Dr. Cerf, Vinton (Vint)

Candidate Speech

Photo of Vint Cerf
Organization: Google

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Candidate Questionnaire

Provide a brief biography of recent experience, associations, and affiliations relevant to serving on the Board of Trustees.

Co-inventor of the Internet, it’s architecture and the TCP/IP protocols. Served as chairman of the Board of ICANN from 2000-2007. Founded the predecessor of the Internet Architecture Board. A founder and first president of the Internet Society. Served at MCI from 1994-2005, during which time the MCI Internet backbone and NSF VBNS were developed by the teams reporting to me. Currently VP and Chief Internet Evangelist of Google. Chairman of the Board of StopBadWare (non-profit helping to clean infected websites). Presently serving a term on the ARIN Board.

What Internet-related services do you or your organization provide?

Google provides a broad range of products and services for Internet users: search, document composition and management in the cloud, Android and Chrome Operating systems (source code), Chrome browser (source code), YouTube video services, Chrome notebooks, Chromecast product (Internet video), Android-based tablets, Motorola mobile phones, HTC and many other manufacturers base their smart phones on Android. Large scale data analytic tools (Map/Reduce, BigTable and its successors, Google Earth, Google Maps, Google Books, Google Play, …).

What conflicts, real or perceived, might arise should you be elected to the Board?

Google is a consumer of IP address space – if there are decisions concerning Google requests or proposals, I will recuse myself. I don’t believe there are other obvious conflict potentials.

Describe any limitations on your ability to attend Board and Public Policy Meetings in person or to serve the entirety of a 3-year term.

I am based in London through end of the Calendar year 2013. I have a fairly heavy travel schedule but ARIN will be high priority.

How do you foresee ARIN’s function, scale, or role changing in the future?

Business models need to adapt to IPv6-only environments of the future; ARIN must deal with the transfer (and possible monetization) of legacy IPv4 address space. The treatment of IPv4 (or IPv6) address space as an asset in bankruptcy must not be allowed to abrogate ARIN’s established rules for allocation of IP address space. Transfers into and out of region must be carefully orchestrated to avoid potential abuse. RPKI or something similar is needed to defend against address space hijacking. As the “internet of things” hits, ARIN may have many more transactions to cope with despite the assignment of large chunks of IPv6 address space.

What is your opinion of the principles outlined in RFCs 2050 and 2050bis?

I believe that RFC2050 is still the best formulation of considerations for IP address management. As the transition from purely IPv4 to mixed IPv4/IPv6 operation continues, the best practices of address management may need to be adapted (hence consideration of RFC 2050bis). RFC2050 has served the community extremely well and forms the basis for community-based practices. Consideration of policy during the transition from IPv4 to the mixed IPv4/IPv6 environment is vital. Generally, I believe the principles that underlie thoughtful allocation of IP address space, taking into consideration impact on routing table size and efficient use of the address space, are well-expressed in RFC2050 and still applicable today. The need for adjustments seems inevitable as IPv6 usage grows.

What would broaden participation in the ARIN public policy development process?

Increased participation of private sector and public sector users of IP address space of all kinds through outreach, presence of more accessible, broadband internet, mobile device use of Internet and IP address space, along with automobiles, set top boxes, etc.

What is ARIN’s role, if any, in promoting IPv6 adoption?

It has a key role to draw attention to the importance and utility of IPv6 usage, the side effects (e.g. NATS) of failure to adopt. It needs to reassure consumers of IP address space that ARIN policies are bottom-up, private-sector friendly, responsive to government needs.

What are ARIN’s greatest challenges and how do you see ARIN addressing them?

Shifting business models to deal with increasing use of IPv6 and eventual abandonment of IPv4 (if that ever happens). Exercise of its bottom-up policy development is the key to transparent development of acceptable policies for IPv6, legacy IPv4, coping with the trend towards monetization of IPv4 address space. The legal community is largely unaware of the IP layer of the Internet and policies for managing these spaces – there is a lot of work to do to help this community reach sensible conclusions in the presence of parties interested in monetizing IPv4 address space.

What is the appropriate scope for ARIN’s organizational activities and responsibilities?

ARIN should stay focused on the basic problem of developing regional and global policy for IP address allocation and assignment, supporting policy development through its bottom-up processes, educating public, government and private sectors as needed about the use of Internet address space and the rules for its allocation. ARIN should be receptive to interactions with the NRO and its RIR members, with the Internet Society, with ICANN and other elements of the Internet Governance ecosystem. This includes participation in the Internet Governance Forum, the International Telecommunication Union and other bodies with interest in Internet Governance (justified or not).

What is your position on the multi-stakeholder Internet governance?

I believe this is the only sensible way to deal with policy for this global, loosely-coupled, highly distributed system. Parties affected by policies adopted by the component institutions of the Internet ecosystem must have seats at the table.


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