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For this RFC, original HTML is available from the RFC-Editor: RFC8789



Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)                   J. Halpern, Ed.
Request for Comments: 8789                                      Ericsson
BCP: 9                                                  E. Rescorla, Ed.
Updates: 2026                                                    Mozilla
Category: Best Current Practice                                June 2020
ISSN: 2070-1721


           IETF Stream Documents Require IETF Rough Consensus

Abstract

   This document requires that the IETF never publish any IETF Stream
   RFCs without IETF rough consensus.  This updates RFC 2026.

Status of This Memo

   This memo documents an Internet Best Current Practice.

   This document is a product of the Internet Engineering Task Force
   (IETF).  It represents the consensus of the IETF community.  It has
   received public review and has been approved for publication by the
   Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG).  Further information on
   BCPs is available in Section 2 of RFC 7841.

   Information about the current status of this document, any errata,
   and how to provide feedback on it may be obtained at
   https://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc8789.

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2020 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
   (https://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.  Terminology
   3.  Action
   4.  Discussion
   5.  IANA Considerations
   6.  Security Considerations
   7.  Normative References
   8.  Informative References
   Authors' Addresses

1.  Introduction

   IETF procedures, as defined by [RFC2026], allow for Informational or
   Experimental RFCs to be published without IETF rough consensus.  For
   context, it should be remembered that this RFC predates the
   separation of the various streams (e.g., IRTF, IAB, and Independent.)
   When it was written, there were only "RFCs".

   As a consequence, the IESG was permitted to approve an Internet-Draft
   for publication as an RFC without IETF rough consensus.

2.  Terminology

   The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT",
   "SHOULD", "SHOULD NOT", "RECOMMENDED", "NOT RECOMMENDED", "MAY", and
   "OPTIONAL" in this document are to be interpreted as described in BCP
   14 [RFC2119] [RFC8174] when, and only when, they appear in all
   capitals, as shown here.

3.  Action

   The IETF MUST NOT publish RFCs on the IETF Stream without
   establishing IETF rough consensus for publication.

4.  Discussion

   The IETF procedures prior to publication of this BCP permitted such
   informational or experimental publication without IETF rough
   consensus.  In 2007, the IESG issued a statement saying that no
   document will be issued without first conducting an IETF Last Call
   [IESG-STATE-AD].  While this apparently improved the situation, when
   looking more closely, it made it worse.  Rather than publishing
   documents without verifying that there is rough consensus, as the
   wording in [RFC2026] suggests, this had the IESG explicitly
   publishing documents on the IETF Stream that have failed to achieve
   rough consensus.

   One could argue that there is a need for publishing some documents
   that the community cannot agree on.  However, we have an explicit
   path for such publication, namely the Independent Stream.  Or, for
   research documents, the IRTF Stream, which explicitly publishes
   minority opinion Informational RFCs.

5.  IANA Considerations

   This document has no IANA actions.

6.  Security Considerations

   This document introduces no new security considerations.  It is a
   process document about changes to the rules for certain corner cases
   in publishing IETF Stream RFCs.  However, this procedure will prevent
   publication of IETF Stream documents that have not reached rough
   consensus about their security aspects, thus potentially improving
   security aspects of IETF Stream documents.

7.  Normative References

   [RFC2026]  Bradner, S., "The Internet Standards Process -- Revision
              3", BCP 9, RFC 2026, DOI 10.17487/RFC2026, October 1996,
              <https://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc2026>.

   [RFC2119]  Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
              Requirement Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC2119, March 1997,
              <https://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc2119>.

   [RFC8174]  Leiba, B., "Ambiguity of Uppercase vs Lowercase in RFC
              2119 Key Words", BCP 14, RFC 8174, DOI 10.17487/RFC8174,
              May 2017, <https://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc8174>.

8.  Informative References

   [IESG-STATE-AD]
              IESG, "Guidance on Area Director Sponsoring of Documents",
              IESG Statement, March 2007,
              <https://ietf.org/about/groups/iesg/statements/area-
              director-sponsoring-documents/>.

Authors' Addresses

   Joel Halpern (editor)
   Ericsson
   P.O. Box 6049
   Leesburg, VA 20178
   United States of America

   Email: joel.halpern@ericsson.com


   Eric Rescorla (editor)
   Mozilla
   331 E. Evelyn Ave.
   Mountain View, CA 94101
   United States of America

   Email: ekr@rtfm.com


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