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Notes on networking standards and politics

Document Type Expired Internet-Draft (hrpc RG)
Expired & archived
Author Niels ten Oever
Last updated 2020-03-31 (Latest revision 2019-09-28)
Replaces draft-tenoever-hrpc-political
RFC stream Internet Research Task Force (IRTF)
Intended RFC status (None)
Additional resources Mailing list discussion
Stream IRTF state (None)
Consensus boilerplate Unknown
Document shepherd (None)
IESG IESG state Expired
Telechat date (None)
Responsible AD (None)
Send notices to (None)

This Internet-Draft is no longer active. A copy of the expired Internet-Draft is available in these formats:


The IETF cannot ordain what standards or protocols are to be used on networks, but the standards development process in the IETF does have an impact on society through its normative standards setting process. This document aims to bring about a better understanding on the political nature of standards and protocols. Among other things, the IETF's work affects what is perceived as technologically possible and useful where networking technologies are being deployed, and its standards reflect what is considered by the technical community to be feasible and good practice. Whereas there might not be agreement among the Internet protocol community on the specific political nature of the technological development process and its outputs, it is generally agreed that standards and protocols are both products of a political process, and they can also be used for political means.


Niels ten Oever

(Note: The e-mail addresses provided for the authors of this Internet-Draft may no longer be valid.)