[Standards-JIG] RFC: NGMUC -- Problems of and suggestion on JEP-0045 (Multi User Conference)

tmarkmann at googlemail.com tmarkmann at googlemail.com
Wed Jul 26 22:05:49 UTC 2006

Hello protocol developers and other interested recipients.

FROM: Jabber Wiki <http://wiki.jabber.org/index.php/NGMUC>

The protocol which is used for many-to-many conversations nowadays:

Here is a list of some things which would be nice to have.

==Resource Support==
JEP-0045 doesn't support multiple resources for one participant. You have to
log into the conferece again as another participant by using another
nickname. Multiple participants who are one and the same individual can lead
into confusion and missunderstanding. Of course there is not much confusing
in room with just 13 participants but the jabber protocol is no hobby
project and up to 100 users can join a conference.

==Role/Affiliation Management==
Roles and Affiliations are inconsistent.  JEP-0045 treats them as if an
affiliation implies a role, but in fact affiliations have effects beyond the
roles assigned.

* A moderator role with an admin affiliation can ban people, while other
moderators can't.

* A moderator role with an owner affiliation can configure the room, while
other moderators can't.

* In some rooms, a participant role with a member affiliation can modify the
topic, while other participants can't.

* In some rooms, a member can send a message, while non-members cannot.

The other half of the problem is that affiliations persist, while roles do
not.  This tends to make the role system close to useless, since no change
will stick around after the assignee leaves. Impossibilities under the
current system:

* Allow someone to kick, but not ban, and change the topic, and make this
status remain even if they leave and return.

* Prevent someone from speaking in a room, and make sure they can't get
around it by simply leaving and rejoining.

* Allow someone to speak in a room, and make sure it stays that way when
they leave and rejoin.

Finally, the roles and affiliations distinction makes for a complex
2-dimensional grid of possibilities, with 20 combinations where only 13
actually make any sense (you can't have an admin or owner who is not a
moderator, or an outcast who has any role except "none"), and even less are
useful (admins and owners can't be kicked, outcasts can't hold any role but
"none", and the moderator/participant/visitor roles don't persist for
members or "none")

==Support for More Participants==
This is the easiest point. You just ged rid of the thought that the jabber
protocol and its enhancements called JEPs were just written for hobby usage.
It's altogether a serious project which is used by hundred tousands of
people. Where is the advantage of a conference with limited participants? In
IRC networks there are rooms with 700 people inside. Who said that isn't
possible with jabber technologies? I think, it is.

The Role/Affiliation Management part has been written by Alex Mauer.

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