[PDB-gov] [PDB-announce] PeeringDB survey with regard to the future of PeeringDB

Chris Caputo ccaputo at alt.net
Thu Aug 6 17:13:24 PDT 2015

I think everyone involved is trying to work from a place of logic and 

Some things to ponder...

Who are the PeeringDB stakeholders?

  - admins?
  - individual users?
  - organizational users?  (networks? IXes? datacenters?)
  - donors?
  - ???

Who should be the Members (the group that elects the Board) of PeeringDB?

  - admins?
  - individual users?
  - organizational users?  (networks? IXes? datacenters?)
  - donors?
  - ???

How is Membership determined?

  - free?
  - fee?
  - service?
  - qualifications?
  - ???

If part of another organization, how would the interests of the 
stakeholders be maintained?

Would donors who have a problem with or are not a member of a parent 
organization be dissuaded from donating to a sub-account devoted to 

How would a parent organization deal with and absorb the potential 
liability that comes from operating PeeringDB? An example of that 
liability being when a spammer harvests from the PeeringDB database and 
gets shut out, they could sue the organization. Or even if they don't sue, 
will they withdraw support from the parent organization or cause problems. 
How will that impact future decision making in the interests of PeeringDB 
versus the parent organization?

The answers to the above are challenging. It is thought by some 
stakeholders that organizing into an independent organization is a clear 
solution, and that there are enough financial supporters out there who 
have expressed support and agree, to make it worthwhile. Obviously, there 
are others who disagree.

Re Membership questions posed above: At present there is no good answer. 
There's a desire to avoid membership fees. There's a desire for 
representation of both users and admins. The thought by folks working on 
independent organization effort, so far, was to have an initial membership 
consisting of the initial Board of Directors. The idea being that these 
individuals (*) are trusted enough by the PeeringDB community to steward 
PeeringDB from its present state to one of being legally organized and on 
a path toward tax-exempt status. The initial Board can then revise the 
Bylaws to be more inclusive.

It could be this should be re-examined in the interest of transparency, 
legitimacy, and securing a mandate. Maybe PeeringDB voting Membership 
could be defined simply as those subscribed to the pdb-gov 
(http://lists.peeringdb.com/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/pdb-gov) mailing list 
with active PeeringDB accounts. From there, drafts of Articles & Bylaws 
can be evolved, along with nominations of initial Board members to be 
listed on the Articles. I think all of the proposed Board members are 
happy to step aside in favor of those who receive greater support from the 
community, myself included.

But the first question is, do we organize independently? Hence the survey.

*: Aaron Hughes, Matt Griswold, Patrick W. Gilmore, Richard A Steenbergen, 
and myself.
Disclosure: In 2014, Patrick retained me to help get PeeringDB organized 
into a non-profit U.S. IRS 501(c)(6) due to my experience with the SIX 
(Seattle IX). He asked me to do so by being a Board Member and 
Secretary/Treasurer of the proposed organization. Not expecting this 
process to take so long or be divisive, I put those positions on my 
Facebook and LinkedIn profiles. I hope doing so did not cause additional 
confusion or appearance of presumption. They have now been removed.

On Thu, 6 Aug 2015, Daniel Golding wrote:
> Peering DB Community,
> Just to provide some additional color from one of those who believes more
> transparency and logic should be applied to the situation....
> A number of us in the community are skeptical of the need for yet another
> organization with resulting overhead (which is significant). In addition,
> there is concern regarding the initial makeup of any proposed PeeringDB
> board - namely, that it may not be representative of the largest user
> groups and potential contributors to PeeringDB. There is concern about the
> degree of transparency to this point - that most decisions are being made
> on a closed "admin-only" list.
> PeeringDB will be funded, theoretically, by contributions or memberships.
> For this reason, its vital that the Board be representative of the
> potential contributor base, as well as absolutely free of potential
> conflicts of interest.
> Of course, one way to avoid these unpleasant issues is to associate with
> another, better funded organization, to operate in a semi-autonomous
> manner.
> Thanks,
> Daniel Golding
> Disclosures: I work for Google and we have a vested interest in the success
> of PeeringDB. I am Chair of NANOG, and NANOG is one of the choices on the
> Survey, but I'd be just as happy to see this activity under OpenIX or the
> Internet Society.
> On Thu, Aug 6, 2015 at 12:05 PM, Aaron Hughes <aaronh at tcp0.com> wrote:
> > Fellow PeeringDB Community,
> >
> > It has come to our attention that several community members believe more
> > transparency and logic could have been applied to the initial survey
> > regarding where PeeringDB functions should live. We respectfully request a
> > poll from the community with a more formal survey in order to keep with the
> > spirit of PeeringDB transparency and bottom up.
> >
> > PeeringDB has been operating for years with no official corporate umbrella
> > or liability protection. There has been much discussion in recent months
> > about officially organizing into an IRS non-profit, so that users may
> > contribute funding and be assured that their contributions will best serve
> > PeeringDB's evolution.
> >
> > Please review and complete the following survey:
> >
> > https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ZDM6RNK
> >
> > This survey will close on 15, Aug 2015 2359h UTC
> >
> > Sincerely,
> >
> > PeeringDB Admins
> >
> > --
> >
> > Aaron Hughes
> > aaronh at tcp0.com
> > +1-703-244-0427
> > PGP Public Key ID: 0xF6B1DEC2
> > Key fingerprint = 6486 43A5 1692 502C DCFC  8446 C714 E317 F6B1 DEC2
> > http://www.tcp0.com/
> >
> > Request a meeting with me: https://doodle.com/aaronh
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Pdb-announce mailing list
> > Pdb-announce at lists.peeringdb.com
> > http://lists.peeringdb.com/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/pdb-announce
> >
> >
> -- 
> Dan Golding | Data Center Strategy | Global Network Acquisition |
> dgolding at google.com |  +1 202-370-5916

More information about the Pdb-gov mailing list