[arin-ppml] Policy Proposal 2008-6: Emergency TransferPolicyfor IPv4 Addresses - Last Call

Owen DeLong owen at delong.com
Thu Jan 1 17:04:25 EST 2009

On Jan 1, 2009, at 1:11 PM, Milton L Mueller wrote:

>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Owen DeLong [mailto:owen at delong.com]
>> The problem here, Milton, is that you assume redistribution based on
>> relative need is required.
> Yes, indeed I do. So do the people in the (gray) market and many  
> others. If the transition period exceeds three years, which it  
> probably will, any policy position that does not allow for legal,  
> organized transfers is just plain irresponsible, and dismissive talk  
> of "short term pain" (undoubtedly, pain that YOU will not feel, but  
> someone else will) is not persuasive.

Your assertion that I will not feel the pain of IPv4 runout is, at  
best, absurd.

In fact, post IPv4 runout, absent an involuntary redistribution  
I expect that the IPv6 transition will take less than 1 year to  
achieve critical
mass and less than 3 years to become nearly ubiquitous.

I expect that something like the following will happen:

t-12 months
	1.	IANA IPv4 runout

	2.	First RIR runouts start to occur, large ISPs are SOL on new
		IPv4 space.
t+3 months
	3.	About 6-12 months of transfer efforts in large blocks occurs
		before the large blocks that can be made available are exhausted.
t+6 months
	4.	IPv6 transition begins in earnest
t+15 months
	5.	RIRs start to run out of smaller blocks and smaller orgs begin
		hunting for transferable space.
t+18-24 months
	6.	IPv4 routing table becomes irretrievably fragmented and smaller
		IPv4 blocks begin to become unreachable due to route filtering.
	7.	IPv6 is now deployed to nearly 30% of the existing internet and
		on the order of 80% of internet expansion is occurring in IPv6.
t+30 months
	8.	IPv6 deployment continues at an accelerating pace.

>> first-com/first-
>> served is the potential for early hoarding. However, hoarding can be
>> mostly avoided by requiring justified need in order to obtain the
>> resource and reducing (to the extent possible) the rewards available
> The early hoarding took place in 1982 - 97, my friend.
While it is true that a large number of addresses were distributed in a
manner which is considered wasteful by today's standards, I would not
call that hoarding.  The definition of the term hoarding requires a time
of scarcity.  That does not apply to 1982-97 and I don't believe that  
mentality applicable to "hoarding" applied to organizations getting
IP space at that time.

>> Those organizations who want IP connectivity after the IPv4 free pool
>> is exhausted can move to IPv6 and make use of transitional
>> technologies. True, the current state of those technologies is less
>> than ideal,
> oh well, so what if you lose internet connectivity for a while, or  
> have to spend 4 times what you expected or are able to afford. I  
> think i will collect these statements and publish them five years on.
In order to lose internet connectivity, you would have to have had it.
Since these limitations would only apply to new entrants, your statement
seems, at best, exaggerated.

In fact, a market is more likely to cause people to suffer the  
you describe than a lack of one.  With a lack of one, those who have
connectivity get to keep their status quo.  With a market, economics
will drive those less able to pay out of the internet in favor of  
those who
can pay more.

>> but, organizations moving to IPv6 will, I suspect, drive
>> significant and rapid improvement in both the transitional tools,  
>> and,
>> the availability of IPv6 connectivity to what is currently a mostly
>> IPv4 only internet.
> What if what you "suspect" is wrong? If I am wrong about the need  
> for a transfer market, nothing bad happens, people just don't use  
> it. Fine with me. As I said at the IGF, it's primarily an insurance  
> policy, and there are very few downsides to instituting it.
I disagree.  The existence of a market and the perception that space
can be made available if you simply throw enough money at the
problem will alter people's perception of the solution space.

The existence of a market could well delay the implementation of
IPv6 by shifting the need for transition from those who have resources
and/or motivation to keep internet connectivity at a higher cost to
those who lack the resources to keep their connectivity as addressing
costs increase.

If you really want to look at a good example of the kinds of problems
an unregulated market situation can create in the allocation of scarce,
but critical, resources, look at the California Electric Grid during the
heyday of Enron. (The grid itself, as operated by Cal-ISO, not the
various generation/delivery/etc. games that were simultaneously
going on... Just the way Enron was gaming the grid is a pretty good
example of the fact that profit motives can really screw up resource
allocations in the presence of bad actors in the market).

