[arin-ppml] Draft Policy 2009-2: Depleted IPv4 reserves

Martin Hannigan martin.hannigan at batelnet.bs
Tue Mar 24 18:56:35 EDT 2009

On Tue, Mar 24, 2009 at 3:14 PM, Stephen Sprunk <stephen at sprunk.org> wrote:

> Martin Hannigan wrote:
>>    *Policy statement:*
>>    4.1.8 Depleted IPv4 reserves
>>    A limit will be applied to all IPv4 address requests when ARIN's
>>    reserve of unallocated IPv4 address space drops below an
>>    equivalent /9. When this happens, an ISP or End User may receive
>>    up to a single /20 within a six month period. This restriction
>>    will be lifted in the event the reserve of unallocated IPv4
>>    address space increases to an equivalent /7.
>> This policy seems to impose exactly the same unfair application that
>> Counsel described in the summary for global policy for returning v4 space to
>> the IANA[3]. Creating equal shares only means that equal allocations occur.
>> It still creates a severe need imbalance and potentially creates an unfair
>> advantage for smaller players that a /20 does fulfill their needs.
> I can see why you'd think that, but I'll take an actual lawyer's opinion on
> that topic.  Per the email from Member Services that started this thread:
> "B. ARIN General Counsel Comments:
> The policy does not pose any significant legal risk to ARIN. A community
> decision to segment the remaining unissued IPV4 numbers to serve a larger
> number of users on its face does not discriminate against or for any user,
> large or small. Therefore it is legally unobjectionable. It is a rational
> scheme for distribution reasonably related to meeting the needs of as many
> end users as possible. Counsel respectfully suggests that the policy as
> drafted may contain potential seeds of confusion by providing for switching
> back to current distribution policies, and then back to this policy."
With respect to my colleagues and Steve Ryan, our Counsel, if I followed
every lawyer that told me something different than I believed with regards
to issues affecting a business that I am involved with I would not be here

In this case, I'm pointing out what appears to be a contradiction. How can
we say that an allocation system that provides for different fractions of
needs is _not_ ok for one party; ARIN as part of the the RIR system via the
global policy I referenced, but is ok for another; in-region networks that
are impacted in the exact same way?

I think that we've got the right idea, maximize end user access, but the
wrong method. The statement was also fairly weak in that it used phrases
like "on it's face" and "significant" and "legally unobjectionable". In
reading between the lines I think that it's to be understood that this issue
isn't completely thought out.


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