North American Network Operators Group

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Re: Regulatory intervention (Redux: Who is a Tier 1?)

  • From: Patrick W. Gilmore
  • Date: Thu Oct 06 13:44:17 2005

On Oct 6, 2005, at 11:56 AM, William Allen Simpson wrote:

Let me be the punching bag for pondering this on NANOG... What about the
roles of governments building a consortium with Teir-1 NSP's where those
backbone Tiers are regulated and have predefined, strictly enforced
rulesets they'd have to follow. The irony of this is that it sounds both
like a nightmare and a dream.

Congratulations, you've reinvented the Internet.  This is exactly what
we did when we built the original (NSFnet).  It worked!
I would argue the NSFnet would not scale to today's Internet. Not to mention today's Internet has the added value of not sucking up 90% of NSF's budget.

We specified regional interconnection. If you wanted to connect, that's
where you had to connect, and you were required to take the traffic from
everybody else at the point of interconnection. No arguments.

This partitioning is exactly what we predicted in many meetings when
discussion the terms of the contracts.
I'm wondering why "this partitioning" - predicted or not - is a "bad thing"?

Markets are inefficient for infrastructure and tend toward monopoly.
Strangely, the Internet has not tended toward monopoly. If you think otherwise, you have been reading too many press releases.

Idiot laissez-faire pseudo-libertarians forget that all markets require
regulation and politics.
Politics are a natural part of human interaction. Regulation sometimes follows.

The Internet is fairly unregulated. It works fairly well - better than many regulated industries.

I guess I'm missing your point?