Consequences I expect are likely from a market that make me think
it may not be the best solution:

	1.	Bad actors driving up costs for everyone.
	2.	Speculative trading in address resources driving up costs.
	3.	Large providers using address pricing to drive smaller
		competitors from the market place.
	4.	Speculative hoarding to create artificial shortages and price  
	5.	Minimal participation on the part of address holders.
	6.	Need + Theoretical Solution + Lack of Sellers = more plausible  
solution ignored in favor of non-solution = delay of useful solution

> Your only argument against it is that it somehow detracts or slows  
> down the migration to v6. I don't buy that. I think that if  
> migration to IPv6 depends on not having v4 transfers there are far  
> more fundamental things wrong with v6 than we suspect, and the  
> absence of transfer markets isn't going to save it. Indeed, that  
> argument is so weak it makes me wonder what your real concern is.
That's 6 arguments against it.  No, the migration to IPv6 does not  
depend on not having IPv4 transfers, but, the artificial perception  
that the creation of a market will somehow magically make vast  
quantities of addresses available will detract from efforts at a more  
permanent solution. A market is all about perception and has little to  
do with reality in most cases.

>> I think it is perfectly reasonable for the following scenario:
>> 1.      Status quo until IANA free pool is exhausted.
>> 2.      ARIN continues to issue under status quo until ARIN
>> free pool's
>> largest remaining block is a single /6
>> 3.      ARIN continues to issue what it can without invading
>> that /6  under
>> status quo rules.
>> 4.      Applications which cannot be satisfied under status
>> quo rules as
>> stated above are rejected and applicants are encouraged to apply for
>> IPv6.
>> 5.      Applicants which receive IPv6 and require IPv4 space for
>> transitional technologies to interconnect their IPv6 networks to the
>> existing IPv4 world apply for small pieces of the remaining /6 under
>> recently adopted policy (2008-5 if I recall correctly).
> Tell me what goes seriously wrong with this scenario if you insert  
> "or to get addresses via transfers" at the end of #4.
> Seriously, what is the downside? The life of v4 is extended for 4-5  
> years to help those with trouble making the transition? Why is that  
> bad?
See the 6 points I mentioned above.

>> A similar transition will occur when the world runs out of petroleum
>> products if we don't destroy the environment first. Some other stored
>> energy mechanism will be adopted. The transition will be painful (as
>> will the IPv6 transition), but, when there is no more oil, there will
>> be a migration to some other technology.
> Owen, try to imagine what the petroleum transition would be like if  
> the price of oil was fixed and could not rise. I suspect you don't  
> really grasp this, based on your comments over the past few months,  
> so I don't look forward to the answer.
> There will never be "no more oil," there will be a more or less  
> gradual adjustment in our use of oil to reflect its price. Take  
> price change out of the equation however, and all hell breaks loose.
> Based on actual consumer responses to the gasoline price increases  
> this past summer, many policy analysts are saying we don't need CAFE  
> standards at all any more, we just need to increase the price of  
> fuel via taxation and consumers will stop buying gas guzzlers. Much  
> simpler and more effective than regulating technical efficiency  
> standards.
Sure... I bought a Prius when the price of fuel made it free.

However, regardless of how we adjust our usage, unless we stop using  
altogether, there will come a time when we have used what exists. The  
more we reduce our rate of usage, the farther out we can move that  
date. However, there still remains the point that eventually there is  
a date where oil runs out.

This, however, is the limit to where the oil analogy holds true to  
IPv4 resources.

Oil being a physical commodity has some radically different properties  
from IPv4 addresses.

One of the most valuable and useful things about the internet is that  
it is a tremendous equalizer in terms of access to information.

As the internet currently stands, it provides a mechanism for people  
of widely varying resources to access a vast percentage of all human  
It provides a mechanism for people of widely varying resources to  
easily reach vast numbers of other people.
It provides a tremendously equalizing tool for social communication  
and political change.

Moving IP addressing to a situation where people of lesser resources  
can be priced out of their connections in order for their addresses to  
be reallocated to organizations with greater resources will damage  
that situation. It will also make it easier for the organizations  
which have the resources to drive IPv6 transition to ignore IPv6 in  
favor of an ever more costly IPv4 status quo.

Oil doesn't have these properties.

I think that the Oil transition is going to be pretty painful when we  
hit it, regardless of how much of that pain is caused by price before  
we get there and how much of it is caused by the costs of actual  

The pricing of oil this past summer had a number of other consequences  
that you
are also ignoring above:

	Increased costs of food
	Increased costs of shipping, thus all products
	I believe that the price of oil this summer is a significant  
contributor to the current economic crisis.
	In fact, the part of the economic crisis that cannot be attributed to  
oil, seems to result from bad
	actors in the monetization of securities and securitization markets.


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