[arin-ppml] Policy Proposal 108: Eliminate the term license in the NRPM

michael.dillon at bt.com michael.dillon at bt.com
Mon Feb 15 04:32:20 EST 2010

> What is the purpose of this? What does it accomplish 
> technically, legally, politically or economically? How does 
> it make IP addresses and routing function better? Does it 
> make addresses more abundant, easier to use, etc.?

The things that you are asking, are the province of the
IETF. On the question of abundance, the IETF has created
> The concept of "property" and "property rights" is far more 
> flexible and much less dichotomous that you seem to 
> understand.

Not if you understand the history of IP addressing. They have
always been loaned out to organizations who have technical
justification under terms which included "IP addresses are 
not property". Trying to apply property rights to something
that has explicitly been "not property" for many years
is beyond the flexibility of the concept.

> Oliver Williamson just received the Nobel Prize for his 
> analysis of how contracts constitute an exchange of property 
> rights. ARIN governs addresses via contract; i.e., it issues 
> contracts granting exclusive assignment of a block of addresses. 

You can only buy and sell contracts if the contracts 
are specifically structured to accomodate this. That 
is the whole basis of derivatives. However, the ARIN 
contracts do not grant exclusive assignment in the way
that you are using the term. ARIN grants exclusivity 
only insofar as they guarantee to you that they will
not grant the same addresses to any other party. But
your right to use the addresses is always strictly 
limited to technical needs, and when those needs go
away, you no longer have a right to the addresses.
This is one of the reasons why ARIN contracts cannot
be used to exchange property rights.

--Michael Dillon

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