[arin-ppml] Policy Proposal: Whois Integrity Policy Proposal

Milton L Mueller mueller at syr.edu
Thu Aug 21 14:47:53 EDT 2008

> -----Original Message-----
> From: arin-ppml-bounces at arin.net 
> lawsuits, i expect.  but can you explain ARIN's likely 
> motives for skirting?

"Trust me" arguments have no place in global governance processes. We've
learned that with ICANN (at least, some of us have). It is horribly
naive not to think carefully about appropriate institutionalized checks
and balances on the RIRs, however good and dedicated the people in them
may be (for the time being).

The problem with private contractual governance of a global resource
pool is that a private contract usually implies an alternative, a
choice, somewhere else you can go. If you don't sign a contract with
ARIN, what's your alternative? No amount of rhetorical identification of
the RIRs with "the community" can obscure the fact that ARIN has
exclusive control over the resource and thus unbalanced bargaining power
in any negotiation. 

(Except, of course, with legacy holders. Which is what makes this
discussion soooo interesting.)

> is that the elephant in this room?  are some legacy
> holders objecting to having RSA-like restrictions on selling 
> their space, and are therefore rejecting the LRSA on that basis, but
> willing to say so here?  if so, that's kinda rotten

I think the situation is the opposite from what you project. Rather than
legacy holders demanding special rights to sell, I suspect they are more
concerned about the application of "justified need" standards that would
take away addresses they currently have the option to use, or which
would prevent them from selling them. 

Milton Mueller
Professor, Syracuse University School of Information Studies
XS4All Professor, Delft University of Technology
Internet Governance Project:

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