My resignation

Steve Crocker steve at
Sun Apr 19 00:14:31 CEST 2009


I have been following much of this dialog and I am familiar with the  
general set of issues involved here.  I have also been around for a  
long time, and I do not work for Google nor do I depend on them for  
income.  I now serve on the Board of ICANN and I served on the Board  
of ISOC from 2003 to 2006.  I was heavily involved in creating the  
present financial support structure for the IETF, i.e. the creation of  
the IASA, its oversight board IAOC, and the funding arrangements now  
in place to support the IETF.

Your third paragraph, "I understand that the IETF've become a  
subsidiary of ISOC ... this is too much control in one place" is  
simply wrong.  The IETF is extremely sensitive about its independence  
and avoidance of capture by large interests.  All of the parties you  
named fully understand the need for independence and work carefully to  
preserve it.  Moreover, Vint Cerf, though he works for Google, is  
above reproach and contributes enormous amounts of his time to public  
service that are not controlled by or aligned with Google's interests.

The IETF is founded on the principle that participation is by  
individuals, not organizations.  No organization, no matter whether it  
is large or small, controls the IETF processes.

Restricting of posting privileges to a working group is done  
reluctantly, rarely, and only after very substantial effort has been  
expended to find useful ways to interact.  It is unfortunate such  
action was required in this case.  I know Vint and everyone wishes it  
had not been necessary.  However, after lengthy interaction and many  
attempts to keep the discussion focused on the topic, it was necessary.

Steve Crocker

On Apr 18, 2009, at 5:46 PM, LB wrote:

