Revising W3C Process Community Group

14 April 2021


plh, weiler, wseltzer
fantasai, jeff

Meeting minutes

Agenda Bashing

dsinger: Coments on agenda?

PSIG Report

wseltzer: Lengthy discussion of registries track

wseltzer: PSIG came away with an understanding of what we were aiming to do here

wseltzer: asked some questions primarily around, was there sufficient clarity on what can be in a registry data table to ensure we don't get material put directly into the registry

wseltzer: to give comfort with the registry track not being subject to patent policy

wseltzer: I invited ppl to come share their questions or comments with the process cg

wseltzer: We didn't take a formal PSIG resolution

wseltzer: Wanted to ask Process CG to ask if wanted anything specific from PSIG

wseltzer: We also brought to them their attention the Process edits on recording of meetings

wseltzer: there was no discussion, just heads up

Fantasai: Being clear that no patented material allowed in data tables
… someone questioned what we said
… we said no normative stuff in registries
… but tokens for algorithms could be in registeries
… but indirect references are already not covered by PP
… so the same what we have
… we shouldn't exclude something from registry track

wseltzer: while we are wording the recordings

dsinger: Suppose we had a registry of W3C abbreviations. There would be no external references, but still a useful registry.

florian: The issue is about referencing normative texts.

wseltzer: Concern is around patentable things, like algorithms

fantasai: E.g. EME registration of formats that link to their specs


dsinger: Should we ban RFC2119 words?

florian: There are other ways to normatively describe requirements

plh: Also registry definition has to use those

florian: Right. But those apply to people, not to implementations.

florian: I don't think there's a real problem, just PSIG getting acquainted with the topic

florian: Not obvious to me the current wording is problematic, just noticed that the topic is worth consideration, and has problematic areas if not defined well

florian: Don't think they've had enough time to look at wording one way or another

wseltzer: I didn't get any specific change requests from them

dsinger: Question of registry definition being under Patent Policy or not, any discussion there?

wseltzer: Not really

florian: We put it on their radar, they're aware of the topic

florian: but should probably assume it's fine until they tell us it's not, but give them some time

dsinger: We've got several cycles of review, so not imminently publishing anyway

jeff: dsinger had asked whether we should get a resolution approved by PSIG

jeff: I think yes

jeff: Since questions have been asked and concerns mentioned

jeff: Would rather start the dialog with them earlier, and cleanest way is to ask for a crisp resolution

jeff: Maybe suggest a resolution

jeff: Would be wise to get them to say yay or nay

jeff: if unable to answer question, we would learn something from that

jeff: better to learn sooner than that

florian: the Process text is clear about interaction with PP atm, what kind of resolution do we want, to restate the text? to accept the text?

jeff: Not sure what resolution is, maybe just no problems forseen in the existing Process text

jeff: Don't want PSIG to raise concern at the last hour

dsinger: Maybe, wseltzer, can you get back to PSIG that we'll keep going, and then will send for review and would want PSIG to weigh in by then

wseltzer: Will look into copying Process 2020 process

florian: fantasai, you had some concern about how REC docs reference registries, do we need to tweak that text?

fantasai too tired to know

florian: So we might need to do some tweaking

dsinger: Not promising our text is frozen anyway

ACTION fantasai figure out if any tweaks need to be made

Action: fantasai: figure out if any tweaks need to be made

florian: ...

Editor's status report

dsinger: Other than Tooling, do we need to land anything?

florian: disclaimer, very long day and may be forgetting things

florian: I believe we have to finish registries, in there, has to be right

florian: need to discuss switching of tracks, that will need to land as well

florian: I think it would be desirable to close the issue on minutes

florian: Would be good to take Tooling and Chairing, but they're independent pieces.

florian: I would like to draw the line to include those

dsinger: But draft is up to date with resolutions?

florian: yes

Issue Triage

dsinger: Didn't notice anything new and pressing

dsinger: also I forgot to remove Agenda+ from some issues, might not really need discussion

