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    ICANN Staff and Structure Did ICANN Approve New Domain Registration 'Scam'?
    posted by michael on Thursday November 15 2001, @04:06PM

    John Gilmore wrote to tell us the following:
    eNom, an ICANN registrar, is now offering a special deal for domain scammers: do a cheap "partial registration" with eNom, which you have no right to transfer to another registrar, put records into the DNS for, change the WHOIS information on, etc -- without making another payment to the original registrar (eNom).

    A perfect deal for domain scammers, but useless to anyone else. And it provides names that are likely to have invalid WHOIS info and for which competitive registration is not possible. (If they can charge a "fee for changing registrars" then they can set it arbitrarily high, e.g. "you can change to another registrar if you pay us $5000".)

    I complained to them that a domain registration that cannot be transferred to another registrar without paying-off the first registrar is invalid under ICANN rules; they replied that they "checked with ICANN first".



    Perhaps ICANN does actual approve of such policies -- in which case ICANN, as usual, needs a good swift kick in the teeth.

    I'll enclose eNom's ad to me (it's apparently spam to their entire list of domain customers, sent of course in incomprehensible MS-Word-generated HTML by someone clueless), and their reply, which includes my complaint to them.

    John In fairness to ICANN, which is having its annual meeting at present, I should add that I haven't checked this with them, and it therefore I don't know whether eNom actually "checked with ICANN," or for that matter what (or whether) ICANN replied...ICANN staff members reading this are invited to let us know, please.

     
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    This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.
    Did ICANN Approve New Domain Registration 'Scam'? | Log in/Create an Account | Top | 13 comments | Search Discussion
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    Re: Did ICANN Approve New Domain Registration 'Sca
    by Stahura on Friday November 16 2001, @07:50AM (#3703)
    User #3126 Info
    This text is from Paul Stahura President and CEO of eNom:
    1) We understand and respect John Gilmore. He is one of our oldest customers. We do disagree
    with him on this point, though.

    2) We are not scamming anyone. eNom is a leading registrar, innovating many value-added services that many registrars now offer.
    We offer these value-added services, including name management, real-time DNS, URL redirection, email forwarding, website builder as well
    as other services for *free* with each registration. Our low prices and high added service combine for one of the best values in the
    industry. With this "Name Only" program, where we offer a $5.99 up-front fee, with $3.99 "activation" fee paid later,
    we figured we could benifit registrants that have registered many domain names
    and that do not need any services by lowering their up-front costs to lower than our cost.
    If the registrant ever needed to use our other services, including transfer-away,
    the registrant pays the extra fee ($3.99). We do not feel the $9.98 total fee is onerous to
    the registrant, and because there is competition in the
    registrar industry, the registrant can choose not to use this program at eNom to register the name in the first place.
    This contract with eNom's customer does not allow us to charge an arbitrary fee to transfer
    away ($5,000 in John's example).

    3) If ICANN tells us to discontinue this program, we will comply.


    The email exchange with ICANN follows:

    Message to ICANN:

    Would it be OK with ICANN if we made a contract
    with a registrant to pay us $6 for registering the name, but he could not
    transfer the name or change name servers or
    make any other change unless he paid
    us say another $6? Obviously this service would
    only be useful to a person who just wanted to
    be the registrant of the name and not use it.

    Wondering,
    Paul
    eNom, Inc.


    Message from ICANN:

    Paul,

    Thanks for your note.

    RAA section 3.7.10 says "Nothing in this Agreement prescribes or limits the
    amount Registrar may charge Registered Name Holders for registration of
    Registered Names." In other words, ICANN doesn't set or limit your prices
    ... you could contract with your customers to charge a fee for any services
    you perform -- modifying name servers, registrant changes (I trust that is
    what you meant by "transfer the name"?), etc., etc..

    I hope this information is helpful. Please let me know if you have any
    other questions.

    Best regards,


    Paul
    [ Reply to This | Parent ]
    Re: Is this the new math ?
    by j11070 on Tuesday November 20 2001, @07:06AM (#3801)
    User #2986 Info
    how can they?....

    they wait until JUST BEFORE renewal date, put a lock on the name and then hold the owner hostage for $50 or whatever sum they can get away with. If the owner won't pay up, the registrar takes the name and puts it up for auction.

    It's the old once-we-have-you-we-can-screw-you-with-no-fear-of-ICANN theory of economics that NSI and Register.com started and made the current standard in the world of domain name registration.
    [ Reply to This | Parent ]
    Re: Did ICANN Approve New Domain Registration 'Sca
    by fnord (groy2kNO@SPAMyahoo.com) on Tuesday November 20 2001, @05:39PM (#3814)
    User #2810 Info
    The Drop Bear Liberation Front. -g
    [ Reply to This | Parent ]
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