why IPv6 isn't ready for prime time, SMTP edition

Matthew Petach mpetach at netflight.com
Sun Mar 30 01:05:39 UTC 2014

On Wed, Mar 26, 2014 at 9:59 AM, John Levine <johnl at iecc.com> wrote:

> >That way?  Make e-mail cost; have e-postage.
> Gee, I wondered how long it would take for this famous bad idea to
> reappear.
> I wrote a white paper ten years ago explaining why e-postage is a
> bad idea, and there is no way to make it work.  Nothing of any
> importance has changed since then.
> http://www.taugh.com/epostage.pdf
> R's,
> John
> PS: Yes, I've heard of Bitcoins.
Good lord.  I love your page about how a micropayment handling system
would have to be so immense it couldn't possibly be built, because
otherwise someone would have built one by now.

The numbers you list in your argument against a micropayment
system being able to function are a fraction of the number of
transactions Facebook deals with in updating newsfeeds for
the billion+ users on their system.[0]  You're postulating
needing something 100x the size of the credit card processing
system, which does 100,000,000 transactions/day.  Facebook's
presentation talks about doing billions *per second*, which if I
do the math right, puts it conservatively at almost 900,000x
the scale of the credit card processing system; certainly well
beyond the threshold of what you considered necessary to
handle email micropayment transactions.

I suspect your notion of "Creating a transaction system large
enough for e-postage would be prohibitively expensive."
is no longer true.



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