[ga] Pointless TF Survey
Dear Dan Steinberg and members of the Transfers TF:
The following letter (cited below) was posted to the ICANN public forum:
This letter is merely one of a great many that appear in the Forums and which
may be found in the customer complaint files of several registrars. With all
of the available registrant input that we have available to review, why does
this TF persist in the belief that we require yet another "survey" to
determine registrants attitudes regarding transfer practices? Is there any
compelling reason why we need to gather even more data when sufficient horror
stories abound? Why not just get on with the job that you volunteered to do,
and craft a definitive policy to govern transfers?
I recently had a domain name coming up for renewal and thought it would be a
good time to go to a registrar that was cheaper and had better service.
Looking at my domain's whois record, I realized that the contact e-mail
address was an old address that I no longer use. In fact, the name was
registered under a pen name I once used as a writer. I imagined the great
difficulty I would have proving I owned the domain just to get the contact
So I thought I would just let the domain record expire and then register it
again with someone else. In fact, I had just done this with a domain at
another registrar last month and it worked great. But as many have already
learned, NSI has other plans for expired domains.
I had been monitoring my whois record, waiting for it to come up empty, but
that never happened. But one day my mail server address would not resolve.
I figured that was my cue to go renew domain but my new registrar said the
domain was not available. Apparently, NSI still had not released the domain,
although it was no longer working.
I called up NSI to find out when the domain would be released and after 10
minutes of trying to get the non-english speaking rep to spell my 4-letter
domain corectly, I suddenly felt like I was getting a big runaround. The rep
told me they would not delete the name until required by ICANN policy. I
asked how long that was and they said they didn't know. "So how do you know
when to delete it?" I asked. He said they delete it according to ICANN
I thought about doing a transfer to another registrar, but was told I could
not do so without first renewing with them. I asked for a supervisor who
fortunately spoke English better and was told it could take up to 60 days for
the name to be released. In the meantime, I would not be allowed to change
any contact information or transfer the domain nor could I renew the domain
with another registrar. The only way I can get my name back is to either
renew with them or wait an "indefinite" time period for the record to be
deleted. They told me this was all according to their service agreement.
I signed a 2-year agreement with NSI for domain registration services when I
originally registered the domain. That time period is over and the contract
expired. They are no longer providing me with their services and I am no
longer bound to their agreement. Yet they seem to be able to get away with
preventing any competitors from renewing my domain for me. They now control
my domain and the only way for me to get it back is to pay them (and only
In reading comments at http://nsihorrorstories.com/index.shtml, I see my
story is nothing unique. This is a clear demonstration of anticompetitive
practices. Verisign obviously does not want others to take their business so
rather than end the contract they say the domain is in "unpaid" status and
use that as an excuse to keep other registrars from taking their business.
Clearly something needs to be done about this.
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