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Re: [802SEC] New Model for the Maintenance of IEEE Standards


Today is the deadline for the submission of comments to Dave Ringle regarding the Staff/Governance proposal for the elimination of Reaffirmation and related changes.

After careful consideration of the discussion that we had during our EC teleconference and a review of the position being put forth by the Computer Society Standards Activities Board (SAB), I have decided that the items upon which we could achieve consensus did not actually overlap the proposal being made. Therefore, I do not intend to submit comments from 802.

We agreed that the changes would mostly have an effect on standards that are rather stable where it is generally the case in 802 that our standards that have any significant market success undergo amendment and/or revision on a regular basis.

As always, 802 has a number of ideas that would be appropriate to improve the standards maintenance process. Bob Grow's editions based voting is a strong candidate from my point of view. However, it is orthogonal to the current proposal and we have a way to go before we achieve internal consensus. I hope we will push forward on it.

My personal hope is that those on the SASB from 802 folks will strongly support the position on the proposed changes that will be made by Jim Moore for the SAB at the March meeting.

Best regards,

    Geoff Thompson

On 262//11 10:04 PM, Paul Nikolich wrote:

I agree there is little to be gained by an 802 submission to SASB at this point. I do recommend you let the EC know your rationale but in a highly summarized simplified form, e.g., you were unable to obtain clear, meaningful EC consensus and think it is best to not submit any comment at this time (or whatever you think accurately reflects the situation).

I am comfortable with that being posted to the EC reflector.

I hope you're having a good Saturday night. I'm going to bed now. Good night!


----- Original Message ----- From: "Geoff Thompson" <>
To: "Paul Nikolich" <>
Cc: "Geoff Thompson" <>
Sent: Sunday, February 27, 2011 12:52 AM
Subject: Re: DRAFT feedback: New Model for the Maintenance of IEEE Standards


I only got 2 inputs from members of the EC.
John Lemon gave me a couple of very minor typo editorial corrections.
Tony expressed the hope that edition balloting would allow relief from the 3/5 rule for revisions in the new regime.
There is no provision for that in the current proposal.

Given the input to the SASB from Jim Moore and the SAB,
I am now of the opinion we should NOT submit our document.

Our document does not actually address the proposal in any way
It says, instead that:
    - It mostly doesn't apply to us
- We would like something else entirely to deal with our problems (i.e. edition balloting)
        (and the truth is we haven't reached consensus on that)

My feeling is our document would just confuse the discussion and detract from the focus of the points that Jim Moore is trying to make. We both know that to get any position past the SASB it has to be kept simple and on focus. I would rather support the position of Jim and the SAB than try to push a different agenda at this point.

(I do have some minor fussing about Jim's position but he was unwilling to incorporate it in his material and I think it is a bad idea to bring it up separately. It had to do with the theory that the 10 year revisions could be limited to just changing the date (as a "substitute" for reaffirmation. A revision is a revision and the entire document is open for change.)

Let me know what you think I should say to the rest of the EC (and whether it should go to the reflector or be private)

Best regards,


If "we" want to promote edition balloting andor
On 242//11 6:34 AM, Paul Nikolich wrote:

The 28FEB deadline is approaching--you didn't conduct a vote on a response, which is OK I suppose as long as there aren't any objections to your submission.

Please post your draft response to the EC reflector to let everyone know what you plan to submit to Ringle.



----- Original Message ----- From: "Geoff Thompson" <>
To: <>; <pthaler@BROADCOM.COM>; <matthew.sherman@BAESYSTEMS.COM>; <>; <>; <bob.grow@INTEL.COM>; <>; <>; <>; <>; <>; <>; <>; <sshellha@QUALCOMM.COM>; <Klerer@QUALCOMM.COM>; <subir@RESEARCH.TELCORDIA.COM>; <apurva.mody@BAESYSTEMS.COM>; <>; <>
Sent: Saturday, February 05, 2011 8:27 PM
Subject: DRAFT feedback: New Model for the Maintenance of IEEE Standards

Please direct your comments on the draft as REPLY ALL to this message rather than to the EC reflector.
I intend to put the finalized draft on the reflector for vote

Dear Dave-

The SASB proposal for a "New Model for the Maintenance of IEEE Standards" was distributed to the 802 EC for consideration on Jan. 3, 2011.

The proposal was a topic of discussion during a conference call meeting of the 802 EC held on Feb 1. I was asked by Paul Nikolich to draft consensus text from 802 to be submitted to you as our response to your request for comments.

As discussed by Jim Moore in white paper that he drafted for consideration by The Computer Society Standards Activity board (SAB), we agree that the greater portion of the impact of the new policy tend to fall upon standards centered around slowly evolving technology or standards whose chief value is in their stability (Nuclear Engineering comes to mind).

We believe that most 802 standards are either evolving at such a rate or amended often enough that they will require revision well before the 10 year mark with the most active standards (e.g. 802.1, 802.3, 802.11) requiring revision (by rule) every three years. Therefore, we believe that the major thrust of the changes will bypass the core work of 802.

