[arin-ppml] LRSA concerns (Re: Policy Proposal: Whois Integrity Policy Proposal)

Jeffrey I. Schiller jis at mit.edu
Thu Aug 21 18:32:53 EDT 2008

I've attached a message a sent to the ppml list back last
October. From what I can tell, no one ever responded publicly to it (I
did receive a private reply).

I proposed then that a good first step to get legacy holders into the
"tent" would be a milder contract that didn't put their "rights"
(whatever they may be now or determined in the future) on the line.

From what I have read and seen, one of the more egregious clauses in
the LRSA is the one where you lose your address space when the
contract terminates, for whatever reason. There are other problems as
well, but I won't go into detail here (others have, I don't need to
repeat them!).

Perhaps a more middle ground between the current LRSA and my proposal
of no discussion of address blocks would be something that would:

o Bind the registrant to not sell or transfer their address blocks
  outside of an ARIN sanctioned process (this is one of the elephants
  in the room!).

o Bind ARIN to not revoke legacy addresses (which the LRSA does

o Arrange for the registrant to pay their fair share of ARIN costs
  (the LRSA does this).

o Isn't terminated based on issues that have nothing to do with
  address assignment (like claimed violations of law, more on this

o Is in some way non-revocable. What I mean here is that the
  registrant shouldn't be able to decide to void the agreement and
  walk away because they want to do something prohibited by the
  contract (like sell address space) *and* ARIN shouldn't be able to
  revoke a legacy address by wiggling out of the agreement. The
  registrant should feel secure in their continued use of address
  space and ARIN should feel secure in that the registrant will abide
  by the agreement. I'm not enough of a lawyer (heck, I am not even a
  lawyer at all) to come up with the language.

I believe the key here is that the legacy registrant needs to be
secure in their continued use of "their" address space. The current
LRSA falls short on this score.

So, how do we move forward on this score? Do I hire an attorney and
develop a replacement LRSA. Is there a way to get the ARIN Board to
consider changes to the LRSA without doing so (I would propose wording
changes myself, but then I am not a competent attorney). I'm
interested in guidance here.

So about claimed violations of law... (feel free to stop reading now
if you are not interested in this aspect of things).

The problem with terminating the agreement on violations of law is
that sometimes the law is wrong and the way to demonstrate it is to
violate it and go to court.

A number of years ago MIT was actually convicted of violating the
Sherman Anti-Trust Act by participating in what was called the Overlap
Group. The Overlap Group was a group of college financial aid
administrators who arranged for students who applied to their colleges
(thus they "overlapped") to receive a similar aid package from each
school that they applied to (from the group). This was a benefit to
society because it permitted students to select a school based on
academics rather then the best aid package. It also permitted limited
donations (where the financial aid sometimes comes from) to be
stretched over a larger number of students. In some cases this was
necessary for schools to offer "need blind admissions."

The government viewed this as illegal price fixing and went to
prosecute the member schools. All but one negotiated a consent
decree. MIT was the one that wouldn't. We stood on principal and went
to court. We were convicted. We appealed and the appellate court threw
out the conviction and remanded the lower court to try again. At that
point the government punted.

My point: When we were convicted, it would have really been unpleasant
to then loose our address block. Frankly what the heck does our
address allocation have to do with this? Nothing, so it shouldn't be
part of the equation.

Sorry for the length.


On Thu, Aug 21, 2008 at 03:25:27PM -0400, William Herrin wrote:
> Perhaps asking for the LRSA to also be about governance pushes the
> legacy registrants further than they're currently willing to go.

Jeffrey I. Schiller
MIT Network Manager
Information Services and Technology
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
77 Massachusetts Avenue  Room W92-190
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307
617.253.0161 - Voice
jis at mit.edu
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