[ppml] Proposed Policy: IPv4 Countdown

michael.dillon at bt.com michael.dillon at bt.com
Wed Mar 14 06:05:00 EDT 2007

> I would like to see some discussion on this, even though I comprehend 
> the reasons given below for the rejection and acknowledge that they 
> are valid.  My motivation for speaking up is to see if there might be 
> a way that the spirit of the proposal can be pushed forward in ARIN 
> even if the particular proposal has mechanics that are problematic.

ARIN has long had a problem with ill-thought-out, hastily written policy
proposals that were shoved into the public arena before they were ready.
In one sense, this is yet another of these. Like other poorly crafted
proposals it also suffers from the "plain English" problem. What is an
A-Date or T-Date? Why  can't the authors just say what they mean in
plain English? How many times did you have to read the proposal, jumping
back and forth in the text, to figure out just what they are saying.
This is bad. The Rationale section is there to allow authors to explain
the reasoning behind a policy, not to explain the meaning of the policy

In addition, the authors suggest that ARIN policy should require ARIN to
take some action when IANA resources reach a certain level. But IANA is
not controlled by ARIN. Does IANA even report on the size of their pool
in /8 equivalents? How is this to be measured?

But that is not all that is undefined. Does ARIN have a clear policy
definition of "critical infrastructure" as referred in the proposal? The
proposal refers to "projections" but does ARIN actually make such

And of course, the policy requires ARIN to terminate allocating IPv4
ranges which is entirely contrary to ARIN's charter. ARIN exists to
allocate IPv4 addresses and the only reason for this to stop is for the
supply to be exhausted. As long as IANA gives ARIN IPv4 addresses, ARIN
should continue to allocate them according to its policy guidelines.

In case you hadn't noticed, this policy proposal was made by people from
outside the ARIN region. The same proposal was put before APNIC in their
own region. They are attempting to create a global policy without
following the global policy process of NRO

Note that in the NRO process, the global policy is ratified by the ICANN
board of directors before coming into action. Also note that IANA is one
of the functions of ICANN, in other words if you want to make policies
based on IANA resources or IANA actions, you should go through the NRO.
Two of the three existing global policies actually do deal with IANA so
presumably the process works reasonably well.

As for anti-trust, well, this policy sounds like somebody making up
rules just for the sake of making up rules. The real goal seems to be
publicity of the fact that we are now in the wind-down phase of IPv4 and
IANA could run out of free /8s as early as 3 years from now. In my
opinion, ARIN policy is not the way to solve a publicity problem and not
the way to solve an education problem.

--Michael Dillon

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