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Well, I'm really pleased to hear that the W3C has taken steps to open up
their process. I've wondered for a long time why they haven't just bitten
the bullet and done this.
Wrt the rest of your post: everything in life is a tradeoff, and openness in
standards efforts is no exception. Of course being closed will have some
marginal advantages, to the extent that any chance of misrepresentation is
eliminated. The point is that the coin has a flip side that is far more
significant. There is widespread perception that the W3C could benefit
greatly from more openness. All this talk about conflict being picked up by
the press seemed almost plausible back in the days of the MS/NS browser
wars, but those days are over. I challenge anyone to point to even one post
in the archives for, say, the XML Schema WG (one of the highest profile
efforts), that could have somehow been latched onto by the press. All of the
discussion is highly technical and, frankly, frightfully boring to the
general or even general technical public.
Anyway, I guess we've beaten this dead horse enough. I really am glad to
hear that progress has been made on this front. The standards landscape is
getting pretty competitive, and the W3C as much as anyone needs to do as
much as it can to be inclusive and make sure its specs are useful to a broad
public and get corresponding buy-in.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Ann Navarro [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
> Sent: Tuesday, April 23, 2002 3:07 PM
> To: John Cowan; email@example.com
> Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org
> Subject: Re: [xml-dev] W3C Culture and Aims (Was: What does
> SOAP really ad
> At 08:36 PM 4/22/2002 -0400, John Cowan wrote:
> >That is indeed (or so I believe) in progress, but the W3C is
> >to impose openness, *especially* retroactively, on its WGs.
> Absolutely -- and new charters of existing working groups and
> new groups
> are asked to discuss the access issue -- though, as far as I
> know, open
> access has not been imposed upon a group against their will.
> It's far more than grandstanding. Look at the quip a few days
> ago about an
> IRC transcript -- imagine any comment, no matter how flip, no
> matter how
> devil's advocate, no matter how pointed, could be read by
> anyone -- and
> then misinterpreted, taken out of context, or otherwise
> manipulated, and
> then you see headlines or email "flashes" about how Company Y thinks
> Technology Z is a waste of time, yet they claim to support that
> Standard!?!, someone's lying to us! That guy is from Company
> Y, so he's
> speaking the Official Company Party Line on this!!!!
> No amount of disclaimers will go around that -- public input *is*
> available, any time after an initial draft is published. You
> don't have to
> wait for a special call for it, read it and comment.
> Suggestions of improprieties (what dastardly improprieties
> could there be
> anyway? Oh! My! Company Y and Company Z, official enemies,
> actually AGREED
> on something!!!) simply because you can't see letter and
> verse of every
> conversion are just downright paranoid.
> Ann Navarro, WebGeek Inc.
> What's on my mind? http://www.snorf.net/blog/