[tz] Why 2021b needed to be issued

Stephen Colebourne scolebourne at joda.org
Sat Sep 25 16:40:00 UTC 2021

"On Sat, 25 Sept 2021 at 06:23, Paul Eggert via tz <tz at iana.org> wrote:
> The main difference in this round of patches, is that I had aimed to
> complete the job, in response to a user query raising equity concerns in
> 2021a. It is clear that the 2021a setup was not sustainable in the long
> term, if equity is a goal.

Equity is not a formal goal of the project. It is not documented or
agreed in the RFC nor in the theory file. Your opinion of what is
equitable does not align with mine.

> Completing the job generated larger patches than usual, and the patches'
> size triggered concern that they held too many changes all at once.

Having read hundreds of emails over the past few months, I don't think
*anyone* expressed the concern of patch size or too many changes.

> Also, the patches' effects on pre-1970 timestamps in (for example)
> Norway and Sweden have triggered concerns, much more so than similar
> changes made (for example) to Angola and Congo in tzdb 2014g.

It may not be pleasant to accept, but I would strongly argue that
places like Norway, Denmark, Sweden and the Netherlands are much more
significant to the world economy than Angola and Congo. You simply
cannot judge the impact based on what has happened before. In
addition, the pre-1970 data being removed now is much better
researched than much of what has previously been removed.

> I also recognize that there are other forms of equity and fairness that
> should be considered, perhaps along with alternative technical solutions
> to the problems these patches address.

Thank you for the acknowledgement.

In summary, I am livid with the high-handed approach you have taken
wrt the release of 2021b. Despite near unanimity of the mailing list
requesting you to release 2021a+MinimalChanges, you progressed 9 out
of the 30 link merges based on a rationale that you acknowledge is not
universally accepted.

I believe your actions are against the spirit of the RFC, if not the
letter (as decided by the IESG), as you "SHOULD take into account
views expressed on the mailing list".

I will now take a break from this matter for a long weekend, as the
list has requested. Later next week I will try to start a positive
discussion as to what the next steps can be.


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