Scope of Activities
The scope of activities that the IX should carry out is worthy of early consideration, although this is likely to be a matter for continual assessment as the IX grows, and the profile and requirements of its members changes. Some IXs limit themselves to purely providing a switched infrastructure, whilst others offer extra technical services (e.g. route servers, private interconnects) and some IXs carry out non-technical activities for the benefit of its members, acting, to varying extents, as trade associations. These latter activities can be contentious, some ISPs want their fees to fund only the IX physical infrastructure. Also these activities can often be country specific, and therefore being of limited benefit to ISPs not based in the country of the IX.
However, an IX brings ISPs together, not only in the network sense, most IXs have mailing lists and meetings for their members. This means the IX can be a natural forum for discussion of subjects of interest to the industry in general. How far an IX should involve itself in these activities is, of course, a matter for the individual IX, its mandate, and its members wishes. Whatever involvement the IX decides to have outside of providing the basic switch infrastructure, it is important that it has the support of its membership, and that the activities are documented so that there is transparency for existing and prospective new members.