On the Politics of Standards
draft-tenoever-hrpc-political-04

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Human Rights Protocol Considerations Research Group         N. ten Oever
Internet-Draft                                   University of Amsterdam
Intended status: Informational                           A. Andersdotter
Expires: September 20, 2018                                   ARTICLE 19
                                                          March 19, 2018

                      On the Politics of Standards
                    draft-tenoever-hrpc-political-04

Abstract

   This document argues that the politics of standards need to be taken
   into account in the standards development process.  We come to this
   conclusion by mapping different perspectives on the relation between
   standards and politics in the Internet community and by providing
   illustrations of the political aspects of standard development.

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ten Oever & AndersdotteExpires September 20, 2018               [Page 1]
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Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   2
   2.  Vocabulary Used . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
   3.  Literature and Positions  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
     3.1.  Technology is value neutral . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
     3.2.  Some protocols are political some times . . . . . . . . .   4
     3.3.  All protocols are political sometimes . . . . . . . . . .   4
     3.4.  The network has its own logic and values  . . . . . . . .   4
     3.5.  Protocols are inherently political  . . . . . . . . . . .   5
   4.  Examples and approaches . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   6
   5.  Competition and collaboration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   6
     5.1.  Standards development . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   7
     5.2.  Standards development in the IETF . . . . . . . . . . . .   7
   6.  More legacy, more politics? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   8
   7.  Layers of politics  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   8
   8.  How voluntary are open standards? . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   8
   9.  The need for a positioning  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
   10. The way forward . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
   11. Security Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
   12. IANA Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
   13. Acknowledgements  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  11
   14. Research Group Information  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  11
   15. References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  11
     15.1.  Informative References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  11
     15.2.  URIs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  15
   Authors' Addresses  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  15

1.  Introduction

   "Science and technology lie at the heart of social asymmetry.
      Thus technology both creates systems which close off other
      options and generate  novel, unpredictable and indeed
      previously unthinkable, option. The game of technology is
      never finished, and its ramifications are endless.

                                  - Michel Callon

   The design of the Internet through protocols and standards is a
   technical issue with great political and economic impacts [RFC0613].
   The early Internet community already realized that it needed to make
   decisions on political issues such as Intellectual Property,
   Internationalization [BramanI], diversity, access [RFC0101] privacy
   and security [RFC0049], and the military [RFC0164] [RFC0316],
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