ABOUT IEEE P802.11 AND HOW TO PARTICIPATE

The following are general statements of how to participate in the IEEE802.11 Working Group. For the official rules, please see the Policies and Procedures of the IEEE Project 802, LAN MAN Standards Committee (LMSC) and the IEEE 802.11 Working Group Operations Manual.


Introduction

IEEE P802.11 is a standards working group on wireless local area networks. The working group is a part of IEEE LMSC (LAN MAN Standards Committee) formerly called IEEE Project 802. IEEE LMSC reports to the Standards Activity Board (SAB) of the IEEE Computer Society.


Open Forum

All meetings of the standards activities of IEEE are open meetings. Everybody is allowed to attend as long as he/she pays their dues to the organization to offset the costs of the meeting. It is not required to be a member of IEEE to participate in, or to become a voting member of the working group. We recommend, however, that you become a member of either the IEEE or of the Computer Society.


Voting

At all meetings of the working group and its sub and ad-hoc groups, participation in the discussions and voting is limited to the voting members (see section Membership for the rules to become a member), although the chair has the discretion to allow non-members to participate in the discussions. At study-group meetings, however, all attendees can participate in discussions and in voting. The voting rules are defined in LMSC WG P&P,  and described in the 802.11 Operations Manual.


Organizational matters

A handy guide for how to develop standards is provided in the IEEE Standards Association Develop Standards site. More formal rules regarding the organization of our work are provided in the IEEE Standards Board Bylaws and the IEEE Standards Operations Manual. A short summary made specifically for 802.11 follows below.

Before a standard can be developed, a Project Authorization Request (PAR) has to be approved by the IEEE Standards Board. The PARs approved for the work of 802.11 are available here.

Once the working group has agreed on a draft standard (i.e., the draft was approved by a working group letter ballot), the draft is balloted in a sponsor balloting group. Membership of sponsor balloting groups is limited to members of the IEEE or the Computer Society. After approval by the balloting group, the result is reviewed by the Standards Board before publication. The IEEE Standards Board Review Committee (RevCom) are responsible for deciding whether the procedure for the development of the standard was followed correctly.


Meeting schedule

Currently the 802.11 standards working group meets 3 times a year during the plenary sessions of IEEE LMSC. LMSC meets in plenary sessions in March, July and November. And 802.11 holds interim meetings an additional 3 times a year in January,  May and September. Refer to the meeting plan.

Additional 802.11 interim meetings are held to host TGaj (China Milli-Metre Wave) meetings in China.


Membership of standards development working group

The membership rules are defined in LMSC WG P&P,  and described in the 802.11 Operations Manual.

In summary, membership belongs to an individual, not to an organization, and may not be transferred. You have to gain voting membership rights by participating in at least 2 plenary meetings out of 4 consecutive plenary meetings and then recording attendance at a subsequent plenary (at which you may vote). Participation means that you attend at least 75% of the time of the whole session of meetings. You may substitute one interim meeting for a plenary meeting.


Member categories and gaining voting rights

IEEE 802.11 recognises the following categories of membership:

  1. Aspirant members. Those members have participated in one plenary or interim session of meetings within the last 4 plenary sessions.
  2. Potential voter members. Those have participated in two sessions of meetings, at least one of which being a plenary session within the last 4 plenary sessions.
  3. Voter members. Those members qualify for voting membership status.

Potential voter members become voter members in the beginning of the first session they attend and and at which they record attendance.

"Participation" means recording electronic attendance for 75% of the "in hours" 802.11 meeting slots during a meeting and paying the meeting fee.

Note that recording attendance in some other (i.e., non-802.11) working-group's meeting during an 802.11 session does not count towards this 75% target.


Sponsor Ballot Group

Before LMSC sends a proposed standard to the IEEE Standards Board for approval, they must have a positive response from a letter ballot among the members of the related sponsor ballot group (the "pool") within its organization. The sponsor ballot pool for an 802.11 standard is established by invitation to interested members of IEEE-SA before the first sponsor ballot of that standard.  The pool is not changed once it has been established - i.e., the voters on the first sponsor ballot are also the voters for all subsequent recirculation ballots of the same standard.

The rules and procedures for sponsor ballot groups are provided in section 5.4 of the IEEE Standards Operations Manual. In summary they are as follows. For each main PAR, LMSC establishes a ballot pool. If you want to be invited to participate in sponsor  ballots of IEEE P802.11 and you are a member of the IEEE Standards Association (IEEE-SA), you can register interest in a standards project. A short time before a sponsor ballot for the project is issued, the IEEE sends the people in the pool an invitation to ballot. If you agree to commit to review and vote on the acceptability, you can apply for membership of that ballot pool. LMSC is responsible for balancing the membership of the ballot pool among various classifications, typically: producer, user and general-interest.


Document distribution

All documents submitted to and produced by the P802.11 working Group (excluding draft standards), such as liaison statements, minutes of meetings, meeting announcements, etc., are provided to the members of the working group by way of the IEEE802.11 document server (see https://mentor.ieee.org/802.11/documents).

Draft standards are available to active participants of 802.11 in its members area.  (Access is available by username/password supplied to active participants by 802.11 officers).

During 802.11 plenary and interim sessions,  documents and drafts are available to all attendees using a local fileserver.


Procedures

The Policies and Procedures of IEEE Project 802, LAN MAN Standards Committee require that Robert's Rules of Order are used in combination with the LMSC Policies and Procedures and the Working Group Policies and Procedures with the LMSC Policies and Procedure taking precedence.


Submissions to the working group

The 802.11 Working Group Policies and Procedures requires that every document must be formatted to a common standard before being submitted to the document server.  Special tools and instructions are available to make the task for submitters easy.

All submissions made to 802.11 WG and its sub-groups must be submitted to the document server before any presentation is made.  The ensures that all members have equal access to the material at the time is is being presented.


This page is maintained by Adrian Stephens. Comments are welcome.

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