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Threat of Tiered Pricing Continues

  • To: 2gtld-guide@xxxxxxxxx, 2gtld-transition@xxxxxxxxx
  • Subject: Threat of Tiered Pricing Continues
  • From: George Kirikos <gkirikos@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 19 Feb 2009 04:50:28 -0800 (PST)


I glanced at the revised draft Base Agreement, and it's clearly unacceptable as 
there continue to be no price caps in place to protect
registrants, see section 2.9 of 


This is a backdoor way of allowing existing registry operators (e.g.
com/net/org/biz/info) to get unlimited pricing power of existing domain
names through .tv-style tiered pricing. Obviously it seems ICANN is only
listening to registry operators and prospective registry operators, given
they've even LOWERED fees for registry operators (see Section 6.1) Note
that price controls were a major source of comments by the public, see the
bottom of page 121 to 123 of:


Note in particular that Neustar (operator of .biz) is on public record
(page 123) stating they want elimination of price caps for .biz under the
"equitable treatment" clause of existing registry agreements if other
registries get it:

"Any material changes for the newer, no-price capped TLDs regarding
vertical separation and equal access in general must be applied to NeuStar
– this is required under the .biz Registry Agreement and ICANN’s Bylaws.
Price caps are appropriate for larger TLDs that have a much higher
percentage of the market and are not appropriate for gTLDs that do not
have any real market power."

If you are existing registrant, even the smaller TLDs have market power
over you, as you are "locked in" to that domain name and face high
switching costs (e.g. if you had operated abc.biz for 5 years, and Neustar
suddenly decides to raise the renewal price to $1 million/year, that will
definitely affect you, and is not something where "competitive forces" are
at play).

I'll have more detailed comments once I finish reading all of the


George Kirikos

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