[LEAPSECS] a big week for leaps at SG7 and WP7A

Stephen Colebourne scolebourne at joda.org
Tue Sep 30 02:45:09 EDT 2014

That Matsakis document includes reference to the UK public dialogue. I
took part in that dialogue at one point as an "expert" on the topic.
The people (regular members of the public, randomly selected) involved
were taught what leap seconds were, and given opinions on whether they
should stay or go. As such, they had enough information to consider
the issues properly, including wider factors such as cultural issues.
The result was a clear preference for the status quo, and bluntly they
were fairly unimpressed with the arguments for change (when compared
against the legal/cultural/meaning-of-day issues.

I can safely say from my experience there, that if leap seconds are
abolished it will not be with the British peoples approval.


On 30 September 2014 04:58, Steve Allen <sla at ucolick.org> wrote:
> This is a big week for the leap second.
> In Geneva the ITU-R SG7 meeting is tomorrow and the WP7A meeting
> follows.  Titles of the WP7A contributions are visible at
> http://www.itu.int/md/R12-WP7A.AR-C/en
> http://www.itu.int/md/R12-WP7A-C/en
> They show a document from Russia, from USA, and one from the recent
> URSI meeting in Beijing which may be a resolution from URSI Comm A.
> The report of the chairman from the May meeting of WP7A included
> two documents which are aimed to be presented at WRC-15 next year.
> http://www.itu.int/md/R12-WP7A-C-0056/en
> One was a draft CPM document on WRC-15 Agenda Item 1.14 (about the
> future of the international time scale), and the other was an earlier
> draft of the US contribution for this week.  During its review period
> the current US contribution was visible and it asserted that its
> content should replace the draft CPM document.  Versions of the draft
> CPM document that have been visible included three different methods
> for resolving the leap second question posed in Agenda Item 1.14.
> A: stop leaps, possibly changing the name
> B: keep UTC with leaps and approve a leap-free time scale
> C: keep UTC with leaps, document it clearly, and maybe do something else
> The URSI document may be related in some way to the presentation by
> Matsakis in Beijing
> http://tycho.usno.navy.mil/papers/ts-2014/Matsakis-LeapSecondComments.URSI-2014.pdf
> One thing that has not been contributed to the ITU-R is the result of
> the IAU Working Group on the Redefinition of UTC.  They rushed to
> prepare their report in time for the WP7A meeting earlier in the year,
> but the IAU never forwarded it to the ITU-R.  The UTC WG report was
> recently linked at the bottom of
> http://www.iau.org/science/scientific_bodies/divisions/A/wgs/
> in this URL
> http://astro.geo.tu-dresden.de/4DIVA/ReportOfTheIauWorkingGroupOnCoordinatedUniversalTime2014.pdf
> In large part the report covers the history of various IAU resolutions
> which led to the inception of leap seconds, so it is strange that before
> publishing the report the IAU prepended a disclaimer to the document.
> --
> Steve Allen                 <sla at ucolick.org>                WGS-84 (GPS)
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