[arin-ppml] Recommended Draft Policy ARIN-2014-12: Anti-hijack Policy

David Farmer farmer at umn.edu
Fri Jun 6 15:56:39 EDT 2014

On 6/2/14, 11:04 , David Farmer wrote:
> On 6/2/14, 09:26 , Kevin Kargel wrote:
>> I will respectfully disagree.  What is the point of “should”?  Even in
>> the example you gave it would better as “must unless” or “shall unless”
>>   instead of “should unless” .  With “should” there is no reason for the
>> unless because there is no requirement to do otherwise in the first
>> place.
>> Should leaves a loophole that can be easily exploited, i.e. “you never
>> said we had to do that, you just said we should, so I can technically do
>> whatever I want”..
> Sorry, I don't have time to debate this issue in general at this moment.
>   The PPC at NANOG 61 is just over 24 hours away.
>> It would be perfectly functional to say:
>> “The allocation size shall be consistent with the existing ARIN minimum
>> allocation sizes, unless small allocations are intended to be explicitly
>> part of the experiment.”
> Are you suggesting we should also change that sentence as well?  If you
> are I need to know ASAP, like I said the PPC is just over 24 hours away
> and I have to finalize the presentation ASAP.  I would also like to hear
> support from a couple others on PPML before opening that sentence also
> to changes, as well.

I don't feel I got sufficient support to modify this sentences on PPML 
prior to the PPC. Also, I discussed this sentence with a couple other AC 
members and with ARIN Staff.  Given the "should" is immediately followed 
by a conditional "unless" the intent seems sufficiently clear, the 
intent is to create a special-case exception, and "should" seems 
appropriate.  Furthermore, "must" or "shall" followed by "unless" seemed 
an awkward way to create such an exception.

Therefore, I did not include any changes to this sentence in the 
Editorial Changes presented at the PPC.

>> Using “should” in the statement makes it a no-op.  With “should” you can
>> choose not to follow what is only a suggestion. If you use “shall” or
>> “must” you have enforceable policy. If the policy is not enforceable it
>> is nothing more than a best practice statement at best.
> I also respectfully disagree.  However, I will discuss the issue with
> ARIN staff here at NANOG to understand how they interpret this issue.

Staff generally agrees that in most cases for policy "must" is preferred 
and it is best to avoid "should" in most cases.  However, in the 
sentence above the intent seem clear enough and "should" seems 
appropriate in that particular case.


David Farmer               Email: farmer at umn.edu
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