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[rpd] [PDWG-Appeal] REPORT ON Appeal against the non-consensus determination on proposal AFPUB-2019-GEN-006-DRAFT02 (RPKI R

Owen DeLong owen at
Fri Mar 12 23:34:48 UTC 2021

> On Mar 10, 2021, at 7:18 AM, Mike Burns <mike at> wrote:


> This is an interesting discussion, but the problem is too large to be decided in this forum.

> As I see it, there are two governance systems in place, and the intersection of these systems begs the question of which is the superior. This question has been elided in the past through careful behavior of judges on the one hand and RIR staff on the other. Both sides have been deferential in the hopes of avoiding that decision.


> But this can’t last forever. ARIN uses the term “intersection of rights” when they discuss legacy rights versus registration rights. Legal governance has some say over legacy holdership rights, but RIR governance has some say over registration practices. Which controls? Nobody knows. I think labeling this as an “intersection of rights” is an attempt to paper over the problem. The label elucidates nothing regarding conflict resolution at these intersections.

Mike, the issue of legacy holder vs. RSA signatory rights is an orthogonal issue to this discussion. An interesting and valid problem, to be sure, but not the subject of this discussion.

This discussion is entirely about what rights the AFRINIC board has with regards to policy creation and/or modification vs. the governance rights of the community vs. the governance rights of the members.

> Owen is correct that legal corporations are setup and certain powers necessarily delegated to them by the requirements of the Internet governance system. Fernando is correct that the Internet governance system came first, and caused the creation of the legal corporations to suit its needs.

I’m not entirely sure that is true. Yes, to some extent, it is true in that there was an internet governance system in place prior to the creation of LACNIC and AFRINIC. However, RIPE-NCC and APNIC almost entirely predate anything that could reliably be called an internet governance system (basically being part of the early stages of a transition off of IANA being a notebook maintained by Jon Postel). ARIN came next and IMHO was built somewhat contemporaneously with the idea of any sort of formal system of internet governance.

Nonetheless, this is also somewhat orthogonal to the discussion at hand in this thread.

> So which system would dominate in a conflicted decision? The local legal system in which a particular RIR is incorporated or the global stake-holder-driven Internet governance system?

That’s a very open question and if we get to a point where it is forced to a decision through a court process, I think it will prove extremely disruptive well before the point where the legal system gets around to making a ruling or even before the case is heard. One need look no further than the various DNS alt-roots to consider what would happen in the event of a contested namespace management system for number resources. The difference is that in DNS, the various alt-roots are mostly harmless because:
1) Mostly nobody listens to them
2) They mostly mirror the existing TLDs as is and merely offer alternate TLD namespaces (which could get
more interesting if ICANN ever gets their act together on issuing more gTLDs and issues any that
begin conflicting).
3) Mostly nobody really uses them for anything meaningful

However, in the finite number space, there is no way for this to happen in a mostly non-overlapping or non-conflicting
manner and unlike DNS zones where you can choose your TLD operator on the basis of who cares about your zone,
when it comes to uniqueness of IP addresses, having different ISPs regarding different registries as authoritative will
be an adventure nobody will enjoy.

> I have no answer except to rephrase the trope regarding the Pope’s divisions. How many guns does the Internet governance system have?

Given the number of participants I know who are 2nd amendment advocates in the US, I’d say it’s probably more than you think, but I doubt that this issue will be solved in a shooting war.


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