Switching Tracks

<dsinger> Switching Tracks #509 <https://github.com/w3c/w3process/issues/509>

github: https://github.com/w3c/w3process/issues/509

florian: I'm happy with the text in the PR now

florian: Anyone else with comments?

dsinger: basically if you switch tracks, you start at the beginning

florian: Yes, the only nuance is that there are Patent implementations for switching to/from REC

florian: Better than copy-paste, because maintain some commitments from before

florian: but it's tricky, so we want people to pay attention to that when switching to/from REC

florian: "A [=technical report=] should not switch away from the [=Recommendation Track=]

without due consideration of the Patent Policy implications

and approval of the W3C’s legal counsel

if the Working Group envisions a likelihood of returning to it later."

florian: You can do it, but we want to avoid doing it accidentally

florian: The check is on leaving the REC track, not returning, because if you need to return to REC track the best thing to do is return to it. But in that case ideally shouldn't have switched away from REC in the first place.

jeff: Curious if we've shared this one with PSIG and asked for any input?

florian: I don't believe we have. Also note this doesn't introduce a new possibility. You can currently go from REC to NOTE and back today.

florian: It's the separation of tracks that we created earlier that makes this switching tracks section necessary

dsinger: We currently mandate abandoned WDs to switch to NOTE

wseltzer: Am I correct that the reason we prohibit REC and PRD switching to NOTE is to avoid confusion about status under shortname?

florian: There's a designated status for abandoned RECs/PRDs (not a NOTE)

dsinger: You've completed the track, so

wseltzer: Why do we have that restriction?

florian: The most important is PRD

florian: Seems weird to switch from "we made a spec with patent commitments, but decided it shouldn't be" seems weird

wseltzer: I'd rather have us make it clear to people what the recommended things to do are, rather than prohobit things

wseltzer: If ancient piece of tech in this PRD, want to use it as exemplary text for something else

florian: This statement doesn't prohibit copy-paste. You can take the content of your PRD and make it something esle.

florian: but if you have a PRD and want to rescind it, can do that.

florian: If you have a PRD, and ppl have implemented it, and then you decide to make it a Note, that's ...

florian: It's weird, nobody wants it, don't do it.

florian: and it's easy to relax restrictions later if we feel like it, but it's hard to undo the problem

florian: If you change PRD to NOTE, material in PRD is still under patent protection, but that would be very non-obvious from the most recently published NOTE

wseltzer: Seems fine. Grammar suggestion.

dsinger: Consensus to include?


Resolution: Merge PR for #509

Alternate AC Rep

github: https://github.com/w3c/w3process/issues/505

dsinger: Do we want to do this? We or the AB need to ask what's practical, not overdefine

florian: I suspect we want to ask Systeam and the legal side.

florian: My sense is that this is desirable, but we need to make sure it's possible

florian: in both respects

florian: I can imagine ways it's not a problem, but that doesn't mean it's right

jeff: I haven't reviewed the legal issues, but I wonder if there are engineering approaches to dealing with this that get us close enough that don't require changin process or legal things

jeff: Two components

jeff: One is keeping multiple alternates informed. ML forwarding, not exactly a challenge.

dsinger: it's ballots that's the concern

jeff: The second thing is the formal things

jeff: a really clunky engineering thing is temporary changes of AC rep

jeff: clunky but doable

jeff: Seems like that's doable today with no change

<TallTed> planned absence is relatively easily handled; unplanned is where it really matters

<jrosewell__> For those where this is a major issue then the AC Rep can be changed temporarily. How big an issue is this in practice? How important is this compared to other issues?

jeff: What's the pain of doing that, compared to complexity of legal process issues

dsinger: Can we do this in a way that minimizes the legal and practical pain

dsinger: Conversation for the Team

florian: sort of thing Jeff just suggested seems to work

florian: I'm not concerned about the ballots, we always keep the latest one

florian: What may not necessarily be fine is that AC rep can do some things that cannot be undone

florian: Joining a WG has patent implications that you can't undo by leaving

florian: Implementation doesn't matter, we can just say we switch back and forth and that's fine, but what if there's a conflict?

