Re: Re SGML URC spec comments

Brian Behlendorf (
Sun, 25 Jun 1995 21:09:27 -0700 (PDT)

Date: Sun, 25 Jun 1995 21:09:27 -0700 (PDT)
From: Brian Behlendorf <>
Subject: Re: Re SGML URC spec comments
To: Terry Allen <>
Cc: Paul Hoffman <>,
In-Reply-To: <>
Message-Id: <>

On Sun, 25 Jun 1995, Terry Allen wrote:
> In any event, *I'm* questioning the
> right of anybody, without permission, to overlay their speech on
> documents I publish on the Web.

To that I agree, but how the user agent decides to implement global
annotations and SOAPs is crucial to this issue.  I don't remember hearing
about it in the context of being a transparent overlay that would replace
text like a series of "diff"-style patches.  That's editing, not annotating -
the ability for me as a reader of the document to put "I don't agree" next to
an exact sentence in a document is completely different from my ability to
erase it and write something new.  I as the commentator would want my words
to be shown as distinctly different from the author's words as possible.  A
browser that didn't make that distinction would be useless. 

> this
> is about whether publishers on the Web will be allowed to control 
> the conditions under which their information is presented.  You can
> be certain that if they cannot do that with present technology they
> will be in the market for future technology that allows them to.

In other words, a closed technology using closed addressing and 
transmission protocols which would prohibit attaching any useful 
metainformation.  Yes, that's a danger.  This hasn't seemed to keep 
companies from posting marketing materials to USENET though. :)  In fact 
every one of our clients wants threaded discussion boards in one form or 


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