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Comments for the proposed renewal of the dot-com contact with VeriSign

  • To: com-renewal@xxxxxxxxx
  • Subject: Comments for the proposed renewal of the dot-com contact with VeriSign
  • From: Frank Michlick <frank@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 26 Apr 2012 10:55:09 -0400


DomainCocoon opposes the renewal of the current dot-com contract with
VeriSign under the terms proposed by ICANN. We believe the contract
should be open to both public scrutiny and bidding from interested parties.


In our daily work we interact with VeriSign as well as with many
ICANN-accredited registrars and their interfaces. We always have valued
the level of support VeriSign provides to its registrars and have been
impressed with the stability of the services it offers.

That being said, we're surprised to learn that ICANN proposes to
re-assign the COM operational contract to VeriSign without further
review of any potential competitive bids. This is especially astonishing
when bearing in mind that intricate details of the current version of
the contract are merely the result of a lawsuit settlement between ICANN
and VeriSign. The settlement in question was forged without public input
from community and stakeholders, and without much information given to
the public at large. The main concern of the contract, though not the
only one, is a provision which permits a price increase of 7% for four
out of six years.

It seems unrealistic for this price increase to be necessary, let alone
to open a venue for continued increases in the first place. Since the
cost of technology bandwidth and other related factors have
significantly come down over the years and will most likely continue to
reduce, the provision mentioned is anti-intuitive to the idea of
spreading technology and nurturing participation among Internet users.

Especially in light of the much lower registration prices for .NET
names, for which VeriSign operates a similar Registry infrastructure,
the cost on a per domain name basis should be lower for the .COM
registry operation. This is mainly due to the higher volume involved in
.COM. Consequently, the cost should decrease with the larger .COM
transaction volume, not increase.

Thank you for your consideration.

Frank Michlick,
Consultant/Founder for DomainCocoon Inc.

DomainCocoon is a consultant to registrars, resellers and hosting
companies. Amongst other services we currently help to manage three
active ICANN accredited registrars that also offer registration services
for COM/NET domains and others. Since our company also holds a portfolio
of about 800 domain names, we also see ourselves on the commercial
registrant side.


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