[sig-policy]Proposal for an APNIC document editorial policy

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  • Subject: [sig-policy]Proposal for an APNIC document editorial policy
  • From: Gerard Ross <gerard at apnic dot net>
  • Date: Wed, 11 Jun 2003 17:28:08 +1000
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    • Dear colleagues

      The text below is a proposal to modify the current APNIC document review policy to create a simple editorial process that would be used to implement consensus decisions reached through the APNIC policy development process.

      This proposal should be read together with the Revised APNIC Policy Process Proposal, which was posted to this list earlier today.

      Comments and feedback are now sought on both proposals and should be made on this list.

      Kind regards

      Gerard Ross
      APNIC Documentation Manager



      A proposal for an APNIC document editorial policy

      Proposed by: APNIC
      Version: draft 4.0
      Date: 11 June 2003

      1 Summary
      This document proposes modifying the current document review policy which is described in "APNIC Document review policies and procedures", available at:


      It is proposed to modify the current document to take full account of the effect of consensus decisions reached through the APNIC policy development process and to provide a separate, simple editorial process.

      An earlier version of this proposal was discussed at APNIC 15. The nature of the discussions held at that meeting have been taken into account in preparing this current version.

      2 Background and problem
      APNIC's policies are developed by the membership and the broader Internet community through a bottom-up process of consultation and consensus.

      APNIC holds two face-to-face APNIC Open Policy Meetings each year. Anyone may attend the meetings and participate in discussions and decision making. The Open Policy Meetings comprise many different elements, but core to the policy development process are the Special Interest Groups (SIGs) and the APNIC Member Meeting (AMM). At the SIG meetings, and throughout the year on the associated mailing lists, policy is created and refined through discussion and consensus-based decision making. Participants at the Member Meeting are asked to endorse the policy outcomes of the SIGs.

      However, the current document review policy was originally developed when the APNIC policy development process was less well defined, particularly in relation to the role of the SIGs. The current policy document combines the decision making process and the editorial process. It focuses on a process of "calls for comment" but does not adequately address the status of decisions which have emerged from the SIG process and reached consensus at the AMMs.

      The current document review policy also describes a set of categories for review, which determine the number and length of calls for comments. However, the role of the SIGs has evolved, and the conduct of SIGs and the AMM has become more structured. As a result, the system of categorising reviews is no longer necessary and only adds complexity to the process.

      Note: The APNIC policy development process is also under current review. It is intended that this proposed document editorial policy would complement the policy development process.

      3 Other RIRs
      At ARIN, LACNIC, and RIPE NCC, the editorial process is contained within the overall policy development process (for full details, refer to the "Proposal for an amended APNIC open policy process").

      Due to the range and diversity of languages in the APNIC region, it is proposed to ensure consistent policy documentation by requiring the Secretariat to coordinate an editorial process which implements the decisions of the policy development process.

      4 Proposal
      It is proposed to revise the current document, APNIC-083 "APNIC Document review policies and procedures" as follows:

      * The revised policy should include formal recognition
      of the policy development process, in which the SIGs
      and the AMM form consensus-based policies and other decisions.

      * The provisions relating to the categories of review should be

      * The document should describe a simple editorial procedure for
      implementing the consensus decisions that arise from the policy
      development process.

      * Under the proposed editorial procedure, the document which
      implements a consensus decision should require only a single
      call for public review.

      * The existing provision which allows for requests for further
      reviews of a document should be retained, but only on the basis
      that the document does not properly reflect the consensus from
      the relevant meeting.

      * There should also be a provision to allow objections to the
      implementation of the document on the ground that the policy is
      fundamentally flawed and may do harm to the global Internet.
      Objections of this nature should be directed to the Executive
      Council who would have the power to suspend implementation of the

      * If a document is required to implement an emergency decision made
      by the Executive Council between Member Meetings, that document
      must be reviewed at the next Open Policy Meeting.

      5 Implementation
      It is proposed to seek consensus on this proposal at APNIC 16. If consensus is reached, it is proposed to implement this policy as soon as possible, so that the editorial process may be applied to any other consensus items arising from that meeting.