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RE: TAG productivity, elections, and httpRange-14

From: Larry Masinter <masinter@adobe.com>
Date: Tue, 24 Apr 2012 06:01:26 -0700
To: "www-tag@w3.org" <www-tag@w3.org>
Message-ID: <C68CB012D9182D408CED7B884F441D4D194AB19E44@nambxv01a.corp.adobe.com>
I find your objection strange, to say the least. The whole point of making these very minor tweaks to the election process is to make it possible for more candidates to apply, because it makes it possible for them to actually win. The current election process means that the primary factor in winning is name recognition.

Let me be more explicit about what I'm trying to optimize.  Of course these are my personal opinions:

Premise (I don't know if anyone shares this sense of urgency, but it's an important topic):   What the web needs most urgently, among all of the things web development is faced with, is a consistent architectural approach to security, privacy, identity, and related topics.   What we have now is a chaos of competing and often inconsistent technical proposals, in a context where there are tremendous market forces between ICANN, DNS providers, security companies, social networking companies, search engines, all of whom may be well intentioned but who have a vested interest in retaining and increasing some part of their ownership of the space of identity and control.  Along the way, we have related battles about rights, copyright, rights management, and so forth.

The reason why this is more urgent than most other topics is that those who want to work and play and do business on the web are faced with an array of, for lack of a better phrase, "evil doers" - those who would create spam, phishing, security exploits, and use the disparity and inconsistency between independently developed security and identity systems to do so.  We can wait for dancing hyperlinked smell-o-vision to work itself out.

We can't wait on security.

For the TAG to be able to effectively contribute to the solution rather than to the problem, in my opinion, what the TAG needs most in terms of membership more expertise in security, privacy, protocol design. ((I am not a security expert, but I feel like I play one on the TAG.))

During the last TAG election, I did try to solicit nominations for TAG membership with those skills. I didn't ask individual candidates - I asked W3C AC reps (who are authorized to nominate members) who also participate in IETF, pointing out the need.  I think it would be also useful to have more TAG members familiar with IETF protocols, documents, and architecture, as many of the security and identity protocols are developed in IETF.

I didn't come up with anyone willing to nominate anyone, or willing to run.

It sounds nice to say that you want to offer more "open" discussion during TAG elections. But as with most things, every perceived benefit also has a cost.

 *   Making TAG elections more like the political election circus, full of innuendo and character assassination, doesn't seem like it would increase the attractiveness.    To be honest, I don't know for certain whether asking candidates to post a public statement or participate in pre-election discussions would be somehow put off, but I think so. The TAG deep-ending on other issues might also be part of the issue.

 *   Statements made during the election period should carry less weight, not more, than someone's record as a participant in open standards deliberations.  Those who want to know about candidate Carvalho for the TAG can look at the public mail archive:


and can see contributions over the years, at least in W3C.

Received on Tuesday, 24 April 2012 13:02:01 UTC

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