[arin-ppml] Fw: Accusationof fundamentalconflictofinterest/IPaddress policypitched directly to ICANN

Owen DeLong owen at delong.com
Wed May 4 17:59:12 EDT 2011

On May 4, 2011, at 1:21 PM, Mike Burns wrote:

> Hi Owen,
> What higher level is there than the community which is being governed?
> This can get so tedious and semantic. Is the governor higher than the governed? I say yes, you say no.
Uh, nice of you to presume to answer for me.

My real answer (if you care what I actually think) is that it depends on the structure of the
government in question.

In the united States of America, the federal government is subservient to the corporations which
can afford to purchase it and to the people who get to vote for the candidates chosen by the

In a democracy, the government is subservient to the people.

In a republic, the government is subservient to the elected representatives of the people.

In a dictatorship, the government is subservient to the dictator who is generally subservient to
no-one unless they possess the means and the will to overthrow the dictatorship in question.

In the case of California, the governor is subservient to the combined will of the senate and
legislature as well as the state and federal judiciary, federal laws, and the will of the people of
the California Republic as expressed in the state constitution, various codes of the State of
California, and of course the potential for a recall petition (such as happened to Governor
Davis), the standard four-year election cycle, and finally, term limits.
> Since he derives his power from the consent of the governed, and answers to them via elections, you could say he is lower than the governed.

Correct. The governor himself is actually quite powerless. He has no ability to introduce new laws, no
ability to change existing laws, and no ability to make new policy other than that granted to him by
the senate, legislature, and the people. I cannot see any way in which he can be considered a higher
authority than the governed.
> But if you want something adjudicated between yourself and your neighbor, then the governor is the higher authority.
No, actually, my neighbor and I have much more ability to affect an adjudication between us than the
governor. Now, if you mentioned the judiciary, you might have a point, but, you did not. You chose
the governor.
> You can go around and around. If  you think the DoC is the source of authority, you view things in one direction.
The DoC is a participant largely as the result of historical accident more than anything else and I do not
consider them to be an authority of any real basis in this equation. I think they have chosen (wisely) to
ensure that reasonable structures of self governance were put in place and then butt out to the greatest
extent possible. I think this is good and I hope they will continue to abide by that decision. I do not think
that interference in the community consensus process from DoC other than as individuals having an
equal participation to that of any other individuals would benefit the process or improve the situation
in any way.

> If you think the community is the source of authority, you view things in the other direction.
> What is clear is that there is a level that is called to approve (rubberstamp) the decisions related to  new registries.
> This level is being asked to make the decision about allowing a new private registry.
A request upon which they have no authority to act and which is more properly brought to them as
a global proposal AFTER it has been ratified by the PDP of each of the existing RIRs.
> If that level is answerable to the community in one way or another, let the community use it's authority over that level.
> If the ICANN board does decide the issue and you don't like that, I guess you could try to change ICANN policy through community participation.
The mechanism for the community to do so is the fact that the community has the right to review any
such changes through their respective RIR policy development processes before such is put in front
of the ICANN board for consideration. You are attempting to short-circuit that process and bypass
that mechanism and then saying that you still want to let the community use its authority.

I actually doubt that the ICANN board will act on such a request if it did not come through the process
that is defined for making such a request (global policy development), but, if they do, indeed, we have
a serious problem because the ICANN board will have overstepped its authority with unpredictable
and likely disastrously disruptive effects of fragmentation of the very fabric that holds the internet

I don't need to change ICANN policy as it currently stands. However, I will continue to oppose your
attempts to circumvent it by bypassing the RIR communities and their respective policy development
processes in an effort to get what you want no matter how the communities feel about it.
>> The proposed private registry after all, would be on the same level and performing the same function as the RIRs.
> Yes... You once again conflate the RIR and the RIR community.
> I don't see the problem with my statement. The new private registry would be performing the same functions as the RIRs, would you accede that?
To the extent that you consider same function to mean strictly their address registration
functions, yes. To the extent that such competing registries appear to be established
for the purpose of eliminating community developed policies (or at least creating an
ability to bypass them entirely), then, obviously, they would not only fail to perform the
same function, but, would work to prevent the RIRs from effectively performing that
function. As to the other functions performed by RIRs such as outreach, education,
maintaining forums for the community to come together, etc., it is undefined whether
competing registries as you have proposed them would do so or not. I am inclined to
think that they are unlikely to do so in most cases.

