ICANN contracts with registrars not registrants who are the true end users of the assets ICANN effectively regulates. From what I can see registrants needs are being ignored and the industry is moving in a very dangerous and increasing predatory direction. Domains are each unique, the idea of registry-registry competition makes no sense. Domains individually are like basic utilities, and as such demand regulation just like electricity and other utility monopolies have. These regulations include; pricing, and handling of domain expiration. Pricing regulation is needed to prevent extortion of businesses who can't survive without continued access, and predictable pricing, of their domain names. Any policy changes that allow tiered pricing, will eventually result in some form of pricing extortion by the registries. If fact this is already taking place at the registrar level. For example transfer fulfillment has reduced competition between registrars and caused consolidation of domains in just a few registrars. Smaller registrars can't compete any longer. If transfer fulfillment were ended (require domain ownership to be locked upon expiration) registrar's would then have more incentive to insure their customer's domains are renewed. Now registrars have incentive not to renew domains so they may be auctioned of. In fact income is orders of magnitude greater flipping domains in auctions each year versus renewing them. Allowing tiered pricing is the same, it now moves incentive to the registries to manipulate pricing and take over the actions from the registrars. In fact the so called "Waiting List Service" (WLS) has been approved for registries. In combination with no price controls, perhaps a competitor could make a WLS bid that sufficiently incentivized the registry to raise the renewal fee on just that domain so the competitor could kill their competition and obtain all their customers. While the given example might seem extreme, it is in fact happening right now. Today registrar use the renewal grace period to promote the domain as for sale at auction. Placing a bid for a domain in this state DOES effect how the registrar handles the domain at that point. With tiered pricing this moves down to registry control due to registrar low margins preventing markups over the registry price - In other words tiered pricing immediately shifts the auctions to the registries. Again, each domain name is effectively a "monopoly", but since a registrant must lease the domain and can't purchase it, domains are no different than a farmer in a country without land ownership laws ... After the farmer establishes a successful farm those more powerful kill the farmer and family to takeover the now profitable land. This is the very basis for the market success of .COM, and as time goes on individual domains increase do to the work of their previous registrants (the very basis of the secondary market). ICANN can not remove price controls from the registries. ICANN must follow, in some way, the same regulations used to control utilities and the prices they charge customers and that the pricing structure must be identical for all customers. ICANN must not create any more "divide and conquer" conditions in this industry and in fact needs to increase regulations on registrars and registries.