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Proposed New Contracts Could Devastate .Org, .Info & .Biz Registries

  • To: <biz-tld-agreement@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: Proposed New Contracts Could Devastate .Org, .Info & .Biz Registries
  • From: "Ron Jackson" <ron@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sun, 27 Aug 2006 17:11:05 -0400

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.


Ron Jackson


Internet Edge, Inc.

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