Re: Internet 2020 Goals

"Carlos M. Martinez" <> Mon, 26 May 2014 19:17 UTC

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Date: Mon, 26 May 2014 16:17:14 -0300
From: "Carlos M. Martinez" <>
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Subject: Re: Internet 2020 Goals
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I agree with almost everything you wrote, and I think we definitely need
something akin to a corporate 'vision' but for the Internet.

What is our utopia? What do we want the Internet to look like and how do
we want it to work in 5, 10, 15 and 20 years ?

I also agree that some of these goals might not be IETF-related, but I
think we (as the IETF we) can set a vision of what we would like the
Internet to be.



On 5/15/14, 1:57 PM, Phillip Hallam-Baker wrote:
> While we frequently see complaints about where the Internet is headed
> on this list and sometimes see proposals to change that direction we
> seem to rarely consider what that direction should be.
> The only time we have done that recently at a high level has been in
> response to the Snowden disclosures. And we will probably revisit that
> in the near future when Greenwald drops the final installment of the
> documents which is who is being targeted.
> Privacy is one important goal that we want to achieve. But it isn't
> the only goal that I think is important. And I don't think we will
> make much progress even on Privacy unless there is some sort of
> deadline.
> Hence the need for Internet 2020. We have six years to go before 2020
> which is sufficient time to do useful development and deployment. It
> might even be possible to do research, development and deployment in
> that time frame.
> Right now we have a lot of governments that are trying to get involved
> in the governance of the Internet. Often without any understanding of
> what it is or why it is built the way it is. A risk we face is that if
> we do not define what our goals are, others will do that for us.
> Another risk we face, one that I think is unfortunately realized
> rather often here is that if we don't state our goals, we can't make
> common cause with others who have the same set of goals. Most IETF
> participants would probably agree with most of what emerged as
> consensus at Netmundial. But most IETF-ers still regard the initiative
> as a threat rather than an opportunity.
> If we set concrete goals and realistic deadlines then there is a
> probability that at least some policy makers and providers of research
> funds will factor those goals and deadlines into their own decision
> making processes. This is how the policymakers themselves work. The EU
> did this when they set 1992 as the date for 'completion' of the single
> market. Now as everyone who is familiar with the issue knows, 1992 was
> neither the start or the end of that process. But setting that date
> did act as a forcing function that drove the process from 20% to 90%
> complete.
> So what are the goals that we might reasonably hope to achieve by 2020?
> By goals I mean providing capabilities that meet user requirements,
> not the deployment of specific technologies. So I don't see deployment
> of IPv6 as the type of high level goal we should start with.
> Deployment IPv6 is not an end in itself, deployment of IPv6 is merely
> a means to the end goal of ensuring that everyone can get Internet
> service. And with a population of 7 billion we obviously need more
> than 4 billion IP addresses.
> So IPv6 is really just one technology that is serving the high level
> goal of Access: The Internet is for everyone. But achieving the access
> goal means much more than deployment of IPv6.
> Returning to the policy maker interface. One of the problems with IPv6
> deployment today is that the deadlines have always been fungible. Even
> now with the IPv4 address space exhausted, IPv6 is far from
> ubiquitous.
> The three high level goals I see are:
> 1) Security: All Internet protocols should provide confidentiality and
> integrity by default.
> 2) Access: The Internet is for everyone and everyone should be able to
> use it regardless of their geographic location or political
> interference.
> 3) Autonomy: [Here I need a concise definition]
> The third goal is the hardest to define but probably the most
> important. One of the main reasons that the Web is designed the way it
> is and why it became so popular was that it gave individual users
> control.
> At the time the Web was invented, the IT infrastructure at CERN was
> centered on a large mainframe system, CERN-VM. The mainframe
> administrators were the aristocracy and the users were serfs. A lot of
> time and effort went into reminding the users of this. Anyone who got
> an account on CERN-VM would have all their mail sent to that machine
> by default, that was not a choice. And since it was an ESIDIC machine
> it meant that your mail would never work again.
> The Web broke up the monopoly of access to the information hoarded on
> CERN-VM. It wasn't necessary to have an account on the mainframe to
> read the phone book or to find out the Delphi meeting schedules or any
> of the other inconveniences that the commissars of CERN-VM had
> inflicted.
> The Web was designed to break up that information monopoly which is
> why it then went on to break up the planned information monopoly of
> 'Interactive-TV', the future of networking as imagined by Time Warner.
> The only interaction in Interactive-TV was that you could buy stuff
> from overpriced online shopping malls. Users were just passive
> consumers. The designers never thought about about the possibility
> that users might actually interact by creating content themselves.
> But now as a result of institutional design and network effects we
> face forces that threaten to eliminate user autonomy returning us to
> the pre-Web model.
> My problem with the institutional arrangements in ICANN is that I have
> no recourse whatsoever. If ICANN decides to jack up the price of
> domain names to $100 each, I have to pay up or lose my domains. And
> that is important because when I am using, Google
> effectively owns my Internet email presence. If they decide to change
> terms of service or impose ridiculous fees then exercising my exit
> right of switching email providers comes with an enormous switching
> cost.
> So the starting point for Internet autonomy is to have our own domain
> names. Which is why I own But while this gives me
> autonomy with respect to google, I do not have autonomy with respect
> to VeriSign or ICANN.
> DNS raises important autonomy issues which is why I have been working
> on it for the past five years. But it isn't the only area where
> autonomy is an issue.
> Autonomy is an important framing on the net neutrality debate. I find
> the usual framing highly suspect because there are circumstances where
> I would be happy to have free Internet access that doesn't work with
> Vonage or Netflix unless those companies pay the provider. My real
> concern is whether that is a choice or a mechanism to extract unfair
> rents where I pay the ISP for the Internet service and then pay again.
> Autonomy is also the reason that I am very concerned by the recent
> trend where web properties require the use of one particular social
> network to comment on their blogs. The commercial reason they are
> doing it is of course that they want the exposure that comes from
> linking the comments to that social network and advertising the
> comments to their friends. But they are taking away my autonomy and
> they don't even register that some people would legitimately see that
> as unacceptable.
> And lest people accuse me of being anti-corporate here. Time-Warner
> made far more money from its Web properties than it would ever have
> made from their Interactive-TV. And the Time-Warner management that
> was clueless about Interactive TV also managed to burn half their
> shareholder value by gifting it to the shareholders of AOL, a business
> unit they eventually disposed of for a few percent of what they paid.
> My thesis is that companies that back the goals Internet users want
> will be the leaders of the Internet in 2020. So if I am right and
> Security, Access and Autonomy are the goals they will get behind,
> companies that want to become or remain leaders should back them.
> So those are my goals. What goals should we be attempting to address?
> What are realistic timescales?
> Are we just going to be happy with a faster Internet with an
> effectively unlimited address space or do we have bigger goals?