31 October 2014

RIPE Chair report October 2014

I would like to share with you what I have been doing as RIPE Chair since the last RIPE meeting in Warsaw in may now that the RIPE 69 meeting in London is just some days away.

The agenda for the RIPE meeting as been published at https://ripe69.ripe.net/programme/meeting-plan/
The Program committee has done a very good job in putting together a program for the week, all working-groups have published their agendas, and most working-groups have started working on wg-chair procedures as agreed at the last wg-chairs meeting.

The working-group chairs will meet as usual for lunch on Thursday. The agenda for this meeting can be found at

As RIPE Chair I am invited as an observer to the RIPE NCC exec board meetings in order to coordinate activities between RIPE and the RIPE NCC. There have been board meetings in June and September and minutes of the meetings are posted at http://www.ripe.net/lir-services/ncc/executive-board/minutes/2014

The theme of my first half-year as Chair, and before that as Deputy Chair, has been to get to know the community better, trough participating in regional meetings.
  • MENOG 14 in Dubai, UAE
  • SEE 3 in Sofia, Bulgaria 
  • ENOG 7, Moscow, Russia
  • ENOG 8, Baku, Azerbaijan
These meetings have given me a better view of the current issues in our region. While we in Western and Northern Europe have a multitude of Internet exchanges to improve regional and national connectivity, there are challenges in the Middle East and further east. International connectivity is also a challenge - limited by available international fiber, and with higher cost than in areas with more competition between fiber providers. Privacy issues were high on the agenda at ENOG. There was a lively discussion on how to deal with government request. It is great to see the participation of these meetings, both in numbers and in content. The technical discussions in the meeting and the corridors, to exchange ideas and solve problems.

The RIPE NCC also does outreach to governments in our region. I participated at the High-level meeting in Brussels the RIPE NCC arranged in close cooperation with CENTR, as well as a Law enforcement meeting earlier this year in London.

During the summer I went to Toronto Canada for IETF 90, my primary interest was the discussions on the IANA transition. In addition I attended most of the Operational track.

The NRO Number Council appointed me to the ICANN NomCom for 2014 and we completed our work and appointed ICANN board members as well as ALAC, GNSO and ccNSO council members.

The report from the 2014 NomCom can be found at https://www.icann.org/en/system/files/files/final-16oct14-en.pdf
the was also an urgent appointment of a board member to replace Olga Madruga-Forti who stepped down unexpectedly during the ICANN week. I was not able to participate in this appointment due to less than 24 hours notice for the meeting.

The NomCom also conducted a peer review of our contributions to the committee. The report from this has been published

The Number Council was kind enough to reappoint me to the 2014 Non-com, which started its work with a two day meeting following the ICANN meeting in Los Angeles. The call for nominations will be out shortly. This year the NomCom will be appointing 3 board members. Looking at the board composition there is particular need for board members from the African region and the Latin American region, but good candidates from Europe are also welcome.

The NRO NC will in addition to the NomCom appointments, appoint one board member, see the announcement at https://www.nro.net/news/aso-ac-call-for-nominations-for-seat-9-on-the-icannboard 

In order to better understand the Internet Governance issues in a broader sense I have participated in 
  • Annual meeting with the Norwegian regulator, Lillesand, Norway
  • EuroDig, Berlin Germany
  • IGF2014, Istanbul, Turkey
My interest in Eurodig and IGF was the NTIA transition of the IANA function. ICANN had a strong presence at IGF and there were several good discussions on how ICANN accountability can be improved. 
  • ITU Plenipotentiary 2014 in Busan, Korea.
The Norwegian Ministry of Transportation and Communication invited me to participate on the Norwegian delegation at the ITU Plenipotentiary 2014 conference in Busan, with the trip funded by the RIPE NCC. The RIPE NCC is a sector member of the ITU-D and participating with its own delegation with Chris, Maxim and Chadic.

There are excellent reports from the meeting by Samantha Dickinson at http://linguasynaptica.com/ as well as live twitter updates, see  #Plenipot14

With this short report I hope I have given you some insight into what the RIPE Chair has been doing since the last meeting.

Hans Petter Holen
RIPE Chair

24 October 2014

RIPE WG Chair procedures

One of the topics that had been discussed among the RIPE Working-group chairs for a while when I joined as Deputy Chair, was procedures for electing and replacing chairs. There was a draft text, but had not been an agreement before the RIPE 67. Some still thought more detail should be added, some think it was to descriptive. The wg-chairs decided to form a task force, with Brian Nisbet as coordinator and Ondrej Filip, Nick Hillard and me as members.

The minutes from Working Group Chairs Meeting at RIPE 67 specifies the objective of the group as:

"- The task force should look at the final document, give it some editing as needed, and have the RIPE Chair publish it on the ripe-list with an explanation and a deadline of one month."

The proposal by the task force was circulated to the RIPE Working Group Chairs Mailing List, but there was no consensus to suggest this as a common proposal for all the working groups.
The matter was further discussed at the Working Group Chairs meeting at RIPE 68, and while there was no consensus on the proposed text, there was consensus that we should have written procedures for this. Hence the following conclusion referred in the minutes:

"- The Collective agreed to work with their respective WGs to establish a procedure for replacing WG Chairs.
- The minimum requirements are that each WG should have its own procedures, that these should be written down, that this should be done by the next RIPE Meeting and executed at the end of that meeting."

This is also more in line with the "bottom-up" principle of RIPE, each working-group agrees on their own procedures. If the procedures turn out to be similar we can later reopen the discussion on

The proposal from the Task Force has since then been published.

