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[rpd] [Community-Discuss] Controversial anti-shutdown policy discussed at RIPE

Badru Ntege badru.ntege at
Sun May 14 17:15:53 UTC 2017


No one supports a shutdown but not supporting it does not mean using the wrong avenue to ensure it does not happen.  Just like in any relationship, we only move forward if we respect each other.

Any policy by an external organization seeking to put a sovereign government on notice is seen as an insult to any sovereign government whatever the intention was.

Dialogue and respect for governments is the only way that will allow us to engage with them and ensure they understand the impact.  But we must also be ready to respectfully listen to them and understand why they might be driven to a shutdown.

The policy is an empty threat which has already damaged our image in the eyes of some member governments.   

Lets not kid ourselves, until we can help the governments understand that there are other ways to overcome whatever threat they see in the internet, if shutdown is what works for them at the time it will happen.

We have one solution if we want dialogue with governments.  

Drop the policy with a touch of humility, engage the governments maybe through AU to help them understand how to overcome their internal threats.  




On 5/14/17, 6:43 PM, "Ali Hussein" <ali at> wrote:


Thanks for sharing. That Cameroon example is important. 

I've been following this discourse for a few days and I'm getting the feeling that no one in the community is supporting a shut down right? 

Or is there among us that do support a shut down? 

If we then all agree that an Internet Shutdown in any African country is unacceptable then instead of this back and forth which will lead nowhere why don't we as a community agree on how best to discourage and dialogue across Africa to ensure we don't experience the Cameroon example? 

For example in a Kenya we have gotten a commitment from the Communication Authority that there will be no Internet Shutdown.

Ali Hussein
Hussein & Associates
+254 0713 601113 

Twitter: @AliHKassim

Skype: abu-jomo


"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit."  ~ Aristotle

Sent from my iPad

On 14 May 2017, at 11:48 AM, Mark Elkins <mje at> wrote:

With regard to the damage a shutdown can do:

Many of you will know that I am part of a team who has put together a
Paper on behalf of ICANN - the project which we call the African DNS
Market Study. This includes getting ccTLD stats from all African
countries. Because of the difficulty of getting responses from the whole
of the African ccTLD community, we also draw upon what other researchers
have done. We did our first count back in November, 2016.

One Data Source we used was DomainTools:

We repeated the exercise a week ago (6/7th May 2017) to see what had
changed. As expected, almost all ccTLD Domain counts have increased and
a handful have gone down by a very small margin.

There was one glaring exception, Cameroon.

November 2016:  63,023

May 2017:             31,801

That is, over the period of the Cameroon shutdown, the number of domains
registered under .CM decreased by more than 50%

That is significant.

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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