[ppml] Research on transfer markets, was: RFC 1744 and its discontents

Matthew Pounsett matt at conundrum.com
Tue Apr 22 17:17:39 EDT 2008


On 20-Apr-2008, at 17:33 , Tom Vest wrote:

>> I don't think there has been a land grab: hence my use of "if".  I
>> think that IP addresses have, for the most part, been assigned
>> fairly and equitably based on the conditions and understanding at
>> the time they were given out.
>
> I agree entirely. However, I also believe that resource transfer
> proposals as currently defined would represent a fundamental and
> irreversible break from this policy/practice/outcome.

Considering that "fair and equitable distribution" is what we think we  
have now with justification requirements, and considering that these  
requirements for justification are maintained in 2008-2, I'm not sure  
I understand how it is a fundamental break from fair and equitable  
distribution.  Could you expand on that?

> Whose demands for redistribution rise to the level of "requirements"
> -- aspiring sellers or would-be buyers? Incumbent buyers or new  
> entrant buyers -- i.e., the current and future "customers" that don't
> participate in ARIN deliberations (yet)?

Personally, the problem with depletion that I think needs fixing is  
the problem of the new company that comes to ARIN the day after  
depletion looking for addresses for their new network.  Yes, they are  
in an excellent position to fire up v6 and never have to worry about a  
transition, but most of their customers will not be able to reach them  
on v6, and so they will need some way to acquire at least a small  
number of v4 addresses to make their web site, mail servers, and  
various other public-facing services work.

v4 will be around in some form or another for a long time.  I don't  
think it's going to "go away" in any significant way until it's  
cheaper to run single-stack v6 (both in terms of straight-up  
operational costs and the ability to do whatever business people need  
to do on v6 only).  As long as v4 is around, any new player on the  
'net will require some v4 addresses... not necessarily a lot, but some.

 In order to allow new players to get the addresses they require post- 
RIR-depletion, we need some sort of incentive for those already  
migrating to v6 to actually free up v4 addresses where possible.   
There will be places where networks don't need to run dual stack, but  
it will cost money to remove the need for the v4 stacks, and to  
renumber into smaller blocks of a company's current v4 addresses.

I'm not entirely convinced that a paid transfer policy is the best  
incentive; it seems to carry a lot of  negative baggage with it, and  
require a lot of complex restrictions in order to maintain the fair  
balance that (I hope) we all want.  However, so far it's the only  
remotely viable suggestion I've seen.

> How is any new entrant ever going to be able to bypass the need to
> reach the universe of IPv4-addressed resources?

The context of your question suggests you think this is a reason not  
to have this sort of transfer policy.  Let me ask you the same thing  
though; in the absence of a policy along these lines, how will a new  
entrant ever do business with other companies/individuals/whomever in  
the universe of IPv4-addressed resources?

I would very much like to see alternative ideas explored that would  
address this issue.

> And if incentives for
> incumbent IPv4 resource holders are realigned so that the worse they
> ever face is big bucks for small IPv4 sales, plus the collective
> ability to manage/limit future competition, what incentive will they
> ever face to migrate to IPv6 themselves?

I believe that, in order to ever receive bucks of any amount for v4  
resources, companies will need to begin the migration to v6 and free  
up those v4 resources.  Presumably these organizations will be growing  
themselves, even as they transfer away v4 resources (the old truism  
that any company that isn't growing is shrinking) and so they must be  
acquiring new resources from somewhere.  v6 would be the only option.

> Perhaps future new ISPs will
> take comfort from the old "donut hole" peering theories -- i.e., they
> won't really be totally marginalized forever -- but the fact is those
> theories only hold water in situations when/where (a) the supply
> critical resource (in this case, "private line" bandwidth inputs) is
> so vast and/or growing so fast that price discipline cannot hold, and/
> or (b) incumbent resource holders are subject to gov-mandated resale
> requirements and price cap restrictions.

Do you believe that in the 'do nothing' scenario (i.e. stick with  
roughly our current distribution mechanism) that new players will be  
any less marginalized?  If that's not what you're advocating, and I've  
misread you, can you be clearer about what alternative action you'd  
like to see the community take?


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