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RIPE NCC Annual General Meeting, October 15th 1998

Publication date:
26 Nov 1998
  • Alissar Nabali
PDF (29.6 KB)


Traditionally these minutes reflect the detailed discussions for the benefit of those unable to attend the meeting. Those interested in a very short summary may want to refer to the Appendix listing the decisions.

List of Participants RIPE NCC AGM 1998

1 Carsten Schiefner TCP/IP GmbH
2 Christian Carstensen dev/consulting GmbH
3 Daniel Karrenberg RIPE NCC
4 Darko Bulat d.o.o.
5 Dave Morton Cybernet AG
6 Denesh Bhabuta Demon Internet Limited
7 Erik Lohr IBM Global Services
8 Francesco Pugliese WIND Telecomunicazioni S.p.A.
9 Frode Greisen Ebone Inc.
10 Hans Niklasson Tele2 / SWIPnet
11 Hans Petter Holen SOL System AS
12 Ingo Luetkebohle dev/consulting GmbH
13 Irena Bacak d.o.o.
14 James Aldridge EUnet Communications ServicesBV
15 John Crain RIPE NCC
16 Kees Neggers SURFnet b.v.
17 Kees van Draanen RIPE NCC
18 Keith Mitchell LINX
19 Krume Dolnenec Open Society Institute Macedonia
20 Lajos Balint HUNGARNET
21 Luca dell'Agnello INFN CNAF
22 Michael Froehlich ECRC Network Services GmbH
23 Mike Norris HEAnet Limited
24 Mirjam Kuehne RIPE NCC
25 Ouedraogo Idrissa ONATEL
26 Pontus Ekman AB
27 Rainer Lillge IS Internet Services GmbH & CO
28 Rob Bron IBM Global Services
29 Siegfried Langenbach Computer Service Langenbach
30 Stephen Burley UUNET WorldCom
31 Tom Forster mbt Online KG
32 Wilfried Woeber Vienna University - ACOnet
33 Wim Vink RIPE NCC Board Member
34 Winfried Motzkus dev/consulting GmbH
35 Yiannos Pitas University of Cyprus

RIPE NCC Legal Representatives:
Joyce Westerop
Florence Van Rossum

Agenda AGM 1998

1. Welcome, Preliminaries, Fixing of Agenda
2. Operational Report by NCC Management
3. Interim Financial Report
4. Postponing 1999 General Meeting
5. Activity Plan and Budget for 1999
6. Charging Scheme
7. Report from the Executive Board
8. Board Elections

1.Welcome, Preliminaries, Fixing of Agenda

Keith Mitchell, chairman of the RIPE NCC executive Board, and as such statutory chair of the meeting, welcomed all attendees and introduced the Executive Board members. The Chair proposed to review the proposed agenda and asked participants to propose amendments or query agenda items. No amendments or questions were raised and the agenda was fixed.

2.Operational Report by RIPE NCC Management

Mirjam Kuehne, RIPE NCC Head of External Services, provided an overview of operations and services covering period October 1997 through to October 1998.

Discussions from the presentation were as follows:

Yiannos Pitas asked if there would be a Web interface for the reverse ( delegation.

Daniel Karrenberg answered that in accordance with input from the RIPE local-IR working group the first Web interface will be for the IP address space request form. The first step of this will be a form that helps to generate a correct request form which will then be sent to the NCC via e-mail in the normal way. The form will help with syntax checking the input. Further steps will be to allow direct submissions of requests from web forms. This needs study of authorisation and authentication methods.

Wilfried Woeber stated that the RIPE NCC is not in the business of directly dealing with the DNS registration, and that the RIPE NCC is not the authority responsible for DNS name registration.

Siegfried Langenbach asked about the hardware type used to run the current RIPE Database.

Daniel Karrenberg replied stating that the hardware equipment used is a Sun Enterprise 450 multiprocessor. One of the specifications of the re-implementation of the RIPE Database is that it should be threaded, the main reason being that the NCC expects to have a PGP key based authentication in the near future i.e. we have to crunch numbers which suggests threading and a multi-processor platform. This is remarkably similar to requirements for the re-implementation of BIND.

3.Interim Financial Report

As the RIPE NCC association is currently in its first year of operation, no formal audited financial report was available yet. An informal report about the financial status including current estimates for the 1998 results was presented by the Financial Controller Kees van Draanen.

Stephen Burley asked what provisions have been made from contributions towards the operating costs of the IANA in 1998. Daniel Karrenberg stated that 40 kECU has been allocated in the budget for 1998, however, the funds have not been requested and thus have not been issued to the IANA to date. He also stated that the 1999 budget as proposed contains a provision of 150 kECU for the RIPE NCC contribution towards IANA operating costs.

4.Postponing 1999 General Meeting

According to article 14.2 of the statutes, a general meeting must be held to approve the annual report within the first 6 months after the conclusion of the financial year unless the general meeting extends this period. Traditionally, the RIPE NCC has held meetings in the autumn to discuss the activity plan and budget for the following year and as a result agrees on a charging scheme for that period. As there are no special circumstances foreseen with regards to financial issues, two general meetings were seen as excessive. The RIPE NCC Executive Board proposed the following resolution:

The general meeting decides to extend the period for adoption of the annual report 1998 as mentioned in article 14.2 of the statutes to 15 November 1999. The board shall send the annual report to the members as soon as the books have been audited and the final report of the auditors has been received."

