"trouble maker"

Keith Moore moore at cs.utk.edu
Sun Jun 22 18:16:25 CEST 2003

> For those of us who have chair IETF WG, I am sure we have encountered, 
> one time or another, members of the group whom we considered "trouble 
> maker".

The flip side of this is the WG that just won't get it - no matter how valid
the issues that are raised, the group brands the individual a "trouble maker"
and refuses to do anything about them other than to try to marginalize him or
her.  No matter how well-supported that individual's arguments are, they are
dismissed as specious - or the group will even claim that the arguments or
evidence have not been presented.  This is most likely to happen when the
group sees the individual as "not one of us" - e.g. not an employee of a
vendor of the products that the group is trying to standardize. 

So if we're going to mention the troublemaker issue in the document (and I
agree it's a valid issue), we should mention this issue also.

I've also seen groups get hung up for months because they couldn't make a
decision to stop arguing.  They'll blame it on the troublemaker, but the
troublemaker isn't the real problem - the problem is that the group isn't
willing or able to make a decision in the presence of any controversy.
Sometimes the right thing for a group to do is to document the controversy
and move on.  And sometimes the right thing is to ask for wider review of a
design decision.

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