[ppml] Policy Proposal: SWIP support for smaller than /29assignments

michael.dillon at bt.com michael.dillon at bt.com
Fri Jan 18 15:55:00 EST 2008

> Rationale:
> With increasing frequency of smaller than /29 assignements to 
> customers, the ability for ISP's to utilize SWIP or RWHOIS as 
> a single comprehensive source of their utilization data 
> should be supported. To implement this policy change, ARIN 
> SWIP would need to no longer reject SWIP templates smaller then /29.

1. Nothing that ARIN does or does not do has any effect on how an
   ISP uses their own utilization data.

2. The WHOIS protocol, WHOIS directory, whois tool, Share WHOIS
   Information Project (SWIP) and Remote WHOIS (RWHOIS) are all
   ancient and amateurish pieces of work. The average college 
   student building an application with Django could do a far
   better job at designing a whois service given the base
   level of technology and training available today compared
   to twenty (or more) years ago. We should be putting less into
   the whois directory, not more.

3. There has been some recent discussion about clarifying the
   purpose of the whois directory and how it should be used.
   It is premature to extend the use of whois until we sort
   out the larger issues.

4. Whois was created by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
   (DARPA) to track who was using their ARPAnet research network
   so that local network managers, and the larger ARPAnet community
   could justify budget funding for their work. Somewhere along
   the way, the network name changed to Internet, the base protocols
   to TCP/IP and the network purpose from research to everything
   that human beings want to communicate about. But whois has never
   been reviewed or changed much beyond adapting it to TCP/IP and
   adding some referral capabilities (RWHOIS). 

   Clearly there is no longer a need to count users in order to justify
   Federal research funding. Outside of net folklore, there has never
   been any agreement on the scope and/or purpose of the whois directory
   other than in the negative, e.g. the whois directory is not a place
   to harvest emails to send out advertising.

   Until we can agree on what whois is for, it is premature to extend
   its use in any way.

--Michael Dillon

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