From the Nov. 11, 1999 version of the W3C Process Document:
Groups strive to reach consensus in order to provide a single solution acceptable to the market at large. If a group makes a decision that causes the market to fragment -- despite agreement by those participating in the decision -- the decision does not reflect a single market and therefore the group has failed to reach true consensus.
(No, they weren't specifically talking about alternate roots, but it's hard to avoid thinking about them here.)
A tip 'o the hat to Joseph Reagle, whose paper Why the Internet is Good: Community governance that works well is the place I ran across this language. The most recent (Feb. 8, 2001) version of the WC3 Process Document, unfortunately, omits it.
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