[arin-ppml] An article of interest to the community....

Brett Frankenberger rbf+arin-ppml at panix.com
Fri Sep 2 09:47:01 EDT 2011

On Thu, Sep 01, 2011 at 10:16:45PM -0700, Owen DeLong wrote:
> On Sep 1, 2011, at 7:14 PM, Brett Frankenberger wrote:
> > On Thu, Sep 01, 2011 at 06:38:44PM -0700, Owen DeLong wrote:
> >> Mike,
> >> 	What risk do you see in listing un/under-utilized resources that is
> >> not present in merely holding those resources?
> > 
> > Can't say for sure, but I'd guess it's comparable to the risk that
> > exists in taking out a full page add in the local newspaper announcing
> > "I will drive 80 in the 60 MPH speed zone at milepost X on highway Y at
> > XX:XX on XX/XX/2001" that isn't present in driving 80 in a 60 but not
> > advertising when and where you will be doing it.
> > 
> Except that it would be more like doing that after the chief of police and
> the commandant of the highway patrol had told you that making such
> an announcement in and of itself would not cause them to pursue you.

As others have pointed out, even if the chief and the commandant say
that, and really mean it, and you trust them, they might not be on the
job forever, and even if they remain on the job, their superiors may
direct them to change their policy.

Of course, with the speeding example, if that happens, you can decide
to stop speeding.  But once you've announced to the world "my addresses
are unused", you can't unring that bell.

> > If your resources are underutilized, ARIN *could* do a section 12 audit
> > and initiate reclamation.  If you don't tell anyone that you are
> > underutilized, ARIN won't know, so they only way you'd get hit with an
> > audit is if you got really unlucky.  If you tell the world (by putting
> > them up for auction), the risks get higher, because ARIN knows (or at
> > least has a strong indication) that you are underutilized.
> In spite of John's claims to the contrary, I actually believe that ARIN should
> begin performing random reviews as time permits and should certainly
> be looking for resources that appear to have a pattern of un/under-
> utilization.

Any serious attempt to reclaim resources is going to result in a
lawsuit.  A /16 appears, based on a recent transaction, to be worth
over half a million dollars.  If ARIN tries to reclaim an unused /16,
the holder is likely to be willing to litigate the matter.

Even if you think ARIN would be successful in court, and that it's
worth the probably 7 figures it would cost them to prevail against a
well-funded opponent, the litigation would likely drag out well past
the point (if your predictions of IPv6 migration are correct) at which
IPv4 space will be largely irrelevant.  (And, let's be clear: the
opponent will likely be well-funded, because there are a lot of
entities out there that would have an interest in preventing the
precedent that would be set by an ARIN victory.)

(I realize ARIN has reclaimed resources in the past, mostly for fraud.
That's different.  Those getting addresses by fraud are in a much
weaker legal position, and a precedent that ARIN can reclaim resources
that were obtained fraudulently doesn't create problems for those
looking to monetize (or just keep for future use) underutilized
resources that were not obtained fraudulently.  Going after
organizations for mere non-use (or underutilization) is fundamentally
> > ARIN hasn't made a practice of doing that, and I agree with John's
> > statement that they aren't likely to start doing that. 
> John's statement wasn't that they aren't likely to start doing so. John's
> statement was that he did not feel that they should start doing so.
> John and I disagree in this area and I think at the end of the day
> as scarcity becomes more of an issue, there will be more pressure
> from the community to change John's position on this. John answers
> to the board. The board answers to the members.

To be clear, you think ARIN should, in general, start going after
underutilized resources, or you think they should specifically target
those who list them for transfer.  (I agree that if ARIN does start
doing it, listing them for transfer shouldn't be an automatic
exemption.  My question, though, is whether you think the criteria ARIN
uses for deciding whom to audit should favor the selection of
organizations who have resources listed for sale.)

     -- Brett

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