by Darius Kazemi, March 14 2019

In 2019 I'm reading one RFC a day in chronological order starting from the very first one. More on this project here. There is a table of contents for all my RFC posts.

Unnecessary changes

RFC-73 is by Steve Crocker of UCLA. It's titled “Response to NWM/RFC #67” and is dated September 25th, 1970.

The technical content

This is a response to Bill Crowther's RFC-67 proposal to eliminate marking. Crocker says that the suggestion was good but he wants to hold off making unnecessary changes to the protocol.

Crocker also says that he polled some Host sites and the ones that had written more code tended to favor fewer changes to the protocol; the ones that had written less code were more open to changes.

He concludes by stating that changes to the protocol are necessary, even to increase efficiency and convenience.


The first paragraph echoes what is stated in RFC-72: splitting messages to remove marking should be delayed. But the second paragraph contradicts the reasoning from that RFC. Whereas RFC-72 stated that changes merely for efficiency were not necessary, Crocker clearly disagrees, claiming that the delay is necessary to collect more data on network performance before making major changes.

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About me

I'm Darius Kazemi. I'm a Mozilla Fellow and I do a lot of work on the decentralized web with both ActivityPub and the Dat Project.