[ppml] Revision to 2008-3

David Farmer farmer at umn.edu
Fri Apr 4 18:43:12 EDT 2008

On 4 Apr 2008 Jay Hennigan wrote:

> Owen DeLong wrote:
> > I know of community networks held together by a collection of WRT-54s
> > and donated 72xx hardware.  The minimum LIR fee to ARIN is $1,250
> > per year, which, vastly exceeds the hardware budget of most community
> > networks I know.
> For 100 users that's just about $1 per month each.  I'm not trying to be 
> Scrooge here, but this really doesn't seem out of line compared to what 
> one would pay an ISP or telco/cableco.

At one level I agree with this, it is not that much money, but for a shoestring 
operation collecting that much money into one place could be hard.  And it is 
usually a dedicated few people that are actually making things happen by 
donating old hardware, donating services, donating office space (if they 
even have office space), etc...  Much of the resource for such organization 
are in-kind donations.  Hard currency is very difficult to come by some times 
for such organizations, even if it isn't that much money in the scheme of 

Really which is easier for you network operators on this list to donate, bits or 

> > As to transit, many of the community networks I know get transit donated
> > from various organizations or pay very little for it through various 
> > discount
> > arrangements.  Even if that is not the case, however, adding $1,250 or
> > more per year to the annual costs usually exceeds the excess revenue
> > of any of the ones I am familiar with.
> Might it be possible (and better for the Internet community as a whole) 
> for the smaller community networks with substantially fewer than 100 
> users to also get address space SWIPped from those transit providers?
> If there is a bona-fide need for a hardship or not-for-profit fee 
> structure for freenet-style LIRs, I'm all for it.  I also fear the 
> slippery-slope addressed by others in this discussion regarding 
> agenda-driven organizations taking advantage.  I'm personally not 
> convinced that such is needed unless I'm missing something really out of 
> whack between the number of users represented in the definition of an 
> LIR and the number actually splitting the bill.

I had an idea this morning on the way into the office, what if ARIN left its 
rates much as they are, and found some person or an organization to 
provide sponsorships or scholarship like program for Community Networks.  
That sponsorship program could then judge who is worthy and not, relieving 
ARIN of the oversight and it can ignore most of these issue.  Any ideas who 
could do this?  the Internet Society?  Who?  If it were a charitable 
organization, maybe even ARIN as a non-profit organization could donate 
some of the excess funds it is collecting, if there are any.  Just a thought.

That said I'm becoming convinced that this isn't really a policy problem, 
Community Networks should be considered LIRs.  If there is really a 
problem with the literal definition of "customer", then maybe a minor policy 
tweak to "customer, member, or other type of user of a network service" or 
something like that would fix it.  

The real issue is a financial one, ARIN could fix it through its fee structure, 
or the Internet community as a whole could fix it outside of ARIN through a 
sponsorship/scholarship program I mentioned.   

> -- 
> Jay Hennigan - CCIE #7880 - Network Engineering - jay at impulse.net
> Impulse Internet Service  -  http://www.impulse.net/
> Your local telephone and internet company - 805 884-6323 - WB6RDV

David Farmer				Email:	farmer at umn.edu
Office of Information Technology
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