Re: Requested addition to section 7.1

I would like to split out two issues. The original one as *raised*, now ISSUE-176, was roughly "the process should limit or prohibit 'substantial' changes to the charter between AC review and Announcing a charter", as I understand it.

In summary, I think the change wanted is best effected by improving practice, which is happening bit by bit, rather than adding something to the Process document.

There is a separate one which is "when should work be 'incubated', and where and how" - I won't try to address that issue in this thread.

For the original issue I think the CSS use case is *relatively* weak.

There have been other charter modifications which have been proposed and drawn quite a lot of objection - typically, in a further AC review because W3C has followed the spirit of the existing process at least to the extent of having another round of review after significant changes.

But there has been a long-standing practice, that I hope is changing, of holding discussions about objections solely with those who objected, meaning that any agreement reached with that party doesn't have any a priori backing from the rest of the reviewers.

I have repeatedly suggested that this is bad practice, because it leads to people feeling they have been excluded from the discussion, and potentially surprised by the proposed solution.

Among concrete examples where issues have arisen are the Accessibility Working Groups renewal, the HTML Media Extensions work, the proposed Accessibility Guidelines work, the Hardware Security proposal. Among concrete steps to improve practice have been the creation of the member-charters-review@ mailing list, and discussions about chartering with the AC, initiated either by W3C or by individual members.

As I have noted elsewhere, I don't think that a change to the process will accomplish the goal of not being surprised. The "error-handling" mechanism in the process is AC Appeal, something that has never so far been used. I would venture that the reason it hasn't been used isn't universal satisfaction among the AC, but the perception that AC Appeal is virtually unworkable in practice - a perception that I consider to be wrong.

If we want to improve practice, the best way to go about it is to identify what we want to improve, explain what the improvement entails, and then check whether, after a certain period, things have improved sufficiently, some but not enough, or not really, and act accordingly.

I therefore think that ISSUE-176 can be closed, at least for now. This is not to say that I won't read any concrete proposal carefully, since it is almost certainly possible to make one which is a real improvement to the Process itself.



22.12.2016, 22:13, "fantasai" <>:
> On 12/22/2016 04:44 PM, Jeff Jaffe wrote:
>>  I just want to make sure that I understand the use case. Are you saying
>>  that without the MAY statement (that work may be incubated in WICG), that
>>  it would have been prohibited for CSS to pick up anything that was
>>  incubated in WICG?
> The CSSWG can pick up anything that is in scope for the charter and is
> presented for its adoption (and is not patent-encumbered), regardless
> of the source. However, any such proposal is subject to the CSSWG's
> review and evaluation, and the expectation is that it may be accepted,
> rejected, or adopted with the provision that it needs significant rework
> before being officially accepted.
> The MAY appears to give special consideration to work prepared in the
> WICG, and can be read (and has been read) as being a substitute for
> review and development within the context of the CSSWG.

More than that, it appears that in this use case, the issue is that the MAY was read as a suggestion that this is how things should be done. Certainly there are people who believe that, but that isn't what it apparently says in the charter.

Charles McCathie Nevile - standards - Yandex - - - Find more at

Received on Tuesday, 27 December 2016 06:45:15 UTC