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Re: DOI and the non-IETF tree

From: Michael Mealling <michael@neonym.net>
Date: 12 Sep 2003 10:00:29 -0400
To: "Daniel R. Tobias" <dan@tobias.name>
Cc: uri@w3.org
Message-Id: <1063375229.6800.33.camel@blackdell.neonym.net>

On Fri, 2003-09-12 at 07:27, Daniel R. Tobias wrote:
> On 11 Sep 2003 at 20:54, Al Gilman wrote:
>  > DOI sounds like a second run at defining URNs that seems to have
>  > acquired a following and demonstrated interoperable practice.
> But shouldn't it be "urn:doi:" instead of just "doi:"?  If it's URN-
> like, why not make it an actual URN?

That has been the issue from the beginning. DOI (handles) were actually
part of the URN discussions way back in '93. Handles are the reason the
'p' flag exists in the URI Resolution mechanism. Larry Lanom was there
in all of the meetings. He knows full well that key parts of the URN
design were specifically put there to accommodate handles. Contrary to
what some in the DOI world think, DOIs have always been valid URNs and
could have easily sidestepped this entire discussion and issue by simply
registering as a URN namespace.

The only reason I can come up with that they wouldn't want to do that is
that they see the entire URN space as competition for their namespace
(sorry guys, I'm tired of not calling it as I see it). There is _NO_
requirement that they use the DDDS resolution mechanism (none of the
currently registered URNs use it so that point even has an existence
proof). The only requirements that putting a 'urn:' in front of their
namespace creates is a) no reassignment which they already do and b)
some character restrictions which they already adhere to.

If they'd simply registered urn:doi (or urn:handle:) 4 years ago the way
they kept promising me they would and the way everyone told them to do
it they wouldn't be having this problem. Given that history and amount
of headache they're now going through with this attempt, I can see no
other reason for this request than their attempt to create a monopoly
namespace that will compete directly against URNs and other standards.

The amount of business development I've seen being done by CNRI (a
non-profit!) in other fora (every where you go you hear that someone
from DOI land has been in to talk about using DOIs for everything from
keywords to UDDI replacements) leads me to believe that they are
attempting to build their own proprietary, CNRI run alternative to URIs
(complete with a private DNS-like root!). I have no problem with someone
suggesting alternative technologies but the disingenuous nature of these
requests strikes me as insulting to both the W3C and the IETF. At the
very least it runs counter to both organizations stated goals of open
and non-proprietary infrastructure.

Received on Friday, 12 September 2003 10:05:17 UTC

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