Re: [arch-d] A Public Option for the Core

Joseph Touch <> Sun, 16 August 2020 01:48 UTC

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From: Joseph Touch <>
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Date: Sat, 15 Aug 2020 18:48:18 -0700
Cc: Scott Shenker <>,
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To: Brian E Carpenter <>
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Subject: Re: [arch-d] A Public Option for the Core
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> On Aug 15, 2020, at 5:02 PM, Brian E Carpenter <> wrote:
> On 13-Aug-20 01:19, Scott Shenker wrote:
>>> On Aug 11, 2020, at 3:53 PM, Brian E Carpenter < <>> wrote:
>>> (Bcc to the IETF list and Cc to the architecture-discuss list)
>>> Thanks for circulating this.
>>> On 12-Aug-20 06:50, Lars Eggert wrote:
>>>> Hi,
>>>> Scott Shenker et al. just presented a pretty thought-provoking "public option" for the Internet's core backbone at SIGCOMM: <>
>>> Hmm.
>>> "The technical Internet community has long embraced the notion
>>> that the Internet should be application-neutral; that notion later
>>> became known as network neutrality (a term coined in [57])."

It’s presumptive at best to claim anything in one voice about any community; this one perhaps moreso (esp. on the main list recently)...

>>> I dispute that assertion. "Network neutrality" is a slippery term,
>>> but certainly there is antipathy between some interpretations of it
>>> and RFC2474 and other QoS technologies.
>> We did not mean to imply that the two are notions are identical, and indeed we discuss the no-QoS interpretation of network neutrality later in the paper. However, I think it is undeniable that conceptually the notion of network neutrality is the descendant of application-neutrality, which was the intent of this sentence. I apologize if our writing was unclear.
> I'd go a bit further. We don't want application-type neutrality, because (e.g.) video streams require different service characteristics from (e.g.) software update distribution.

I agree only that there are many interpretations of the term, many at odds with each other.

Again, “we” is hard to define, but it certainly doesn’t include me...

> What we want is application-service-provider neutrality, so that streaming from CarpenterTube gets the same service as streaming from ShenkerTube.

*I* want apps to be able to get different service from the network and to pay differently for them if needed, but *never* to have the network infer or enforce that mapping. Just like the USPS, variable fee for variable service, but there’s absolutely no reason the price of a letter should be determined by who wrote it or what it says. If a user wants to run software update over low-latency, slightly lossy service, that’s their decision; same for someone who wants to stream over best-effort.

Providers that do otherwise only force us to run a whole Internet *inside* a single port number - e.g., as is starting with the merging of DNS and HTTP over 443.