[arin-discuss] [arin-ppml] Advisory Council Position Petitions?

Ted Mittelstaedt tedm at ipinc.net
Wed Sep 23 16:36:14 EDT 2009

Joe Maimon wrote:
> Ted Mittelstaedt wrote:
>> John,
>> "...The NomCom selects those nominees that is feels are most
>> qualified and builds a ballot for each election..."
>>   Without even a general specification of the criteria the
>> Nominating Committee is using, it is perfectly understandable
>> that some individuals who were excluded would naturally be
>> frustrated at why they were excluded.
> This is what the petition process is for. I believe we should give it a 
> chance to work.

I am not stating a position for or against the petition process.  The
petition process is completely tangential to the point I've raised here.

>>   I have also seen a similar process used for not only other
>> Internet organizations in their selections, but also for many
>> other types of 503(c) organizations.
>>   In my opinion the level of transparency of this process has
>> a huge effect on the support for the organization.
> Without a petition process, I might agree with you, even as much as the 
> committee is comprised of community volunteers. Otherwise, I think its 
> far less an issue.

The RIR system only works because every
admin on the Internet agrees that it's a Good Thing and we all work
together to make it work.

ARIN's hold over IP assignments is far far more tenuous than that
of the roots over the DNS system.  The DNS system how has a veneer
of international law that supports it, based on the copyright agreements 
among countries.  IP addressing by contrast has no such "teeth"

If enough admins on the Internet voluntarily decide the
RIR's are full of shit, and just use whatever IP addressing they
feel like, there's nothing to stop them.

Additionally, ARIN is trying to use it's moral authority to get all
those admins on the Internet to voluntarily adopt IPv6.  That isn't
going to work if the same people ARIN is trying to push to use IPv6 are
pissed off at ARIN for being capricious and arbitrary.

Your attempting to make the argument that community support for ARIN is
not important.  I don't subscribe to this and I won't subscribe to it.
That argument is an "us vs them" paradigm that simply will not
allow ARIN's goals to be accomplished.  We are all married to
ARIN and as they say, happy wife, happy life.

>>   ARIN is in a unique position here compared to your
>> run-of-the-mill Internet organization, because
>> dissatisfied individuals simply cannot run away; ARIN is the
>> only org that does what it does.  ARIN therefore lacks the
>> self-selecting safety valve that another org
>> does which uses an opaque selection process.  People cannot
>> "vote with their feet" with ARIN. 
> En masse, they could. Or it could happen by fiat. I believe(hope?) ARIN 
> is well aware of the icebergs they need to navigate around.

I don't believe they are otherwise they would not have made the
mistake of cutting off the "sunset clause" from a recent policy
proposal and generating a huge flood of anger from many
many members.

In fact I will go so far as to say that not only do -I- not think
they are, -THEY- don't think they are - otherwise John wouldn't be 
ASKING for opinions.  And for this I am glad because that otherwise
would be a mark of hubris.

> Not to mention how much dirty laundry is aired regularly here.
>> I would submit that your paragraph explaining the nomcom selection
>> process is very disappointing with the amount of transparency
>> in it, and I am alarmed at phrases like "consideration of each 
>> candidate in closed session".
>> As long as the nomcom was simply rubber-stamping applications to
>> be a candidate, the underlying problem with using an opaque
>> candidate selection process was essentially masked, but if the
>> nomcom is going to flex it's authority to deny candidates, without
>> increasing transparency of the selection process, I suspect ARIN
>> is going to create completely unnecessary and distracting controversy.
> This would be the distracting controversy.
> I put forth that having a flood of under-vetted candidates without clear 
> community support would be worse.

How exactly does increasing the transparency of the criteria the NomCom
uses going to do this?

>> I would recommend that it's imperative that the NomCom
>> produce an objective summary of what they feel constitutes a qualified 
>> candidate. 
> I dont consider it imperative, but perhaps it would be nice. However, it 
> might just serve to fan more controversy.

And "in-depth consideration of each candidate in closed session" is 
going to generate -less-?

>> It is also important to keep in mind that these are
>> only candidates - the NomCom needs to trust that the membership
>> doing the voting has the wisdom to select the most qualified
>> candidates during the election.
> I personally dont think I could handle much more than the current number 
> of applicants while trying to properly vote on their merits.
> Less might even be better.

Once again, please explain how exactly does increasing the transparency 
of the criteria the NomCom uses going to do this?

> Since you seem to feel otherwise, you should probably go and place your 
> support for the petitioners.

I think you missed the point of my remarks.

I will try to say it more succinctly.

I don't have a problem with the NomCom disqualifying candidates for 
whatever reason.

I do have a huge problem when those "whatever reason" is shrouded in

As of now we still don't know what criteria was used by the NomCom
to deny the 2 candidacies.  Someone prove to me, in the absence of
transparency, that they simply didn't just hang the candidate list in
front of a dartboard and throw darts at it.


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