XSF Discussion - 2023-05-04

  1. edhelas

    XEP-0482: Call Invites <3

  2. emus

    Hello, almost Board time ✨

  3. stpeter


  4. moparisthebest

    Until then... Bored time...

  5. stpeter


  6. emus

    📯🔔📢 Board is on time - right?

  7. ralphm bangs the gavel

  8. ralphm

    0. Welcome

  9. ralphm


  10. emus

  11. ralphm

    Who do we have?

  12. stpeter notes that there is a rough agenda at https://wiki.xmpp.org/web/Board-Meeting-2023-05-04

  13. stpeter


  14. ralphm

    MattJ, Arc?

  15. MattJ

    Here o/

  16. emus


  17. Arne


  18. ralphm

    I actually don't see Arc in here and he doesn't show as online to me, so let's continue.

  19. emus


  20. ralphm


  21. ralphm

    Anything to report at this front?

  22. stpeter

    I can report on my recent activities.

  23. ralphm

    Please do

  24. stpeter

    I’ve had two conversations with the MIMI WG chairs.

  25. emus

    (Everyone must have got my reminder for my meting yesterday)

  26. emus

    (Everyone must have got my reminder for the meting yesterday)

  27. stpeter

    After the first conversation I talked with MattJ.

  28. stpeter

    And MattJ has started an email thread with folks who are interested in working on an XMPP profile of MLS.

  29. ralphm

    (emus: I just used my calendar :-) )

  30. Arne

    > (Everyone must have got my reminder for the meting yesterday) per e-mail?

  31. stpeter

    I’ve also reached out to the MLS WG chairs but I haven’t heard back yet.

  32. stpeter

    Here is a short summary….

  33. emus

    > ralphm: > 2023-05-04 07:04 (GMT+02:00) > (emus: I just used my calendar :-) ) (yes just to be sure after last meetings)

  34. emus

    Arne: just to board

  35. stpeter

    The MIMI folks are basically hoping that the threat of DMA fines forces the “gatekeepers” (big tech companies with chat systems) to get involved with the IETF effort.

  36. stpeter

    But I am skeptical that will happen.

  37. emus

    > stpeter: > 2023-05-04 07:05 (GMT+02:00) > I’ve also reached out to the MLS WG chairs but I haven’t heard back yet. > Here is a short summary…. on which regard exactly have you reached out?

  38. stpeter

    Supposedly some of the gatekeepers are open to a standardized solution, not one-off bilateral agreements.

  39. stpeter

    But gatekeeper representatives are not involved yet.

  40. ralphm

    I think it hinges on several things: a) MIMI offering a viable approach, b) the EU Commission forcing their hand

  41. stpeter

    And we don’t have anyone from the XMPP community who wants to dedicate lots of time to the MIMI effort. I was asked and I declined because I’m semi-retired, y’see. ;-)

  42. ralphm

    And my personal feeling is that a) kinda requires XMPP

  43. emus

    > stpeter: > 2023-05-04 07:07 (GMT+02:00) > And we don’t have anyone from the XMPP community who wants to dedicate lots of time to the MIMI effort. I was asked and I declined because I’m semi-retired, y’see. ;-) Are there further other active actions we should start over to encourgae that? What is preventing?

  44. stpeter

    So IMHO MIMI is sort of dead in the water until (b) happens

  45. stpeter

    Well, who wants to work on MIMI? It’s basically volunteering a whole bunch of your time to work on technical solutions that will save Google and Facebook millions/billions of dollars, but you’re going to do all that work for free!

  46. stpeter

    And we’ve been down this road before!

  47. ralphm

    emus: it requires someone who can navigate the IETF, the XMPP community and its standards process, as well as someone apt enough to work through the politics of this all. Most of the problems aren't really technical.

  48. stpeter

    @ralph right, which is why they tried to recruit me. ;-)

  49. emus

    Is it about paid time for people from our side?

  50. stpeter

    As to MLS, that seems much more viable.

  51. ralphm

    MLS is also kind of a requirement to get MIMI done.

