[arin-ppml] Q1 - ARIN address transfer policy

Scott Leibrand sleibrand at internap.com
Sat Jun 21 13:14:20 EDT 2008

Owen DeLong wrote:
> I think it is just as reasonable to assume that some
> fraction of those holding address space they do not need are doing
> so because they believe there will be a future value to it.

This is almost a tautology: everyone who holds address space does so 
either because they believe it will have value to them at some point, or 
because of inertia.  Value is not something created by a market.  A 
wife's love is one of the most valuable things on the planet: just 
because it can't be traded doesn't make it any less so.  In the case of 
IPv4 addresses, they have value because you can use them on the 
Internet, or reassign them to customers to do so.

> I'm not so sure that if we were to make it clear a market will not be
> legitimized that those few who are holding on to resources in
> the hope to realize future value will continue to retain them.
> I'm sure some will.  I'm sure some will not. I think that any
> statement about what fraction will fit into each category is
> purely speculation at this time.

I disagree.  If you understand that "hoping to realize future value" 
does *not* equate to "hoping to be able to directly sell them for 
money", then no matter what we do, IPv4 addresses will have future value 
up until the point that IPv6 adoption is far enough along that people no 
longer need IPv4 addresses to have good Internet connectivity.

Given that most organizations will see some future value in their IPv4 
addresses, I see it as quite unlikely that we'll see enough voluntary, 
non-incentivized returns of address space to meet more than about 10% of 
the demand for IPv4 addresses post-exhaustion.  Therefore, I see two 
alternatives: either do nothing, and force long enough (gas)^W IPv4 
lines to get people to (buy electric cars)^W^W^W migrate to IPv6, or 
provide incentives to IPv4 address holders to give up their space.  The 
latter still provides a strong economic incentive to move to IPv6, but 
it does so without the disruption of shortages.


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