Search RPD Archives
Limit search to: Subject & Body Subject Author
Sort by:

[rpd] IPv4 Soft Landing BIS

Owen DeLong owen at
Fri Jul 28 06:32:15 UTC 2017

> On Jul 27, 2017, at 22:45 , Jackson Muthili <jacksonmuthi at> wrote:
> On Thu, Jul 27, 2017 at 1:16 AM, Owen DeLong <owen at> wrote:
>> Frankly, IMHO, the preservation of IPv4 is strictly a way of inflicting
>> additional cost and pain on the majority of the internet. Unfortunately,
>> much like toxic polluters of the 70s and 80s, most of the cost and pain is
>> inflicted on those who are ready for IPv6 rather than those who remain
>> unprepared for that future. The good news is that if the current adoption
>> rates continue, the holdouts that haven’t implemented IPv6 will become
>> mostly irrelevant relatively soon and when the rest of us start turning off
>> IPv4, they will be the ones left out in the cold wondering what happened
>> instead of inflicting costs and pain on the rest of us.
>> The sooner the internet moves on from its unhealthy IPv4 addiction the
>> better. I’m pretty sure you know this as well as I do, despite all of your
>> apparent protestations to the contrary.
> - Our region is still a young and growing region relative to yours.

Like it or not, Jackson, I’m part of this region, too. Nonetheless, 

> - IPv6 is the end. But IPv4 is still a means to the end.

No… IPv4 is a temporary means of survival and is to some extent the status quo. Nothing more.

> - If IPv6 were the absolute solution we would not have a booming a
> billion dollar IPv4 market.

That’s the same kind of logic currently being used by the climate change deniers.

In the 1960s and 1970s, in my other region, the argument was that if dumping toxic chemicals
into waterways was a real problem, it wouldn’t be so cheap to do so. Fortunately, the
EPA was created and huge fines were put in place and the superfund was created to try and
shift some of the costs of these toxic waste dumpings back on to the sources instead of
the down-stream victims.

> - As the growing region transits to IPv6 there will still be need for
> IPv4 meantime. If our IPv4 is not well and meticulously managed during
> this period it will cost our operators more to buy from the market as
> AfriNIC runs out completely.

I actually agree with you here. That’s why I oppose the terrible mismanagement
proposed in the soft landing BIS proposal which would deprive operators of networks
in the region of the addresses they need in the present in order to protect imaginary
future operators who may never materialize.

Forcing present operators to pay higher rates in the transfer market because they cannot
get the addresses they need in order to preserve inventory for operators that don’t actually
exist is nonsensical and quite far from anything I would consider to be “meticulous management”

> - A mechanism to put in place a carefully managed runout which ensures
> fair allocation specifically for a region like Africa that has many
> late business and startups is very critical for us.

If I were to see such a proposal, I would support it. The proposal that is the subject
of this thread is pretty far from that.

> - Irrespective and irrelevant of evolution of the proposal and
> bickering of authors the proposal has the best interests of African
> network operators and Africa region in general.

Here we couldn’t disagree more. This proposal has the best interests of imaginary operators
that don’t even exist and may never exist being placed above the needs of real operators that
actually have networks and customers they are trying to serve today.

I don’t deny that the authors genuinely believe that they are acting in the best interests of
the community. I’m not accusing anyone of malfeasance or malicious action beyond the ad hominem
and hostile rhetoric which has served only to make it more difficult for the community to find
common ground.

> We shall get to IPv6 eventually. Now we still need IPv4. Our growing
> industry needs it badly and for a while before IPv6 eventually ever
> gets adopted. When it is depleted they will struggle big time.

I know Africa and the AfriNIC community like to believe that they are unique in this regard,
but as someone who has been watching this unfold worldwide for many years now, I can assure
you that there are actually only two major difference between the AfriNIC situation and the
situation in the rest of the world as regards IPv4 needs and IPv6 deployment.

	1.	AfriNIC region is far behind even the most undeveloped parts of the
		rest of the world in deploying IPv6, with the possible exception of
		China and India (though India is showing remarkable progress lately).

	2.	AfriNIC is the last RIR to exhaust its inventory due in large part to the excessive and
		debilitating over-user of NAT within the region. Perpetuating and or encouraging
		the expansion of this situation (a primary consequence of this proposal) does
		nothing good for the community.

There are many things about the situation in the AfriNIC region that are unique. Some of the most
striking are the remarkable failure of the community to act as a community and the hostility between
subgroups of the community that seem rooted far deeper than divisions over policy and which are
continuously allowed to interfere with any good faith effort at finding common ground.

I have no allegiance to any of these sub-groups, whether they be Francophone, Anglophone, Geographic,
Ethnic, or National. I have no prejudice against policy proposals based on who authored them. True there
are people in the community that I consistently disagree with and there are people who I believe are
more destructive in their methods of participation than others. However, I try very hard (I admit I don’t
always succeed) to avoid letting those thoughts intrude into my policy comments and I always evaluate
and comment on policy proposals based on my understanding of the merits and/or consequences of the
proposal itself.

I have never believed I have any greater power or voice than anyone else in the community, nor have I
ever made any effort to interfere with the job of the co-chairs. I don’t believe that the co-chairs are
so weak as to be driven by my statement of opinion on what I believe is the state of a policy proposal
and I have only made any such statement on rare occasion when I felt that the record made the conclusion
somewhat obvious.


More information about the RPD mailing list