What would improve our situation significantly is support from staff (and the P&P if necessary) so that 802 could move the bulk of our balloting to edition based. This would be in line with the proposals previously made by Bob Grow and would align to the needs and clarity of more rapidly evolving (and more frequently amended) standards. There is currently no recognition of editions in the P&P and the staff support for generating editions for projects other than revisions is not systematic. If 802 (and other rapidly evolving standards) were to move to edition based balloting (supported by the P&P) then many of the issues driving the 3 year revision cycle would be much less significant. That would perhaps allow the 3 year requirement to be relaxed to perhaps 5 years. Obviously additional details would have to be worked out for that aspect.

In addition, the current proposal by eliminating reaffirmation has eliminated the immediate need for the "Approval Balloting" process in which the actual vote is not cast until all comments are seen by the balloting group. It is our opinion that such a process would be a valuable tool for the IEEE-SA and work on it should continue.


On 3/1/11 2:34 PM, Paul Nikolich wrote:
Dear EC Members,

Last month I received the below request for comment by the SA on a proposal for a "New Model for the Maintencance of IEEE Standards". They are requesting feedback by 28FEB2011.

On the 16th of December Geoff requested I put this on the interim EC meeting agenda (remember we have a telecon scheduled for 01FEB2011 from 1-3PM ET). I will do so, at the moment, it is the only item on the agenda other than a status update from me regarding the DEC SA BoG meeting If there are other items you would like to put on the agenda, please do so immediately.



----- Original Message -----
Cc:stds-board-comm@IEEE.ORG ;y.hoSang@IEEE.ORG ;
Sent: Wednesday, December 15, 2010 5:50 PM
Subject: New Model for the Maintenance of IEEE Standards

To: IEEE-SA Standards Sponsors
RE: New Model for the Maintenance of IEEE Standards

For several years now, the IEEE Standards Association's Standards Board (SASB) has dealt with a number of issues/concerns related to maintenance activities, such as: · Reaffirmation ballots, which are supposed to lead to yes/no decisions, often have technical comments that cannot be resolved, as no changes to documents are allowed; this is a continuing concern in IEEE-SA Standards Board Standards Review Committee (RevCom) reviews of Reaffirmation ballots. · Revisions PARs are not always initiated to resolve issues raised during Reaffirmation, and this increases risk/exposure to IEEE when we do not adequately address concerns. · Reaffirmation ballots (and heavy workloads) have led to cursory voting as many voters cast default 'yes' votes without really reviewing the standard(s); this has led to questions on whether the approval percentage for a Reaffirmation should be raised, which would make our procedures more complex. · There are differing (and strongly held) views on what levels of technical errors/inconsistencies might be allowed in approving a Reaffirmation ballot. · The desire to gain ballot group input on issues (and Sponsor reaction) before a yes/no Reaffirmation vote has led to proposals for two-stage voting procedures, which would introduce more complexity into our procedures. · Stabilization (see the definition in SASB OpMan 1.2) is not allowed if: the standard is a 'health or safety standard'; if the technology is 'immature'; if it contains 'significant erroneous information'; etc. - items that require clear decisions from a risk perspective and that have led to much discussion/concern.

In the past year, the Standards Board's Reaffirmation Ad Hoc has considered these issues and is now proposing a resolution that is described in the attached flowcharts and three Bylaws/OpMan documents. We have discussed these revisions with ANSI, and pending their formal review of our final procedural documents, ANSI does not have concern with our path - and we will retain our ANSI accreditation. In addition, the revisions proposed will reduce Sponsor and staff effort, and put focus squarely on the need to actually revise maintained standards.

The key points of this proposal are:
1. 'Reaffirmation' and 'Stabilization' processes are eliminated. Standards are either 'Revised' or 'Withdrawn from active status'. 2. Sponsors have to complete a Revision on a maintained standard every 10 years, as opposed to starting a Reaffirmation every 5 years; the Revision may be as simple as minor reference updates or even just changing the ':yyyy' designation in the title to indicate it has been examined. 3. If Sponsors cannot form ballot groups or otherwise complete their work, staff can initiate an administrative action to make the standard inactive at the 10-year mark. 4. Each year, Sponsors will receive a list of standards under maintenance, with special highlighting of standards that are at or past the 5-year mark to encourage them to start considering Revision PARs. Staff will file the necessary notifications to ANSI to insure that ANSI is aware that we are working to maintain the standard. 5. Sponsors will decide (internally) how they process this list each year and consider whether to either start a Revision PAR or 'do nothing'. If nothing is done (and the 10-year point has not arrived), the standard will simply move forward for reconsideration by the Sponsor in the following year. 6. Transition plans will be developed in early 2011, but it is expected that standards currently under maintenance plans will continue to follow those plans in 2011, and this new process would start in 2012. We expect little to no changes to myBallot and other systems, but education/training will be important. FAQs and similar material will be prepared to support the program. 7. These changes are expected to reduce Sponsor formal workloads through the elimination of Reaffirmation/Stabilization ballots, and insure that when comments on technical flaws are raised it will be simple to update the standard without having to initiate a separate revision process.

Standards Sponsors are invited to review the attached documents. Please note that proposed Policy and Procedure changes are indicated in the Bylaws and OpMans in yellow highlight.

Please send any comments to me by 28 February 2011. Thanks.

David L. Ringle
Manager, IEEE-SA Governance
IEEE Standards Activities Department
445 Hoes Lane
Piscataway, NJ  08854-4141 USA
TEL: +1 732 562 3806
FAX: +1 732 875 0524

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This email is sent from the 802 Executive Committee email reflector.  This list is maintained by Listserv.