However, my response was to more than the single sentence of your previous message that
you quoted above it. I was responding to the fact that you conflate the RIR as a body with
the community when claiming that the RIR (which has no significant influence over the
content of the policy process) has a meaningful conflict of interest in evaluating a policy
proposal (which other than for clarity and understanding, they do not do) vs. the role
of the community (which does actually discuss, propose, develop, and support policy)
and its elected representatives (the AC and the BoT in ARIN's case) which do actually
evaluate policies and the community consensus for said policies in their role in the
policy development process.

>> ICANN is the higher level, in my mind, based on their clear approval responsiblity for new RIRs, and their predating the RIRs.
>> ICANN has a policymaking apparatus which is being appealed to by the writer of the letter which started this thread.
> Your mind is clearly confused on multiple levels...
> ICANN does not predate RIRs. Both RIPE and APNIC, as does ARIN.
> ICAN was formed in October of 1998.
> APNIC was formed in 1992.
> RIPE NCC was formed in 1992
> ARIN was formed in 1993
> Their approval responsibility for new RIRs is delegated to them by the RIRs and serves as a
> self-imposed check-and-balance on the RIR system. ICANN cannot approve a new RIR without
> the consent of the RIRs (as expressed through the NRO which is comprised of the RIRs and
> members elected by the RIR communities). Neither can ICANN withhold such approval
> except in a case where they feel that some aspect of the documented policy and procedures
> has not been met.
> ICANN has no apparatus for making number policy other than the ASO AC/NRO NC which
> is made up of members elected by the RIR communities. The ASO AC/NRO NC process for
> making policy is the global policy process which I have explained to you before and for which
> the first step is to pass substantially identical policy in all 5 RIR policy processes as a proposed
> global policy.
> If the letter asking the ICANN board to decide was written to an entity without decisionmaking capability, then you don't have to worry about them making a decision, I guess.
> Sorry, meant to say IANA preceded the RIRs.
The IANA as it existed before the RIRs actively worked to establish the RIR system and I
would be surprised if you can find a single person who believes that the person serving
in that role up to the point where the RIRs were established would support the idea of
competing address registries for the purpose of bypassing community developed policies.

>> Here is a document I found which proposes that ICANN adopts a set of requirements for those who wish to provide private registry services:
>> http://www.icann.org/en/correspondence/statement-ip-address-registrar-accreditation-policy-31mar11-en.pdf
> Given that this is shown as "correspondence" and not attributed to a source but also does not
> contain any information about it having been adopted, to the best of my knowledge, this is
> just a suggestion from some random source which has not necessarily received any
> community support for implementation.
> I never said it was adopted, I figured the source would be in the document, which I found on the icann.org site. But it spells out the kinds of requirements a new registry would be required to meet.
No, it proffers one possible set of requirements which could be used to do so.
That is (and was) my point. Other than the author, there is no reliable evidence
that anyone has reviewed or accepted this as the way such a thing should
be done, let alone the way they would be done if such a structure were to be
>> I just skimmed it, but if the community decided that Benson's proposals suffered only from a lack of oversight, and required action at a global level, then perhaps they will add their voice to the support which I offered.
> Perhaps, but, you would still need a global policy proposal to voice support for.
> Unless ICANN board actually does make the decision they are being asked to make. The link above is  policy proposal on the ICANN correspondence page, and it is referenced in this letter:
> http://www.icann.org/en/correspondence/holtzman-to-olive-02mar11-en.pdf providing reasons for requesting the decision at the ICANN board level. Based on the appeal to the authority of the DoC contract, I expect there could be a further appeal to the DoC or NTIA level if the ICANN board decides not to make a decision. It is interesting that ICANN requested information from ARIN instead of summarily dismissing the request as coming outside of policy. ARIN's reply to ICANN is on the same site.
I cannot see any correspondence that shows ICANN board requesting information from ARIN that was done after ICANN received this letter.
Can you point to a link to such?

I also don't see any replies from ARIN that were submitted to ICANN after this letter. Can you provide a link to such?

Indeed, I don't see any indication after the letter that ICANN has done anything with it other than post it on the
correspondence page.

