[arin-ppml] Draft Policy ARIN-2013-4: RIR Principles - revised

Owen DeLong owen at delong.com
Wed Jul 17 20:49:41 EDT 2013

On Jul 17, 2013, at 5:30 PM, Steven Ryerse <SRyerse at eclipse-networks.com> wrote:

> Correct, the Missions Statement isn't policy but policies all need to flow from and be in alignment with the Mission Statement.  It exists to help guide ARIN and this community in day to day matters.  I don't know who wrote the original Mission Statement - maybe IANA and NSF and others were involved - I don't know for sure.

You made the statement that the BoT changing the mission statement without community input was not in line with the claim that policies are developed by the community. I was pointing out the fallacy in that argument by pointing out that the mission statement was not policy. Policies are developed by the community. Other things about ARIN are not. At least not directly.

> I do know for sure that the number one function that ARIN was created for is to allocate Internet resources and of course at that time it was worldwide.  It says so at the beginning of the old Missions Statement ("allocates Internet Protocol resources" - see below).  The new Mission Statement just says ARIN is to manage resources ("supports the operation of the Internet through the management of Internet number resources" - see below). 

Actually, by the time ARIN was created, it was not world wide. There were already two other RIRs in operation at the time ARIN was created, so ARIN's original service region was "Rest of World" meaning everywhere not served by RIPE-NCC or APNIC (both of which predated ARIN). LACNIC and later AfriNIC further reduced ARIN's service region (in fact, AfriNIC also reduced APNIC and RIPE's service regions, not sure about LACNIC).

> In my opinion these are very different.  The first says ARIN is to allocate, and the second says ARIN only has to manage - and thus doesn't necessarily have to allocate.  

At the time ARIN was created, managing internet resources consisted almost exclusively of the process of allocating resources from greenfield space. Things have changed since then. We now have transfers of IPv4 resources and ASNs, reclaimed and returned resources (to a much greater degree than when ARIN was created), inter-regional transactions, etc. As such, I think that the term manage has become more consistent with ARIN's current mission whereas allocate describes only a subset.

> I have no way of knowing but I wonder if IANA is OK with a change like this.  Would they need to approve of a significant Mission Statement change for an RIR?  I don't know how that all works.  

Well, per the MoU, IANA policies (with respect to number resources) are governed by policies which achieve consensus through the independent policy development process in all 5 RIRs and are then ratified by the NRO NC and subsequently ratified by the ICANN Board. As such, I can't see how IANA could object to a change like this since IANA has no role in defining the policies of the RIRs, but, rather operates in the other direction… The collective RIRs through the NRO manage the IANA policies.

> I have many times pointed out in this community that a particular policy or policy proposal does/did not match the Missions Statement.  I guess instead of working with this community to align policies with the Mission Statement, ARIN decided to make the Missions Statement fit the policies.  

I think, rather, that the original mission statement was an artifact of the time when it was created and we live in a different time now. I do not believe that the change in the mission statement represents a change in mission or an adaptation of the mission statement to fit the policies nearly so much as it represents a change in wording to recognize the larger nature of the mission than was evident at the time of ARIN creation.

If ARIN's sole responsibility is to allocate, then who should process reclamations, returns, transfers, and other aspects of management of the address space? How do you see such a structure working?

> As I said ARIN does have the right to change it without this community's input but it sure leaves a bad taste in my mouth for ARIN not to have sought this community's input on something as significant as a Mission Statement rewrite.  In my humble opinion it feels like they went behind my (our?) back and deprived this community of the much needed opportunity to truly debate and have input to what we want the overall mission of ARIN to be.  Just my two cents. :-(  

It left a bad taste in my mouth as well. I informed several board members of that fact at the time.

I don't think that it was their intent to go behind anyone's back. Indeed, I think it was out-of-control group-think on the word smithing when they set out to clarify that the policies are, in fact, set by the community. Having talked to most of the people responsible for the change, I don't believe that any of them felt that the change was meaningful beyond the clarification intended.

I was actually more upset about the loss of the "principles of stewardship" at the time. I still don't see the change from allocate to manage as being a material change to the mission statement (or to the mission) so much as a recognition of the current reality.


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Owen DeLong [mailto:owen at delong.com] 
> Sent: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 1:03 PM
> To: Steven Ryerse
> Subject: Re: [arin-ppml] Draft Policy ARIN-2013-4: RIR Principles - revised
> The mission statement is not policy.
> Policy is what is in the NRPM. In addition to policy (driven by the community process), ARIN also has operational guidelines and directives (set by management and the board), bylaws (set by the board), a corporate charter (I believe this is set by the board, but may also require a vote of the membership), a mission statement (set by the board, though to the best of my recollection, this is the first time it has changed), and probably some other documents that I am unaware of involved in its administration and/or operations.
> I agree it would have been better if the board had solicited community input prior to instantiating a new mission statement. However, since the mission statement has no impact on policy, per se, I also don't feel that doing so has any impact on whether or not the community controls the policy process.
> Owen
> Sent from my iPad
> On Jul 16, 2013, at 3:01 PM, Steven Ryerse <SRyerse at eclipse-networks.com> wrote:
>> I certainly think that ARIN has the right to change the Mission Statement when it wants to.  I would comment though that ARIN deciding to make a significant rewrite to the Mission Statement  without this community's input first - sure does puncture the illusion that ARIN only changes policies with this community's consensus.  
>> Steven L Ryerse
>> President
>> 100 Ashford Center North, Suite 110, Atlanta, GA  30338
>> 770.656.1460 - Cell
>> 770.399.9099 - Office
>> 770.392-0076 - Fax
>> ℠ Eclipse Networks, Inc.
>>                    Conquering Complex Networks℠
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: John Curran [mailto:jcurran at arin.net]
>> Sent: Tuesday, July 16, 2013 2:51 PM
>> To: Steven Ryerse
>> Cc: David Farmer; arin-ppml at arin.net
>> Subject: Re: [arin-ppml] Draft Policy ARIN-2013-4: RIR Principles - 
>> revised
>> On Jul 16, 2013, at 2:40 PM, Steven Ryerse <SRyerse at eclipse-networks.com> wrote:
>>> Well that's interesting.  Last August I included a copy of the ARIN Mission Statement that I cut and pasted  from ARINs web site into one of my comments to this community.  This was the statement:
>>> “Applying the principles of stewardship, ARIN, a nonprofit corporation, allocates Internet Protocol resources; develops consensus-based policies; and facilitates the advancement of the Internet through information and educational outreach.”
>>> I looked at ARINs web site today  since the Mission Statement below didn't look like what I remembered and lo and behold - the Mission Statement has changed.  David is correct that it says:  
>>> "ARIN, a nonprofit member-based organization, supports the operation of the Internet through the management of Internet number resources throughout its service region; coordinates the development of policies by the community for the management of Internet Protocol number resources; and advances the Internet through informational outreach."
>>> It would have been nice if ARIN had let this community know of the change.
>> <https://www.arin.net/announcements/2012/20121012_mission.html>
>>> I wonder why it changed?
>> It was changed to make it clear that ARIN does not develop the policies, but instead "coordinates the development of policies by the community"
>> (This is accomplished by mechanisms such as the ARIN Policy 
>> Development Process, maintenance of this Public Policy Mailing List, 
>> support of the the ARIN Advisory Council, etc.)
>> Thanks,
>> /John
>> John Curran
>> President and CEO
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