Outraged Over ICANN(R) Giving VeriSign(R) Monopoly

Most Profitable Line of Business Would See Gratuitous Price Hikes

Mar 01, 2006, 00:00 ET from

    SCOTTSDALE, Ariz., March 1 /PRNewswire/ --, the No. 1
 registrar of domain names worldwide, is outraged by the Internet Corporation
 for Assigned Names and Numbers' (ICANN) 9-5 vote last night to approve a new
 .COM registry agreement with VeriSign.  The agreement grants VeriSign
 uncontested price increases and perpetual monopoly power, which will lead to
 exorbitant profits at the expense of the Internet community.
     ICANN, the governing body of the Internet, has been working to settle a
 lawsuit with VeriSign, which manages .COM and .NET domain name extensions.
 The proposed settlement agreement would allow VeriSign to raise registration
 fees by seven percent annually in four of the next six years without
 cost-based justification.  It also would give VeriSign control of the .COM
 registry indefinitely, as it extends VeriSign's "presumptive renewal" right
 when the proposed settlement agreement expires in 2012.
     "We are bitterly disappointed, but we're not giving up yet.  It's simply a
 bad deal for the industry and registrants everywhere," said Bob Parsons, CEO
 and Founder of  "The fact that this monopolistic deal was
 approved is a loud signal that major changes are needed at ICANN." joined other top registrars, representing approximately
 57 percent of all registered .COM names, in petitioning ICANN to address
 concerns with the proposed settlement.  The ICANN board vote came only one
 week after the close of the public comment period, and without modifications
 to any of the raised issues.
     According to a Credit Suisse(R) analyst, the .COM registry is VeriSign's
 highest margin business.  One forecast puts the net present value of just the
 price increases in this agreement alone at about $1 billion.
     "I personally don't have a problem with VeriSign making a fair profit, but
 that's not what we're talking about here," Parsons said.  "I have a big
 problem with VeriSign's windfall profits being accomplished outside of the
 free enterprise system in which the rest of us must compete.  I find it
 particularly outrageous that because of the special privilege VeriSign wants
 to be granted, all of us who use the Internet may be denied the economies and
 innovation that come along as a natural part of our competitive environment."
     The new .COM registry agreement still requires approval from the U.S.
 Department of Commerce.  The controversial agreement has also prompted
 lawsuits by the Coalition for ICANN Transparency and the World Association of
 Domain Name Developers.  Additionally, some members of Congress have already
 expressed concerns with the deal.
     Parsons encourages all Americans to write to their Representatives and
 Senators and voice their opposition to the agreement.  He is helping to
 facilitate this by providing a form letter people can send to their elected
 officials.  For a copy of the action letter and more on Parsons' views, visit
     For information on Go Daddy(R) products and services, visit
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 membership-based registrar Blue Razor(R) Domains, Inc. (,
 and reseller registrar Wild West Domains(R), Inc. (
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 Certificates through its SSL Certificate Authority, Starfield Technologies(R),
 Inc. (  The Go Daddy Group registers or renews a domain
 name every 3 seconds and has nearly 12 million domain names in its portfolio.
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 Available Topic Expert(s): For information on the listed expert(s), click
 appropriate link.
 Bob Parsons
 Warren Adelman