owners of those services will simply go to ISPs and say "route
this, or I'll find someone else who will".
I'm actually not as convinced of this. Yes, they can get routing from
their ISP, and the ISP will be happy to sell it to them. Can they get
it from their ISP's upstream, and from that ISP's downstreams? To
make it into PI space in the usual sense of the word, I think they
wind up writing a contract with every ISP in the world that they care
Paul Wilson and Geoff Huston wrote an article a while back entitled
(http://www.potaroo.net/ispcol/2005-04/compete.html) that talked about
competion on policy resulting in policy dilution. While the thrust of
the proposal they were responding to was different, there are some
parallels. I.e., that when you get people entities on policy, and the
incentives favor "increase revenue" rather than "Good of the Internet"
the bottom line, lowest common denominator tends to win - even to the
detriment of common sense.
A key point here is that when it comes to sales and marketing, it's
problematic when your competitor says "we offer X," if you yourself
don't. Given the commodity nature of ISP service, it doesn't take long
before everyone is offering similar terms, even if there are
technically bad implications (they won't kick in until next quarter
anyway). There is often a rather large disconnect between what the
operators in the trenches think is a Good Idea and what the Sales &
Marketing side of an organization think is necessary to remain
profitable (or increase market share, etc.).
And please note, I'm channeling what I have heard, from both speakers
and from hallway chatter at RIR meetings, and this is from people that
have been around a long time and have been (or still are) in the
trenches operating networks, so to speak. So this is more than just a
The concern is that pretty soon, everyone will route ULAs because they
feel like they are at a competitive disadvantage if others are doing
so and they are not. And that would a huge mess.
And what if only _some_ of the ISPs routed them? We'd still have a
mess, because now we'd have a Balkanized Internet, where univeral
connectivity wasn't the norm anymore.
I think ULAs will exceed the bounds of a single administration, but
they will do so on the basis of bilateral contract, not general routing.
I've made that argument in the past too, but there are others who just
don't think it is that simple or will end there.
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