10 June 2014

PT forum - annual norwegian regulators forum

The Norwegian regulator invites to a yearly forum for the telecom industry in Norway.
The regulator was relocated to the small city of Lillesand some years back, and hour by plane from Oslo. 

There were some 100 participants in the forum - limited by the venue - making the event rather exclusive with CEOs and key management from the larger telecom players in Norway.

The minister of telecom and transportation Ketil Solvik Olsen, with his political advisor, as well as staff from the ministry participated the whole day - not only trough the welcoming speech. Without any political bias I think it is a good sign from the new minister that he takes time to learn from the industry.

The keynote was from professor Victor D.  Normann, NHH. He was trying to find how mobile communications influences the national economy. He took us trough the history of tele-communications from telegraph until present and made a good point that the biggest leaps was probably in the past, moving from the pony-express to telegraph, making it possible to communicate faster than the train, and saving double track on the line. The more recent leaps did not have similar impacts, but have made electronic communication a commodity which have caused an explosion in the volume of the communication, but also a reduction in the value of individual messages. In his analysis he looked at different impact on the national economy and tried to quantify these, but was surprisingly enough not able to find a direct impact.

Moving the the presentation from the industry played, the first presentation was from ICE.net and their owners Access Industries, who to everybodys suprise won part of the 4G spectrum in the recent auction. ICE.net has been providing a data only service in the 450Mhz  stated their plan to launch LTE across the different frequencies.

The main topic of the event was clearly 4G and frequencies. Several of the providers present graphs on growth showing that 4G LTE had, or would soon, pass 2G & 3G in volume. In one of the network 

Two of the providers, Lyse and Telenor talked a bit about fibre. For Lyse - a fibre only provider set up by an electricity company, the focus now is to introduce more services in their network (besides Internet, TV and Telephony) a Smart house product Smartly will be launched this autumn.

From Telenor the most interesting part of the presentation was on the redundancy and resiliency in their Network. Berit Svendsen, managing director of Telenor Norway,  showed and spoke passionately about the double and triple redundancy in the national backbone and the regional rings. The challenge is the access network were serious incidents like fire, flooding av avalanches have caused whole communities to be without connection for days. I guess we have our geography to thank for the challenges in this area.

In his closing speech Torstein Olsen, director of the NPT addressed the changing times the regulator is going trough. This is the only time the importance of numbers (phone numbers) and IP addresses was mentioned.

So my key takeaway from this event is that the Technical coordination work done by RIPE and the RIPE NCC is done so well that is it not on the radar of major Internet and telecommunication managers in Norway.

16 May 2014

RIPE Chair - Rob handing over "the Internet"

The handover from RIPE Chair trough 25 years, Rob Blokzijl took place at the end of the closing plenary on Friday 16. May 2014 at RIPE 68 in Warsaw.

The chairman of RIPE never had a gavel or any other symbolic tools to conduct this duties. The ceremony was instead inspired by the IT Crowd, to hand over “the Internet” (and the legacy space).

The event can be enjoyed in full at the RIPE 68 meeting archives.

In the video starting at around 19 minutes into the recording.

As a reminder for the future I have made a transcript of my first speech as RIPE Chair.

Thank you very much for this Rob.
Its a great challenge,  - Its indeed big shoes to fill, -  I realize that.

I have been here for some 20 years I think.  At first setting up two of the first LIRs in Norway in the beginning of the 1990s. Getting IP addresses then, was just as important as it is now to run our Network.
But  I sincerely think that this community is about much more than the  addresses and the registry.

Its a great venue and great place to meet and exchange ideas, and to cooperate.

I think that is one of the very important things that I will work, to contribute to, to make sure that we keep it like that.

It is not just about keeping the phonebook of IP addresses.

We are a community that are here to make things happen.

I am a strong proponent of the openness, and the  inclusiveness and bottom up processes that we have had in this region.

I really think it is important to make sure that not only we as this community, but that also the Internet stays open as a vehicle for communication for everybody.

That has  been an important pa and driver for me in my work. At university with the UUCP node, getting a connection to Russia in the days when the Soviet Union was falling a part. That is some of the things that sort of triggered me to stay in this community, to help make sure we have an Internet for people to communicate, even in politically unstable times.

So, what about the next 25 years?

Well, since the term of chairman ship here is 25 years, I should probably have a 25 year plan.

Well, Rob already challenged me that there should be a procedure to replace me. I do not think I will work on that the first three months. But during the next couple years that is something that we need to get in place.

We are working on a procedure to select and replace working group chairs.
Thats been delegated to the working groups, to go trough a bottom up process. And I think, that is really also for all you to think about. I am your chair, to serve you, and I am accountable to you, so you need to tell me what you expect from me. I think that is important rather than me telling you what to do. That is part of this community´s spirit .

Other than that I think that we have an interesting challenge ahead of us: 
  • How to migrate to IPv6?
  • How do we do that collectively?
  • How do we make sure that the network stays open and transparent for end to end communication for the coming years?
We are running out of IP addresses, so IP address distribution policy for IPv4 is less and less important, but registering who has which addresses is going to be more important, and certification as well.

I think we are going to change our focus as a community a bit, from addresses this type, that type.  “All addresses are equal" as it has been said here. We need to figure out how to keep a strong and good registry so we know who has the right to use, or is using, which addresses. So we are not subject to highjacking and other things like that.

Other than that, I look forward to hearing from you, what you expect from me for the coming years, 

I will try to go to most of the regional meetings in this region and of course all the RIPE meetings, so I really look forward to seeing you again there. 

Thank you!