[Foundation] Re: [Council] Extension Proposals

Ben Schumacher ben at blahr.com
Tue Oct 28 13:18:15 CST 2003

As there seems to be some confusion (and some animosity) surrounding my
earlier post, I've decided to forward this message to the list, which is
my response to Paul, clarifying my position (and I do apologize for the
wording in the original post, it was shot off quickly at a point when I
realize I had insufficient information). It begins:

> Look... the point is, if this is really intended to be an open
> discussion amongst members, then it should be posted about on the
> members list. I don't read council. I don't, generally, care about the
> goings on of the council mailing list, as I imagine that when they've
> come up with something they're prepared to present to the membership,
> then they'll do that... (and frankly, I don't have time for another
> mailing list)... besides, it mostly seems to consist of discussing
> technical nit-picks that are nothing more than rehashes of what's
> already been discussed on standards-jig. It does, however, bother me
> when people seem to be moving away from formats of communications that
> are open and transparent... it reminds me of O'Reilly's "No Spin
> Zone"-- which is nothing more than a playing field over which he has
> complete control, and as such, he gets away with censoring and
> attacking people, without giving them the opportunity to defend
> themselves. Moving the JSF (and discussions related to the JSF) into
> an  environment where one person is able to exercise complete control
> over  ideas is not productive... and there is a long history of folks
> trying  to do just that. While there is a ton of fluff on mailing
> lists, there  is, also, a ton of important and useful things... as
> the song goes,  "You take the good, you take the bad, you take them
> both, and there you  have... the facts of life."

And in response to Paul's later emails on the same issue.

1) List admins may have some control, but since these lists are
unmoderated, it seems startlingly unlikely that anybody could stop a post
that was intended to be delivered to the membership, at-large, without at
least one person seeing it. As I understand the H2O system, responses are
hidden from view until a "round" is over. It would be, I imagine, a simple
matter for somebody with control over the system to modify or remove a
reponse from the system, and leave the other parties involved (with the
exception of the person who sent the message and the person who
altered/removed it) unaware. I am in no way implying that this is
something you would do, but I do think it is a risk when we move from the
transparent system of mailing lists we currently use to discuss such

2) Something that so radically changes the meaning of JEP's, their goal,
etc, seems like it should be discussed with the membership, at-large. As I
understand the organization of the JSF, the council is supposed to be a
body that guides the technical standards. I do not, personally, believe
that renaming, recategorizing, or significantly changing the process under
which JEP's are accept falls under the realm of technical guidance
although, undoubtably, people will disagree with me on this particular



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