[Comments-com-amendment-3-03jan20] .COM Price Increases

Marie Wakefield wakefieldm_2000 at yahoo.com
Mon Feb 10 23:54:07 UTC 2020


ICANN was created in part to introduce competition between domain name
registrars, but now ICANN itself is at the heart of the problem, without
considering any input from Internet users on these critical decisions. 


There are four main concerns with ICANN's decision: 

1. Price Increases

It is not clear how much of these price increases registrars will pass along
to consumers, but it is likely that most of these increases will be paid by
domain name registrants. The contract does allow for other price increases
for certain extraordinary situations, so it is possible prices could
increase more than anticipated. 


2. ICANN Will Receive an Extra $20 Million 


With the contract changes, Verisign agreed to pay ICANN an additional $20
million dollars over five years to support ICANN's initiatives regarding the
security and stability of the domain name system. There is no explanation
why Verisign did this, how ICANN will spend the money, or who will ensure
that the funds are properly spent. 


3. Verisign Can Operate as a Domain Registrar


The new contract will allow Verisign to operate its own registrar, except
for selling .COM domain names itself. To circumvent this, it is also
possible that Verisign could act as a reseller of .COM domains, through
another registrar.

This result is that the company that controls almost 80% of the registrar
pricing for domain names will compete directly with all domain registrars.
This is a conflict of interest.   

Verisign's registrar could also use its dominant position to charge higher
prices to consumers, while at the same time raising registrar prices. 


4. ICANN Ignored Previous Comments


As detailed on Standing Up to ICANN to Keep Domain Prices in Check and
pricecaps.org, over 3,500 comments were submitted in support of price
controls for the .ORG, .INFO, and .BIZ TLDs. Only six comments supported
removing price controls. ICANN discounted the comments that were in favor of
maintaining price caps. A number of the comments were submitted using an
online tool, which caused the comments to be discounted as "spam" by the
ICANN Ombudsman.  ICANN removed the price caps, primarily relying upon a
biased preliminary analysis from 2009 by an economics professor that did not
reference any data.


These changes will have a significant impact on the Internet for years to
come, and only ICANN and Verisign have participated in this decision.


Oppose these changes.




Marie Wakefield

3054 Hwy 20

Newport , OR 97365

wakefieldm_2000 at yahoo.com



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