We made a mistake and it is time to clean it up. Two sub-sections in the GeoPackage Specification, Schema and Metadata, have failed to provide any measurable benefit to users. I believe they were added to the specification with the best of intentions. Alas, as far as I can tell GeoPackage providers have been leaving the tables blank and even when they have been populated, they were not being read by clients. In the end all we are doing is making more work for people by making the presence of these tables mandatory.
In response, the Standards Working Group (SWG) voted to relegate the two sections into extensions. We will not remove these sections entirely but they will no longer appear in Section 2. As described separately, we have already agreed to compile all OGC-approved extensions into a single Annex. These changes will shorten the core of the standard and make the whole document more organized. We hope that this will make it more palatable to implementers. I plan to do the reorganization over the course of the next two weeks.
Meanwhile, the SWG's work is not done on this topic. I would like to reach the point that implementers look for opportunities to support extensions like these that do exist. Emerging profiles such as the National System for GeoINT Profile will use them and that is a good start.
To get beyond that, we will need to make a stronger case for the community benefits of providing this information.