Characterization of Proposed Standards
draft-kolkman-proposed-standards-clarified-04

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Network Working Group                                         O. Kolkman
Internet-Draft                                                NLnet Labs
Updates: 2026 (if approved)                                   S. Bradner
Intended status: Best Current Practice                Harvard University
Expires: April 18, 2014                                        S. Turner
                                                              IECA, Inc.
                                                        October 17, 2013

                 Characterization of Proposed Standards
             draft-kolkman-proposed-standards-clarified-04

Abstract

   RFC 2026 describes the review performed by the IESG on IETF Proposed
   Standard RFCs and states the maturity level of those documents.  This
   document clarifies those descriptions and updates RFC 2026 by
   providing a new characterization of Proposed Standards.

Status of this Memo

   This Internet-Draft is submitted in full conformance with the
   provisions of BCP 78 and BCP 79.

   Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering
   Task Force (IETF).  Note that other groups may also distribute
   working documents as Internet-Drafts.  The list of current Internet-
   Drafts is at http://datatracker.ietf.org/drafts/current/.

   Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum of six months
   and may be updated, replaced, or obsoleted by other documents at any
   time.  It is inappropriate to use Internet-Drafts as reference
   material or to cite them other than as "work in progress."

   This Internet-Draft will expire on April 18, 2014.

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2013 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
   Provisions Relating to IETF Documents (http://trustee.ietf.org/
   license-info) in effect on the date of publication of this document.
   Please review these documents carefully, as they describe your rights
   and restrictions with respect to this document.  Code Components
   extracted from this document must include Simplified BSD License text
   as described in Section 4.e of the Trust Legal Provisions and are
   provided without warranty as described in the Simplified BSD License.

Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  2

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   2.  IETF Review of Proposed Standards  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  2
   3.  Characterization of Specification  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  3
     3.1.  Characterization of IETF Proposed Standard Specifications   3
     3.2.  Characteristics of Internet Standards  . . . . . . . . . .  4
   4.  Further Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  4
   5.  Security Considerations  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  4
   6.  IANA Considerations  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  4
   7.  References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  4
   Appendix A. Acknowledgements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  4
   Appendix B. Internet Draft Notes and RFC Editor Instructions . . .  5
     Appendix B.1.  Version 00  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  5
     Appendix B.2.  Version 00->01  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  6
     Appendix B.3.  Version 01->02  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  6
     Appendix B.4.  Version 02->03  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  6
     Appendix B.5.  Version 03->04  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  6
     Appendix B.6.  Editors versioning info . . . . . . . . . . . . .  6
   Authors' Addresses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  6

1.  Introduction

   [Editor Note: ietf@ietf.org is the mailing-list for discussing this
   draft.]

   In the two decades after publication of RFC 2026 [RFC2026] the IETF
   has evolved its review processes of Proposed Standard RFCs and thus
   RFC 2026 section 4.1.1 no longer accurately describes IETF Proposed
   Standards.

   This document exclusively updates the characterization of Proposed
   Standards from RFC2026 Section 4.1.1 and does not speak to or alter
   the procedures for the maintenance of Standards Track documents from
   RFC 2026 and RFC 6410 [RFC6410].  For complete understanding of the
   requirements for standardization those documents should be read in
   conjunction with this document.

2.  IETF Review of Proposed Standards

   The entry-level maturity for the standards track is "Proposed
   Standard".  A specific action by the IESG is required to move a
   specification onto the standards track at the "Proposed Standard"
   level.

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   Initially it was assumed that most IETF technical specifications
   would progress through a series of maturity stages starting with
   Proposed Standard, then progressing to Draft Standard then, finally,
   to Internet Standard (see RFC 2026 section 6). Over time, for a
   number of reasons, this progression became less common.  In response,
   the IETF strengthened its review of Proposed Standards, basically
   operating as if the Proposed Standard was the last chance for the
   IETF to ensure the quality of the technology and the clarity of the
   Standard Track document.  The result was that IETF Proposed Standards
   approved over the last decade or more have had extensive reviews.
   Because of this change in review assumptions, IETF Proposed Standards
   should be considered to be at least as mature as final standards from
   other standards development organizations.  The IETF review is
   possibly more extensive than that done in most other SDOs owing to
   the cross-area technical review performed by the IETF, exemplified by
   technical review by the full IESG at the last stage of specification
   development.  That position is further strengthened by the common
   presence of interoperable running code and implementation before
   publication as a Proposed Standard.

3.  Characterization of Specification

   Section 3.1 of this document replaces RFC 2026 Section 4.1.1. Section
   3.2 is a verbatim copy of the characterization of Internet Standards
   from RFC 2026 Section 4.1.3 and is provided for convenient reference.

3.1.  Characterization of IETF Proposed Standard Specifications

   The entry-level maturity for the standards track is "Proposed
   Standard".  A specific action by the IESG is required to move a
   specification onto the standards track at the "Proposed Standard"
   level.

   A Proposed Standard specification is stable, has resolved known
   design choices, is well-understood, has received significant
   community review, and appears to enjoy enough community interest to
   be considered valuable.

   Usually, neither implementation nor operational experience is
   required for the designation of a specification as a Proposed
   Standard.  However, such experience is highly desirable, and will
   usually represent a strong argument in favor of a Proposed Standard
   designation.

   The IESG may require implementation and/or operational experience
   prior to granting Proposed Standard status to a specification that
   materially affects the core Internet protocols or that specifies
   behavior that may have significant operational impact on the
   Internet.

