[Community-Discuss] [members-discuss] AFRINIC Update 23rd November 2015

Owen DeLong owen at delong.com
Tue Nov 24 22:44:36 UTC 2015

[much snipped]
> SO: ... (Now please don't ask me where "there" is ;-) )

Perhaps this is a significant contributor to the difficulties of these discussions.

Allow me to digress into an example from one of my other fields… As many of you know, I am a pilot. I fly small airplanes, often in clouds, for fun.

I enjoy the mental challenge of navigation and situational awareness while deprived of visual reference.

There are three fundamental components to any problem of navigation.

1.	Where am I?
2.	Where do I want to be?
3.	How do I get there.

Unless one has a clear answer for questions 1 and 2, it is absolutely impossible to come to any meaningful or useful conclusion on question 3.

Note I use the word clear rather than precise. Precision is not necessarily required.

Example, if I know that I am in the San Francisco Bay Area and that I want to be in Oregon, I can provide a useful answer to question 3 comprised
of “head 340º” and know that I am flying towards my destination while I develop more precise answers to 1 and 2.

This represents the relatively simple case of a single pilot navigating a single craft to a single destination.

Coming back to AfriNIC, we are faced with a much more complicated problem. First, it is clear to me that various members of the community
are both in a multitude of places in terms of what they believe to be the current AfriNIC status. Second, there is an even wider dispersion among
the community of “where do we want to be?”.

I believe that the board’s efforts with respect to publishing the minutes and other improved and expanded transparency efforts will help with question 1.

Given that, however, I think it may well be worth taking some time to examine question 2 in more detail and attempt to develop a community consensus
around something like a 5 year plan. I don’t know if there is an existing strategic plan for AfriNIC or not. Clearly, if there is, a review of its goals and
objectives with the community may be in order and it may be appropriate to modify it based on community feedback. Perhaps this can be one of the
first tasks for the governance committee, to develop and execute a process by which that can occur. Perhaps the board should tackle this directly.
I will leave that decision in the capable hands of the board.

Only when the community has come to some level of consensus about where we want to be can we begin to come together in a more useful dialog
about how to get there.


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