WHOIS Review Team - Public Comment
During the process of implementing Othello's registrar systems we have had a constant uphill battle implementing transfer protocols: -
1) With Thin Registries a) Constant rate-restriction and/or blocking despite originating from RADAR registered IP sources. b) Most, if not all, registrars also fail to provide all of the required data via their public WHOIS service. (I appreciate this may be under the guise of protecting their customers' privacy, however when a domain transfer is initiated this data is required). c) We currently have 38 format conversion types registered with our systems, and this barely scratches the surface of used formats - only the ones we've had to retrieve details from so far. d) There is little standardisation, including what a voice number looks like, despite a regular expression being provided by the IETF in the EPP-1.0 formal specification. e) As there is no standardisation, and only half of the registrars provide 'headings' to their WHOIS output, reconstituting structured data is often impossible. This leads to a complete loss of faith by the registrant, at worst legal threats about stolen domains. 2) With Thick Registries a) The single contact across multiple domains methodology is broken as 90% of these domains are with different sponsoring registrars, and only one of them may have access at any given time. Obviously every registrar /must/ provide the ability to update the contact details so each registrar duplicates the data. b) Following on from the above, most registrars do not include contact transfers as part of the domain transfer process, as they consider it related to their customer rather than the domain, again breaking the single contact method.So from the above, it doesn't appear to matter which method the Registry follows for handling registrant data, the methods offered to registrars for obtaining and gaining control of that data prove difficult to non-existant.
Whilst WHOIS provides a valuable service to the general internet community, this is the only method we have to facilitate domain transfers - a process and level of data access diametrically opposed to those expected of a public WHOIS system.
-- Cameron Gray, Systems Architect Othello Technology Systems Limitedhttp://www.othellotech.net | http://my.othellotech.net | http://support.othellotech.net