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Re: Documentation of the updated decision process of the DNT WG

From: イアンフェッティ <ifette@google.com>
Date: Wed, 7 Mar 2012 21:01:33 -0800
Message-ID: <CAF4kx8e2uuPnv6BvDa2Nv33eV17U9FdS25or-1UxrriBu8-Y3g@mail.gmail.com>
To: Nicholas Doty <npdoty@w3.org>
Cc: Matthias Schunter <mts@zurich.ibm.com>, "public-tracking@w3.org" <public-tracking@w3.org>
On Wed, Mar 7, 2012 at 8:42 PM, Nicholas Doty <npdoty@w3.org> wrote:

> On Mar 7, 2012, at 4:28 PM, Ian Fette (イアンフェッティ) wrote:
> On Wed, Mar 7, 2012 at 4:13 PM, Nicholas Doty <npdoty@w3.org> wrote:
>> On Mar 7, 2012, at 2:21 PM, Ian Fette (イアンフェッティ) wrote:
>> > I see the discussion of the process, I also see concerns. I don't see
>> any resolution recorded or any vote.
>> >
>> > I will also note that the charter of this group specifically says
>> >
>> > "As explained in the Process Document (section 3.3), this group will
>> seek to make decisions when there is consensus. When the Chair puts a
>> question and observes dissent, after due consideration of different
>> opinions, the Chair should record a decision (possibly after a formal vote)
>> and any objections, and move on.
>> Right. As noted in both the Charter and in the Process Document, chairs
>> may need to record decisions when there is dissent in order for the group
>> to move on, a formal vote is one step that may be involved. Here, Aleecia
>> and Matthias are just documenting how they plan to record decisions (text
>> proposals and counter-proposals, calls for objections, Working Group
>> decision, re-opening on new information).
> According to 3.4, a vote is in order when all means of reaching consensus
> have failed and a vote is necessary to proceed past deadlock. In this case,
> there are requirements that MUST be followed for the vote. The charter of
> this WG states that we will attempt consensus, and that if we cannot reach
> it, the chairs will, after "consideration of different opinions, the Chair
> should record a decision (possibly after a formal vote) and any objections,
> and move on."
> Right, chairs consider opinions and record decisions, possibly after a
> formal vote. The Process doesn't require formal votes, it just recommends
> against their use in all substantive cases except a lack of any other way
> to overcome a deadlock. (I feel like I'm repeating myself here, sorry; let
> me know what I can do to clarify.)

If there is a decision in a WG meeting to close an issue, then so be it.
But that should be either a consensus decision or a formal vote, not a
unanimous action by the chairs. It is inaccurate to characterize the lack
of solution as the lack of a problem or the lack of interest in the problem.

> "If no text proposals are written for an issue, the chairs may choose to
> close the issue for apparent lack of interest." does not jive well with
> that. An issue implies a lack of consensus. It may be that there is no good
> alternate text that solves an issue and that the best the group can do is
> to drop a part of the spec as there is no text that will lead to consensus
> and/or an implementable solution.
> As the chairs have noted several times on calls and at the last
> face-to-face, a perfectly valid text proposal for an issue would be the
> lack of text, or that a piece of existing text should be removed.
> The Chairs should not be empowered to merely close an issue which
> indicates a lack of consent by implying that the lack of alternate text is
> an "apparent lack of interest".
> If an issue is raised, opened for discussion by the group and no one is
> willing to propose a resolution for it upon consideration by the group, I'm
> not sure the value of keeping it open, especially since we can re-open
> issues when new arguments or information arises. That being said, I believe
> there have been cases on calls where the group has chosen to postpone (just
> leave as "raised" rather than "open") issues that we knew we wanted to come
> back to, if for example an issue depended on the outcome of some other
> issue.

As I said earlier, the lack of a solution does not indicate the lack of a
problem. Having a list of open issues that people feel are valid and
unresolved is valuable for people reviewing the spec, be they working group
members or not, and contributes to people having an understanding of the
issues around the spec and its implementability.

> I think the past five weeks have seen a lot of progress from the group
> partly because of the focus on providing text proposals for open issues. If
> you think the chairs are proposing closing an issue and are incorrect about
> the lack of interest, please speak up! The chairs will usually at that
> point suggest that you take an action to write some sort of proposal for
> that issue; as the Process notes elsewhere, a good objection proposes
> changes that would address the objection.

The process document states "If no text proposals are written for an issue,
the chairs may choose to close the issue for apparent lack of interest." --
this is the specific point I am objecting to. If it said "the chairs may
propose to the group closing the issue" that would be one thing, but this
proposed process document implies something quite different that I do not
agree with.

> Hope this helps,
> Nick
Received on Thursday, 8 March 2012 05:02:01 UTC

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