  52. singpolyma

    I think it's a very time expensive thing. I see value there, but I see more value in other things most people are spending time on (sorry if I should be silent during meeting I will be after this if you say)

  53. stpeter

    Eventually we might want to have MLS-based solutions to MUC encryption and so on, and we have people who are interested in working on that, either at the XSF or the IETF.

  54. ralphm

    Because the DMA requires an e2e component

  55. emus

    Do we still need to develop an official position from "XMPP / XSF side

  56. stpeter

    It turns out that the MLS might not be the place to work on MLS profiles (like MLS over XMPP), so it might be fine to do this work at the XSF for now. This is why I have asked the MLS WG chairs for their insights.

  57. MattJ

    singpolyma, no, board meetings are open to participation from "the floor" :)

  58. stpeter

    s/the MLS/the MLS WG/

  59. stpeter

    And as Ralph says, MLS over XMPP is a good first step toward DMA compliance.

  60. emus

    > stpeter: > 2023-05-04 07:11 (GMT+02:00) > It turns out that the MLS might not be the place to work on MLS profiles (like MLS over XMPP), so it might be fine to do this work at the XSF for now. This is why I have asked the MLS WG chairs for their insights. But noone wants to spent time on it?

  61. stpeter

    @emus we do have people who want to work on MLS over XMPP

  62. ralphm

    My feeling about MLS on MUC should not be hard. I.e. not as hard as it is to get Matrix going (hence the dMLS stuff). But unfortunately I haven't spent enough time on it to make a proper determination.

  63. emus

    Ok, I understood the opposite

  64. stpeter

    But we don’t have people who want to define a new S2S protocol that Google and Facebook can use.

  65. emus

    stpeter: sure

  66. moparisthebest

    Right, because they can just use XMPP s2s as is

  67. singpolyma

    I mean, ideal this new s2s protocol would be "XMPP" but I guess they want a big chunk of it written down in a certain way

  68. ralphm

    My understanding was that we had Tim and Marvin interested in working on MLS. Correct, MattJ?

  69. MattJ


  70. stpeter

    One piece of tech-ish feedback from the MIMI chairs is that the gatekeepers think XMPP s2s is a non-starter because it’s too hard to scale. They don’t know how to manage long-lived sessions across multiple servers etc.

  71. emus

    Well, my only concerns are that this very important topic is bot actively adress to our best capabilities

  72. MattJ

    moparisthebest, singpolyma: agreed, though there are some people (involved in MIMI) who are sceptical about that

  73. emus

    Well, my only concerns are that this very important topic is not actively adress to our best capabilities

  74. stpeter

    Because we don’t have direct connections with the gatekeeper people, it’s hard to have a real conversation even if we wanted to.

  75. moparisthebest

    The gatekeepers opinions don't matter, they aren't even involved and likely won't use any of this anyway

  76. stpeter

    @moparisthebest I tend to agree.

  77. singpolyma

    moparisthebest: except that it's being done "for them"

  78. ralphm

    stpeter: I am surprised that this is still the argument. Is that really a problem? And if so, we could redefine s2s streams to not require permanent connections.

  79. ralphm

    I don't think it even requires a protocol change.

  80. singpolyma

    I think you can already close s2s stream when you like and reopen as needed it's just less efficient. Something something quic

  81. stpeter

    @ralphm Right, but someone would need to define that option in XMPP - basically negotiate it upfront or switch to non-persistent version.

  82. Zash

    s2s streams don't require permanent connections already? you can time out whenever you want. with direct tls and bidi it's super fast too

  83. moparisthebest

    Plus "won't scale" etc is just provably false ie https://www.process-one.net/blog/ejabberd-nintendo-switch-npns/

  84. Zash

    Google Talk proved it scales just fine

  85. ralphm

    singpolyma: sure, defining XMPP on top QUIC is something we should do anyway. The problem is probably in proper library support for the relatively new IETF QUIC.

  86. stpeter

    @Zash I believe the concern is keeping a user session alive across the s2s restart etc.

  87. stpeter

    Anyway, this is getting into a technical discussion.

  88. singpolyma

    Getting a real contact at any of the gatekeepers would be a huge win independent of MIMI and DMA stuff

  89. stpeter

    And the basic problem here is people / political.