> Dear IETF Members,
> Sorry, I do not speak but I read Engslih. I use Google translation.
> google translation:
> JFC Morfin asked me to interface our working groups, france @ large,  
> with the IETF. I was badly received by some. Then I had the chance  
> to talk with serious people, respectful of my ignorance, mindful of  
> my user inputs. I participated in the WG-IDNABIS and I could share  
> here, with dedicated people, wishing to work for the common good.  
> They were also subject to the problem of financing by sponsors  
> described by the IAB in RFC 3869.
> Today, two brilliant and dedicated contributors to the WG-IDNABIS  
> have been banned, in a quarter of an hour. By decision and execution  
> of members of Google.
> I understand that the IETF've become a subsidiary of ISOC and the  
> consortium of its biggest members. I understand that Google pays its  
> expenses. I understand the enormous interests involved to control  
> the global namespace (rather than just domain names, but the words  
> of semantic processing). However, one root for the IPs, one root for  
> the DNS, one root for languages, and now a root for the spelling of  
> words, this is too much control in one place.
> I'm too old for that. I quit after copying the mail of one of the  
> deportees that you did not receive. It is important because it is  
> very firm, but it also calls for reconciliation in a practical  
> manner. I hope that the other expelled, will do the same.	
> French text:
> JFC Morfin m'avait demandé d'interfacer nos groupes de travail,  
> france at large, avec l'IETF. J'ai d'abord été méchament accueilli par  
> certains. Puis j'ai eu la chance de discuter avec des gens sérieux,  
> respectueux de mes ignorances, soucieux de mes apports  
> d'utilisateur. J'ai participé au WG-IDNABIS et j'ai pu échanger là,  
> avec des gens dévoués, désirant travailler pour le bien commun. Ils  
> étaient aussi soumis au problème du financement par les sponsors  
> décrit par l'IAB dans la RFC 3869.
> Aujourd'hui, deux membres brilants et dédiés contributeurs du WG- 
> IDNABIS ont été bannis, en un quart d'heure. Par décision et  
> exécution de Membres de Google.
> Je comprends que l'IETF ai du devenir une filliale de l'ISOC et le  
> consortium de ses plus gros membres. Je comprends que Google paie  
> ses dépenses. Je comprends les énormes intérêts en jeu pour  
> contrôler le nommage mondial (non plus seulement les noms de  
> domaine, mais les mots des processeurs sémantiques). Cependant, une  
> racine pour les IPs, une racine pour le DNS, une racine pour les  
> langues, et maintenant une racine pour l'orthographe des termes,  
> cela fait trop de contrôle dans un seul endroit.
> Je suis trop vieux pour cela. Je démissionne après avoir copié le  
> mail d'un des expulsés que vous n'avez pu recevoir. Il est important  
> car il est trés ferme, mais il appelle aussi à la réconciliation de  
> façon pratique. J'espère que l'autre expulsé, fera de même.
> JFC je reste dans le groupe de travail et au comptoir. Enlève moi  
> partout ailleurs. Explique mon départ. Je suis écoeuré pour  
> l'instant. Je sais que tu comprendras. De tout coeur avec ce que  
> Patrick Yeu veut dire. Il faut vivre avec ces gens là pour  
> comprendre combien ils sont pénibles, mais aussi parfois magnifiques.
> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> From: Xavier Legoff <xlegoff at>
> Date: 2009/4/18
> Subject: Re: [listegenerale] Removal of posting privileges
> To: Vint Cerf <vint at>
> Cc : listegenerale at, housley at, lisa  
> Dusseault <lisa at>, Idna-update at, lisa  
> Dusseault <lisa.dusseault at>
> 2009/4/18 Vint Cerf <vint at>
> >
> > Harald,
> > please remove the posting privileges of the email addresses:
> >
> > renardinr at    "remy renardin"
> > xlegoff at     "xavier legoff"
> >
> > These posters show no ability to participate constructively in the  
> consensus building process.
> > Vint Cerf
> > Chair, IDNABIS
> > _______________________________________________
> > Idna-update mailing list
> > Idna-update at
> >
> >
> Dear Mr. Cerf,
> I am afraid that this is an ukase.
> Yet, there is no king or tsar in the IETF.
> You are welcome to enable your company to benefit from the IETF  
> along the new ISOC vision, in order to exclude your competition and  
> users, but at least do this while respecting the IETF rules.
> We have sufficiently proven time and time again that we participate  
> constructively. We have provided enough information to seriously  
> support our position: now it is up to the governments, experts,  
> managers, and users to judge.
> The only problem that we have observed thus far is that consensus  
> was headed our way. We have no doubt that the technical solution,  
> which the Internet will eventually use, will be rather near the one  
> that clearly not only we support. Maybe this is because we are the  
> users and - how large can it really be? - a single operator only  
> lives off of the money of its respective users.
> I cannot prejudge the position of others, as I only joined JFC via  
> Skype.
> 1) We request people to NOT DoS this WG. Please wait for the  
> IDNA2008 to be presented to the IETF/LC. The only need for  
> interoperability with any ML-DNS solution/application, of any kind  
> or by anyone, is for the Charter to be respected: i.e. no mapping at  
> the protocol level.
> 2) Please do NOT claim that there is a COI. There is a simple WG  
> management problem that was created by someone who needs to reread  
> the IETF rules, who in turn thought himself to be exclusive, and now  
> has to tackle an unexpected technical clarification in order to  
> address a problem (missing presentation layer) that many eventually  
> thought was a feature.
> Google is important for the Internet and we all benefit from it.  
> Moreover, their last quarterly results show that they are confronted  
> with their centralized architecture problem earlier than was  
> expected due to the current crisis.
> As their users, we now have to accompany them in their very long way  
> to go to the fully distributed people centric architecture that we  
> consensually agreed upon. We, then, were all of the countries of the  
> world, civil society, private sector, public powers, international  
> organizations, and every stakeholder, ... except for the IETF who  
> might have thought that they could tell all of us, forever, the way  
> to spell better in our own native languages.
> 3) Please do NOT harass ISOC for the way that they want to assume  
> the IETF governance and financing. We have been illegally banned. We  
> were NOT bought out. However, RFC 3935 certainly has to be enhanced.  
> We are interested in discussing an RFC 3935bis BOF.
> We also have not been banned from ISOC France. Set out to oppose  
> ISOC only if they also expel us, because in so doing you will  
> thereby defend the IETF that we truly believe in and that we have  
> joined through the IUCG: it is not for sale, it is only to serve.
> Multilingualization is something complex, in which we are now going  
> to work on, in peace. This is because we now know that this WG/ 
> IDNABIS is unable to match multilingualization's very prerequisites:  
> to live with others, to be polite, to be respectful, to care and not  
> to expel, to inform oneself, not to repeat the same propositions  
> that did not work, to have some multilingualistic competence and at  
> least some multilateral spirit. We also want to thank all of its  
> members who, kindly or more formally, supported us. We hope that  
> they will pursue and perhaps even complete the job that was  
> described by the Charter.
> Therefore, someone needs to take this job over now. Who, other than  
> the people and lead users of the world, is better suited for this  
> job? That task will not be easy. However, there is no other way  
> around all this, since ISOC sold the soul of the IETF to its  
> Platinum members, and its Gold members are expelling their  
> competition.
> I am surprised to have come to sign such a texte after so short a  
> time of duty at the IETF. However, I started to like it - in spite  
> of the egos, blazés, aggressive ones. I want this adventure of  
> thousands of people building a new world with T-Shirts, to survive  
> ISOC sponsors' money, political creeps, commercial priorities, and  
> continue to help us, the users and the people.
> Xavier Legoff
> _______________________________________________
> listegenerale mailing list
> listegenerale at
> -- 
> LB
> _______________________________________________
> Ietf mailing list
> Ietf at

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