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ICANN Seeking Advice on Dealing with Domain Registrars and Protecting Domain Owners

At its 29th International Public Meeting in San Juan, Puerto Rico, ICANN hosted a workshop discussing improvements needed for its domain name Registrar Accreditation Agreement (RAA) and steps to ensure domain name registrars provide good service to their customers.

The effort stems from the recent debacle involving registrar RegisterFly, which ICANN had to strip of its accreditation due to poor quality of service, which prompted massive and loud complaints from many of its tens of thousands of customers.

PC World reports that, "Among the issues panelists and audience members debated was the need for Internet registrars — companies ICANN accredits to sell Internet domain names to individuals and organizations — to escrow their customers' data with ICANN or another third party."

Read full story: PC World

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Related topics: DNS, Domain Names, ICANN

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Re: ICANN Seeking Advice on Dealing with Domain Registrars and Protecting Domain Owners VBDesign  –  Jul 26, 2007 4:27 PM PST

The way this article is worded, one would think that ICANN was surprised by the Registryfly debacle. One might also get the sense they were actively looking for ways to improve their responsiveness to the end user of registration services, and that they are champions or truth and justice. Nothing could possibly be further from the truth. If "Spin" had an odor this article would reak.

The fact is that ICANN has enjoyed a steady diet of sloth and inertia up until the filing of a class action against them for not merely failing to act in the case of RegistryFly, but a willfull refusal to act in the face of the blatantly criminal behavior of their registrar. Their eventual enforcement of the RAA was forced upon them. It was not the benevolent intersession of a slow but merciful giant, compassionate but loathe to act in haste. It was the urgent act of an irresponsible child finally threatened with the shadow of impending consequence if they did not tidy their room.

ICANN has made itself consistantly unavailable to contact regarding registrar abuses, and in fact, was still responding to requests for action with a stock boiler plate answer abdicating responsibility for enforcing their own RAA even after acknowledging by action, that they did recognize that they were uniquely responsible for enforcing that agreement.

RegistryFly is not and will not be in the near term future, the only scandal in the ICANN portfolio. Several other registrars are currently engaged in a variety of miscreant behaviors, which under the current ICANN policies, there is no recourse other than to send a complaint more or less directly to the offending registry. When contacted, ICANN claimed they had no responsibility for enforcing the current RAA at all. A statement which is consistant with their past replies, and one which is disingenuousness embodied in its purest and most callous form.

Exactly what is the ammendment of this documentmeant to accomplish other than as a smoke and mirror show to distract those who believe that ICANN will act any differently toward the new version?

The RAA may or may not need an enema. What is clear is that ICANN itself has demonstrated a requirement for the weight of consequence to be felt when they fail to fullfil their responsibilities. They were meant to be transparent and approachable, responsible and authoritative, neutral and judicious… What they have become is sheltered, deceptive, and inert save for being easily bent to the interests of their corporate puppetmasters.

As to the thousands of loud complaints. This article seems to imply that ICANN heard them. The responses I have received are as far as I can tell, entirely typical of their response generally to any attempt to contact them. It is as though what they hear is the gentle chirping of crickets in the meadow. To them "I have lost my business and my livelihood due to your inaction" seems to fall upon their ears as, "chirp… Chirp… chirp..."

Should ICANN become the repository for proxy registration data to protect us from irresponsible registrars, who then will protect us from a demonstrably irresponsible ICANN?

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