[arin-ppml] simple question about money

Brian Reid reid at mejac.palo-alto.ca.us
Mon Jun 9 11:20:25 EDT 2008

> you have an employment conflict of interest, vixie being a non-trivial
> and typically vixie religious player in the game of maintaining the
> RIRs' bloated position leasing integers.

Feh. I've known Paul Vixie more than half his life, and to me "typically vixie" means "honorable" and "lives by principle". That's why I'm proud to work for him and I probably should have checked with him first.  Whatever this is, I can't imagine that he is guilty of "maintaining the bloated position" or of anything else that's even slightly unscrupulous. I shouldn't have been so harsh on ARIN in my question, and for that I owe him a public apology; I should have assumed that there was a good 
reason for the prices instead of assuming that there was not.

Paul's typically laconic reply actually answered my question. Would that the documentation did so also. The summary of what I got from his reply was "there are solid technical reasons why there shouldn't be very many portable blocks, and so they are priced accordingly." What I learned is that I shouldn't want a direct allocation.

To many of the rest of you: there's a difference between being a member of ARIN and a customer of ARIN. At least I think there is. Nowhere in the documentation do I see anything saying that you have to be a member of ARIN in order to get a direct allocation. Of course you can't fund the activities of ARIN with a membership fee that's 1/100th of what it is now, but that's not what I was asking about.

If IPv6 is going to catch on with the technical public, the process of using it needs to be sufficiently transparent that somebody who spends 3 or 4 hours reading the website to figure out what to do needs to come away with a sense of how to get things done. I didn't. I know that many of you will just respond by telling me I'm stupid, but I really did read what was there and try hard to understand it. Nowhere did I see an explanation that the administration and management of IPv6 is (presumably 
by design) different from that of v4 and that the concepts don't just move over. In particular, the whole supply-and-demand thing is not properly explained or documented. There was a scarce resource (v4). It is priced high, like many scarce resources. Now there is an abundant resource (v6), with millions of times more availability. Conventional economics suggests that the more abundant resource ought to be a lot cheaper because of the principles of supply and demand. It isn't.

The mistake I made was assuming that the bizarrely high price was motivated by greed or stupidity. I admit that my expectations there were set by having paid close attention to ICANN's early years. The bizarrely high price is in truth motivated by solid operational and technical concerns (and is therefore not bizarre), because there still is a scarce resource, namely routing table slots. I think it would help a lot for ARIN documentation to explain why the usual laws of supply and demand 
seemingly do not hold here.

More information about the ARIN-PPML mailing list