I do see a letter from Depository on 15 March regarding ARIN's bulk whois denial, but, that relates to a thread of
letters that well predates the letter you mention above and which is only somewhat loosely related.
> If the action happens at this level as a result of an informed decisionmaking process at ICANN, then I am happy because it will expedite the appearance of competing registries.
> I'm not sure I can parse what you are saying here in the context of the current way
> decisions are made by either ICANN (with the limitations that exist on their
> decision making ability) or the RIR level.
> If the ICANN board decides the issue than I am happy because I think competing registries will be allowed, and because I think ICANN is a higher level than ARIN and can mandate that ARIN share bulk whois data with competing registries.
I suspect that the ICANN board is most likely to deny the request and push it back as something
which should go through the global policy development process.

I still don't see how you can consider ICANN a higher level than ARIN or state that they have
any ability to mandate that ARIN share bulk whois data with competing registries. Can you please
provide some basis for this perceived authority? Where is such authority documented?
>> And why do I want competing registries? Is it because ARIN charges too much, or their website is hard to navigate?
>> Is it because I wish to take my business elsewhere as a statement against ARIN staff? Is it their response time?
>> Is it because I am a buyer who requires more than officer attestation for determining the right to sell addresses?
>> Is it because I am a buyer who does not wish to sign an LRSA or RSA?
>> Is it because I choose a 5 year planning horizon?
>> Do I want to transfer out of region?
>> No, none of those reasons, although are all, in my mind, potentially valid reasons for somebody to change registries.
>> It is because I think a competing registrar would naturally reduce barriers to transfers.
> It is, perhaps, exactly this reduction of barriers that leads me to believe that competing registries
> would be a bad idea. I believe that the barriers that exist in the transfer process today were
> considered by the community and have the support of the vast majority of community members.
> I believe they were placed there for good reason and represent appropriate safeguards in the
> proper stewardship of number resources.
> Proper stewardship is to make policy that will increase the supply of addresses and bring down their price, while increasing whois reliability and removing the biggest distinction between legacy and non-legacy addresses.
In general, I would agree with you about the goals of proper stewardship. Obviously, I do not
think that is the effect competing registries would have.

>> And that is my underlying goal. In fact, ARIN could probably pull the rug out from under a private registry by beating them to the punch and removing restrictions for all transfers.
> Q.E.D... "If ARIN merely abandons its stewardship role, we wouldn't need other registries to
> do that instead." In my opinion, stewardship is a good thing that should not be abandoned.
> Are you accusing the APNIC community of abandoning stewardship, and if they did, why do you think they did that? Is the region largely peopled by IPv4 profiteers?
Yes. I believe that the transfer policy in the APNIC region was an abandonment of their
stewardship role and I have said as much on their policy development mailing list.
Why? Because Geoff Huston and a few other leaders in that community pushed long
and hard to get that position adopted mainly by creating fear that failing to do so would
render all RIR policy meaningless because the RIR policy would simply be bypassed
in favor of people doing what they wanted anyway.

Personally, I think that argument is absurd. Making theft legal just because you can't
stop people from stealing makes no sense to me.
>> (I think needs analysis should be done on free-pool allocations, though. I hope that goes without saying.)
> I fail to see a reason that needs analysis should not be done on transfer recipients. Nothing
> you have said so far makes the case for that. If you could get the community to come to
> consensus that needs basis should be abandoned, a simple ARIN policy proposal could
> cause ARIN to do so. I believe that the community consensus is against such an abandonment
> of stewardship and so development of competing registries to override that community
> judgment strikes me as inappropriate at best.
> I think I have made my case to the community that maintaining a needs requirement in a post-exhaust world is not a requirement of stewardship.
I think you have presented your case. I remain unconvinced. I have not seen a great deal of support for the idea come
from the community, either. Some, but, not a lot.
> I suppose the discussion part has ended its productive phase and that it is time for a proposal so the community's voice can be heard one way or the other.
Makes sense.
> I will try to get a proposal knocked together. I looked at the template last night.
Let me know if you need any help. While I don't agree with your goals and think they would be bad policy, I am happy to help
bring such proposal before the community for their consideration.
> Owen, is it better to provide three examples of proposals with slightly different language, or one more general one that can be modified through discussion?
> As in, should I make separate proposals to remove needs justification from legacy transfers only, and one for non-legacy, and one for both?
I think a more general one that can be modified through discussion. Usually when I write a proposal, I try to identify a specific
problem and work with a few other knowledgeable folks to flesh it out into a relatively complete set of language before
submitting it.

I think for removing needs basis from all transfers, you should make one proposal to modify section 8 as needed.


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