[ppml] Securities Act 15 U.S.C. 77b(a)(1)

Stephen Sprunk stephen at sprunk.org
Tue Mar 11 13:06:37 EDT 2008

Thus spake <michael.dillon at bt.com>
>> To argue that an IP address meets that definition requires a
>> stretch of imagination that even lawyers can't handle. Only
>> network engineers are capable of that stretch.
> I didn't say that. We all know that IP addresses are not property and
> cannot be bought and sold. But now people are proposing that
> contracts, bearing the right to use certain IP addresses, can be
> bought and sold.

Perhaps I missed a message, but I haven't seen that proposed.  What I've 
seen proposed so far is that people would be able to qualify for addresses 
for their own use with ARIN and pay a third party to provide those 
addresses.  That is _not_ trading contracts to use addresses, and it's not 
even remotely similar.

> In fact, since the law in this area is quite complex, there probably
> are some situations that would clearly be covered, and some that
> would clearly not be covered. Before people write the policy that
> defines the situation, it would be nice to know what these
> boundaries are, before we cross them. And if the question is
> sufficiently fuzzy, then ARIN could ask the SEC for a ruling, before
> we take the action which has unintended consequences.

That is not how we've been told the process works.  We have been explicitly 
told to make proposals based on what we think is best for the community and, 
if there are legal ramifications, those will be presented to the BoT for 
their consideration before a proposal is adopted.

I would fully expect that if counsel determined that a proposal (which had 
passed the consensus process) would incur SEC regulation, the BoT would 
remand it back to the community for modification or use the ACSP to 
determine if we really want to go down that path.

We should not play armchair lawyer here.  We have real lawyers that will 
look at the results of the process and let us know if there are problems or 
unintended consequences.  In fact, comments by counsel are part of the 
"staff assessment" that comes out before the meeting, and we'll see what, if 
any, concerns are there at that time.

> I don't know and I don't think that anyone in ARIN, (BoT, staff, AC,
> members, hangers-on) really has the specialist knowledge to make
> that determination.

ARIN pays lawyers for that specialist knowledge.  I'm confident that our 
general counsel is quite capable of bringing in whatever outside resources 
are needed to get definitive answers if he doesn't have them himself, and in 
fact is obligated to do so or be guilty of malpractice.

Michael, you need to accept that you're not a lawyer and let the experts do 
their job.  It's nice that you're concerned, but you've already been told 
repeatedly that counsel is already aware of your concern.  Drop it until 
we're told there's an actual problem, so that we can get back to arguing 
about the actual goals of the proposal and whether we want a market in the 
first place.


Stephen Sprunk         "God does not play dice."  --Albert Einstein
CCIE #3723         "God is an inveterate gambler, and He throws the
K5SSS        dice at every possible opportunity." --Stephen Hawking 

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