[arin-ppml] Q1 - ARIN address transfer policy: why thetriggerdate?

Milton L Mueller mueller at syr.edu
Thu Jun 26 04:29:47 EDT 2008

> -----Original Message-----
> speculation can be a very profitable activity for those who engage in
> but the resulting volatility is bad for consumers.  i do not
particularly > want my actions and values to be monetized in this way,
not for ipv4
> space, not for oil, not for electric power in california in 2001.  if
> here are amateurs as randy bush has often said, then the speculators
> win no matter what

I think the level of fear of speculation evinced on this list has lost
connection with reality. 

All of the speculative markets cited (currency, oil, etc.) involve the
flexibility to acquire and resell the commodity in days, hours or
minutes. Every transfer market proposal imposes limits of 2 years on
resale. Acquirors also have limits on getting addresses from ARIN. The
idea that a volatile, unstable market will develop is at odds with the
time limits that are being placed on both acquisition and re-sale of
acquired addresses. 

I believe that pre-qualification is an unnecessary administrative burden
and an obstacle to the functioning of a transfer market. The future will
be uncertain, as all of the comments of the experts on this list
demonstrate.   It's perfectly acceptable and justifiable for operators
to acquire addresses they _may_ need. Projections of need are just
estimates. Estimates can be wrong, and if someone wants to spend the
money to err on what they consider the safe side I don't see the

So many of the comments against transfer markets are really just
hand-wringing about the implications of address scarcity. I don't think
I should need to remind people that the presence or absence of a
transfer policy does not change the fundamental fact of increasing
scarcity in the ipv4 space. It may even mitigate it somewhat by
providing incentives to release unused space. It does seem to be dawning
on people that as long as IPv4 addresses will continue to be needed, and
there are people who have them but don't use them and there are people
who want them but don't have them, a market will develop. It will be
either a transparent, open, rule-governed market or it will be a
black/gray market. 

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