[arin-ppml] FW: Proposal: Clarification of draft policy 2009-3 (ARIN-prop-135)

Benson Schliesser bensons at queuefull.net
Tue Feb 22 17:48:44 EST 2011

On Feb 22, 2011, at 2:46 PM, John Curran wrote:

> On Feb 23, 2011, at 4:10 AM, Benson Schliesser wrote:
>> I can't speak for Matthew.  But my understanding is: ARIN's Internic "predecessors"* were contracted by the US Govt to perform the IANA function, and ICANN is currently contracted by the US Govt to perform the IANA function.  As such, returning legacy addresses to the IANA/ICANN seems to make sense unless IANA/ICANN would prefer otherwise.
> The InterNIC registry function, including personal, systems
> and records were transferred by NSI to ARIN at ARIN's inception.  
> ARIN is operates the registry in question.  

This may be true, but it doesn't address the question of IANA.  Even if ARIN was acting as the "successor registry" for global address allocation during the period prior to ICANN, the US Govt clearly chose to recognize ICANN as the IANA.  The IANA contract with ICANN explicitly includes oversight of address allocations.  Delegation of registry responsibilities doesn't change that situation.

>> * - To my knowledge, while ARIN made it possible for NSF to release NSI from their IANA responsibilities, the contract was not novated to ARIN and ARIN  has never held a contract for the IANA function.  If my understanding is incorrect, I would appreciate pointers to correct background.  If my understanding is correct, then claims that ARIN is the "successor" are fairly hollow.
> No contract is needed, anymore than RIPE NCC or APNIC needing a 
> contract, nor LACNIC and AfriNIC needing one on their formation. 

I agree.  Each RIR represents a constituency, and in as much as this is true each RIR also has authority inherent to the consent of the governed.

> Collectively, the RIRs participate jointly as the NRO in ICANN, 
> serving as the ASO (Address Supporting Organization).  This is 
> covered in the ASO and NRO MOU's with ICANN.  

(Understood - thanks also for the background you provided in your previous message on this topic.)

Through contract with NTIA/DoC, ICANN has been delegated a governmental responsibility which we call the IANA.  The acronym literally includes the word "authority", so I'll posit that IANA has the US Government's delegated authority*.  However, each RIR represents a constituency as I've outlined above.  My view is that constituency and authority meet at the NRO-ASO interface, and I think this is an elegant system.**  However, the recognition of ASO-NRO by ICANN does not diminish the role and responsibility of IANA.

> In each case, the
> registrations which from that region prior to the RIR formation
> ("legacy registrations") where transferred under that RIR. This
> shouldn't be surprising given the non-for-profit, non-overlapping
> service regions.

This is a fair argument, but it's one that needs to be formalized.  As Matthew pointed out in a parallel message, the historical distinction of legacy holders doesn't seem to reinforce their inclusion in ARIN's constituency.  And while it might never have mattered before, it does matter now that IPv4 addresses are a scarce resource - because people may be motivated to behave differently now, and legacy holders may wish to act outside the regulation of ARIN policy.

To this end, I think IANA should be called upon to clarify the relationship of legacy holders.  Until this is done, I think the most responsible approach for ARIN to take is deference to IANA on legacy resource issues.

> That's not to say that address space can't be returned to IANA or 
> ARIN as the community decides and in compliance with ARIN's mission.
> IANA has indicated their ability to provide stewardship for number
> resources even prior to any global policy providing for reallocation,
> so there is no difficultly there.

I agree with your statement - in fact, I was encouraged by you previously to get involved in this policy discussion.

For what it's worth, I think that whatever we come up with (i.e. whether ARIN has legacy authority or IANA does), we should advocate for an international system that allows address resources to reach those that need them without minimizing the freedom of constituents.


* - International authority is more complex, and I cannot even pretend to know how we can improve that situation... without taking a big step backwards.

** - I would like to see ICANN ASO/NRO be more democratic than it currently is, but that's a separate criticism.

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