[arin-ppml] Q1 - ARIN address transfer policy: why the trigger date?

Tom Vest tvest at pch.net
Fri Jun 20 10:35:24 EDT 2008

On Jun 20, 2008, at 10:11 AM, Milton L Mueller wrote:

> From: Ted Mittelstaedt [mailto:tedm at ipinc.net]
> This is the kind of response I had hoped I wouldn't get. I know  
> there are ideologically motivated people who think it is evil to  
> trade addresses, or "immoral" to hold on to more than you actally  
> "need" (as if "address need" were some stable, fixed and objectively  
> verifiable attribute of any network). But if that is your position,  
> then there should be no transfer policy at all, right? So while it  
> is evident that that attitude has shaped the nature of ARIN's  
> policy, it is not really relevant to defining a transfer policy once  
> you decide to have one.
> >ARIN policy isn't supposed to be based on an economic rationale.
> Um. Policies pertaining to scarce resources used by global  
> industries that aren't grounded in sound economic concepts about  
> actual behavior under conditions of scarcity cannot succeed. The  
> greatest good for the greatest number cannot be achieved without  
> taking actors' economic incentives into account. See below.
> >By definition, if you have "too much" address space then you
> >are required under the RSA you signed to return it.  Why - because  
> [snip]
> >Therefore your hypothetical situation -cannot- exist pre-IPv4 runout.
> Your statement describes an idealized interpretation of what you  
> consider to be a moral obligation. It does not describe how people  
> actually behave. Thus, your statement that the situatuion "cannot"  
> exist is factually incorrect. The situation does exist, and everyone  
> knows it does. Further, the situation exists both before and after  
> IANA's free pool exhaustion.
> >The modification of the ARIN requirements to permit "selling"
> >effectively modifies the existing RSAs that people have signed,
> >because it basically says that "After IPv4-runout we don't give a  
> crap
> >how you got your IPv4, whether honestly or not, from this point on  
> we all
> >have a clean slate" This is why such a policy is a horrible idea  
> pre-IPv4 runout.
> OK, I am glad that you finally got around to attempting to answer my  
> question. And your anwer is, presumably, that the "clean slate"  
> facilitates the transfer of resources from people who value them  
> less to people who value them more. And my simple observation is  
> that if it makes sense to do that after IANA pool depletion, it  
> makes sense to do it beforehand.
Hi Milton,

Following this logic, would you also say that the distribution of  
address resources should have always been determined through direct  
competition between those who value them more (i.e., are willing  
willing/able to pay more for them) and everyone else (ala RFC 1744,  
contra the "Address Ownership Considered Fatal" argument that  
prevailed back in the mid-1990s)?

If the answer is "no", is the differentiating factor the existence of  
a "free pool" from which addresses can be allocated on some other,  
noncompetitive basis?

If this answer to the second question is "yes", then which would you  
value more highly, or advocate more strongly: making due without  
whatever benefits recommended the old order, or taking steps to  
preserve those benefits, e.g., by maintaining something like a "free  



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