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Managing Internet Addresses: Global and regional viewpoint.
Workshop description and list of panelists:
The aim of this workshop was to present detailed information about the functioning and main activities that the RIRs develop, including description and analysis of their processes (PDP, allocation process, criteria and evaluation of the requests), their involvement in the projects to foster the Information Society and their current challenges in the management of the Internet resources.
Topic was presented by 2 main speakers:
1) Haitham El-Nakhal, from the Egyptian Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (representing the Afrinic community)
2)Germán Valdez, Communications Area Manager at APNIC, the Regional Internet Registry for the Asia Pacific region.
- Governmental vision: Heather Dryden, Senior Advisor on Internet governance at the Canadian Federal Ministry of Industry.
- Civil society perspective: Willie Currie, Manager of the Communications and Information Policy Program at APC (Association for Progressive Communications)
- Private sector: John Sweeting, Director of Network Engineering at Time Warner Cable, USA.
Vladimir Radunovic, Coordinator of the Internet Governance and Policy Educational and Training Programmes at Diplo Foundation.
The actors involved in the field; various initiatives that people can connect with, and contacts for further information:
Regional Internet Registries/NRO
Contact for information: LACNIC - www.lacnic.net -
A brief substantive summary and the main issues that were identified:
- Haitham El-Nakhal, from the Egyptian Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (representing the Afrinic community) presented “The Regional Internet Registry System.” In his presentation he made a comprehensive description of the function and role of the RIRs in the management of the Internet addresses resources, including their structure, the bottom-up model, the Policy Development Processes, and how the policies (regional and global) are defined and reach consensus within each regional community with a multistakeholder participation.
He also mentioned other roles performed by the RIRs beyond their registry function, such as education and training of their communities. Individual RIRs carry out activities that include training courses (DNS, Routing, IPv6, Security, etc) seminars, outreach activities, and statistical reporting, research and projects related to whois, RPKI, cyber security and encouraging the launching of IXPs, among others. In addition, RIRs conduct and fund research and development projects related to deployment of DNS root servers and ICT.
- Germán Valdez, Communications Area Manager at APNIC, the Regional Internet Registry for the Asia Pacific region. His presentation on “Managing Internet Resources”
intended to illustrate what is the core function of the RIRs, which is the distribution of the Internet resources. He explained the resource management before the establishment of the RIRs, and how it evolved into the RIR system under a bottom-up Policy Development Process. He described in detail how the analysis of resources request is done based on the principles of Conservation, Aggregation, and Registration and how the distribution of IP addresses is completed (from RIRs to customers and end users). He also presented the challenges that RIRs face in the near future with the depletion of the IPv4 addresses and how they are working informing and preparing the community and all interested parties to adapt to the new scenario.
Conclusions and further comments:
After the presentations, a panel of commentators made up by representatives from different sectors (private, governmental, and civil society) joined the discussion giving their own views on the topics addressed.
The panel was moderated by Vladimir Radunovic, Coordinator of the Internet Governance and Policy Educational and Training Programmes at Diplo Foundation.
Heather Dryden, Senior Advisor on Internet governance at the Canadian Federal Ministry of Industry gave a government vision.
She indicated that aspects related to RIRs of importance for Canada include:
- A good, efficient and uninterrupted functionality and operation of the Internet
- Welcomed the creation of a working group in ARIN, a place for governments to gather and to focus on some of the issues of particular interest to them, to influence appropriately and participate in the PDP of their region.
- Adoption of IPv6 is of great importance for the government – Canada is involved in the creation of an IPv6 Task Force and they are making recommendations to facilitate IPv6 adoption. The Canadian government is interested in the economic aspects of IPv6 adoption, and how they affect competition between ISPs. Concerned about Canadians continuing to have access to government services on line.
- She emphasized the importance of re-allocation of IPv4 addresses
- Made a note on WHOIS database and access for law enforcement
Willie Currie, Manager of the Communications and Information Policy Program at APC (Association for Progressive Communications) who represented the civil society perspective.
