Alex Currant alexcurrant911 at yahoo.com
Fri Nov 7 00:19:25 EST 2014

I am sorry but my statement was correct:  the IAU has not taken a stand.    My statement was correct because an IAU Working Group is not the IAU, and that IAU leadership has been explicitly clear about this point.   I am sure the demeanor of everyone in the WG was professional. But I would also bet that the opinions of the individual Working Group members at the end of their deliberations were exactly the same as their opinions when they joined the group.  I have no knowledge of that fact, but its a good hunch that you would know more about than I or anyone not on the WG.
Similarly, it appears you have distorted the Torino meeting by suggesting a consensus existed.  The summary of that meeting, as referenced on Steve Allan's web pages for example, specifically states that there was no concensus, yet you claim one existed.    More importantly it also says the ITU should consider replacing UTC by a new continuous timescale, with a new name TI.   The actual phrase was evolving, and that means no more UTC and no more leap seconds after a period for preparation.
 Perhaps it should also be noted that the only still-active proposer of the name TI, Dr. Arias of the BIPM, no longer supports a name change.
      From: Rob Seaman <seaman at noao.edu>
 To: Leap Second Discussion List <leapsecs at leapsecond.com> 
 Sent: Thursday, November 6, 2014 10:45 PM
 Subject: [LEAPSECS] IAU UTC report
On Nov 6, 2014, at 8:04 PM, Alex Currant via LEAPSECS <leapsecs at leapsecond.com> wrote:

The IAU has not taken a stand on this - if it were so simple then the disagreements that were expressed in the IAU deliberations would not have been sufficient to prevent a resolution.

This is not correct.  The IAU UTC working group did take a carefully negotiated stand on this.  All members of the working group contributed in a serious and professional manner, and I was honored to work with all of them, including those whose opinions differed from my own.  The final report from the IAU UTC working group is available online from the scrolling news banner at the top of the page:
>From the executive summary:

"Consequently, the Working Group recommends that the IAU respond to the ITU-R by stating that the IAU is not in a position to formulate a conclusive opinion regarding any change in the definition of Coordinated Universal Time. Nevertheless, in the event of the deletion of future leap seconds the name of the scale should no longer reference the astronomical time scale “Universal Time” to avoid technical confusion, and a time interval of at least five years between adoption and implementation should be allowed."

This supports the consensus from the 2003 Torino colloquium.  Whether a large organization like the IAU or ITU responds efficiently to such a recommendation depends on many factors, but nothing about the report was "sufficient to prevent a resolution" or to prevent forwarding it to the ITU, and the report was delivered to the IAU Exec in a timely fashion.
Rob SeamanNational Optical Astronomy Observatory
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