[arin-ppml] Policy Proposal 2008-6 - Staff Assessment

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Wed Oct 8 16:22:23 EDT 2008

Policy Proposal 2008-6
Title: Emergency Transfer Policy for IPv4 Addresses
Submitted: 15 August 2008
Assessment: 8 October 2008

ARIN Staff Assessment

The assessment of this proposal includes comments from ARIN staff and
the ARIN General Counsel. It contains analysis of procedural, legal, and
resource concerns regarding the implementation of this policy proposal
as it is currently stated. Any changes to the language of the proposal
may necessitate further analysis by staff and Counsel.

I. Proposal

Policy Proposal is available below and at:

II. Proposal Summary

ARIN staff understands that this policy would create a second set of
transfer requirements when implemented. A resource holder deemed
legitimate by ARIN may transfer IPv4 addresses to a recipient that
qualifies for IPv4 addresses as long as the original block isn't broken
into more than four blocks.

III. Comments

A. ARIN Staff

1. The meaning of "without the active involvement of ARIN" in the first
sentence is unclear and should be further defined by the author.

2. Section 1 indicates the transfer must be done by the "legitimate and
exclusive holder of those resources". The term “legitimate and exclusive
holder” is vague and must be clearly defined with accompanying criteria
to help staff determine who is eligible to transfer resources under this

3. Section 2 says that the recipient must have “documented operational
need in accordance with current ARIN policy”. Current ARIN policies do
not allow the issuance of /23s and /24s with the exception of the
micro-allocation policy. This would indicate that no organization would
be allowed to transfer /23s and /24s under this policy unless they could
qualify under the micro-allocation policy which has very limited

4. This policy would become 8.4 in the NRPM and not 8.2.1 as indicated.

5. This policy proposal addresses the same subject matter as 2008-2.
They both specify requirements that Transferor and address space be
recognized by ARIN, Transferee demonstrate need and Transferee sign an
RSA. Additionally, they both include provisions on deaggregation,
minimum prefix size and directory services. They are distinguishable in
a number of other respects: for example, this policy would only be in
effect for three (3) years from its implementation, unlike 2008-2, and
it does not include specific criteria on matters such as facilitating
and establishing eligibility for the transfer. For a complete list of
differences, see comparison attached.

B. ARIN General Counsel

Counsel believes passage of an additional, more permissive transfer
policy would reduce potential legal risks and costs to ARIN arising from
transfer disputes as available IPv4 address space is depleted.
Specifically, counsel believes passage of 2008-2 or 2008-6 is better for
ARIN than continuing its current policy that is highly restrictive in
the right of parties to transfer number resources.

We now turn to more specific concerns of this particular transfer policy.

This policy is a major departure from existing ARIN policy which has
generally prohibited transfers except in specific, limited
circumstances. We therefore address the overall intent of the policy
from a legal perspective.

The first legal concern in evaluating the specifics of any transfer
policy is whether it is consistent with antitrust law. Currently, this
policy does not create concerns. By creating a white market for transfer
of v4 resources, the policy arguably advances competition. In this
regard, there is no difference between 2008-2 and 2008-6.

Second, any new policy should be consistent with the legal theory of the
Internet community that numbers are not "owned." We have no concerns
about the language of this proposal in this regard. In this regard,
there is no difference between 2008-2 and 2008-6.

No matter what transfer policy ARIN implements, it seems likely that
there will be more disputes, and hence more legal risk, once ARIN can no
longer satisfy requests for v4 resources. But if ARIN continues its
existing community created policy to prohibit most transfers, counsel
anticipates that widespread transfers in conflict with ARIN’s current
policy would nonetheless occur – imposing significant future legal costs
including the costs of investigation, revocation, arbitration, and
litigation. A carefully drafted but more permissive transfer policy
would likely relieve ARIN of legal risks and cost. We therefore seek to
balance risks created by the community’s adoption of the proposed policy
compared to the risks of retaining the current policy. This policy could
lead to future legal costs due to disputes arising from the lack of
specific criteria on transfer eligibility and other matters, which ARIN
staff would need to supply, and which would not have a community
consensus as a standards defense. Choosing between 2008-2 and 2008-6
should reflect the community evaluation of whether the additional issues
addressed in 2008-2 are correctly stated, or those issues are best left
to future policy development or staff interpretation. If a court were to
construe an application of 2008-6 if adopted, the court might find any
issue explicitly addressed in 2008-2 and not in 2008-6 cannot be applied
as interpretive policy.

