[arin-ppml] Update on 2009-3: Global Policy for the Allocation of IPv4 Blocks to RIRs

Owen DeLong owen at delong.com
Fri Jul 24 16:55:41 EDT 2009

Personally, I think "Is permitted but not required to" and "may" have  
meanings and that speaking of extra words, using 10 syllables (6  
words) to
say what can be said with 1 (1 word) is, indeed, extra words.


On Jul 24, 2009, at 1:03 PM, Scott Leibrand wrote:

> William Herrin wrote:
>> On Fri, Jul 24, 2009 at 2:36 PM, Scott Leibrand<scottleibrand at gmail.com 
>> > wrote:
>>> This is an update on the status of the Global Policy for the  
>>> Allocation
>>> of IPv4 Blocks to Regional Internet Registries, which is policy  
>>> proposal
>>> 2009-3 here in the ARIN region. Please also see below for an updated
>>> version of 2009-3.
>> [...]
>>> Each RIR through their respective chosen policies and strategies may
>>> recover IPv4 address space which is under their administration and
>>> designate any such space for return to the IANA. Each RIR shall at
>>> quarterly intervals return any such designated address space to  
>>> the IANA
>>> in aggregated blocks of /24 or larger, for inclusion in the  
>>> recovered
>>> IPv4 pool.
>> Scott,
>> Let's parse that: Each RIR [...] may [...] designate any such space
>> for return to the IANA.
>> I object to the intentionally ambiguous and potentially dishonest use
>> of the word "may" here. Policy should not describe what we might or
>> might not do, it should describe what we will and won't do.
> The background here, which I mentioned in a message on 6/18, is this:
> "Those discussions finally made it clear to me that one of the  
> reasons 2009-3 is such a difficult policy to get consensus on is  
> that the original policy, as proposed, is a global policy proposal  
> that has some local policy aspects, namely that requires each RIR to  
> return reclaimed space.  Ideally, global policies are supposed to  
> maintain a clean separation from local policies: global policy is  
> supposed to only govern the relationship between the IANA and the  
> RIRs, and local policy defines what the RIR can do internally."
> "As a side effect of the blurring of global and local policy in the  
> current revision of 2009-3, we (and most of the other RIRs) are  
> having an interesting debate about exactly which space should be  
> covered by the policy (such as legacy vs. non-legacy), and some  
> people are uncomfortable even with a legacy-only requirement.  So,  
> as a result of a suggestion on the floor at LACNIC, and in an  
> attempt to restore the proper separation between global and local  
> policy, I drafted the following text for the 2nd paragraph of  
> section A"
>> If the intention is to establish an IANA method for accepting returns
>> which we might or might not later authorize in some other ARIN  
>> policy,
>> try replacing "may" with something more precise like "is permitted  
>> but
>> not required to."
> That is exactly what is intended.  I have no objection to replacing  
> "may" with "is permitted but
> not required to", if folks think that would add clarity.  To me,  
> they mean the same thing.
>> If the intention is that we in fact do return space to IANA as a
>> consequence of this policy then replace "may" with "will" and  
>> describe
>> the criteria for which space returned to ARIN will be subsequently be
>> returned to IANA.
> As above, the intent is to move such policy out of the Global Policy  
> and make it the subject of local policy.
> -Scott
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