  90. ralphm

    Zash: Google literally used "XMPP is not ready for the cloud" as an argument for shutting down federation and eventually Talk.

  91. moparisthebest

    ralphm: we already have XMPP on quic defined and implemented and deployed...

  92. Zash

    So we need someone to ~bribe~ lunch with the right people in the right lobbies then. Who likes to eat? :)

  93. stpeter

    @singpolyma We had great contacts originally with the Google Talk team but those atrophied and their commitment to XMPP wavered once a new product manager took over. Etc. I don’t see a lot of upside here.

  94. emus

    stpeter: (as you are writing miniutes, can you liate the technical implentations mentioned)

  95. stpeter

    “We’re trillion dollar companies, please do all this work for free to save us from EU fines” is simply not a great offer.

  96. singpolyma

    stpeter: right. That's one issue with all political work. New people always come and go and it needs constant renewal. It's not a project more like a job unfortunately

  97. ralphm

    In any case, we're more or less where we started: nobody that has the cycles and/or desire to do this work.

  98. Zash

    stpeter, ... "or we'll do it an even worse way!"

  99. ralphm

    If money is the problem, however, we can apply for funding, and likely get that sorted.

  100. Zash

    EU funding?

  101. ralphm


  102. emus

    So don't know the problem? or is it money?

  103. stpeter

    These companies are likely to create bilateral agreements or one-off APIs in order to comply. They will not be pretty, but they will help the gatekeepers avoid fines.

  104. emus

    there is also the german security fund

  105. singpolyma

    Unless XSF wants to become the kind of org that has staff I think funding probably won't help this particular kind of issue. Unless it's just about flights or whatever

  106. emus

    there is also the german souvernaity fund

  107. Arne

    what about the sovereing tech fund?

  108. emus

    Arne: yes, mentioned that

  109. Arne

    May I ask, how the progress of the application?

  110. Arne

    May I ask, how far is the progress of the application?

  111. emus

    > Arne: > 2023-05-04 07:21 (GMT+02:00) > May I ask, how the progress of the application? no application

  112. stpeter

    Well, there’s also a question of who the hell wants to do this kind of political / standards work for literally years on end.

  113. moparisthebest

    Yes, they aren't going to federate with the open XMPP network no matter how much we butcher XMPP s2s to please them, so why expend any effort?

  114. ralphm

    stpeter: there was discussion on this at the DMA meeting in Brussels, and all parties there, except Meta of course, made it clear that they didn't think that bilateral APIs were going to be an acceptable approach. The summary by the EUC representative made me think that the C would agree.

  115. moparisthebest

    Remember their goal is user lock in

  116. emus

    I't rather start with a funding and work towards this if that is what we all believe is the right way

  117. stpeter

    Even if we think there is a high likelihood of success from the XMPP perspective, we’re talking about 3+ years of unpleasant political / standards work. I’m pretty sure everyone here would rather spend their time writing code and making their software better for real people.

  118. ralphm

    If we put in a good proposal NLNet will likely provide funding. But as I said, and Peter is as well, somebody has to want to do this. And also have the qualifications I mentioned above.

  119. singpolyma

    > Well, there’s also a question of who the hell wants to do this kind of political / standards work for literally years on end. Yes, it's a kind of work that's extra hard to do long term with volunteers

  120. emus

    ralphm, stpeter: but please lets define what we believe are required and meaningful questions and how to adress. then we can call and see how we could reach this in a second step

  121. stpeter

    If I hadn’t been working for JINC and then Cisco, I don’t think I would have done all that IETF work for the last 20 years.

  122. MattJ

    I don't have anything further to say and I don't think we have any action items here (other than generally keeping on top of MLS)

  123. stpeter

    @emus Sure, we can do that.

  124. ralphm

    So I'd focus on the people part first, then arrange the funding.

  125. emus

    Action, peoplex funding, rather?

  126. stpeter

    But in any case I think a good first step, no matter what, is to jumpstart the MLS over XMPP work.

  127. emus

    Action, people, funding, rather?

  128. stpeter

    That’s a concrete, useful effort, and we have people who want to work on it.

  129. emus

    Should we make it an official team? I mean its really important right?

  130. stpeter

    I think it makes sense to take a wait-and-see attitude w.r.t. MIMI.

