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Proposed .BIZ, .INFO AND .ORG gTLD Registry Agreements

  • To: biz-tld-agreement@xxxxxxxxx, info-tld-agreement@xxxxxxxxx, org-tld-agreement@xxxxxxxxx
  • Subject: Proposed .BIZ, .INFO AND .ORG gTLD Registry Agreements
  • From: Chris Raters <craters@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 25 Aug 2006 11:12:16 -0400

I oppose the new proposed terms for the operation of each of the .BIZ,
.INFO, and .ORG registries due to the Presumptive Renewal and the
Lifting of Pricing Controls on Registry Services. These two measures are
anti-competitive and promote abuse of the domain name system by registries.

Lifting the pricing controls will enable the registries to charge more
for a desirable domain name even if that domain name wasn't desirable
until after a business or other entity put work behind it to increase
it's worth. It makes something that should be eminently affordable for
all (therefore promoting competition) only affordable to a few that the
registries ultimately control.

Imagine having a driver's license and a car, for which you pay a modest
registration fee in order to drive it on public streets (similar to the
public Internet). Then you are informed that in 6 months you will have
to pay an exorbitant fee to drive on those same streets (one that you
may not be able to afford). Sure you can pre-pay 10 year's worth of the
current fees so you can drive for 10 years. But since there's no one
else to compete for administration of car registrations, in 10 years,
even if your car is still in good shape, you will be priced out of
driving it.

Registries are FOR-PROFIT entities. They are going to take whatever they
feel they can get. They aren't going to be afraid of raising prices on
domains they consider to be desirable. They want to maximize their
profit. However, it doesn't cost them one cent more to register a
popular domain name than an unpopular domain name. In order to maximize
this profit potential, they will take advantage of the work the popular
domain owner has put into their domain and force them to pay more for
their own success.

In addition, terms like these, if approved, will likely make their way
into other TLD agreements in the future. It's time ICANN stop giving
registries the benefit of the doubt or even a long leash. ICANN should
be concerned about the welfare of ALL current and potential domain
owners because registries are NOT. They are only concerned about
themselves and their own profit.

I urge ICANN to reject these proposed agreements in regards to the price
control and renewal provisions. Any terms that will negatively affect
the certainty and assurance of reasonably priced domain names for all
should be rejected outright.

Chris Raters
(toasty.com, raters.org)

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