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Growing the Internet 24 February 2014

We Need Your Feedback: IXP Toolkit And Best Practices Guide

Jane Coffin
Jane CoffinSenior Vice President, Internet Growth

Imagine a world where everyone can access and develop a connected, borderless, permission-less, limitless Internet that creates opportunity and progress for all.

At the Internet Society, this is our ambition and our inspiration behind the creation of an online guide to help bring the world online.

One way to help do that – it’s called the IXP Toolkit and its our hope that it will become a guide for people interested in either learning about, building, or investing in Internet Exchange Points (IXPs) in emerging markets and developing economies.

But to do that we’ll need your help.

A working draft is set to launch next week and over the next two months we’re asking you to send us your feedback so we can improve the site and make it as useful as possible.

First let’s take a step back and begin at the beginning.

What Are IXPs?

Practically speaking, an IXP is physical connection point that helps keep local Internet traffic local. This reduces costs associated with traffic exchange between Internet Service Providers (ISPs).

IXPs are a solution.

Why?

They keep local traffic local.

IXPs improve local quality of service, reduce local costs, build local technical expertise, encourage local content hosting and local business creation, and help speed up connections.

They encourage local solutions that bring global impact.

While it may seem complicated, it isn’t. There are many experts out there that have been working to help build technical capacity, build networks, and improve local, regional, and global Internet development.

They know what it takes and how to do this in a technically efficient and sustainable way.

They keep costs low.

Expensive equipment – “gold-plating” is not the way if we want solutions that can last. Many others have done this before and you can find the “how to” stories in our section on IXP case studies.

How Could You Use The New Guide and Tools?

If you’re a technical expert: This guide will help share your expertise, learn from others, and bring new ideas to your work.

If you work in the world of policy: The IXP Toolkit Guide will help you understand what an IXP is, how it can help your community, and how to work with governments and decision makers to encourage local solutions for global impact.

If you’re in the business community: This guide will help you understand how an IXP can help save money and improve local services.

If you’re a policy or decision maker maker you can also use it to help create an enabling environment in your country.

How Can I Get There?

You can get to the site by visiting www.ixptoolkit.org.  Please share it across your social channels.

Don’t forget that we’ll need your help to make it better! Send your feedback to feedback@ixptoolkit.org

OK, I’ve sent feedback. What’s next?

We’ll keep the option to send feedback on the first version for two months. By the end of April we’ll be launching the next version. We’ll then continue the feedback process and reach out to experts around the world to keep making improvements throughout 2014.

The Internet Society is dedicated to outreach, training, and building relationships that build trust.

We want to do more of that, particularly in the IXP community.

We look forward to your feedback and helping develop your guide to IXPs.

You can reach us at

You can visit the site at www.ixptoolkit.org

Funding of ISOC’s IXP Toolkit Grant & Best Practices Project is provided by Google.

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Disclaimer: Viewpoints expressed in this post are those of the author and may or may not reflect official Internet Society positions.

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