  131. ralphm

    emus: so far the team is called Board, and I don't think that creating a dedicated work team will change the outcome at this point.

  132. emus

    ok, but you mentined others too right?

  133. stpeter

    @emus It’s a XEP. Potential authors can submit a proposal anytime. Not sure we need a team for it.

  134. emus

    sorry, matt mentined

  135. emus


  136. ralphm

    emus: I mentioned people who have previously indicated a desire to work on MLS. I don't know what the current status is, but maybe MattJ knows

  137. emus


  138. stpeter

    And I am no longer convinced that the MLS WG is the right place to do this work, until we have a conversation with the MLS WG chairs.

  139. MattJ

    For MLS we may form some kind of official team, but there is no pressing need

  140. stpeter

    @ralphm we have an email thread going

  141. emus

    stpeter: open for all? :-)

  142. stpeter

    (Which I need to reply in given my recent discoveries.)

  143. ralphm

    Various people in the MLS WG have indicated they'd help out if needed. Including Raphael Robert.

  144. emus

    (whos that?)

  145. stpeter

    @emus Just an organizational thing among potential spec authors. Once they get organized, I’m sure a XEP will be forthcoming.

  146. stpeter

    @ralphm Yes, Richard Barnes offered to share insights, too.

  147. stpeter

    Anyway, I think we have enough to go on for the moment, let’s see how the next few weeks shake out and we can discussion again in the next Board meeting.

  148. emus

    (Anything I can do even though I lack may required competences?)

  149. ralphm

    stpeter: where is the thread?

  150. emus


  151. ralphm

    (I may have missed it completely)

  152. ralphm

    Agreed on moving on.

  153. ralphm

    2. Infra

  154. ralphm

    I understand there have been issues and work was done. What's the latest?

  155. emus

    fine, but lets write good mnutes here and cycle them

  156. stpeter

    @ralphm It’s not on any list yet.

  157. ralphm

    stpeter: ok, then it makes sense I haven't seen it :-D

  158. emus

    > stpeter: > 2023-05-04 07:31 (GMT+02:00) > @ralphm It’s not on any list yet. lets move it there please

  159. stpeter

    @emus Yes, I will write up some minutes based on the discussion here, likely tomorrow.

  160. emus


  161. ralphm

    MattJ: infra?

  162. MattJ

    (typing :) )

  163. MattJ

    There are no major infrastructure emergencies right now, but some ongoing issues of various severities. Top ones that come to mind are the lack of web-accessble archives on the mailing lists since restoration, and a lack of IPv6. The first one is within our control, the second seems to be some issue at USSHC and so far Jerry has not responded to a couple of pings about the issue (but I didn't press too hard because he was helping us with more urgent issues). I'll try and get on top of both issues as soon as I can.

  164. MattJ

    The lack of IPv6 affects all our USSHC servers, so for us that's primarily our mail server, DNS server and everything we host at xmpp.net (beyond the XSF, jabber.org is also affected). The website and XMPP service are not affected.

  165. ralphm

    Is lack of IPv6 a problem?

  166. ralphm

    (or a desire)

  167. MattJ

    Yes, it means the service can't be accessed by people with IPv6-only internet connections, for example

  168. ralphm

    Right. I have no idea how large that group is

  169. MattJ

    and we can't deliver (or receive mail from) IPv6-only mail servers

  170. MattJ

    It's not the largest group on the internet, but it's certainly a group

  171. Zash

    One small part of holding us back in the Legacy IP dark ages!

  172. ralphm

    Yep. Ok. Thanks for the update.

  173. ralphm

    3. AOB

  174. ralphm

    Any OB?

  175. emus


  176. stpeter

    Well, another issue is that we still haven’t fully configured mailman - we need to install/configure nginx and re-enable list archives and perhaps a few other tasks. I’ve been traveling so I have been remiss in working on this.

  177. stpeter

    (At least I think those tasks still need to be completed, but I might be out of the loop.)

  178. MattJ

    I did mention that above, I'm planning to look into it

  179. emus

    stpeter: Maybe we can ask singpolyma for help if thats required

  180. ralphm

    stpeter: I think that was in MattJ's message

  181. stpeter

    OK, sorry, my attention wandered.