The motion was passed unanimously.

5.Activity Plan and Budget for 1999

The RIPE NCC Activities & Expenditure 1999 Document can be found on the RIPE NCC Web site.

Daniel Karrenberg provided a short overview of the RIPE NCC Activities & Expenditures 1999 document highlighting the changes for this year's activities, and the budget for 1999. The NCC expects a growth of 33% in the number of registries for 1999. The RIPE NCC is planning to increase focus on reliability and quality.

The meeting Chair announced that the general meeting unanimously adopted the RIPE NCC Activity Plan and Budget for the 1999 operation period.

Discussions resulting from the presentation were as follows:

Kees Neggers asked if the revised RIPE Database will be year 2000 compliant? Daniel Karrenberg answered that this was one of the requirements.

Yiannos Pitas inquired whether there are added costs for y2000 checks in the 1999 budget? Daniel Karrenberg replied no, this is part of general software maintenance budget line. The software we are using is either developed and maintained in-house or bought as a commodity including maintenance and updates. We use Unix as an operating system for most purposes.

Lajos Balint asked where the 33% percent growth originates from? Daniel Karrenberg: It comes from the growth of membership,from the constant number of one new member registry per calendar day which we have observed for more than 18 months now. We also expect to close a number of registries in Q4/98 because they will have reached the final stage of our debt collecting procedure. This is going to affect a maximum of 125 registries.

Yiannos Pitas asked if we take address space back when closing? Daniel Karrenberg answered only unassigned (i.e. unused) address space, we don't want to hurt the end users. The last stage is to notify them, that their membership has ceased and that means they cannot assign address space any more. All unassigned address space that has been allocated by RIPE NCC will revert to the RIPE NCC.

A question was raised about the relatively high attrition rate in the U.K: do you see the same effect on other countries? Daniel Karrenberg commented that this may be attrition or may be payment morale. It is hard for the NCC to distinguish at this point. Keith Mitchell added that NOMINET is also observing debtors problems. Daniel Karrenberg said the question rephrased is: "Why are we confident to get 365 new members in 1999?" It's because he has been signing a contract every day for 2 years. He does not see this changing nor any reason to change our estimate to higher or lower. We will be in trouble if we estimate lower, but if we estimate too high and we see that during the year its actually lowering, we can easily correct by slowing the growth of the NCC. As long as one is growing then he is in a comfortable position to adjust.

At this point the motion "The general meeting adopts the activity plan and budget for 1999." was passed unanimously.

6.Charging Scheme:

Daniel Karrenberg presented the proposed 1999 Charging Scheme to the participants. The charging scheme is available as document ripe-187

Mike Norris inquired about what happens with registries who change size category who have been voluntary with the higher category last year? Daniel Karrenberg replied that the calculation is based on the minimum size category expected on November 1st 1998. We have not seen many upgrades over the last year, so I think this is a realistic expectation. A certain paradigm shift here in this sense is that the NCC is regarded more as a service organization and not so much as was in the past as a club for which you voluntary want to give a bigger contribution. We have budgeted accordingly by assuming that no-body upgrades.

Question by Lajos Balint: "Were there any comments to the substance of the documents as published?" Daniel Karrenberg answered that he had received no substantive comments.

Siegfried Langenbach: There were different numbers in the presentation: 33% growth in membership, 37% growth in operating expenditure, 8% growth in membership fees. How is this determined? Daniel Karrenberg: This is a multi-step process: The basis is an estimation of membership growth as discussed earlier. Then operating expenditure is determined by allocating resources to different activities based on the requirements and an estimate of growth in demand. Then we devise a fee structure that meets the operating costs. There are a number of factors influencing this: one is inflation, another is that in the past we had relatively more income from the start-up fees because we were relatively growing more.

Question: "Is it legal for the members to pass the cost of RIPE NCC to their customers?" Answer: Obviously the RIPE NCC membership fees are a part of the costs for a member to do business. It is outside the scope of the NCC to determine how these costs are recovered. However it is not allowed to charge for address space per se, while it is OK to charge for registration services. Document ripe-161 explains this.

Darko Bulat stated that, some organizations sell address space. Mirjam Kuehne commented that if the RIPE NCC hears about this it will investigate and take the necessary action.

The board proposes to continue the successful charging scheme used over the last years.

The resolution "The general meeting decides to continue using the current charging scheme and adopted the 1999 fee schedule." was passed unanimously.

