Internet community organizing to form Internet Y2K Campaign : LUSENET : Millennium Salons : One Thread

From Gary Allan Halonen. Original message located at:

A message sent by the Chair of Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility (CPSR) - an organization I'm proud to be associated with.

Woodbury []
Sent: Tuesday, December 08, 1998 11:32 PM
To: Multiple recipients of list

Members of the Internet community are organizing to form the Internet Y2K Campaign. This campaign is aimed directly at Y2K issues as they affect the Internet. This campaign is designed to provide resources to ISPs, for example, on how to do a complete assessment of their systems. Would CPSR like to join the campaign?
The current supporters of the campaign are

* The Commercial Internet eXchange
* Texas Internet Service Provider Association
* The Association of Online Professionals
* Washington Association of Internet Service Providers
* Virginia Internet Service Provider Association
* Next Generation Internet
* Florida Internet Service Provider Association
* Internet Service Providers Consortium
* Internet Society
* Agent Society

Supporters are asked to

(a) give permission to include their name on a letter to be published in Boardwatch

(b) give permission to include their name on the Campaign web site and

(c) link to the campaign web site. Some supporters are doing more by holding events and publishing articles. The idea is for umbrella organizations to speak in harmony and loudly so that the members of the Internet community who are not preparing themselves listen and start preparing themselves. Obviously CPSR through its working group has already done a tremendous amount.

The activities of the campaign planned are publishing the letter along with other material on the new Y2K law and how to do an assessment in the February issue of Boardwatch, publish material in the Internet Society magazine in March, and hold events at TISPA, ISPCON, and INET. There is also a campaign web site being built at (this site may move to an association host such as ISOC).

-Robert Cannon Y2K Task Force Federal Communications Commission

Dear Internet Community

One of the greatest problems facing the Internet in 1999 is the Year 2000 Date Conversion Problem. Year 2000 Date Conversion Problems have been found in all types of equipment and software. Even though the Internet was designed to be robust, a failure of even the smallest part of the network can have significant effects; multiple failures occurring simultaneously can have devastating effects. Critical systems are a priority. But malfunctions outside of critical systems, such as in the billing systems, can create disruptions that may be difficult for Internet companies to endure. In addition, as the Internet becomes increasingly important for the exchange of information, free speech, culture, and e-commerce, it is essential that Year 2000 problems be kept to a minimum.

This is not a limited problem. Examining one component of the Internet and determining whether it will function is not enough. The successful operation of the Internet depends on protocols, servers, routers, modems, directories, operating systems, software, and service providers. In order for the Internet to work as well on January 1, 2000, as it did the day before, each service provider and member of the Internet must conduct a thorough assessment. We must act swiftly as time is short. As we approach January 1, 2000, we may face additional challenges as parts and resources become increasingly difficult to obtain. And we must be mindful that there are multiple occurrences of date conversion problems including August 21, 1999 (GPS clock), September 9, 1999 (shown as "9999" in some programs), and February 29, 1999 (the year 2000 is a leap year; the year 1900 was not).

This problem calls for cooperation. In response to private sector demand, President Clinton signed into law the Year 2000 Information and Readiness Disclosure Act. This new U.S. law permits the sharing of Y2K information with significant protections from liability. This will help avoid a situation where each Internet provider and member of the Internet community must recreate the wheel. Instead, an ISP, for example, that has tested certain equipment can share the results of those tests with other ISPs.

Today we are announcing our support for the Internet Year 2000 Campaign. We are calling all members of the Internet community, with the greatest of speed, to conduct an assessment of their systems and prepare for Y2K. We are encouraging our members and all members of the Internet community to share information about their own readiness and any information that they uncover. We are supporting the creation of an Internet Year 2000 Campaign web site that will act as a clearing house of information relevant to the Internet and Year 2000. We will also be conducting Year 2000 sessions whenever possible at our Internet conferences and association meeting.

The lessons that we learn from Y2K should prepare us well for 2038.

Commercial Internet Exchange Texas Internet Service Provider Association
Virginia Internet Service Provider Association Association of Online Professionals
Washington Association of Internet Service Providers

-- Bill (, December 11, 1998

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