[discuss] we need to fix what may be broken

Barry Shein bzs at world.std.com
Fri Apr 18 18:53:29 UTC 2014

On April 18, 2014 at 00:02 sm+1net at elandsys.com (S Moonesamy) wrote:
 > Hi Barry,
 > At 12:42 17-04-2014, Barry Shein wrote:
 > >I'm wondering if the assertion is "don't see" or "can do"?
 > >
 > >The former is understandable and invites suggestions, but taken as a
 > >whole I sense it's meant to say it's outside of ICANN's ability or
 > >purview.
 > It's outside ICANN's ability.  Andrew Sullivan already mentioned that 
 > the IPv6 transition is an economic problem.  The world was told that 
 > IPv4 addresses had run out.  The internet is still working.  The 
 > networks are, in general, not facing any unsurmountable addressing 
 > problem.  The average user can still do what he or she likes to do on 
 > the internet.

Since the RIRs are contractual entities of ICANN, and anyone might
decide to engage in industry missionary work I don't see how one can
say it's beyond ICANN's ability.

IPv4 addresses have not run out.

IANA has run out of IPv4 addresses to transfer to RIRs.

But RIRs have IPv4 addresses. Here, for example, is ARIN's current
IPv4 inventory as of today, 2014-04-18.


They even still have a /9 block which is about 12M addresses, etc.

Their simple meter on that page says 1.25 /8s total space, so about
30M addresses.

I could review that for the other 4 RIRs but we'd all get bored, fast,
I believe APNIC is in somewhat worse shape and AfrNIC somewhat better
though all that's relative to perceived demand rather than absolute
numbers. Not at all sure about RIPE and LACNIC.

And a secondary market is emerging (some sub-rosa) though I'd agree
it's not clear what impact that will have.

So we don't even seem to agree on the basic facts.

And that's a very important distinction.

The average user won't notice until s/he is denied an address. So if
even one remains it will appear there is no problem to someone merely
measuring by their own experience.

But, more importantly, and here's where I take some exception to
separating technical from societal issues:

What you just about CANNOT do is start a business which requires new
IPv4 allocation.

But business people tend to be practical, they go into the hot dog
franchise or video gravestone business instead.

Few would pursue an enterprise requiring new IPv4 block allocations
unless they were compelled (e.g., already in that business and only
seeking expansion.)

That's a huge societal effect of an almost purely technical policy

But one can't glibly say that everything is working just fine because
they and most people they know seem to be getting along.

 > If a body claims responsibility for IPv6 transition it would have to 
 > ensure that the transition is moving forward.  If a body allocates 
 > IPv6 addresses it would have to try and move the transition 
 > forward.  It would also have to assess the issues on which it can act 
 > on.  Otherwise, it might be investing in efforts which are 
 > unrewarding; it could also end up in the middle of a larger problem.

Not just forward, but also forward at a sufficient pace, "impedence

That's important since demand for the internet as a concept is growing
at its own rate.

 > A few minutes ago, I took a look at a document which was written 
 > about 10 years ago.  IPv6 transition was considered important at that 
 > time.  It's more pressing now as it is unlikely that the IPv4 address 
 > pool will be replenished.  I am aware of integer slicing.  I am not 
 > enthusiastic about that.  There are some minimal efforts which I have 
 > put in.  The result was failure.  Would ICANN intervention have 
 > helped?  I don't think so.

I'm not sure "how ICANN can help" has been explored all that much,
even if that seems intuitively objectionable.

For example one controversial issue in the RIR space is the creation
and (if yes) management of orderly secondary IPv4 markets.

This seems bigger than something each RIR should just proceed with
independently. ICANN is their common denominator for policy.

 > >Do we all agree that if this IPv6 transition fails then everything
 > >else we are talking about here crumbles to dust?
 > People are currently interested about the IANA transition and some 
 > other topics.

I started by admitting some might find this off-topic.

I was responding to what I thought was a poorly thought out comment
asserting that IPv6 transition is completely outside of ICANN's
purview. Not the discussion topic at hand, but ICANN's.

I was mostly pointing out that if the IPv6 transition fails we don't
need an IANA transition, as a counter-point.

The whole structure comes tumbling down.

Let me clarify that:

The internet per se will continue. What is in danger is the current
governance and administrative structure since it will be declared a
dangerous failure.

(some text elided)

        -Barry Shein

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