Re: [ga] Working Groups
On Sun, Jan 13, 2002 at 07:02:03PM -0500, Sandy Harris wrote:
> > What sort of power do you expect the WG to have over the SOs for example?
> We're talking a bit at cross purposes here. Let me try to clarify.
> What I'm trying to do is advocate a model more like (my understanding of)
> the way the IETF does things rather than the current way ICANN does them.
IETF WGs are an excellent model for what the GA *could* be doing, but
not, I think, for what you think the GA *should* be doing: IETF WGs are
fundamentally *document-producing systems*, not *decision systems*.
This is an absolutely fundamental distinction. The documents that the
IETF produces, as a general rule, have absolutely no binding effect on
anyone; you (or a company) can follow an RFC or not, as you please.
Basically, the IETF produces documents, and whether they have any effect
is completely dependent on how the public reacts to them. In fact, the
IETF is perfectly capable of producing incompatible, competing protocols
for doing the same basic function.
If you transfer that model to the DNSO, then there would be great
freedom to form working groups on any topic relevant to the DNSO, but
the documents that those WGs produced would not be binding on anyone.
You could form one WG to define and clarify a particular view of how
things should be done; and I could from a second, competing WG to
explain the same thing. The WGs could each produce documents that were
the consensus of their respective WGs, but there would be absolutely no
presumption that the process developed any policy that was in any way
binding on ICANN or anyone else.
> So, in that context, I'm saying I'd like to see roles much more like the
> IETF system of Working Groups overseen by Area Directors and the IESG
> (Internet Engineering Steering Committee).
If you go back over the archives of WG "D" (the WG on WGs), I think it
was (one of the userful things the IETF does is require mnenomics for
WGs -- much better than the nonsense of using single letter names), you
will find proposals for exactly this kind of stuff.
> Restrict the Names Council and ICANN Board from rewriting WG proposals.
> They can reject a proposal, or send it back to the WG for a rewrite, but
> not rewrite it themselves. On overall policy matters, they might generate
> pronouncements like the IESG/IAB RFC 1984. However, the basic model is
> that decisions are made by Working Groups.
You are very confused about the IETF, I'm afraid.
> Scrap the idea that the Names Council should ever appoint a closed Task
> Force rather than setting up an open Working Group to deal with a problem.
> Scrap the notion of constituencies. Let them join the Working Groups.
You know the saying about those who don't know history are condemned to
repeat it? You are proposing that we repeat history. We tried open
WGs and they don't work for the purpose you imagine they do.
Kent Crispin "Be good, and you will be
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