Proposed New Contracts Could Devastate .Org, .Info & .Biz Registries
I operate a web publishing company that has developed a number of websites (some of them quite large and the product of many years of hard work that is ongoing today). I have utilized a variety of TLDs for our projects and believe that each of the global and country specific extensions has a well defined purpose that helps us reach our targeted audience through use of the most appropriate TLD. However, I now have to automatically RULE OUT the development of ANY .org, .info or .biz domain as long as the pricing uncertainty created by ICANN?s consideration of these amazingly ill-advised new contracts with those three registries remains unresolved. Why would ANY business or website developer invest their time and money in one of those extensions when ICANN has left the door open for the registries to unilaterally become partners in the enterprise through extortionate renewal price increases at some point in the future? While dozens of respected individuals and companies have already lodged their protests against approval of these new contracts that have no price cap protection for consumers built in, I would think officials of the .org, .info and .biz registries would be the FIRST IN LINE, begging for very precise price controls to be written into the contracts. Why would they want that, when the contracts, as written, gives them one of the most open-ended licenses to steal in American business history? Quite simply, because if these contracts are approved as is, .org will be dealt a crippling blow and the new .info and .biz extensions will be smothered in their cradles. Ask yourself the rhetorical question again - who in their right mind would take the risk of developing in one of those extensions with this axe hanging over their heads? Though ICANN has tried to rush these approvals through in the slow summer period when few people are watching, the gaping flaws in the contracts, discovered by Mr. Kirikos just a few days ago, have already become major news and the source of considerable outrage across the Internet. As word continues to filter out to business people, organizations and individual registrants, I have no doubt that new .org, .info and .biz registrations will come to a standstill. The chilling effect of these proposed new contracts is so pronounced I think there is little doubt that they will usher in an Ice Age for those three extensions unless they are immediately withdrawn and revised. I would also not be surprised to see that effect spill over to .com and .net because if ICANN would let something like this slip past them in one registry, why should anyone trust the organization to prevent it from being allowed in other registries in the future? If these proposals are not rejected and reworked with sane price protection included, the equivalent of a nuclear explosion will incinerate public confidence in the domain name registration system and the negative fallout for ICANN will exceed anything the organization has experienced to date. Given the incalculable damage that could be done here (damage that is actually already occurring from the mere possibility that these one-sided contracts could be approved), I have to believe that common sense will prevail and these contract proposals will be quickly rejected, before any more damage is done. Sincerely, Ron Jackson President Internet Edge, Inc.