North American Network Operators Group|
Date Prev | Date Next | Date Index | Thread Index | Author Index | Historical
Re: data request on Sitefinder
To inform? Not yet, although I have the feeling that this will be changed due to historic record. However, changes that have an effect are always analyzed and a course of action chosen. I believe this is the job of ICANN. At some point, ICANN's power will need to be tested and set in stone. Only the community can create or strip that power. Yet if an organization is going to exist to serve the community and maintain order, then it needs the power to do it.
I will point out that it will be much easier for the community to strip that power than to vest it in another entity. To strip that power only requires one of two things: 1. Enough of the community heading in a different direction and disregarding said entity (ICANN). 2. An organization such as Verisign openly defying ICANN and ICANN failing to make a sufficiently strong response to enforce and protect the consensus will of the community. I think item 1 is unlikely unless fueled by item 2. Verisign would do well to notice that if they do implement the sitefinder wildcards again, and, ICANN does not successfully put a stop to it, the single most likely outcome is for the community to view ICANN as irrelevant and impotent. Once this happens, the inevitable result is a fragmentation of the DNS, disparate roots, and, loss of the convention of a single recognized authority at the root of the tree. This convention is fundamental to the stability of the current internet. Losing it would definitely have negative impact on the end user experience. In every forum to which I have convenient access, Verisign has repeatedly attempted to restrict the discussion to the technical issues around the wildcards. The reality is that the technical issues are the tip of the iceburg and, while costly and significant, they are not the real danger. The issues that must be addressed are the issues of internet governance, control of the root (does Verisign serve ICANN or vice-versa), and finally, whether the .com/.net zones belong to the public trust or to Verisign. Focusing on the technical is to fiddle while Rome burns.
The IETF process is the consensus means of proposing and discussing changesRelated issues include whether the IETF process, even if flawed, is the consensus means of proposing and discussing changes in the infrastructure. Whether or not the operational forums like NANOG have a role in this process, or even in presenting consensus opinions, also is a basic question for Internet governance.
in the DESIGN of the infrastructure, not the construction or maintenance.
That _IS_ the role of the network operators and the operators forums. For
this to work, however, the operators have to be generally of good will and
cooperative for the greater good. This model is somewhat antithetical to
capitalism because for it to operate efficiently, it requires the long term
good of the community to take precedence over the short-term gains of the
individual or single organization. Capitalism is well optimized for the
short-term gains of the individual or single organization. This is one
of the growing pains that comes from the internet being originated as a
government-sponsored community research project. The design was done
assuming a collection of organizations whose primary motivation was to
cooperate. As we shifted to a privatized internet, that fundamental design
assumption was broken and we have seen some interesting changes as a result.
The fact that it still works at all is somewhat of a miracle. Its continued
stable operation will vitally require the continued good will and cooperation
of the entities playing vital roles. An ISP can be routed-around as damage,
although the larger the provider, the more painful the injury.
If it becomes necessary, significant portions of the internet will route around
Verisign in a similar manner. The difference is that absent ICANN providing for
this, there will be no agreed upon replacement, and, several alternatives will
emerge. The result will be fragmentation of the root, marginalization of ICANN
and a reduction in internet stability.
I believe much of ICANN's previous resistance to dealing with Verisign's abuses
of their role has been fear of the instability that could result. It has appeared
to me to be strategically and tactically very similar to the accomodations made
by the powers in Europe in the late 1930s. (No, I am not comparing Verisign's
actions to those of Hitler, but, the strategy and tactics are a match.)
If ICANN continues to give ground, Verisign's capabilities to commit further
abuses will continue to grow as well.
Agreed. This is a big part of how the Nazis came to power in the 1930's as well.Purely from my experience in journalism, media relations and lobbying, I have to respect the effectiveness of the Verisign corporate folk who largely have been setting the terms of debate, and managing the perception -- or misperception -- of this matter in the business and general press.
I hate using that analogy because it is so emotionally charged and the scope of
the damage was so much more significant, but, again, I am comparing only the
strategy and tactics, not the ideology or the actions.