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FW: Proposed Procedures for handling Last Call comments.

From: Gregg Vanderheiden <gv@trace.wisc.edu>
Date: Thu, 4 May 2006 14:43:48 -0500
To: <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <00d901c66fb3$10a648c0$ee8cfea9@NC6000BAK>


Below are the procedures we discussed last week.


Am posting so we can discuss today 


Gregg and John







1.             All incoming comments for all drafts are entered into a special last call comment tracking system.


2.             A triage team sorts the comments into the following categories.


                a.             Typographical and formatting errors


                b.             Editorial comments


                c.             Substantive and 


d.             future working draft.


3.             Items in category (a) (typos etcetera) are forwarded to Ben to be made directly and the comments are accepted.  If Ben detects an error or thinks it is substantive or editorial he refers it to the chairs for re‑categorization.


4.             Items in the editorial category (b) are handled by the editors.  They are edited or proposals are made and entered into the tracking database.  A report of the edits is then reviewed by the working group prior to acceptance.  Anything that is deemed substantive moves to that category.


5.             The items in the substantive category (c) are forwarded to the most closely related task force team.  Each team has a set of topics or sections it is focusing on.  The team first looks to see if there are any existing past issues and resolutions in Bugzilla that relate to this item.  Other significant discussions or decisions that relate to the item are also noted.  This information is all entered into the database in the “related discussions and decisions field”.  At this point the working group takes one of three actions:


a.                   They propose a resolution and resolution text for the item and enter it into the working notes field in the database.


b.                   They ask that the item be put on the agenda for discussion on our weekly call (if they do not know how to resolve the issue).


c.                    If they suspect that there will be multiple comments on an item that should be addressed simultaneously, they wait until the rest of the comments have come in. (Even if they are going to delay however they still do the preliminary step of identifying issues and links that relate to this item).


6.             As items have proposed resolutions they are considered by the full working group using our current survey and discuss procedure.  Resolutions are reached and recorded in the WG Resolutions field.


7.             Commenters are contacted and the resolution for each comment is presented to them.  They can either accept or reject the resolution.   We try to resolve all comments to the commenter’s satisfaction.    



8.  For resolution we will be following the official rules which are as follows.

3.3.3 Formally Addressing an Issue

In the context of this document, a group has formally addressed an issue when it has sent a public, substantive response to the reviewer who raised the issue. A substantive response is expected to include rationale for decisions (e.g., a technical explanation, a pointer to charter scope, or a pointer to a requirements document). The adequacy of a response is measured against what a W3C reviewer would generally consider to be technically sound. If a group believes that a reviewer's comments result from a misunderstanding, the group SHOULD seek clarification before reaching a decision.

As a courtesy, both Chairs and reviewers SHOULD set expectations for the schedule of responses and acknowledgments. The group SHOULD reply to a reviewer's initial comments in a timely manner. The group SHOULD set a time limit for acknowledgment by a reviewer of the group's substantive response; a reviewer cannot block a group's progress. It is common for a reviewer to require a week or more to acknowledge and comment on a substantive response. The group's responsibility to respond to reviewers does not end once a reasonable amount of time has elapsed. However, reviewers SHOULD realize that their comments will carry less weight if not sent to the group in a timely manner.

Substantive responses SHOULD be recorded. The group SHOULD maintain an accurate summary of all substantive issues and responses to them (e.g., in the form of an issues list with links to mailing list archives).





1.  Where we have reached consensus on a topic we do not reopen the topic unless new evidence has been identified and the majority feel that the topic should be reopened and discussed because it is likely that we will reach a different consensus decision.  (Official policy is that re-opening is at discretion of chair(s). )


2.  Decisions are made on merit not on the number of comments for or against a particular item.  

       -  We do not have a valid random sample of the field so we cannot make judgment based on counts.  

       -  This isn’t a popularity contest.  

       -  We are also likely to get many more comments from individuals who against rather than agree with any particular current position.  


Received on Thursday, 4 May 2006 19:45:02 UTC

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