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[ NNSquad ] Re: Moderation policy (and previous message from Brett Glass)

Let's get past the airline bomb analogy.  A bomb's sole purpose is
to destroy and terrorize, and whatever "damage" is done by P2P is
ancillary to P2P's purpose, not P2P's purpose itself.  When someone
triggers a purposeful DDoS attack, that's damage for damage's sake.

But Brett's concern about VoIP liability is a valid one, though I
tend to approach the question from a different angle.  The trend in the
VoIP industry seems to be toward disclaiming any responsibility for
handling emergency calls reliably -- in some cases I've even seen
stickers on VoIP phones warning that they shouldn't be used for
emergency purposes.   

Much of this issue has revolved around E-911 capability problems,
but concerns about VoIP availability under heavy load (either due to
the emergency itself or other factors, such as overall Internet
traffic characteristics at any given point in time) have increasingly
been noted.

Since most Internet access networks are not engineered to traditional
telco POTS availability standards, the risks of emergency calls on
most consumer or enterpise VoIP systems can be considerable.  For
that matter, in serious regional emergencies, even conventional POTS
can fail.  Having lived in L.A. my entire life, I can testify to the
range of riots, fires, landslides, earthquakes, and other
biblically-inspired disasters locally where I've seen all my phone
and Internet circuits go down.  And that's not counting the guy
who ran his car off the street and sheared away my local B-box.

Which brings us to an interesting question.  Is it even reasonable
to be considering the use of VoIP for emergency calls in the current
Internet environment, given the wide variety of factors that come
into play (including but not limited to QoS considerations)?

NNSquad Moderator

 - - -

Brett Glass wrote:
> Yes, I know that to some who don't operate networks for a living the 
> analogy might seem "over the top." But it's not. Just as a bomb is 
> destructive and can hurt innocent people, P2P is destructive to networks
> and hurts innocent users. And, yes, there can be harm to life and limb, 
> because people rely on VoIP to serve as their telephone. I worry, day 
> and night, that if I don't provide absolutely reliable service someone 
> will be hurt and that I will be held liable. This is no joking matter;
> networks MUST be reliable.
> --Brett Glass