[arin-ppml] Discussion on elimination of SWIP requirements.

Andrew Sullivan ajs at anvilwalrusden.com
Sun Jun 4 12:01:56 EDT 2017

On Sun, Jun 04, 2017 at 03:46:21PM +0000, John Curran wrote:
> As noted earlier, if this community develops and adopts policy regarding how 
> the number registry is to be operated, ARIN will indeed implement such policy 
> (including marking or revocation of number resources blocks as appropriate 
> per policy.)   I am in no way advocating for, or against, any policy change, but 
> simply making clear that the ARIN community does have the ability to specify 
> how the registry will be operated and ARIN will enforce any resulting policy, 
> at least with respect to registry operation. 

I appreciate (and am confident) that ARIN (the organization) will
implement such policies as those the community adopts.  My point is
rather that ARIN does not really have the power people seem to be

Let's suppose that the community came up with a policy that required
some sort of "enforcement" that resulted in IP address space being
taken away.

Suppose it were IPv4 address space.  It would have to be pulled out of
service for quite some time because ensuring that old routes didn't
remain in place would be needed.  That very "pulling out of service"
would presumably result in some sort of legal action, which itself
would bring the entire RIR arrangement into disrepute.  Moreover,
there'd be little incentive for the operator in question to give in,
so that operator might well just keep using the space anyway.
(Indeed, they'd probably get injunctive relief for some period of
time.)  If the operator were large enough, ARIN's authority to do this
effectively would be blunted, which would be worse for ARIN and all of
us collectively than it would be for the supposed ill-behaved party.

Given the size of the v6 address space, the consequences would be even
more ridculous.  Since there are operational stability reasons to
prefer "pristine" space over previously-used space, and given the
current size of the available v6 pool, the space would be taken out of
service under the policy.  The chance that the space would not
continue to be used by the offender is tiny, and any attempt to
enforce that would be subject to restraint of trade complaints.

I know that ARIN will faithfully implement community policy.  What I
am suggesting is that the community had better, in formulating such
policy, understand the limits of its power.

Best regards,


Andrew Sullivan
ajs at anvilwalrusden.com

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