- APC is particularly concerned over Internet rights i.e. rights of end-users (issues related to Internet governance and ICTs
- He emphasized the critical role of the RIRs raising a question on the threats to the openness of their policy development process (PDP).
- Concerns over privacy aspects of WHOIS database and possible misuse for surveillance.
- Questioned the role of Internet Service Providers on protection of Intellectual
- Property rights and linkage with distribution IPs and identification of end-users
- Question on possibility that RIRs, through their PDP, and ASO introduce protection of freedom of expression and right to privacy into ICANN bylaws (which is not saying that they should become human rights enforcement bodies).
John Sweeting, Director of Network Engineering at Time Warner Cable, USA, representing the private sector.
- Emphasized how the RIR system has supported his business interests during the 11 years he was involved in different companies obtaining resources from different RIRs.
- He highlighted the different roles of RIRs in different regions. They are all the same but, they are also different. Mission, vision and structure are unique to the requirements of the regions. The main advantage of the RIRs system is that they focus on the needs of the region and develop policies for that region by each particular region.
- He mentioned that this could be a disadvantage if you work with different RIRs since you need to know the policies on each particular region.
- Other notes about the RIRs: PDP works very well in each region, participation is open to anyone, enables sharing of experience among regions. Registration and accuracy of the WHOIS database is very important.
Germán Valdez, Communications Area Manager APNIC commented the following on the question from Willie Currie about the WHOIS database:
Within WHOIS database there is only information on a technical contact, for administrative and technical purposes about who is holding an IP address.
There are different aspects of privacy - It is important to say that what data should be opened or not and what are the levels of protection published on the whois database is under discussion and is part of the PDP. Even law enforcement people can participate in the PDP with the technical Internet community.
Comment from Remote Participation: McTim to Willie Currie
“RIR do not route IP address blocks (except for those that they themselves use); RIR take no position on these subjects, they have a very limited role, they allocate and assign.”
German Valdez agreed with the comment from the remote participant
Vladimir Radunovic posed a question to the panel about who is the community, how can one get involved in the community?
Haitham El-Nakhal and German Valdez answered that everybody, every single person or entity can get involved and be part of the community and participate in the PDP (face to face meetings, mailing lists, policy discussions, remote participation, etc)
Comment from Remote Participation: McTim
Approval of German’s response: “if civil society is really concerned about IP address WHOIS policies, they should get involved in making policy they live with.”
In response to Willie, he also stated: “Route aggregation has nothing to do with Intellectual Property Rights and surveillance”.
Comment from the audience: Raimundo Beca, ICANN Board Member, speaking from his personal perspective asked the panel to comment about global policies.
He stated that before the global policies IANA allocated with its own criteria, but the community had no opportunity to discuss on them. After the NRO creation, there are global policies that had made a very good contribution to the fairness distribution of IP addresses in the world. He mentioned the global policy about the allocation of the last 5 /8 to the RIRs which is based on a fair distribution, not on a need basis.
He also raised a question to the panel about the global policy now under discussion for the re-allocation of IPv4 addresses.
German Valdez, Communications Area Manager APNIC, highlighted the global cooperation of the Internet community reflected in the approval of the last 5 /8 allocations global policy.
Haitham Haitham El-Nakhal, Egyptian Telecommunications Regulatory Authority, also commented that the global policy of the last 5 /8 is a good example of cooperation between the 5 RIRs.
Heather Dryden, Canadian Federal Ministry of Industry comments on global policies: the important aspects are community’s leadership and building up a collaborative model.
John Sweeting, Director of Network Engineering at Time Warner Cable: even though there are challenges in the future, the current RIR system has proven that it is able to deal with these challenges. The system is well prepared to deal with regional as well as global challenges
Willie Currie, Manager, Communications and Information Policy Program, APC:
Affirmation of Commitment (ICANN-DoC) should make it easier to civil society to get engaged in global policy. ICANN should thus be an accountable body.
Other panelists have not discussed on global policy due to their direct involvement with RIR.
...End of Report...
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