  182. ralphm

    No worries

  183. stpeter

    In finance news, I just reimbursed Ralph for FOSDEM/Summit expenses.

  184. ralphm

    Any other business?

  185. ralphm

    YES! And got it, too

  186. stpeter

    That was somewhat expensive. :-)

  187. ralphm

    Well yeah, it is has been a while since we needed to pay for a venue

  188. emus

    wait I may have one extra announcement

  189. stpeter

    So instead of $16k+ in the bank we now have $13k-ish in the bank.

  190. stpeter

    But we can talk next time about sponsors again and I can provide a more complete finance report.

  191. Arne

    About finances, I'm thinking about contacting a potential investor. He has some small political contacts and he came to me once after I won a price for my project. I could try to introduce him to xmpp. Maybe anyone here could help then?

  192. emus

    Na not yet

  193. ralphm


  194. stpeter

    Arne: sounds intriguing.

  195. emus

    (nothing to announce yet from my side)

  196. ralphm

    Arne: nice!

  197. stpeter

    @emus OK, but the suspense is killing me!

  198. ralphm

    So yes, we can help

  199. stpeter

    No more AOB here.

  200. ralphm

    emus: guess the next meeting then.

  201. ralphm

    4. Date of Next

  202. emus

    ralphm: later hopefully :-0

  203. Arne

    > So yes, we can help Thanks

  204. stpeter

    June 1 or 8?

  205. ralphm

    June 1 works for me

  206. emus

    7th in my cakender

  207. emus

    but should be 8 righy?

  208. ralphm

    AFAIK we haven't picked a date in June yet

  209. emus

    I thought we did. ok wait

  210. emus

    id prefer 8th

  211. ralphm


  212. ralphm

    Next meeting is on June 8, 17:00 UTC.

  213. ralphm

    5. Close

  214. ralphm

    Thanks all!

  215. ralphm bangs gavel

  216. stpeter


  217. emus

    but actually, didt we agree on first Wed? thats how it is in my calendar

  218. Arne

    Thanks and bye!

  219. stpeter

    I thought we agreed on Wednesday?

  220. stpeter

    I mean Thursday.

  221. stpeter

    Anyway, we can work it out on the Board list.

  222. stpeter

    I need to run, cya later!

  223. emus

    fun :-) I got blamed sending a reminder :-0

  224. emus

    kk bye

  225. ralphm

    emus: We only recognise 64v3vs15qlalgqv0j7r99ikm1c@group.calendar.google.com

  226. emus

    ralphm: well didnt worked for arc I think

  227. ralphm

    arc always has calendar issues. One of the constants in the universe

  228. emus

    🙈 people don't believe we work in tech

  229. emus

    Good night

  230. Zash

    Tech workers have the most tech problems, probably.

  231. moparisthebest

    Relevant https://www.moparisthebest.com/images/enthusiasts-vs-engineers.png

    😂️ 1
  232. Zash

    A printer? Someone likes to live dangerously

  233. Arne

    Printers often make problems

  234. emus


  235. emus

    ralphm, stpeter: But we used to say that we want to have a strategy before be start asking for a funding in any direction. now I understood it was mention to "simply" look for people and funding. Im a bit confused... Btw, I want to remind that nicola, a lawyer and politician from Italy offered support in eg. legal questions if that is required.

  236. ralphm

    emus: I strongly believe that we should first find a person that would want to lead this effort, and has time to do this. This could mean that instead of doing other work, this person will dedicate his time for this *if paid for it*. But we'd first have to find a person that is _willing_ and _capable_. Then if funding is the "only" concern, we can try and find funding for that.

  237. emus

    But I'd rather say lets set the goals or what ever we want to work towards and set the scene. why only one person. maybe the could be done by people part time. or people act on certain parts, not all of it. I mean we are looking for one champion, but maybe thats too high of an expectation?

  238. singpolyma

    Are we still talking about doing political/ietf work? Because that's at least focus of one person to realistically happen in full

  239. singpolyma

    Rag tag group can do a lot but some stuff needs continuity

  240. emus

    sure, not ignoring that