Sorry I couldn’t join the fun in Berlin, I’ve been at a wedding all weekend. I’ve been following a lot of the developments from the meetup and what’s been going on with EIP-999 on twitter and other channels (AllCoreDev gitter / Governance gitter).
After chatting for a bit with @fubuloubu in the Governance gitter, we had a couple of potential process improvements to float to you all for feedback.
First: In EIP-1, the Last Call rejection bullet (under Drafts) is written as “ Last Call – A request for Last Call status will be denied if material changes are still expected to be made to the draft. We hope that EIPs only enter Last Call once, so as to avoid unnecessary noise on the RSS feed. Last Call will be denied if the implementation is not complete and supported by the community.”
Can we change or strike that last line if it is not referring to community support (sentiment)? It gives the impression that to move to Last Call community support (positive overall sentiment) is required. I’m not sure if that is what is meant or if it is supposed to mean “supported by the clients.”
Second: One of the problems I’ve been seeing is that there isn’t a clear path for rejection or deferral of proposals that lack community support. I don’t think that’s a bad thing (especially outright rejection), but I think it creates a situation where the governance process may halt on proposals lacking clear support leaving them in Draft status for what seems like forever (either stuck there, or endlessly looped back from Last Call > Failed Acceptance), which does not signal appropriately to the champion/author. For EIP-999 since it is likely meant to be included as some future planned hard fork, there’s no value in leaving it Draft / Last Call and continuing the discussion without any clear change in community support once it has become clear it won’t be included in the next “scheduled” hard fork due to that lack of support.
@fubuloubu reminded me of the deferred status and had a great idea, I think to help with this problem. If a core protocol proposal can not proceed past Last Call status, which as I understand it can occur for a number of technical review reasons/unaddressed issues (reverts back to Draft), or because philosophically controversial proposals lacking clear community support aren’t included in ETH Core Dev call agendas and thus cannot be voted on for Acceptance, that the proposal be moved to Deferred status. @fubuloubu proposed that the champion can then petition to have the EIP status changed back to Last Call after demonstrating there is clear(er) community support, and the controversiality of the proposal, and the proposed changes, no longer pose a threat to the ecosystem. I dig this idea as a way back from deferred to active consideration for inclusion in the subsequent scheduled HF (assuming it’s not something critical enough to warrant an out-of-band fork).
I realize this relies significantly on signaling and better metrics for gauging support. So in the interim, focusing also on defining better ways for gauging such support is critical, and I know already Work-In-Progress.
Please let me know what you think.