What's really needed is a routing slot market

Eliot Lear lear at cisco.com
Wed Feb 9 00:42:09 CST 2011


Hi everyone,

Responding to multiple messages here:

On 2/6/11 10:16 PM, John Levine wrote:
>>> What's really needed is seperate the routing slot market from the
>>> address allocation market.
>> Bingo! In fact, having an efficient market for obtaining routing of a
>> given prefix, combined with IPv6 vast identifier space, could
>> actually satisfy the primary goals that we hold for a long-term
>> scalable address architecture, and enable doing it in a highly
>> distributed, automatable fashion

Indeed as John Curran may recall, there was a presentation at either the
BGPD/CIDRD or ALE working group at an IETF meeting by a gentleman from
Bell Labs on the idea of a routing slot market, back about 15 years
ago.  I thought it was a great presentation, but a number of factors
came into play, and chief amongst them was that it would require
substantial "cooperation" amongst service providers to refuse to carry
customer routes, and that just wasn't happening.  Have times changed
since then?
> This is not unlike the oft made comment that if you could just charge
> a fraction of a cent for every mail message, there would be no spam
> problem.  They're both bad ideas that just won't go away.
>
> Here's some thought experiments:
>
> 1) You get a note from the owner of jidaw.com, a large ISP in Nigeria,
> telling you that they have two defaultless routers so they'd like a
> share of the route fees.  Due to the well known fraud problem in
> Nigeria, please pay them into the company's account in the Channel
> Islands.  What do you do?  (Helpful hint: there are plenty of
> legitimate reasons for non-residents to have accounts in the Channel
> Islands.  I have a few.)
>
> 2) Google says here's our routes, we won't be paying anything.  What
> do you do?
>
> 2a) If you insist no pay, no route, what do you tell your users when
> they call and complain?
>
> 2b) If you make a special case for Google, what do you do when Yahoo,
> AOL, and Baidu do the same thing?
>
> I can imagine some technical backpressure, particularly against networks
> that don't aggregate their routes, but money?  Forget about it, unless
> perhaps you want to mix them into the peering/transit negotiations.

These are great questions.  Approaches that due away with this scarcity
seem more feasible.

Eliot




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