Network Working Group                                            T. Polk
Internet-Draft                           National Institute of Standards
Intended status: Informational                            and Technology
Expires: February 3, 2012                                 P. Saint-Andre
                                                                   Cisco
                                                          August 2, 2011


Promoting Compliance with Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Disclosure
                                 Rules
                      draft-polk-ipr-disclosure-00

Abstract

   The disclosure process for intellectual property rights (IPR) in IETF
   stream documents is essential to the accurate development of
   community consensus.  However, this process is not always followed by
   participants in the IETF process.  Regardless of the cause or
   motivation, noncompliance with IPR disclosure rules can derail or
   delay completion of standards documents.  This document describes
   strategies for promoting compliance with the IPR disclosure rules.
   The strategies are primarily intended for area directors, working
   group chairs, and working group secretaries.

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 February 3, 2012.

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2011 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



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   (http://trustee.ietf.org/license-info) in effect on the date of
   publication of this document.  Please review these documents
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   to this document.  Code Components extracted from this document must
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   described in the Simplified BSD License.


Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
     1.1.  Terminology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
   2.  Background  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
   3.  Strategies for Working Group Documents  . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
   4.  Strategies for Individual Submissions . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
   5.  Conclusions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
   6.  Security Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
   7.  IANA Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
   8.  References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
     8.1.  Normative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
     8.2.  Informative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
   Authors' Addresses  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8




























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1.  Introduction

   The disclosure process for intellectual property rights (IPR) in IETF
   stream documents is essential to the accurate and efficient
   development of consensus by the community.  Ensuring that IETF
   working groups and participants have as much information as possible
   regarding IPR constraints, as early as possible in the process,
   enables the community to develop an informed consensus regarding
   technical proposals.  Statements to that effect appear in [RFC1602],
   Section 5.5 Clause (B), and [RFC2026], Section 10.4 Clause (B).

   However, IPR disclosures often do not occur at the earliest possible
   stage in the IETF process.  Individuals might delay disclosure
   through an oversight, to subvert the consensus process, or introduce
   delay.  Regardless of the cause or motivation, noncompliance with IPR
   disclosure rules can derail or delay completion of standards
   documents.  Disclosure of IPR after significant decisions, such as
   working group last call, might lead to reconsideration of those
   actions.  For example, a working group (WG) might change course and
   use a previously rejected technical proposal with less onerous
   limitations.  Such course corrections introduce unnecessary delays in
   the standardization process.

   This document suggests strategies for promoting compliance with the
   IPR disclosure rules and thereby avoiding such delays.  The
   strategies are primarily intended for area directors (ADs), working
   group chairs, and working group secretaries.

   The strategies are focused on promoting early disclosure by authors,
   since late disclosure involving authors has historically caused
   significant delays in the standardization process.  Many of the
   strategies also promote early disclosure by other contributors.

1.1.  Terminology

   This document relies on the definitions provided in section 1 of
   [RFC3979].

   This document does not use the conformance language described in
   [RFC2119].


2.  Background

   The responsibilities of contributors and IETF participants regarding
   IPR disclosure are documented in [RFC3979] and [RFC4879].  These
   documents do not assign any further responsibilities to working group
   chairs and area directors, other than those imposed by their role(s)



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   as contributor or participant.  However, late disclosure of IPR has a
   direct impact on the effectiveness of working groups, WG chairs, and
   ADs.

   According to [RFC2418], working group chairs are responsible for
   "making forward progress through a fair and open process" and area
   directors are responsible for "ensuring that working groups in their
   area produce ... timely output."  IPR disclosure at the earliest
   possible time is an essential feature of a "fair and open process,"
   and late disclosure impedes timely output through recycling and
   appeals.

   To better fulfill their responsibilities in the IETF standards
   process, ADs and WG chairs might wish to adopt strategies to
   encourage early disclosure consistent with the responsibilities
   established in [RFC3979] and [RFC4879], such as the strategies
   described in this document.


3.  Strategies for Working Group Documents

   Building upon the framework provided in [RFC3669], this section
   identifies opportunities to promote IPR disclosure within the
   document lifecycle for IETF working group documents.  In general,
   these opportunities are encountered during socialization, working
   group adoption, working group last call, and IETF last call.  The
   strategies proposed in this section are primarily implemented by
   working group chairs.  (The exceptions are strategies for IETF Last
   Call, which would be implemented by ADs.)  In cases where the working
   secretary creates meeting agendas or initiates consensus calls, the
   secretary might also implement these strategies.

   The working group process provides a number of opportunities to
   encourage early IPR disclosure.  The first opportunities may be
   presented even before a technical proposal becomes a working group
   document.

   When IETF participants wish to socialize a personal draft, in hopes
   of future adoption by a working group, one common strategy is to
   request agenda time at an upcoming face-to-face meeting.  Before the
   community commits resources to reviewing and considering the draft,
   it is very reasonable for the WG chair to confirm (often via email)
   that all IPR disclosures have been submitted.  The chair should
   request confirmation from each of the authors, especially if authors
   are from multiple organizations.

   If necessary disclosures have not been submitted, the chair has a
   choice: insist on an informal disclosure in the presentation, or deny



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   the agenda slot unless the IPR disclosure is submitted.  One factor
   in this decision could be the number of revisions that have occurred:
   the chair might wish to permit presentation of a -00 draft with a
   verbal disclosure, but not after a draft has gone through multiple
   cycles.

