Internet Speed vs ITR

Chronological Thread 
  • From: Randy Saunders <R.Saunders@xxx>
  • To: <wcit-public@xxx>
  • Subject: Internet Speed vs ITR
  • Date: Wed, 7 Nov 2012 16:25:52 -0500

The concept that a document that's thoughtfully revised through a consensus
process every 25 years is not consistent with the Internet as it presently
exists. Existing standards groups work tirelessly, meeting many times per
year, to reach consensus on the technical aspects of the Internet. It would
be unwise, and likely ineffective, to replace these engineering teams with
politicians guided by the UN.

Let me offer a simple example. In 2.13 you define Spam as "information
transmitted over telecommunication networks [as text, sound, image, tangible
data used in a man-machine interface bearing advertizing nature or having no
meaningful message,] simultaneously or during a short period of time, to a
large number of particular addressees without prior consent of the addressee
(recipient) to receive this information or information of this nature." This
definition is hopelessly insufficient. There are two possible definitions of
Spam: 1) it is email that the receiver doesn't like when they get it; or 2)
it is email that includes covert behaviors. If you were to use definition
(1), the one most users have in mind, you would find that the spam problem is
provably unsolvable. No computer system can ever hope to know what a human
being is thinking, at least given current technology. If you give up on (1)
as too hard, then (2) is no easier. Definition (2) requires knowledge of
every possible vulnerability to the user's computer systems. This knowledge
grows at a fantastic rate, as new vulnerabilities and attacks are identified
every day. Meeting every 25 years to assess them is not effective. As an
example, the email message you sent me, confirming that I'd accepted ITUs
terms and conditions for speaking in this forum, was rejected by the Google
Spam system because it contained text in many languages that I don't know how
to read. That alone was sufficient to constitute a type (2) threat, in
Google's mind. They were applying the criteria you express "no meaningful
message" to exclude messages simply because they were in many languages!

The notion that Spam is sent in mass volumes characterizes only one small
type of spam. Many spammers send unique messages to each sender, full of
meaning, plus a little advertizing message. This form of spam wouldn't be
spam by your definitions, and your document is only a few months old.
Imagine the effect in another 25 years.

While goals, guidelines, and objectives might be viable over long periods,
the details outlined in these regulations need constant vigilance and update
by trained engineers. The ITU just isn't the right forum for this task.