ARIN-PPML Message

[arin-ppml] [arin-announce] [Fwd: ARIN-prop-133: No Volunteer Services on Behalf of Unaffiliated Address Blocks]

On Feb 16, 2011, at 7:56 AM, Milton L Mueller wrote:

> 
> 
>> -----Original Message-----
>>> When Mr. Lewis says that "My membership in ARIN is funding my ability
>> to find out who is sending me packets" he may be overlooking the fact
>> that his membership is also funding that ability for all kinds of other
>> people as well, many of whom are free riders and/or have no contract
>> with ARIN.
>> 
>> That is the whole point of a Public Network Information Database.
>> 
> [Milton L Mueller] 
> 
> McTim,
> The issue is not "Can anyone query the Whois and get information out of it?" 
> 
> The issue is, rather, what makes ARIN's Whois authoritative and what does it mean for it to be authoritative, especially when a large portion of the registrations are not maintained or authorized by the actual ip address block holder? What kinds of obligations do ip address holders incur when they register in ARIN's Whois, as opposed to those who don't? How can an authoritative Whois database be maintained, updated and relied upon for policy purposes when many legacy holders don't even participate in ARIN? That's the issue, and imho prop-133 addresses it (no pun intended) head on and therefore is a good initiative.  
> 
Speaking only for myself...

Milton,

I think McTim actually has the correct issue.

However, to address your chosen issue...

ARIN's whois is authoritative only for the ARIN service region and only within the context of the cooperating
RIRs and IANA system. You are welcome to run an authoritative whois server any time you want and it will
be authoritative for the data that it contains. Anyone else can also run an authoritative whois server.

I do not think the term authoritative has much meaning in this context.

If you are asking, instead, what makes ARIN's Whois meaningful or more valuable than other whois
listings, then, the answer is simply the number of constituents that choose to regard the data in
ARIN whois as meaningful and legitimate, just as what makes IANA's allocations to RIRs meaningful
is that the RIRs and the rest of the industry choose to recognize that as meaningful.

The internet is not a single homogeneous entity. It is a collection of independently owned and
operated networks that choose to cooperate and exchange packets based on a pre-arranged
set of protocols and behaviors. Any of those networks is welcome to adopt its own numbering
scheme or system of allocations. However, they do so at the risk that some or all of the networks
to which they are connected may choose to no longer connect to them.

Quite simply, the internet works because people choose to cooperate. If you don't like the
way this internet works, you are welcome to start your own somewhere else. Metcalfe's law
says that building value in your internet may initially be difficult, but, if it is truly so much better
as you claim it would be, I'm sure you'll have ISPs flocking to it in no time.

Owen

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