IV. Resource Impact – Minimal

The resource impact of implementing this policy is viewed as minimal.
Barring any unforeseen resource requirements, this policy could be
implemented within 90 days from the date of the ratification of the
policy by the ARIN Board of Trustees. It will require the following:

· Updates to Guidelines will be required
· Staff training will be required


Member Services
American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN)


Policy Proposal 2008-6
Emergency Transfer Policy for IPv4 Addresses

Author: Bill Darte

Date: 26 August 2008

Proposal type: New

Policy term: Temporary

Policy statement:

8.2.1 Emergency Transfer Policy for IPv4 Addresses

For a period of 3 years from policy implementation, transfer of ARIN
IPv4 addresses between two entities in the ARIN region, without the
active involvement of ARIN as an intermediary, will be considered
legitimate and will be documented accordingly under the following

1. Transfer takes place from a holder of IPv4 addresses recognized by
ARIN as the legitimate and exclusive holder of those resources.

2. Transfer takes place to a recipient that has documented operational
need in accordance with current ARIN policy and that signs an RSA with
ARIN covering those resources in advance of transfer.

3. Transfer of addresses takes place in such a way that the original
contiguous block(s) are not disaggregated into more than 4 resultant
network blocks each being greater than or equal to the current minimum
sizes specified in applicable ARIN policy.

4. Transfer is complete and unrestricted and is supported by
documentation that ARIN deems satisfactory.


In order for ARIN to fulfill its mission and to facilitate a continuing
supply of IPv4 address resources to its service community when ARIN
resources are no longer adequate, and to preserve the integrity of
documentation and ARIN services for those resources, this policy may be
implemented. Its intent is to preserve the current tradition of
need-based allocation/assignments for those still needing IPv4 resources
during a transition period as the industry adopts IPv6. This policy is
not intended to create a 'market' for such transfers and does not
introduce or condone the monetization of address resources or a view of
addresses as property. It does recognize that organizations making
available unused or no longer needed address resources may incur certain
costs that might be compensated by those acquiring the resources. This
policy is intended to be transient and light-weight and does not
encourage a sustained or continuing role for IPv4, but rather helps to
mitigate a transitional crisis that may emerge while the industry adopts
IPv6 in accordance with the recommendation of ARIN's Board of Trustees.

Timetable for implementation:

This policy, once ratified by the ARIN Board of Trustees, would be
implemented when either the free-pool of IANA addresses is exhausted or
IPv4 address resources in the ARIN Region reaches a threshold of
scarcity recognized by the ARIN Board of Trustees as requiring this
policy implementation.


2008-6 and 2008-2 Compared

1. Issues Addressed in Both Policies:

· Transferor and address space recognized by ARIN

· Transferee demonstrates need

· Transferee signs RSA

· Deaggregation

	o 8-2: Unlimited

	o 8-6: Not more than 4 pieces (each greater than minimum prefix size)

· Minimum prefix size

	o 8-2: /24

	o 8-6: Based on current policy.

· Directory Services

	o WHOIS updated

2. Policy Guidance is included in 2008-2, but not found in 2008-6:

· Conditions on the transferor (source)

	o No outstanding balance

	o Has not received space from ARIN in preceding 12 months

	o If retains portion of space, must sign SA

· Conditions on the transferee (recipient)

	o Intent to use space in ARIN service area

	o No outstanding balance

	o Not more than a 12-month supply

	o Not more often than once per 6 months

· Safe harbor text

	o Availability for transfer does not give okay to ARIN to take it back.

· Organizations under Common Ownership or Control

	o ARIN may consider this during requests.

· Listing Service

	o Voluntary

· Directory Services

	o Log of transfers


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