jeff: caveat emptor

jeff: In my solution, or in the formal alternate AC rep solution, if an organization makes that change, they have to live with it

dsinger: They chose that person. Sounds like a management problem on their part

wseltzer: I'd love to get more AC input on this question. People so far have said it would be convenient to delegate this role. I wonder if anyone sees it as a valuable limitation, that there is only one person who can hold this role

wseltzer: Some considerations, e.g. have to double people ot reach out to if trying to reach out AC reps, etc.

wseltzer: is this a feature?

wseltzer: Also of course I want to make sure we do it carefully to get the legally binding representation

dsinger: OK, I will send a message to AC-forum requesting input from AC reps

Action: dsinger: Ask ac-forum about alternate AC reps

jeff: I'm not convinced we're ready to ask, because we don't have a proposal

jeff: I don't want to ask the AC conceptually, if need many changes

<jrosewell__> Agree with Jeff

dsinger: Let's leave it then, Jeff and Wendy will talk to the Team

dsinger: wseltzer would look at what would be binding, and Team will look into what's implementable

dsinger: Let's leave this to the Team

jeff: I would like a straw poll, whether the instinctive reaction is more towards a formal definition or is instinctive reaction towards an engineering solution where we can do this within existing Process

dsinger: If I could nominate an alternate, probably me and Tess would designate each other

dsinger: so if can do as a semi-permanent thing, would be better than fiddling with database

<TallTed> durable Alternate solves many more problems than engineering reassignment

jrosewell__: I agree with jeff's comment earlier. Should have a proposla

fantasai: Could do Jeff's solution, just put people on a list of "people who're allowed to set the AC rep of my org"

TallTed: Interesting idea

TallTed: Something happens suddenly, can't set alternate

TallTed: So some kind of set-up that can handle such things

dsinger: Seems that some solution might be desirable, not sure what.

dsinger: so going to leave this with the Team

Define Minutes

github: https://github.com/w3c/w3process/issues/511

dsinger: We discussed in previous meeting, can't remember conclusion

florian: IIRC we were in almost agreement, and then wseltzer quesiton some of the phrasing, which was later fixed

florian: so once we had that agreement, I merged it

dsinger: Anybody think we got this wrong or should I take off agenda?

Resolution: close issue

Suspension/ removal for cause

dsinger: Can't remember why it's on the agenda

florian: I think we tlaked about it already.

florian: We had refactored this section in parallel

florian: This issue isn't closed because not fixed on Director-free branch

florian: So maybe we should close, and let DF branch will solve by rebasing

jeff: it's for DF, we're not doing that in P2021

dsinger: OK, removing Agenda+

Improve AB Chairing

github: https://github.com/w3c/w3process/issues/514

fantasai: AB gave us conceptual agreement, and a number of AB members have approved the text in the proposal

fantasai: I suggest we just merge it into Process 2021


dsinger: Approve?


Resolution: Accept proposed text


jeff: I think text of resolution is fine. i've shared in other discussions think we should incubate before changing Process text, but don't really object, so if consensus then happy to yield to consensus

dsinger: I'm with you, but I'm also aware Chris and others who want Process updated aren't here

dsinger: we can always back it out if necessary


github: https://github.com/w3c/w3process/pull/436

dsinger: I think we're settling on MUSt only for recordkeeping

dsinger: We've got continued debate on geographical restricitons

dsinger: nobody is on either extreme of the argument

dsinger: Somewhere between those two polar opposites is where we need to land, and that's what RFC2119 SHOULD is about

3. SHOULD This word, or the adjective "RECOMMENDED", mean that there

may exist valid reasons in particular circumstances to ignore a

particular item, but the full implications must be understood and

carefully weighed before choosing a different course.

florian: If country has citizens has people who want to participate cannot, is a problem

dsinger: Does that automatically mean we can't use the tool even if no viable alternative?
… find a workaround for them?

dsinger: other opinions?

weiler: interesting geographical and political

weiler: In the interest of moving the overall section forward, may I suggest we strike geographical bit?

weiler: and argue over it for another year?

weiler: You don't have consensus over geography text

weiler: Would want ppl who are affected involved

florian: we've had such peeople involved

<jeff> scribe:

