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Re: [whatwg] New URL Standard from Anne van Kesteren on 2012-09-24 (public-whatwg-archive@w3.org from September 2012)

From: Ted Hardie <ted.ietf@gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 23 Oct 2012 15:02:27 -0700
Message-ID: <CA+9kkMBg=hxz=yRYfYA5Hkwp-4ODFBnpK_qctCMB_oEHLPP49g@mail.gmail.com>
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Cc: URI <uri@w3.org>, IETF Discussion <ietf@ietf.org>
On Tue, Oct 23, 2012 at 2:34 PM, Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch> wrote:
>> If you choose not call what you're doing a "URL" but by some other
>> term ("fleen" is my favorite), then the issue does not arise
> Since the IETF doesn't call it a URL anyway, I don't see the problem with
> terminology.

Please see RFC 3986, Section 1.1.3, which says:

   "A URI can be further classified as a locator, a name, or both.  The
   term "Uniform Resource Locator" (URL) refers to the subset of URIs
   that, in addition to identifying a resource, provide a means of
   locating the resource by describing its primary access mechanism
   (e.g., its network "location").  The term "Uniform Resource Name"
   (URN) has been used historically to refer to both URIs under the
   "urn" scheme [RFC2141], which are required to remain globally unique
   and persistent even when the resource ceases to exist or becomes
   unavailable, and to any other URI with the properties of a name."

While the document does recommend the use of the more generic term
"URI" it defines URL clearly and in a way that is significantly
different from that used in Anne's document and which you have
described as the aim of your work.

Note also that Anne's document contains this text:

"Align RFC 3986 and RFC 3987 with contemporary implementations and
obsolete them in the process."

Unless you get buy-in from the community that produced RFC 3986 and
RFC 3987, the production of this document *will* result in a fork, and
that is damaging to the Internet.  I urge you to pick a different term
(several far more useful ones than fleen have been suggested) and
avoid this needless conflict.  The WhatWG choosing to redefine IETF
standards is not contributing to a better web; it's simply making it
less clear for those outside the small cabal of standards workers what
they should do when faced with a URL.  Un-marked context shifts are
likely, and likely to be bad.  Avoiding them by picking a new term is
both easy and appropriate.

My personal opinion, as always,


Ted Hardie
Received on Tuesday, 23 October 2012 22:02:54 UTC

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