   In some cases, an IETF participant has not developed an Internet
   Draft but might still request agenda time to discuss a proposal for
   new draft, or a new feature for an existing working group document.
   Again, it is very reasonable for the WG chair to confirm that all IPR
   disclosures have been submitted before approving agenda time, so that
   the community does not commit resources to analyzing the proposal
   without knowledge of IPR limitations.

   When a technical proposal is considered for adoption by the working
   group, the chair might wish to explicitly ask the WG participants if
   anyone is aware of IPR that is associated with this proposal.  While
   requiring confirmation from each working group participant is clearly
   impossible, silence might be interpreted as as a weak "No".

   Working Group Last Call is a particularly significant milestone for a
   working group document, measuring consensus within the working group
   one final time.  If IPR disclosure statements have not been
   submitted, the judgement of consensus by the chair would be less than
   reliable.  Even if the procedures such as those described above have
   been implemented to promote IPR disclosure during socialization and
   adoption, features might have evolved in a way that introduces new
   IPR concerns.  New participants with knowledge of IPR claims might
   have joined the working group.  Chairs might wish to re-confirm with
   each of the authors, even if the authors all work for the same
   organization.  Chairs might also wish to include a reminder about the
   importance of IPR disclosures in any Last Call message.  (Note: If
   IPR disclosure statements have been filed, the chair might wish to
   include a link in the Last Call email message to ensure the consensus
   call reflects this information.)

   Working group documents are forwarded to the appropriate Area
   Director after successfully completing working group Last Call.  Area
   directors are encouraged determine whether the chairs took explicit
   action to promote disclosure of IPR.  If the chair did not take any
   of the actions listed above, the Area Director might choose to
   contact authors and other key contributors (e.g., those listed in the
   acknowledgements) to confirm that appropriate IPR disclosure
   statements have been filed.

   IETF Last Call is the AD's vehicle for gauging IETF-wide consensus.
   It is critical that the community have easy access to all related IPR
   statements when considering an Internet-Draft.  The current tools



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   automatically include the URL for each IPR statement explicitly
   linked to the draft when the default Last Call message is generated.
   If the AD edits this message, the links to IPR disclosure statements
   should be preserved.


4.  Strategies for Individual Submissions

   This section identifies opportunities to promote IPR disclosure
   within the IETF document lifecycle for documents that are not
   processed in a working group.  In general, these opportunities are
   encountered during socialization, area director review, and IETF last
   call.

   When IETF participants wish to socialize a personal draft not
   intended for a working group, it is still common to request agenda
   time at an upcoming face-to-face meeting.  These requests might be
   made to related working groups, area meetings, or even plenary time.
   Before the community commits resources to reviewing and considering
   the draft, it is very reasonable for the chair of that meeting (WG
   chair, AD, IESG chair or IAB chair) to confirm that all IPR
   disclosures have been submitted.

   The meeting chair should request confirmation from each of the
   authors, especially if authors are from multiple organizations.
   Where the presentation covers a concept that has not been documented
   as an Internet-Draft, the chair should request confirmation from any
   co-authors and from contributors acknowledged in the slide deck.

   When considering the possibility of sponsoring an Internet-Draft, an
   AD should also confirm that all IPR disclosures have been submitted.
   The AD should require confirmation from each of the authors, even if
   authors are from the same organization.

   As with working group documents, IETF Last Call is the AD's vehicle
   for gauging IETF-wide consensus.  It is critical that the community
   have easy access to all related IPR statements when considering an
   Internet-Draft.  The current tools automatically include the URL for
   each IPR statement explicitly linked to the draft when the default
   Last Call message is generated.  If the AD edits this message, the
   links to IPR disclosure statements should be preserved.


5.  Conclusions

   WG chairs and ADs are not expected to enforce IPR disclosure rules.
   This document is not suggesting that they take on such a role.
   However, compliance with IPR disclosure policies can significantly



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   impact their effectiveness.  To support the efficient development of
   IETF standards and avoid unnecessary delays, chairs and ADs should
   look for opportunities to promote awareness and compliance with the
   IETF's IPR policies.  The strategies in this document promote
   compliance by raising the question of IPR disclosure at critical
   junctures in the standardization process.


6.  Security Considerations

   This document suggests strategies for promoting compliance with IPR
   disclosure rules during the IETF standards process.  These procedures
   do not have a direct impact on the security of the Internet.


7.  IANA Considerations

   This document has no actions for IANA.


8.  References

8.1.  Normative References

   [RFC3979]  Bradner, S., "Intellectual Property Rights in IETF
              Technology", BCP 79, RFC 3979, March 2005.

   [RFC4879]  Narten, T., "Clarification of the Third Party Disclosure
              Procedure in RFC 3979", BCP 79, RFC 4879, April 2007.

8.2.  Informative References

   [RFC1602]  Huitema, C. and P. Gross, "The Internet Standards Process
              -- Revision 2", RFC 1602, March 1994.

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

   [RFC2119]  Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
              Requirement Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119, March 1997.

   [RFC2418]  Bradner, S., "IETF Working Group Guidelines and
              Procedures", BCP 25, RFC 2418, September 1998.

   [RFC3669]  Brim, S., "Guidelines for Working Groups on Intellectual
              Property Issues", RFC 3669, February 2004.





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Authors' Addresses

   Tim Polk
   National Institute of Standards and Technology
   100 Bureau Drive, MS 8930
   Gaithersburg, MD  20899-8930
   USA

   Email: tim.polk@nist.gov


   Peter Saint-Andre
   Cisco
   1899 Wyknoop Street, Suite 600
   Denver, CO  80202
   USA

   Phone: +1-303-308-3282
   Email: psaintan@cisco.com
































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