7.Report from the Executive Board

Keith Mitchell reported verbally on the work of the board to date, and recent developments on the new IANA position of the RIPE NCC with regards to the new IANA

The formal board composition is that Wim Vink is treasurer and Wilfried Woeber the secretary.
Much of the Board's initial effort was on the incorporation of RIPE NCC Association as a legal entity, both in terms of setting the Association and setting up the personnel fund. The work was completed on schedule before the 31st of December 97, and the Board is grateful to Paul Ridley who did much of this work and has since left the NCC. The RIPE NCC now enjoys status and recognition of an independent, stable and representative legal entity.
The bad debt situation needed and needs work, and as a result of advice provided by the board, additional staff dedicated to resolving it have been appointed and progress made.
The Board has devoted attention to the question of the relationship between RIPE NCC, CENTR and RIPE. Although they work closely together they are separate bodies, and there is a lot of confusion in how they are perceived. Both are working with the Board to communicate their relationship to the Internet community and to the outside world.
The biggest area of Board activity has been in the internet governance/administration debate over the structure of the new IANA

One of the issues for the RIPE NCC community is that this debate has been mainly driven by naming interests, particularly by generic top level domain stake-holders, and the private monopoly of NSI.

NSI's contract with the US government expired a week ago, and much of the new IANA process has been driven by concerns over NSI becoming a de-facto private monopoly after this.

A lot of interests and constituencies that were having concerns about the process, like the intellectual property lobby, internet trade Associations, various other bodies, have wanted to have their say, and we have had to deal with many new bodies in discussions.

There was RIPE and RIPE NCC representation at all the major meetings that were held as a result of the US Government White Paper, in particular the INET98 Conference in Geneva and the European Commission's Panel of Participants' meeting in Brussels. We deliberately avoided the Washington IFWP meeting because we did not want to be associated with bias towards NSI that was perceived to be an element of that meeting.

One of the main concerns that we have is the whole process being driven because of the naming element, despite IANA having existing responsibilities not just in terms of being root of the name space and the number space, but also of being source of protocol identifiers and editing Internet Standards documents.

It is very clear to us that there was a danger of the organizations that run the number space being completely crowded out and a lot of the work that we had to do was to make people realize that RIPE NCC is here, it represents a large number of Internet registries, and that we are here to stay, we are not to be crowded out.

As of early September, we got optimistic when version 3 of the IANA bylaws, which was drafted after all the discussions and forums, appeared to address our concerns. There were then closed negotiations between NSI, IANA and the US government, shortly before the RIPE31 meeting in Edinburgh.

At that point came version 4 of the bylaws which we were very concerned about. The changes from version 3 we were most concerned about included the fact that the new IANA should be "blank check" bound by any future agreement between the USA government and NSI.

On the basis of this and one or 2 other provisions that we were not happy about, we made quite strong statements effectively and so did RIPE and RIPE CENTR. Various other bodies made representations - the result of these are version 5 of the IANA bylaws. We are in general happy with these but there are some outstanding open issues.

It was surprising to see the names proposed for the 9 interim "at-large" members of the new IANA board as they are not on the whole well-known, only 2 are related to the Internet and 3 from Europe. It may be intentional to take people that are not involved in previous discussions. Version 5 of the bylaws allocates 3 seats to each Supporting Organisation out of a total of 19. Another area of contention is whether the new IANA and/or its supporting organisations should be required to be membership organisations open to anyone.

In summary Version 5 is relatively sensible proposal, and more work is needed together with other RIR's to set up the Address Supporting Organization. We need to think about who from Europe should be on the ASO board.

8.Board Elections

The terms of Wim Vink and Wilfried Woeber expire on November 12th 1998. The general meeting may elect two executive board members to succeed them. Candidates can be nominated according to article 7.2 of the RIPE NCC statutes. Frode Greisen asked formally whether article 16 of the statutes was applied carefully when preparing the voting slips, especially 16.4 and 16.5. Keith Mitchell assured him that this has been applied.

Dave Morton, Mike Norris, Wim Vink and Wilfried Woeber were nominated. In the first seat voting (Slip A), Mike Norris received 19 votes , Dave Morton 7 , Wim Vink 5, and Wilfried Woeber 7. A second vote was taken as the statutes require a majority of votes cast for election (Art 17.4). In the second round (Slip B), Mike Norris received 26, Dave Morton 5, and Wilfried Woeber 7.

Mike Norris was elected to the board.

The remaining candidates decided to run for the second seat. In the first vote ( Slip C) Dave Morton received 7, Wim Vink 14 and Wilfied Woeber 17.

In the second round of voting (Slip D) Dave Morton received 4, Wim Vink received 21 and Wilfried Woeber received 13.

Wim Vink was elected to the board.

The meeting unanimously thanked Wilfried Woeber for his service on the board and expressed the hope that his contributions will continue as the RIPE DB WG chairperson. Keith Mitchell thanked the members for the confidence in the EB the Executive Board for their commitment and good work.


With no further business to discuss, the meeting was formally closed.

APPENDIX: Decisions of the Meeting

The general meeting decides to extend the period for adoption of the annual report 1998 as mentioned in article 14.2 of the statutes to 15 November 1999. The board shall send the annual report to the members as soon as the books have been audited and the final report of the auditors has been received."

The general meeting adopts the activity plan and budget for 1999 (ripe-186).

The general meeting decides to continue using the current charging scheme and adopted the 1999 ( ripe-187 ) fee schedule.

Executive Board Elections:

Mike Norris was elected to the board.

Wim Vink was elected to the board.