Section 2.4 of draft-ietf-problem-statement-00.txt

Keith Moore moore at
Fri Feb 28 14:38:12 CET 2003

> Apart from this being a solution statement, it doesn't sufficiently clearly
> put over the idea that the current arrangement doesn't have enough people
> wielding the authority and influence. 'Too few' is certainly a judgement
> call but if you believe it needs to delegate, then is that not a vindication
> of this call? Anyway, in a sense all this paper is entirely about judgement
> calls!  Your subsequent response to Ran indicated that you felt that fingers
> were being pointed here:  That wasn't intended but maybe something like 'The
> IESG is does not have enough members to effectively wield all the authority
> that it has' might appear more neutral.

that also begs a particular form of solution, perhaps not an appropriate one.

maybe we can get consensus on a statement for what is observed external
to IESG, and then present differing views for what is actually happening?
(and make it clear that these are divergent opinions)
especially since there can be multiple causes (independent or not) for the
same symptom.

> Again I think the alternative wording masks the problem point:  As is said
> later, the problem is possibly that ADs appear fireproof because there is no
> sanction short of the recall process,

not true.  first of all, 'sanction' is not appropriate when the AD is doing
his/her job.  second, there is already considerable pressure for ADs to push
documents through and considerable pain when they do not do so (whether or
not those documents merit approval).  if memory serves, we've had several 
ADs quit rather suddely due to overwork, stress, or worse.

ADs aren't fireproof - they can get burned rather badly.

> > I think this should be preceded by
> > 
> >     Successive IETF Nominating Committees have chosen to give heavy
> >     weight to continuity of IESG and IAB membership. Thus, 
> > the IETF appears...
> I agree ... an earlier pre-draft had some less good words to this effect,
> although we should be careful not to push all the blame onto the NOMCOM(s).

the whole 'ruling class' language is plainly finger pointing and needs to go.
or if you want to make it clear that this is a common perception, fine,
(because that is certainly true that the perception exists) but distinguish it
from the problem statement.

> The lack of a formal hierarchy does make it extraordinarily difficult for
> people to get involved unless they are quite extrovert - and I do think that
> this happens - it is said in another way at the end of 2.6.

someone came up to me when I was AD and asked me in effect "How do I become
successful within IETF".  My answer: "find some problem that needs solving
and contribute to solving it."  He has done that multiple times, and he's
now widely recognized as being a useful contributor, and his opinion carries
weight.  No, he's not an extravert.

> The sentence was not necessarily intended to imply that the IESG as a whole
> ever did this: For the purposes of this draft I don't know that we need to
> go into this issue in a more detailed way - suffice it to say that 'black
> balling' mechanisms are not desirable.

how can 'black balling' be distinguished from IESG doing its job?

> Clearly this feeds into the quality control discussion as well, but the
> point is that authority is concentrated into the hands of a small subset of
> the IESG in such a way that
> it can frustrate the whole process by stopping progress rather than
> providing positive input.

widespread belief;  not demonstrated.

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