NAIPR Message

Rebuttal to Mr. Weisberg's insinuations Re: Important News from Don Telage about ARIN

Robert T. Nelson wrote:
> I hope that Vaden, Weisberg, Fleming, Walker, etc think carefully about
> these points, and perhaps they might find people more williing to listen
> to their ideas.
> Robert Nelson, President
> the internetwork operating company, inc.
> +
> rnelson at


I respect your thoughts on this.  I am certain that you are speaking
from your heart and experience.  I fully accept that you understand an
immense amount that I can not appreciate.  Thus,  I have to be and am
concerned that I may be wrong in my criticism.  Furthermore, I have
nothing to gain from this heated and personal discussion. I fully
understand that my company may suffer harm from my being so foolish. 
And, I do not enjoy the enmity I am earning from people whom I would
like to have as friends.  

However, I am continuing this side of the discussion because I think
these are fundamental issues which must be correctly resolved in order
to guarantee the good health and proper functioning of the system.  If
we organize correctly in the beginning, we will live in a more just and
healthy environment.  If we do not, we will pay the price with
discriminatory rules and arbitrary enforcement.  

I suggest that there has been little response to the issues I raise.  I
think Gordon, has been the exception and has genuinely tried to nudge
the process in the right direction.  Instead of dealing with my points,
people questioned my motivation and accused me of attacking the Net. 
That, I do not accept.  

I want to be subject to a REPRESENTATIVE system.  And, I suggest that it
should be created in a democratic process--a vote of the governed or of
some broadly representative group.  I question whether that has

I am not criticizing Jon Postel.  I am criticizing top-down governance. 
I am alleging and criticizing a failure to publically discuss how ARIN
should be organized.  

You may have discussed ARIN's structure to death before I came along and
decided that a self-appointing board is what you want.  Maybe there was
a public vote to do it this way.  If so, I owe and give a lot of people
an appology and will understand their reluctance to accept it.  If such
a process has not occurred, I suggest that it should. I ask you to
respond to this suggestion rather than attacking my motives or

I also suggest that the ARIN "proposal" smacks (to my admittedly
sensitive ear) of paternalism.  I read it as saying that the people
involved in the Internet are not competent to democratically manage an
IP registry in a responsible way and that this function must be
entrusted to a board which is out of the reach of the "peasants" (to use
an indellicate term which I suspect Gordon would love to withdraw from
his prior post).  Thus, some may believe and argue that having a board
appointed by NSI (or whomever) was necessary.   If anyone disagrees with
my reading of the proposal, they should say so.  Or if anyone believes
that a more democratic or representative form of governance would be
dangerous, you should discuss your thoughts.  But, no one has responded
to me on these points.

Sometime in the next year, the BoT is going to appoint an advisory
board.  How representative will it be?  Does anyone reallly know? 
Shouldn't we discuss that process, now?  Or, do you feel this process
should go on behind closed doors?

My comments are directed toward making AN arin (if not THIS arin) work. 
Am I off base in my stated concerns or premises?  If not, how else do
you propose we raise and deal with those issues?


Eric Weisberg, Gen. Counsel
Internet Texoma, Inc.
The ISP which DIDN'T