North American Network Operators Group|
Date Prev | Date Next | Date Index | Thread Index | Author Index | Historical
Re: Reducing Usenet Bandwidth
USENET is by its nature a commons facility for sharing rivalrous resources (e.g. bandwidth and storage capacity). Elementary reasoning (if anyone's interested, Lawrence Lessig's "The Future of Ideas" contains as detailed discussion as anyone can bear :) leads to the conclusion that lacking usage control mechanisms such commons are doomed to disintegrate. No exceptions were found so far. (Such control mechanisms do not have to be market-based to be effective and successful; public policy or code may embed usage controls as well - TCP's cooperative congestion control is an excellent example). When the Internet was small, the personal reputation was strong enough limiter to abuse of shared resources. It only works when community is smallish and elitary. This is clearly no longer the case. In other words - USENET cannot be fixed with technological improvements as long as the root problem (admission control) is not solved. Improving transmission or storage systems would only let spammers to send more spam for free. Therefore, i'd say it is time to declare USENET defunct. It was fun while it lasted. --vadim PS. Talking about commons... A lot of network and computing resources are quite under-utilized. Many owners of those resources would be quite willing to donate underused capacity to the community - providing that such donation will not have any noticeable negative impact on resources' performance for primary functions. While most modern OS-es have mostly adequate prioritization mechanisms, a lot of would-be donors are turned out by the effective inability to protect their primary network capacity. Therefore, i would like to ask ISPs to be civic-minded and standartize on an IP TOS for "community" traffic, giving normal IP traffic an absolute queueing and drop-policy preference over packets with community TOS. Correspondingly, though most backbone (and some access) IP routing equipment already has everything needed to implement community TOS, they could be similarly civic-minded by making such preference turned on by default and by improving per-TOS utilization data collection, so NMS-es won't cry wolf seeing links being highly utilized by low-priority traffic. Another area which needs improvement is making L2 switches similarly aware of community TOS in IP packets.