[arin-ppml] Emergency PDP process

John Curran jcurran at arin.net
Fri Dec 3 17:26:31 EST 2010

On Dec 3, 2010, at 2:54 PM, George, Wes E [NTK] wrote:

> I think that this whole discussion throws into sharp relief the absence of
> implementation details around how to determine a legitimate emergency based
> on the current text in 7.1 of the PDP.

The lack of a definitive test for an "emergency" should not be surprising:  
I believe that the emergency policy mechanism exists to handle imminent 
catastrophe situations which would otherwise prevent ARIN from performing 
its mission of technical coordination and management of Internet number 
resources, or cause ARIN's performance of its mission to be contrary to 
the principle of stewardship.  

> Perhaps the AC, board, PDP committee and ARIN legal counsel should put their
> heads together on this ASAP and bring out a draft recommendation for a series
> of tests that can be used to justify any emergency policy. These would be either
> questions that must be answered, objective standards to define a problem, etc. 
> Put it before the community for comment. Even if it's not formally added to
> the PDP, or not added in time for this round of emergencies, it would really
> help to have some of that rigor. Chances are quite good that every policy
> recommendation that might be considered an emergency will be equally
> polarizing within the community, and it would be helpful to not have to rely
> solely on (charged, emotional) rhetoric on the part of those for and against
> the issue to determine whether something is actually an emergency. "I'll
> know it when I see it" isn't good enough in this case I don't think...

ARIN performing allocations according to community-developed policy is the 
status quo.  As CEO, I know would recommend to the Board for the adoption 
of emergency policy under circumstances where the existing policy could no 
longer be followed (e.g. in response to unforeseen legal developments, or 
due to an action at IETF/IANA/ICANN which prevented ARIN following our 
policies).  I also might be swayed to recommend emergency policy if the 
implementation of a policy turned out to be directly contrary to apparent
intent of the community or placed the organization at grave risk as a 
result.  That doesn't mean that there aren't other circumstances which
might also warrant emergency policy, only that it's extremely difficult 
to establish the criteria in advance.  The ARIN Board has not discussed
specific criteria by which it would judge emergency policy, so I cannot 
not provide any additional guidance, but I hope my particular examples 
prove helpful.


John Curran
President and CEO

p.s. I'll note that there is also a specific section of the PDP (7.2) to 
     allow for policy suspension if following an already adopted policy 
     will cause "significant problems", and this appears to be to be a 
     lower barrier (but again without specific criteria for evaluation)

More information about the ARIN-PPML mailing list