Call for Review, W3C Process2015

Dear AC representative, WG Chair, or member of the public,

Please review the current draft of Process2015 [1] and respond by 31 
March. Comments should be sent to 
<> and may be copied to any list you think 
relevant to the comment. This draft document [1], also has a link to a 
diff document showing changes from Process2014.

On July 31, 2014 we announced [2],

“The AB is re-launching the [Process Document] TF with two tasks: 
ProcessDoc2015, a short term structural update and the prioritization 
and processing of the outstanding issues. The short term structural 
update has three sub-tasks: (1) the removal of "Activities" a step 
already approved by the AB; (2) splitting the current Process document 
into three separate documents: an "administrative" document containing 
introduction/references/table of contents, a document relevant to 
Members, and a document with information relevant to participants in 
general that includes the Recommendation process but also things like 
group decisions, and who can participate under what conditions; and (3) 
fixing editorial issues that arose with the 2014 Process document and 
any other issues on which consensus is reached in time to allow at least 
two rounds of AC review.”

This work has been substantially completed so this is the first of the 
above “two rounds of AC review. ” At the request of the editor the 
document has not been split into three separate documents because that 
increased the difficulty of maintenance. But, the other projected 
changes and some additional ones on which consensus was reached (see 
below for a list of these) have been made.

We are asking for wide review of this document so that comments can be 
received and acted upon in time to have an AC Review Document sent to 
the AC prior to the May 5-7, 2015 AC Meeting. The closing date of March 
31 for comments was chosen to allow the TF to complete comment 
processing in April and prepare the AC Review Draft.  At the time of 
this message, there is only one open issue, Issue-152 [3] on section 
7.7.2 and for this issue there is a note in the document noting the 
issue. See below (after the change list) for additional information on 
the issue.

Please read the document and send any concerns to <> .

The second task in the July 2014 announcement was to begin work on 
Process2016 to deal with issues that need more discussion. That work is 
still in progress.

Jeff Jaffe, Chair, W3C Advisory Board
Charles McCathie Nevile, Editor, W3C Process Document
Steve Zilles, Chair, W3C Technical Report Development Task Force




_List of Changes_

  * Remove Activities from the Process (as resolved multiple times since
  * Remove Good Standing in a Working Group
  * Remove Coordination groups - ISSUE-129
  * Loosen constraints on multiple employees of a single member being on
    TAG - section 2.5.1
  * Replace "W3C Chair" with "CEO" and preserve instances that have a
    clear role such as chairing the AC and AB meetings
  * Remove section 6.2.7 "Heartbeat" publishing requirement, in favor of
    the first requirement of section 7.3.2
  * Editorial cleanups to Wide Review (e.g. add liaisons to be
    considered in wide review)
  * Editorial Changes to 7.7.1 Errata Management - ISSUE-141

A detailed list of resolutions of the TF are in Summary of Resolutions 
re Process 2015

_Discussion of Issue-152_

It has been asserted that Process2014 
<> has made the publication of 
Edited Recommendations more difficult in the case when they only have 
corrections that do not affect conformance and that this change was 
un-intended. For this kind of change, Process2005 
<> does not require any 
“technical review of the proposed changes.” This also holds for 
Process2014, but an additional step, publication as a Proposed 
Recommendation, has been added.

One focus of the discussion was whether there is a clear enough boundary 
between "editorial changes" and "substantive changes" to separate cases 
2 and 3 of the classes of changes, section 7.2.5 of Process2014

The test example was the case where, in the preparation of the REC, an 
update was made in one place in the specification, causing a second 
place in the specification to conflict with the update. That is, the 
second place should have been updated as well.

It is clear that the intent of the working group was to make the change 
they thought they had completely made. There was a discussion as to 
whether fixing the "second place" above would be an "editorial" (class 
2) change or a "substantive" (class 3) change. Arguments can be made for 
both interpretations. It was noted that an implementer may have only 
consulted the second place (and missed the update to the first place) so 
that making a change to the second place could affect his/her 
implementation. It was also noted that since such updates seem to be 
allowed by the 2005 Process, this does not seem to be a problem in practice.

The discussion of this issue has been broadened to include a discussion 
of Patent considerations; that is, whether a definition of "editorial 
change" can be specific enough that a simple process can verify a given 
set of changes are "editorial" and do not (or most likely do not) 
introduce possible patent infringements.

By "simple process" above, is meant (a) trusting the Working Group (and 
its chairs), (b) having a Team member confirm the assessment or (c) 
having a short AC review that could detect possible patent issues and 
would then trigger a full Call for Exclusions if a patent issue were 
raised. Process 2005 used (a) above.

The two positions that have been expressed are:

1.Patent infringements can be subtle and without a Call for Exclusions 
that would guarantee a Royalty Free License from all participating 
Members the editorial changes could have introduced an (unintentionally) 
required infringement.

2.The changes that (typically) introduce infringements would also change 
conformance requirements and would not be editorial. As noted above, 
changes that clarify ambiguous specifications should be treated as 
changing (making more restrictive) conformance requirements. If this is 
noted in the definition of "editorial changes" then evaluation of a 
given set of editorial changes can be done by a simple process.

The Process Document TF seeks input from the AC to resolve this issue, 
both in clarifying the definition of “editorial change” and what level 
of process is necessary to make such changes.

Received on Friday, 6 March 2015 18:20:23 UTC