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Subject: RE: [chairs] When is a TCs work done?

Just looking at the relevant clause:  

In full it says:

"The TC Administrator may close a TC that fails to conduct at least one 
Quorate Meeting or conduct any Specification Ballots during any six month 
period; whose membership falls below the Minimum Membership; which has not 
completed its deliverables within the schedule listed in its Charter; or 
which has failed to show progress towards achieving its purpose as defined 
by its Charter."

I'd wonder what % of OASIS TCs actually complete their deliverables within 
the schedule they predicted at the time they chartered it?  I bet it is 
quite small.  Nothing special about OASIS.  Schedule estimation is hard in 
general and we all tend to be overly optimistic.   But regardless, one 
man's "lack of progress" is another man's "deliberate pace with consensus 
building".  Some of the best breakthroughs come after "lack of progress", 
including good stuff worth waiting for,  Hopefully we're not triggering TC 
closures based on those criteria very often. 

I realize that this is always going to be a judgement call, and you want 
to look at the totality of the facts and circumstances.  So I'm surprised 
that this decision can be made by a single TC Admin.  I would have thought 
that there would be at least some minimum notification time, comment 
period, access to a Board appeal, etc.  Closing a TC -- absent approval of 
the TC members -- does not feel like an administrative action to me on par 
with sending out the announcement of a public review, or conducting a 
committee specification ballot.  It sounds like a far graver action, which 
should have some more checks and balances behind it.

My personal opinion, of course.


Martin Chapman <MARTIN.CHAPMAN@ORACLE.COM> wrote on 07/16/2010 12:22:59 

> So what is the exit strategy for your TC?
> IMHO, the only way to avoid these automatic shutdowns  is for every 
> charter to be explicit enough so that TC members themselves can 
> declare victory and shut themselves down. Also the criteria isn’t 
> that onerous: maintain minimum membership (I’m sure temporary lapses
> are tolerable), and hold a quorate meeting every six months!
> Cheers,
>    Martin.
> From: David RR Webber (XML) [mailto:david@drrw.info] 
> Sent: 16 July 2010 12:58
> To: chairs@lists.oasis-open.org
> Subject: [chairs] When is a TCs work done?
> I'm reminded of the maxim in any good initial business plan asking -
> what is the exit strategy?
> Seems that OASIS has criteria based mainly around number of emails 
> posted, who's posting them (apart from the TC chair) and how many 
> meetings and minutes you have posted.
> As TC chairs however - I think we deserve more support than OASIS 
> hitting our TC with FUD messages to bolster continuation of the 
> technical work.
> Several members I recently canvassed told me they would like to do 
> more than observer but their company is restricting hours and 
> requiring formal manager approval and justification for any new TC 
> related work - even just reading emails or joining a group.  Given 
> those types of challenges its little wonder that typical TC work is 
> being driven by just a handful of individuals.
> OASIS needs to therefore do more in terms of assisting garnering 
> support for our work.  So for example - one simple thing I notice 
> that is misleading - is that Kavi only shows voting members - what 
> should be shown also is the total number of observers (just the 
> count), and non-voting members underneath that also on the whole roster.
> Clearly TC chairs have a huge role in continuing work of a TC.  In 
> the lifecycle of a standard it is way more than just calling 
> meetings, writing specifications and publishing schema. 
> Rather than FUD messages from OASIS staff to our TC - we need more 
> informal coordination to help with members who may be contemplating 
> contributing - or just testing the pulse = looking to help get more 
> involvement and so on by working with the TC chairs and reaching out
> to potential new resources.
> Also - chairs usually know way more about what is really going on. 
> The mailing list only tells one small part of the picture - in terms
> of what is external parties are doing, or planning to do with a 
> specification, or additional potential resources to advance new work. 
> The current administrative door slamming by OASIS seems to be based 
> solely on reducing the number of TCs to some acceptable lower number
> - rather than any rationale based on the importance of work - and 
> need to actively foster and help TC chairs gain support either 
> within their TC or with external industry groups or academic 
> institutes who may benefit or contribute further.
> Everyone is burned out of course on standards work - and its now 
> layers of burn out over burn out.  Now in tough economic days it 
> seems that bean counting and ROI have totally taken over the 
> equation of specification development - rather than anything else 
> relating to technical value and incubating potential groundbreaking 
> or interesting XML capabilities within OASIS.
> Ironically the small independent members would appear to be those 
> that have the most flexibility to continue OASIS work and yet OASIS 
> itself it set to penalize them for trying!
> Thanks, DW

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