About inetnum "ownership"

Karl Auer kauer at biplane.com.au
Wed Mar 2 06:12:38 UTC 2016

On Wed, 2016-03-02 at 00:44 -0500, William Herrin wrote:
> Do I have the legal right to exclude others from announcing my block
> of IP addresses to the public Internet routing tables? It's not well
> tested in court but the odds are exceptionally strong that I do.

If I own some property - say a field - the location of that field is
with certain rare exceptions public information. I as the owner cannot
enforce a requirement on you to NOT tell people where my field is. I
can't demand that you NOT build roads past it, or that you NOT put up
signs saying how to get to my field, or even that you NOT tell people
who owns the field. I have the right to exclusive use of the property,
but I have no rights to information about the property, nor any
property rights outside the boundary of the property.

Testing in court the idea that you may not advertise my routes would be
a fascinating exercise. If you falsely advertised them it would be a
different matter.

Has this sort of thing been tested in the courts at all? In any

> Indeed, the whole point of registration is to facilitate
> determination
> of -who- has the exclusive right over -which- blocks of addresses.

The problem is what rights we are talking about. I would say that
practically speaking the only real right here is the right to configure
an address on an interface. But anyone else can send packets to an
address, or advertise to others the direction of travel towards that
network. Malicious activity excluded of course - DoS attacks and so on,
but I think the issues there are different. Also, contractually
regulated relationships are different - if I connect something up to
ISPX and have a contract with ISPX to NOT advertise the route to me,
then ISPX is constrained.

Regards, K.

Karl Auer (kauer at biplane.com.au)

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