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Re: On another topic ... :-)

  • From: Sean Donelan
  • Date: Thu Jul 11 03:46:58 1996

>Have you fully thought out what the implications are of this?
>Currently the internet is not regulated. Any internet analogy of something
>coming out of the FCC generally would require the internet to be
>regulated.. which is something that should be though long and hard about
>before jumping the gun..

The 'Internet' has been transitioning for 20 years from being owned and
operated by the US government through several phases to a relatively
deregulated international internetwork.  But we're not completely
free yet.

What's this got to do with NANOG?
 
Each section of the NSF 93-52 solicitation included an item similar
to this:
>     o    Propose and establish procedures to work with personnel
>          from other NAP Managers (if any), the RA, the vBNS
>          Provider, and regional and other attached networks to
>          resolve problems and to support end-to-end connectivity
>          and quality of service for network users

Which is pretty cool because it gives us the US government's blessing to
sit down with NAP managers, the RA, the vBNS, and most importantly,
our competitors to do some things cooperatively.  Gosh, it sounds like
a NANOG meeting.  On the other hand, the NAP managers, RA, vBNS have
to report back to the US government how well they've completed their
task, including how the procedures to resolve problems and support
end-to-end connectivity and quality of service for network users work.

And what does that have to do with the FCC?

In the telephony world, the Network Operators Forum serves a similar
function, and gets a similar blessing.  I'm not suggesting the anyone
Internet wants FCC regulations, but it can be instructive to look how
other industries handled similar problems.

The North American Electric Reliability Council <http://www.nerc.com/>
(voluntarily formed after the 1967 northeast blackout) and the Alliance
for Telephone Industry Solutions <http://www.atis.org/> had several
battles between its members over problems which would sound familar (though
not identical) to the typical NANOG meeting.  Megawatts or gigabits,
the management of dynamic interconnected networks is a challenge
for everyone.

Instead of reinventing the wheel, we could do a little research and
maybe steal some of their ideas.  I know the Internet has its own culture,
and its own way of doing things.  But the net has never been shy about
taking good ideas that work, irregardless of their source.  On the
other hand, if NOF found some ideas don't work, we might avoid the
ratholes they ran into.

For example, I was a bit surprised to find the industry groups often
favored greater reporting of outages than the government wanted. 
It seems the US government was worried reporting some outage information
would give hints to the Soviets where to aim their missles to cause
maximum disruption.

And even though the FCC permits companies to report outages confidentially,
most companies report the information publicly.  Which gives me hope
some of these same communication companies, different divisions, will
participate in an Internet equivalent.  One suggestion I found from
reading the minutes of the eletric industry meetings, we might change
the term from "outage" to "network disturbance."  Yes, its an euphemism,
like calling a nuclear reactor meltdown an "event."

PS, Mr. Metcalfe. Reports for the old reliable telephone system show
over the course of a year, a daily average of 30,000 US telephone customers
are out of service for five hours.
-- 
Sean Donelan, Data Research Associates, Inc, St. Louis, MO
  Affiliation given for identification not representation

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