Re: Last Call: Modern Global Standards Paradigm

SM <> Sat, 11 August 2012 10:04 UTC

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Date: Sat, 11 Aug 2012 02:35:34 -0700
To: Eric Burger <>, Phillip Hallam-Baker <>
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Subject: Re: Last Call: Modern Global Standards Paradigm
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At 15:52 10-08-2012, Eric Burger wrote:
>that the ITU-T wants to write Internet standards. The proposal being 
>put forth is that ONLY ITU-T standards will be the *legal* standards 
>accepted by signatory nations.

Phillip posted the following comment previously:

   "The strength of the IETF negotiating position comes from the fact that
    we cannot dictate terms to anyone. The consensus that matters is not
    just consensus among the people developing the specification document
    but consensus among the people who are expected to act on it."

If one accepts the above principle signatory nations would still use 
some IETF standards for systems and equipment and push back on 
competing standards proposed within another organization.  The 
sweetener in what was proposed is that developing nations would be 
provided with assistance to evaluate product compliance.

A significant number of these nations do not understand what is the 
IETF and how it works.  This does not affect the IETF as long as 
there isn't an alternative standard developed within an organization 
which these nations consider as reputable.

>The difference here is some countries may take their ITR obligations 
>literally and ban products that use non-ITU protocols. Could one go 
>to jail for using TCP/IP or HTTP? That has an admittedly small, but 
>not insignificant possibility of happening. Worse yet,

It is highly unlikely that someone would be sent to jail for using 
the protocols mentioned above.

>  having treaties that obligates countries to ban non-ITU protocols 
> does virtually guarantee a balkanization of the Internet into open 
> and free networking and controlled and censored networking.

Some of issues which the organization seeks to address are:

  - cybercrime

  - spam

It has been mentioned within the IETF that the walled garden service 
model simplifies a number of issues.  I don't think that some nations 
would consider network control to solve these issues as censored 
networking.  Whether these issues could be solved without a strong 
regulatory regime is another question.

At 20:09 10-08-2012, Phillip Hallam-Baker wrote:
>The real problem is that many of the smaller countries have lost tax
>revenue that used to be collected on international telephone calls and

I would describe it as a motivation to support a change which might 
bring in more revenue for these countries.  The end user will get 
fleeced but that's just a matter of detail.

>There is a big difference between aspirational and necessary goals.
>The SCO countries aspirational goal is control of the net. Their
>necessary goal is to ensure that undue US influence over Internet
>governance might lead policy makers to believe that they could impose
>a digital blockade. Now I am pretty sure that the technology does not

That debate has been going on for years.

>allow them to do that but what really matters is what the policy
>makers believe and there are some individuals who could well be in
>very senior policy making positions who clearly think it does.