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Username: antipodes
Date/Time: Mon, December 17, 2001 at 7:36 AM GMT
Browser: Netscape Communicator V4.74 using Windows 98
Subject: I think there were few genuine "unique" cueue registrars in


the Afilias .info rollout - a registry and new extension launch that I think will always be remembered for its deceit and deception.

Many .info preregistrants thought they were buying places in unique or exclusive cueues, only to have that registrar's or shop front's cueue submitted to another registrar for cueuing at the registry.

Before the .info Sunrise I repeatedly tried to have one well respected registrar confirm that their Landrush cueue would be exclusine/unique and repeatedly I received email responses that avoided giving me that assurance.

After questioning another unique/exclusive cueue registrar about refunds for names I had preregistered with them, but which had been taken fraudulently in the Sunrise because of Afilias's "after the event" policy to protect against TM fraud, I was advised that they were afiliates of the registrar which had avoided giving me an assurance that their cueue was unique/exclusive.

The unique/exclusive cueue afiliate was relatively expensive and produced no Landrush registrations for me.  The "well, we are sort of an exclusive cueue registrar", like the afiliate, produced nothing more than a hole in my credit card.

I got caught and wasted money as did many others in the Afilias .info rollout, due to a lack of transparency, due to a lack of business ethics (perhaps an oxymoron) of some of the registrars and their afiliates.

Given the fact that the Internet is in its infancy, but has apparently already - perhaps because it is still so young - attracted some corporate players who have behaved during the .info rollout as though they schooled in used car lots, it's time for the appointment or establishment of an ethical regulatory authority to stop the abuses which characterised the Afilias .info launch.

ICANN as currently constituted is patently not up to the job.

While incredibly valuable, web sites such as Garry's and Richard's - when it is permitted to operate - can't protect all the Internet community.

That job is for a public interest corporation or entity which the current ICANN is not, despite its public proclamations.

Privately operated public interest and consumer protection web sites must be encouraged, but the Internet community will continue to be at risk as long as the type of scamsters and carpetbaggers which characterised the Afilias .info launch are permitted to operate without apparent concern for the welfare of their customers or their negative impacts on the beneficial operation of the Internet.

Where are we now?  We are at that point where honest men walk away from the Afilias partnership describing the .info launch process as an abomination; a new extension is launched with an "after the event" TM fraud and cybersquatting policy which produces around 10,000 fraudulent registrations - processed by registrars and the registry without checks but described by Hal Lubsen on December 6, 2001 as "improperly submitted"; where an Afilias Director falsifies TM details in order to register names such as, but choses to describe the registrations as a trial error; where .info registrars engage in a form of insider trading by grabing lists of registrations, way beyong the limits imposed by ICANN; where registrars such as RegLand go belly up and disappear during the launch process with the preregistrations fees and chances of the people like the author who has yet to receive any advice from the company as to where his money went.....the list goes on.

It seems that there are too few honest men and women in the domain business at present - and until the directions and preferences of ICANN are changed through a change of executive personnel, the interests of the broad Internet community will be ignored in favour of the current big players and entrenched interests.


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