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[rpd] New Policy Proposal - "Anti-Shutdown (AFPUB-2017-GEN-001-DRAFT-01)"

Mark Elkins mje at
Tue Apr 18 16:35:12 UTC 2017

On 18/04/2017 15:33, Tutu Ngcaba wrote:
> Dear Mr.Mark Elkins,
> In south Africa if government shuts yes it shall not succeed as our
> politics also different and we big economy which internet is also
> spread from telkom to other many isp.

I hope a call by government in South Africa to shut down the Internet
would fail (or simply never happen), but if someone physically holds an
AK47 to my head - then I'll quickly comply, in the hope I can reverse
the situation later. If I learn that this happens to someone else in
another country - I would not blame or go after the guys managing the
Internet, but the people holding the guns.

> But the ideas of your email is maybe true buy the look like predictions.
> Did the Afrinic ever ever not get paid by its customers of IPv4
> address because they did not have the money to pay for the next year
> because of the internet shuts?

I don't completely understand your question.
In the past, AFRINIC customers have failed to pay. I was a board member
for six years and, like other board members, at times assisted AFRINIC
staff in trying to contact delinquent members to get them to pay. My
understanding is if they did not pay, their resources were reclaimed.
This has nothing to do with any Internet shutdown.

Several ISP's in North Africa had issues after the Arab Spring though -
business failed - etc.

> Does the Afrinic have such report from the customer who was blocked
> before.?

I was told this was the procedure.

> If our Afrinic is worry about loosing payment from ISP which didnt do
> business due to internet cuts after 1 year then the Afrinic is very
> harsh and not understanding.

None of this (reclaiming IP resources) has anything to do with Internet
cuts. AFRINIC runs a business. If AFRINIC is not paid - bad things may
happen that may effect every other African country. We looked close to
this a few years back.

> I am sure the Afrinic also not getting payment from some of the member
> customers who delay to pay because of other reasons.

Yes - for example the budget cycle in some countries didn't match the
beginning of the year (AFRINIC's cycle) and a fellow AFRINIC director
who worked for a university had this problem year after year. The
resources were never reclaimed but his universities payments were always
something like 3 months late.
> This is political issue and shall be resolved through dialog
> politically and government is only shutting because of political
> threat the internet pose to it not the Afrinic refusal to give the IP
> address in future because they will say same IP is what we shutdown so
> we dont need it.

For some reason, dialogue always works better when you hold a stick in
your hand. That doesn't mean you actually have to use the stick. Its
mere presence can have a persuading effect.

As a sometimes naughty boy, when my mother held a stick and said "time
for bed", I would lightly comply immediately, unlike when there was no
stick. The stick was never otherwise used.

> Maybe you have to ask why government will do it if indeed there is any
> loose to them.
> Do you know how much sactions the UN put on some countries and nothing
> change as political problem is solved by the people through dialog
> eventually.

South Africa changed from apartheid to what we have now. Sanctions were
certainly part of the tools used.

North Korea has been sanctioned - the USA have shown them some sticks,
I'm hoping sanity will prevail.

> Why we want the Afrinic to create rules which will never works in real
> life?

Why do you think they won't work?
Its never been tried before.
The other RIR's are watching us and may copy us.

