is the ES4 proposal as good as approved?

Brendan Eich brendan at
Thu Dec 20 14:45:20 PST 2007

On Dec 19, 2007, at 10:05 PM, Peter Michaux wrote:

>> Let's cut to the chase: what are you worried about?
> Curious about the process mostly.

Here's a fresh example:

My conclusion is at

We knew this could happen, but we planned to find out in a Firefox 3  
beta. Lack of negative feedback would not be decisive, but in  
combination with the incoherent state of constructor property present  
value vs. memoized initial value (or value of constructor.prototype)  
in ES3, would be encouraging. Negative feedback would be decisive,  
and is being decisive ;-). See, no "strong-arming". You can't fool  
Mother Web.

>> Ecma and ISO technical groups work by consensus, not voting. As  
>> everyone
>> knows, consensus broke down within TG1, in a public way this past  
>> fall --
>> but we are trying to repair it now.
> I didn't know it was consensus. I think it is much easier in a vote
> for someone to say no to the proposal knowing it will pass anyway than
> for someone to say no in a consensus group knowing his perhaps unique
> position will spoil the party for everyone else.

This seems not to be a problem for our group ;-). I hear you, it can  
be a problem on marginal issues, where people want to "avoid  
conflict", but we've learned to embrace conflict.

> It seems like it
> would take a very big jerk to turn down the proposal if so many
> companies have already invested in implementing the proposal. That is
> why the term "strong arm" came to mind when I commented on John's
> blog.

So many companies implementing something that needs adjusting, or  
even removal, can still leave those companies carrying an extension,  
if they don't adjust to match the final spec. But companies are not  
working together in a standards body just to try to win by going to  
market -- that is too obviously counter-productive at least for the  
minority-share vendors (not necessarily for the majority-share vendor  
-- see the Prisoner's Dilemma).


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