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   A Proposed Standard will have no known technical omissions with
   respect to the requirements placed upon it.  Proposed Standards are
   of such quality that implementations can be deployed in the Internet.
   However, as with all technical specifications, Proposed Standards may
   be revised if problems are found or better solutions are identified,
   when experiences with deploying implementations of such technologies
   at scale is gathered.

3.2.  Characteristics of Internet Standards

   A specification for which significant implementation and successful
   operational experience has been obtained may be elevated to the
   Internet Standard level.  An Internet Standard (which may simply be
   referred to as a Standard) is characterized by a high degree of
   technical maturity and by a generally held belief that the specified
   protocol or service provides significant benefit to the Internet
   community.

4.  Further Considerations

   While less mature specifications will usually be published as
   Informational or Experimental RFCs, the IETF may, on occasion,
   publish a specification that still contains areas for improvement or
   certain uncertainties about whether the best engineering choices are
   made.  In those cases that fact will be clearly and prominently
   communicated in the document e.g.  in the abstract, the introduction,
   or a separate section or statement.

5.  Security Considerations

   This document does not directly affect the security of the Internet.

6.  IANA Considerations

   There are no actions for IANA.

7.  References

   [RFC2026]  Bradner, S., "The Internet Standards Process -- Revision
              3", BCP 9, RFC 2026, October 1996.

   [RFC6410]  Housley, R., Crocker, D. and E. Burger, "Reducing the
              Standards Track to Two Maturity Levels", BCP 9, RFC 6410,
              October 2011.

Appendix A.  Acknowledgements

   This document is inspired by a discussion at the open microphone
   session during the technical plenary at IETF 87. Thanks to, in
   alphabetical order: Jari Arkko, Carsten Bormann, Scott Brim, Spencer
   Dawkins, Randy Bush, Benoit Claise, Dave Cridland, Adrian Farrel,
   John Klensin, Subramanian Moonesamy for motivation, input, and

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   review.

Appendix B.  Internet Draft Notes and RFC Editor Instructions

   This section is to assist reviewers of this document.

   [Editor Note: Please remove this section and its subsections at
   publication]

Appendix B.1.  Version 00

   Introduction and motivation

   Verbatim copy from section 4.1.1 and 4.1.3 of [RFC2026] of the
   Proposed and ant Internet Draft characterization into Section 3.1 and
   Section 3.2

   Modification of paragraphs of the Proposed Standards
   characterization, namely:

   OLD:

   A Proposed Standard specification is generally stable, has resolved
   known design choices, is believed to be well-understood, has received
   significant community review, and appears to enjoy enough community
   interest to be considered valuable.  However, further experience
   might result in a change or even retraction of the specification
   before it advances.

   NEW:

   A Proposed Standard specification is stable, has resolved known
   design choices, is well-understood, has received significant
   community review, and appears to enjoy enough community interest to
   be considered valuable.  However, as with all technical standards,
   further experience might result in a change or even retraction of the
   specification in the future.

   OLD:

   A Proposed Standard should have no known technical omissions with
   respect to the requirements placed upon it.  However, the IESG may
   waive this requirement in order to allow a specification to advance
   to the Proposed Standard state when it is considered to be useful and
   necessary (and timely) even with known technical omissions.

   Implementors should treat Proposed Standards as immature
   specifications.  It is desirable to implement them in order to gain
   experience and to validate, test, and clarify the specification.
   However, since the content of Proposed Standards may be changed if
   problems are found or better solutions are identified, deploying
   implementations of such standards into a disruption-sensitive
   environment is not recommended.

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   NEW:

   A Proposed Standard will have no known technical omissions with
   respect to the requirements placed upon it.  Proposed Standards are
   of such quality that implementations can be deployed in the Internet.
   However, as with all technical specifications, Proposed Standards may
   be revised if problems are found or better solutions are identified,
   when experiences with deploying implementations of such technologies
   at scale is gathered.

Appendix B.2.  Version 00->01

   Added "Updates 2026" and added Sean's initial"

   Copied the whole characterization paragraph for Internet Standards
   from 2026, instead of only the line that is the actual
   characterization itself.

   Added the Further Consideration section based on discussion on the
   mailinglist.

Appendix B.3.  Version 01->02

   Sharpened the 2nd paragraph of the Introduction to be clear that the
   scope of the update is limited to section 4.1.1. and that this
   document should not be read stand-alone.

   Refined the "Further Considerations" Sections to express that as part
   of the process less mature specs are sometimes approved as Proposed
   Standards but that in those cases the documents should clearly
   indicate that.

   Minor editorial nits, and corrections.

Appendix B.4.  Version 02->03

   Changed a number of occurances where IESG review was used to the
   intended IETF review.

Appendix B.5.  Version 03->04

   s/In fact, the IETF review is more extensive than that done in most
   other SDOs/The IETF review is possibly more extensive than that done
   in most other SDOs/

   Minor spelling and style errors

Appendix B.6.  Editors versioning info

   $Id: draft-kolkman-proposed-standards-clarified.xml 16 2013-10-17
   13:22:30Z olaf $

Authors' Addresses

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   Olaf Kolkman
   Stichting NLnet Labs
   Science Park 400
   Amsterdam, 1098 XH
   The Netherlands
   
   Email: olaf@nlnetlabs.nl
   URI:   http://www.nlnetlabs.nl/

   Scott O. Bradner
   Harvard University Information Technology
   Innovation and Architecture
   1350 Mass Ave., Room 760
   Cambridge, MA 02138
   United States of America
   
   Phone: +1 617 495 3864
   Email: sob@harvard.edu
   URI:   http://www.harvard.edu/huit

   Sean Turner
   IECA, Inc.
   
   Email: turners@ieca.com

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