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[I-coordination] What is 1net to me?

Roland Perry roland at
Thu Dec 5 11:09:53 CET 2013

In message 
<CAMm+LwiqNZ7cNSsXhtSXL2Y0meQPSuS4paRiMbVJj1TA=ieRrw at>, at 
16:28:42 on Wed, 4 Dec 2013, Phillip Hallam-Baker <hallam at> 
>> > The IETF and IAB Chairs of course act as leaders, but in general the
>> >IETF doesn't elect people to speak for it.
>> So why did they allow their names to be attached to a statement of this
>> kind with attributions such as "Chair IAB|IETF"?
>> At the very least it will be confusing to people who are not extremely
>> well versed in IETF politics (which is of course "almost everyone").
>> They will undoubtedly assume that their signature is backed by the
>> organisations they chair, just as we assume that what the RIR and ISOC
>> chiefs said was representing their organisations' view, and not just a
>> personal opinion.
>The constraints Andrew raises are hardly unique to the IETF they apply
>equally to the President of the United States.
>Even though the POTUS is elected to speak for the US in treaty
>negotiations, any treaty must be ratified by the US Senate before it is
>It is generally understood that the only parties that can make such
>commitments unilaterally are either essentially undemocratic or

I disagree. The leaders of organisations can, and do, make serious 
commitments which they have previously cleared with whatever/whoever 
comprises the decision-making process back at the ranch (which may of 
course be democratic, although democracy is somewhat over-rated at 
times). It's called "having a mandate".
Roland Perry

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