Minutes of the RIPE Cooperation Working Group, RIPE 65
Thursday, 27 September, 11:00 – 12:30
A. Discussion of ITU Issues
Input from RIPE 65 Plenary on Internet Governance & WCIT
- Patrik Fältström, Cooperation WG co-Chair
Patrik summarised some of the issues raised in the Internet Governance and WCIT panel that took place in the RIPE 65 Plenary. He noted the importance of specific words in how we discuss Internet governance issues, including the word "governance" itself. He also noted questions from some network operators as to why they should take an interest in WCIT. He emphasised the need for all Internet stakeholders to engage with the public sector in their home country.
Process towards WCIT from a CEPT perspective
- Anders Jönsson, former Chair of the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT) Committee for ITU Policy (ComITU)
The presentation is available at:
Maria Häll raised the question of who could participate in the various regional ITU preparatory meetings. Anders noted that different organisations have different rules: CEPT allows a number of observer organisations, including RIPE NCC, ETNO, ISOC, ICANN. The Asia Pacific Telecommunity (APT) applies the same principle, though their meetings often have 300-400 representatives, so they are organised differently to CEPT.
Olaf Kolkman, NLnet Labs, noted that while the CEPT states have made no proposals on certain Internet-related issues (as listed in Anders' slides), it is unclear whether the CEPT would push back against proposals on these issues from other regions, or if they may be willing to entertain others' proposals.
Anders replied that while the CEPT negotiating position is based on certain high-level principles, once negotiation starts, all parties need to prioritise what they hope to achieve in the ITRs.
Carsten Schiefner, DENIC, asked about Criterion 1, "As an International Treaty, the ITRs should address high level strategic and policy issues" and to what extent does this make it impossible to make significant changes to the existing ITR text.
Anders reiterated that the CEPT "guiding criteria" is a starting point, but that in the negotiation process there will necessarily need to be compromise.
Patrik Fältström, WG co-Chair, commented on the potential of the revised ITRs to affect the role of the ITU itself.
Anders agreed that the ITRs may have a significant affect on what the ITU does and how it works, as it has in the past been demonstrated by other ITU agreements and international treaties. It is also clear that if you change the definitions of terms like "telecommunications" (to "telecommunications/ICT"), you change the scope of the ITU's work.
Patrik also noted the ETNO proposal, and asked whether CEPT's Criterion 1 would prevent CEPT from supporting it. Anders noted that the CEPT will need to consider both whether the ETNO proposal raises issues that should be discussed in some forum, and whether it is appropriate for such issues to be addressed via the ITRs.
Tahar Schaa, Cassini Consulting GmbH, noted that the Internet was built by private companies in a transparent manner, and that many in the Internet community do not see any justification for limiting transparency in Member States' Internet governance discussions.
Anders said that CEPT has aimed to limit their discussions to issues between Member States, rather than those issues that directly affect individuals. Anders also directed people to a recent discussion held at the UN in New York between several high level government and ITU
representatives [available at http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/25722111]
Paul Rendek, RIPE NCC, thanked Anders for his role in inviting RIPE NCC and other industry partners to take part in the CEPT Com-ITU.
What is happening re WCIT: Definitions of Operating Agencies, Telecommunication etc.
- Phil Rushton, BT
Phil presented the definitions being discussed in WCIT discussions, and noted the significance of changing these definitions or trying to apply them to contemporary technologies. Some of the definitions currently being examined in preparatory meetings are "Recognised Operating Agency" (which some are pushing to change to "Operating Agency") and "telecommunication" (which may be changed to "telecommunication/ICT", and may be expanded to include all "processing" of communications).
Looking ahead to WTPF
- Cathy Handley, ARIN
Cathy discussed the ITU World Telecommunication Policy Forum, which will take place in May 2013. The sole input document is a Secretary-General's report, which will reflect input from an Informal Experts Group (IEG), of which Cathy and APNIC Director General Paul Wilson are members. The Number Resource Organization (NRO, representing the five RIRs) has submitted a document correcting some confusion about IP addressing issues. Cathy noted that the IEG is a non-decisional group, but that non-ITU members can follow and contribute to it via community
Olaf Kolkman, NLnet Labs, noted that the potential impact of the WTPF (and other ITU events) remains quite vague. Cathy committed to send some additional information to the Cooperation WG list.
Maria Häll, WG co-Chair, asked about any connection between WTPF, WCIT and the ITRs. Cathy noted that the WTPF is part of a much larger chain of events (including the World Telecommunication Development Conference and Plenipotentiary Conference, both in 2014). The WTPF, however, is one of the few forums where non-members can participate, and is therefore an important opportunity.
Andrew Sullivan, Dyn, Inc.,commented on whether Internet technical community contributions would even be included in the Secretary-General's report.
Dmitry Burkov, RIPE NCC Executive Board, questioned how some of the proposed changes to the ITRs could be implemented in reality. He noted that the US did not even ratify the 1988 ITRs, and for the revised ITRs to have a significant impact they would need to be ratified and integrated into national legislation in all ITU Member States.
Maria Häll said that the language and method of implementation would be decided as part of the negotiation process.
Dmitry replied that he doesn't see any real consequences coming out of this work.
Maria thanked Cathy and Paul Wilson for their work in the WTPF Informal Experts Group.
Updates from Regional ITU groups (including Arab States)
- Paul Rendek, RIPE NCC
Paul gave an update on some of the other regional preparations going on, including RIPE NCC's participation in CEPT, and RIPE NCC's cooperation with AFRINIC to contribute to the Arab Group. He noted that a significant issue is the breadth of the language being used, and that the RIRs will have a strong delegation going to Dubai for WCIT-12.
Wout de Natris commented on the recent Council of Europe Octopus meeting on cybercrime, and the Russian delegation's statement that they would not sign the Budapest Convention on cybercrime, but would instead rely on the ITU.
Dmitry Burkov later commented that, in relation to the Budapest Convention, the Russian opposition was based on quite specific issues with the Convention that affect national sovereignty.
Meredith Whittaker, Google, commented that the Internet technical community is not defining the potential threats clearly enough, and people need to understand what is at stake. She noted that the pushback to SOPA/PIPA legislation in the US was the result of effectively engaging and educating Internet users.
Rob Blokzijl, RIPE Chair, said that half of the current ITRs list government reservations, and suggested that the contemporary environment may result in a treaty with many more reservations.
Maria Häll commented that the status of the ITRs (mandatory or optional) is one item for negotiation.
Fahad AlShirawi, RIPE NCC Executive Board, said that most governments are driven by a fear of something they have no control over, and need to be reminded of the benefits that the Internet in its open form has brought them.
B. Modern Paradigm for Global Standards Development
- Andrei Robachevsky, ISOC
The presentation is available at:
Andrei gave an overview of the OpenStand project, which is dedicated to promoting a jointly developed and proven set of principles that establish The Modern Paradigm for Standards.
Maria Häll asked if the ITU had endorsed the OpenStand principles.
Andrei replied they have not at this stage, and that standards organisations that wish to sign on should provide a statement of how they live up to these ideals.
C. Building on the Success of the IGF
- Paul Rendek, RIPE NCC
The presentation is available at:
Paul Rendek gave an overview of the planning underway for the global Internet Governance Forum, which will take place in Baku in November 2012, and the first Arab IGF, which will take place in Kuwait in October 2012.
Steve Nash, Arbor Networks, noted that the Internet technical community cannot pretend that governments are going to go away, and that they need to continue to find ways to allow governments to take an active interest in Internet governance. He noted that while the ITU may not be the ideal vehicle for government involvement, there may need to be new international organisations developed.