[At-Large] US v John Doe 1 & Others [Defendants]

Karl Auerbach karl at cavebear.com
Sat Nov 26 20:03:49 UTC 2011

On 11/26/2011 11:20 AM, Salanieta T. Tamanikaiwaimaro wrote:

> In this instance, are "IP addresses property"?

That is a somewhat dangerous question to ask.

It's not dangerous because you ask it, but rather because the word
"property" has so many cultural, social, and emotional connotations that
get in the way of clearly thinking about things.

It is better to ask what specific rights and obligations have been
created in the RIRs by IANA allocations to each RIR and, in turn, to ask
what other specific rights and obligations have been created in the RIR
and address block recipient.

Those rights and obligations may arise from an agreement, but that does
not make them any less rights and obligations that could be enforced.

The RIRs generally follow a mantra that all they do is enter numbers
into books of records, that the RIRs have nothing to do with the
routability of packets on the net to computer interfaces that bear those

Something that is mentioned in the IGP blog entry - is that the RIRs
might end up becoming a kind of certificate authority that locks the
routing systems of the net - at least the BGP based routing systems -
into some sort of overarching control hierarchy.

That means that this order may be one of the early yellow bricks on a
road that leads to yet another set of levers and knobs that can be
turned to turn the internet from a vehicle for open interconnection into
a vehicle only for approved interconnection.  The implications of that
for internet governance are large.

One good thing about these events is that they are being overseen by a
court that appears to have some degree of technical capacity to
appreciate the nature of what it is doing.


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