Fantasai: We need to take geographic restrictions into account when selecting our tooling
… people would like that considered
… we made it a SHOULD so it could be a consideration
… striking this and never putting it back would be unacceptable
… can you live with a SHOULD?
… people in regions affected would like an effort to include them.

weiler: No, I can't live with this.

weiler: I might if some caveats around it, but don't want even with a SHOULD.

dsinger: [quotes text]

"Any tooling used by the group for producing its documentation and deliverables or for official group discussions should be usable without additional cost by all who wish to participate, to allow their effective participation regardless of disability or geographical location."

dsinger: We can leave out "regardless of disability or geographical location"

dsinger: Sentence would have same impact, just draw less attention to it

dsinger: thoughts on that?

florian: I think that approach might work. personally I'm also satisfied with a SHOULD. But to go in Sams' direction, I can imagine additional phrasing that would make a difference

<weiler> [also need to take it out in the previous section re: worldwide, but same idea]

florian: We could say things like, "however, access to electricity may be assumed"

florian: can't require participation by snail mail

florian: Need to have general means of electronic communications available

dsinger: Might just be able to delete words though

jeff: I want to know Sa's reaction to dsinger's proposal

weiler: I'm fine with it

fantasai: I can live with it

<wseltzer> +1

dsinger: OK, we'll just stop the sentence early

florian: I'll just do it

weiler: There's multiple places

weiler: There's a reference to worldwide in the other section

weiler: in item 2

fantasai: I'm OK with dropping from item 2

jeff: can we just say for all?

dsinger: Maybe replace "worldwide" with "internationalization"

florian: We're just saying "follow best practices", why is this a problem?

[debate over where we're editing]

weiler: Replace with "internationalization"

dsinger: OK

fantasai: I have concerns actually with the earlier edit, I think it makes the sentence unclear, but I suggest we merge in and ask the AB about it

Resolution: Merge PR with the edits above: end item 4 before "regardless" and switch "accessibility worldwide" to "internationalization and accessibility"

Where are we

florian: I think we're at the point where we check over the text

dsinger: When you're done updating the text, please post a message about that

dsinger: restructuring of document

dsinger: Defining constitutents, define groups (e.g. AB/TAG), define publications, miscellaneous

dsinger: Trying to take seriously concern about document bieng hard to read

dsinger: would like intro to give us a roadmap of the document also

jeff: also +1 to what florian said about really getting a look at the holistic document

jeff: I understand in bits and pieces, we review as a series of PR

jeff: so would like an opportunity to see the changes in totality

jeff: and say, great, those individual things we did realy do hang together!

dsinger: Yes, Florian has action item to prepare document and an explanation of what's been done

florian: Yes, I'll prepare, and we'll all take opporunity to do a holistic review

florian: I'll also make a changelog

plh: Cleaning up wrt AC review comments?

florian: We have addressed some of them, but haven't prioritized all to to the topi

dsinger: Yes, pls look at them

dsinger: OK, seriously over time

dsinger: Next meeting, suggest we cancel

Resolution: Next meeting cancelled

dsinger: Please use spare time to look at ??, things we tagged and prioritzed for 2021, and AC comments from last time

dsinger: with that, let's adjourn

Meeting adjourned.

Summary of action items

  1. fantasai: figure out if any tweaks need to be made
  2. dsinger: Ask ac-forum about alternate AC reps

Summary of resolutions

  1. Merge PR for #509
  2. close issue
  3. Accept proposed text
  4. Merge PR with the edits above: end item 4 before "regardless" and switch "accessibility worldwide" to "internationalization and accessibility"
  5. Next meeting cancelled
Minutes manually created (not a transcript), formatted by scribe.perl version 127 (Wed Dec 30 17:39:58 2020 UTC).


Succeeded: s/Mike Gelblum/someone/

Succeeded: s/carefully enough/carefully to get the legally binding representation/

Succeeded: s/wholistic/holistic/

Ignored empty command "scribe:"

Maybe present: dsinger, Fantasai, florian, jeff, jrosewell__, TallTed