Dotster Demands Response to WLS Appeals
Date: Wednesday April 30 2003, @05:38AM
Topic: Registrars

GeorgeK writes "The registrar Dotster has posted their most recent letter to ICANN demanding a response regarding their formal appeals of Verisign's proposed Waiting List Service (WLS) for deleting domain names. Those appeals were filed in September 2002, yet ICANN has continued to be silent regarding their status, showing a cavalier attitude that threatens the existence of many smaller registrars. Without the ability to add value and innovate as registrars on behalf of registrants, they'd ultimately become merely low margin resellers of the Verisign registry, and be doomed.

WLS would replace a thriving and competitive series of offerings by various registars, with a monopolistic single-source provider benefiting Verisign and partners with a projected $100 million return over 5 years."

WLS has always been a controversial proposal because of these huge stakes. Those dollars don't come out of thin air -- ultimately, they come from consumers. Over 4000 members of the public signed an online petition against the proposal. ICANN's own public forum saw more than 800 posts, with the vast majority of posters against WLS. The registrars constituency opposed WLS. The task force appointed to investigate the WLS issue came back with a consensus main recommendation to reject WLS which was endorsed as a consensus policy by the Names Council in July 2002 with the required supermajority vote.

A major change in domain name allocation policy, such as WLS, requires the documentation of Consensus Policies. Thus, opponents of WLS would have seemed to have trumped Verisign by the victory at the Names Council. Not only did Verisign fail to show consensus support for WLS, but opponents could prove a consensus against WLS. However, Verisign mysteriously overcame this blow. They had previously challenged the authority of the Names Council to review WLS, even though such review was ordered by ICANN upon recommendation of Louis Touton, their legal counsel.

In a shocking (perhaps not shocking to long-time ICANN watchers) display of arrogance and contempt for process, the ICANN Board accepted WLS. Ignoring the consensus opposition to it, they closed their eyes and gave in to Verisign's lobbying.

Often, observers of these absurd decisions by the ICANN Board can do nothing but shake their heads. However, this time the anti-WLS forces have the ICANN contracts with registrars to fall back on. With the law and facts on their side, Dotster will not sit by and see WLS implemented by Verisign. It's been 7 months since Dotster filed their appeal, and this issue is sure to come to a boil soon, as Verisign can in theory introduce WLS as early as July 25, 2003.

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ICANN Board Correct Here
by Anonymous on Wednesday April 30 2003, @07:44AM (#11538)
The only entities shaking in their boots over WLS are those registrars, resellers, and domain speculators who play the drop system for .coms whilst few netizens outside the domain world ever heard of DropWizard or Namewinner. Yes my friends, Verisign is an unfriendly player in the domain game, but their WLS levels the playing field. Take a look at speculator havens and, & read the threads about WLS. The speculators and hoarders are shaking in their boots, along with registrars who also milk the system. Sick of getting spam hawking .info's and .biz's for $14.95/year? Most of that junk spam is from resellers who mine whois data for their spam lists. Those are the folks up in arms over WLS.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
by fnord ( on Wednesday April 30 2003, @10:30AM (#11540)
User #2810 Info
A fight between Veri$ign and other registrars over who can make the most dirty money (as I pointed out here [] a year and a half ago. I say a pox on both their houses. -g

PS: On first posting this in preview mode I got:

Post Comment Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Reason: PLEASE DON'T USE SO MANY CAPS. USING CAPS IS LIKE YELLING!
apparently because I'd used the subject line FEH! in caps. It really hurts when even software accuses one of being a lamer. Note that this post now contains many more caps than when it was originally submitted. FEH! FEH! FEH! :)
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
  • Re:feh! by dmehus Thursday May 01 2003, @08:20AM
    • Re:feh! by PeterBarron Thursday May 01 2003, @09:42AM
      • Re:feh! by dmehus Thursday May 01 2003, @02:53PM
    • 1 reply beneath your current threshold.
Touton finally responds
by GeorgeK on Tuesday May 06 2003, @09:05PM (#11579)
User #3191 Info | []

Although, it's just delaying matters until June 26, essentially.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

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