Thread One - Scale Creep - A Blog Essay
Thread Two - Length or Girth
Thread Three - What is "scale" and whether it is "creeping"
Another TMP Thread on Establishing a common miniatures scale
In addition to these discussions I would point you in the direction of this blog http://thunderboltmountain.com/serendipity/ which has a series of excellent articles on proportion and scale.
As a roleplayer and a painter I'm not actually that bothered about scale [oh the blasphemy!]. I just want my miniatures to look good when painted and I want them to stand out on the games table. Having said that I can totally appreciate why a wargamer or collector would want some consistency in size and proportion.My motivation for writing my article was to try and sort out my own muddled thinking on the subject. I don't mind necessarily if my 28mm minis are actually 34mm, or anywhere in between, so long as they look good when painted. As a roleplayer I like to use good mini's on the games table but I'm not going to have a heart attack if there is 6mm difference between the Fighter and the Cleric.
However I am interested in finding if there is any industry standard and so far I can't see one. And maybe that's the biggest downfall of referring to 28mm as a scale. Its not exact enough to maintain scale discipline within manufacturers. Having said that if you were to ask most gamers if 28mm (or 15mm etc) is a 'scale' I suspect most would say "of course it is". So maybe the real problem isn't scale creep but more the void between the technical definition and the common vernacular for scale.