New York, New York – (The Hosting News) – February 16, 2006 – Domain registrar and web hosting provider, Register.com, Inc., has joined other top registrars to urge the Board of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to revise a settlement agreement and .com contract extension with VeriSign, Inc.
The current version of the agreement allows for unchecked .com general top level domain registration rate hikes and permits VeriSign ‘presumptive renewal’ of its contract, which practically denies a competitive bid when the contract ends in 2012.
According to Register.com, among issues at hand, the .com registry agreement and proposed settlement between ICANN and VeriSign permits VeriSign to raise .com registration fees by 7 percent annually without justification or review in four of the next six years. The agreement also bars any future competitive re-bid of the contract, virtually guaranteeing that VeriSign will hold the contract forever.
Roni Jacobson, General Counsel and COO, Register.com said, ”A perpetual .com contract with year-over-year price increases is anti-competitive and serves no one but VeriSign. Because the .com extension accounts for 75 percent of registered domain names in the U.S., ICANN has placed VeriSign in a position of market power by appointing them as the .com operator. ICANN’s mission is to protect consumers from that power, which requires that it reject these unjustified price increases. Neither VeriSign nor ICANN have made the case for a 31 percent price increase over six years.”
The registrars sent a letter on February 14 to ICANN Board Chairman Vinton Cerf and all 20 Board members requesting specific changes to the VeriSign settlement agreement. The proposed settlement requires approval from ICANN’s Board and the U.S. Department of Commerce. ICANN recently posted its newly revised proposed set of agreements, for which a comment period closes February 20. It is expected a decision will be made shortly thereafter.
To learn more about Register.com, please visit: www.register.com.