> Best Regards,
> Tutu Ngcaba
> Kwazulu Techno Hubs
> South Africa
> On 18 Apr 2017 3:44 p.m., "Mark Elkins" <mje at
> <mailto:mje at>> wrote:
>     On 17/04/2017 20:06, Adnan RIHAN wrote:
>     > Hello brothers,
>     >
>     > I’m just a young Congolese (BZV) citizen, and here is my own
>     thoughts
>     > about this policy and your reactions. I’m a new ML member and
>     this is
>     > my first email to any afrinic’s ML.
>     Welcome to the list. Please note, I'm going to disagree with your
>     thought on this. Please don't be offended or stop posting in the
>     future.
>     I'm glad you have viewed your opinion because I believe many others -
>     including Governments - share it with you.  I also assume that you
>     wouldn't mind if there was a solution to the problem of Internet
>     disconnections.
>     > Some of us live in more or less free countries, others under hidden
>     > dictatorships, and the rest of us in locked-down countries.
>     True. I think I live in a more or less free country. Switching off the
>     Internet in South Africa wouldn't be as simple as perhaps others. We
>     have multiple undersea cables and cables that cross boarders all
>     over. A
>     number of people also have Satellite connections. We have a large
>     number
>     of providers and much of our content is local. An Internet shutdown
>     would indeed be a catastrophe, the countries economy would almost
>     certainly slow down considerably.
>     > This policy started from an idea, good or bad, based on the fact
>     that
>     > Internet is sometimes shutdown in some countries, for good or bad
>     > reasons. Unfortunately, AFRINIC has NO POWER AT ALL on any
>     > governments, so we are trying to find a leverage.
>     This is not quite true (AFRINIC has no power).
>     There are many organisations that want to see Internet Access for all,
>     such as ISOC. AFRINIC also falls within this category. This is part of
>     AFRINIC's vision.
>     Unlike a number of these organisations, AFRINIC actually does have
>     power. All machines connected to the Internet need unique
>     identifiers -
>     that is, IP addresses. If its IPv4 - it could be behind NAT, but
>     somewhere along the line - something has to have a unique address. For
>     IPv6 - there is no NAT - so every machine numbered with IPv6 is
>     unique.
>     (I'm ignoring things like AnyCast - to keep this discussion simple).
>     What do you think happens when someone who is a customer of an RIR
>     stops
>     paying the RIR for their services? The Address space is reclaimed. The
>     RIR can examine the Routing Tables and if the address space is still
>     being advertised - they can ask a suitable upstream service
>     provider (or
>     two) to stop accepting the routes - so the Address space is no longer
>     seen. That organisation is then effectively cut off from using the
>     Internet.
>     This is what AFRINIC can do.
>     Perhaps with this (completely plausible) threat hanging over
>     people that
>     want to block Internet to other people - they will think twice before
>     doing so - because there can be consequences. Perhaps, up until now,
>     they are thinking like you, that no one can cut them off? You should
>     rather be telling people, indeed, AFRINC could cut you off.
>     > Like Tutu said, there is almost nothing we (as AFRINIC’s community)
>     > can do about it without collateral damages on citizens.
>     If the citizens are already being cut off - what further damage
>     would be
>     done? Others might actually say "Hey, you are cutting off that
>     population group - then we will happily join them" ?
>     >  Considering
>     > the fact that this Policy would be dangerous for citizens and nearly
>     > useless against governments, we should start a thread somewhere else
>     > to continue finding ideas.
>     I hope you see that this is not necessarily correct.
>     > Unfortunately, only citizens of a country have the power to change
>     > things, legally and peacefully. Such citizens could organize a
>     sit in
>     > (if it’s legal) in front of gov’s offices, write mass letters, do a
>     > peaceful walk or even create a local protesting group associating
>     > medias. Anyways,
>     That is certainly one method to do this. Use public opinion to get a
>     change to happen. It doesn't seem to have worked in the Cameroon yet.
>     > it won’t be AFRINIC’s business.
> could be AFRINIC's business policy - ugly as it is.
>     > --
>     > Regards, Adnan RIHAN
>     --
>     Mark James ELKINS  -  Posix Systems - (South) Africa
>     mje at <mailto:mje at>       Tel: +27.128070590
>     <tel:%2B27.128070590>  Cell: +27.826010496 <tel:%2B27.826010496>
>     For fast, reliable, low cost Internet in ZA:
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>     RPD mailing list
>     RPD at <mailto:RPD at>
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Mark James ELKINS  -  Posix Systems - (South) Africa
mje at       Tel: +27.128070590  Cell: +27.826010496
For fast, reliable, low cost Internet in ZA:

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