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  • From: Milan Sterba < >
  • Date: Wed, 23 Sep 1992 12:01:11 +0200

I would like first to express my full support to the ideas expressed
in the 2nd version of the RIPE position paper. RIPE as a coordination
body of IP networking in Europe has to be completely independent and
thanks to this independence has until now been able to successfully
solve problems occuring in practical european IP networking. The NCC
as the body which executes the day to day tasks related to practical 
european IP coordination is logicaly reporting to RIPE as the IP 
coordination authority in Europe. This seems to me to be the only 
acceptable scheme.

[The rest is a formal implementation of this idea which of course may
be subject to imperfections as any implementations have always been.]

RIPE takes and confirms its independence from the fact that it is directly
financed by european IP providers and major IP network users. These find
it necessary and usefull to meet and to coordinate and so they pay.
Thus RIPE is under direct control of those who run and use the european
IP network.

Ideally the situation of the RIPE NCC should be (and I hope will be) the same.
We need the the NCC for our day to day work, we don't want it to be biased
in any way and we want some quality of service so we pay it. There is no 
other way. No one can own RIPE and no one should own the RIPE NCC. Otherwise
by definition it stops existing and we will have to create one.

Margin :

 Ideally all operational and evolutionary tasks in networking should be
 financed this way. Only major steps which bring a completely new quality
 to the network might require central funding. But we are now much more in a 
 situation of day to day evolution rather than revolution in networking.
 EMPB implementation would be today a technical routine and not a scientific 
 heroic act.

 That's why I do not see any reason for EMPB or NCC to be funded by RARE
 or other central EC sources. We must find a suitable way of funding these
 OPERATIONAL actions directly from users. I wonder whether RARE is able
 to organize this new type of mission oriented fundraising process, which 
 should address not only national members of RARE (which as we know are only
 one per country and thus often do net represent significant parts of user 
 community) but also other commercial and non-commercial communities. 

 In this case RARE would only act as a formal entity allowing money
 gathering for different network operation and network developpment 
 purposes but not deciding directly what these missions should be.

 The objectives should be fixed in a much wider audience representing 
 reasonably all shared infrastructure network users in Europe. Clearly
 with all the today's users of the network we are far beyond the scope
 of academia (the OU plans show it clearly). RIPE is one example of such
 an audience.

 I don't even see any reason for the RARE WG's being funded by RARE. Let RARE 
 be a small coordinating body, which provides a necessary organizational frame-
 work. If users from find a topic worth cooperating and working on
 together, let them pay. That's exactly the way RIPE WG's work, and I dare
 say that's WHY they work. If some work is no more considered as valuable
 the group dies because no one pays and it's OK. That's also exactly the way
 Ebone is born and the reason of its success.

So let's try to find ways of limiting central unaddressed funds and prefering
direct funding to tasks we consider usefull. Let's look round at industrials
who have the same needs, network service providers and let's simply be the
NCC independent. 

Milan Sterba


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