Fragments - The Internet Protocol Journal - Volume 7, Number 1

NRO Comments Concerning ICANN and WSIS

Number Resource Organization
(NRO) is the coalition of
Regional Internet Registries
(RIRs) which operate in the world today. The NRO is an organization representing the collective experience of individual RIRs and their communities. While the prime subject of its work are matters of joint interest relating to Internet numbering resources, the NRO provides an efficient interface to other parties interested in these issues. As the Internet continues to evolve, the NRO will ensure continuity of the operational infrastructure of Internet number resource allocation.

The RIRs are responsible for distribution of
Internet Number Resources
[IPv4 and IPv6 addresses and
Autonomous System Numbers
]. These number resources are the most fundamental of the identifiers on which the Internet relies: the Internet can operate without domain names; but it cannot operate without numbers. The RIRs have carried the responsibilities associated with managing these critical resources collectively for over 10 years, since well before the start of ICANN. This has been done very effectively through the entire "modern history" of today's Internet which includes both the "dot com boom" and the "dot com bust."

The RIRs have participated in the
World Summit on the Information Society
(WSIS) processes for over a year, including regional Prepcoms and the Summit itself. This is probably longer than any other Internet organization. The RIRs have attended as observers, and as subject matter experts with a genuine aim to assist in debates and discussions around issues related to Internet Number Resources in general and to IP addresses in particular.

The RIRs participated in the WSIS Phase I process as full supporters of ICANN as the model which represents not only the fundamental and critical aspects of Internet development to date, but also the means of community self-regulation to administer and manage Internet Number Resources. It must be understood that this is not given by the RIRs as mere components of ICANN, dependent upon it for support; but rather as independent components of the broader Internet administrative framework which ICANN itself is intended to support.

In the second round of WSIS, the NRO speaking for the collective RIRs will assert an active role vis-à-vis ICANN in order to aid that organization to address the genuine questions that it faces. The principle of these issues within the WSIS context is that of the independence and genuine internationalization of ICANN.

Therefore the NRO calls on ICANN to continue its work in this area, not by building a multinational organization, but rather by including and gaining the genuine support of its significant base of core stakeholders, namely those in the DNS, IP address, and protocol communities. Furthermore, the NRO calls on ICANN to work with the US Government to demonstrate a genuine and unambiguous plan for its independence and to commit to this plan before the conclusion of the second phase of the WSIS.

Finally, the NRO rejects any concept of an alternative Internet administrative model located within any governmental or intergovernmental structure. The NRO acknowledges that there is a valid role for governments in the administration of the Internet but this must be in the context of the current model. There is a need for the continual improvement of the current model of industry self-regulation to the extent that the ultimate solution may look little like today's ICANN.

Upcoming Events

INET/IGC 2004 will be held in Barcelona, Spain, May 10-14, 2004. INET, which is the annual conference of the
Internet Society
(ISOC), will this time be held jointly with Spain's
Internet Global Congress
(IGC). For more information, visit:

North American Network Operators' Group
(NANOG) will meet in San Francisco, May 23-25, 2004. For more information see:

South Asian Network Operators Group
(SANOG) will meet 23-30 July, 2004 in Kathmandu, Nepal. More info at:

Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers
(ICANN) will meet in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, July 19-23, 2004, and in Cape Town, South Africa, December 1-5, 2004. For more information see:

Internet Engineering Task Force
(IETF) will meet in San Diego, CA, August 1-6, 2004 and in Washington, DC, November 7-12, 2004. For more information, visit:

Asia Pacific Regional Internet Conference on Operational Technologies
(APRICOT) will be held Feburary 16-25, 2005 in Kyoto, Japan and February 15-24, 2006 in Bangalore, India. For more information visit:

The Internet Protocol Journal

Ole J. Jacobsen
, Editor and Publisher

Editorial Advisory Board

Dr. Vint Cerf
, Sr. VP, Architecture and Technology


Dr. Jon Crowcroft
, Marconi Professor of Communications Systems

University of Cambridge, England

David Farber

The Alfred Fitler Moore Professor of Telecommunication Systems

University of Pennsylvania, USA

Peter Löthberg
, Network Architect

Stupi AB, Sweden

Dr. Jun Murai
, Professor, WIDE Project

Keio University, Japan

Dr. Deepinder Sidhu
, Professor, Computer Science & Electrical Engineering, University of Maryland, Baltimore County Director, Maryland Center for Telecommunications Research, USA

Pindar Wong
, Chairman and President

VeriFi Limited, Hong Kong

The Internet Protocol Journal
is published quarterly by the Chief Technology Office, Cisco Systems, Inc.

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