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VeriSign Signals Readiness to Auction Deleted Domains
Brett_Tabke




msg:685277
 10:34 pm on Jan 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

Verisigns recent Dot Net Application [icann.org] contain a gem:

VeriSign is now working with Bruce Tonkin, one of the Registrar Constituency's representatives to the GNSO Council, to facilitate the process of developing a solution for an industry-wide com/net deleted names handling process, which facilitates an open auction during the pending delete period.

In January 2005, VeriSign will begin surveying end users in the Internet community to get input on various types of auction house solutions and price sensitivity for deleted name auctions. VeriSign anticipates providing the feedback received from end users, along with a revised deleted names proposed auction model in February 2005. The proposed model will be further vetted with registrars and other stakeholders to ensure that it adequately addresses the needs of registrars, registrants, and other impacted parties.

Tipped off by: IcannWatch [icannwatch.org]

 

Clark




msg:685278
 11:32 pm on Jan 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

Does that mean the registrar wants to make sure they make the maximum amount of money off of deleted domain rather than allow it to go back to unregistered status which would be most appropriate.

mm1220




msg:685279
 12:01 am on Jan 25, 2005 (gmt 0)

I'm sure VeriSign aren't proposing it for the good of their health and that it may push up the price of dropping domains. But I'd rather have the option of bidding for a dropping domain at its market value (as opposed to the basic registration value) than the current scenario where I can, in theory, register for $10 but realistically don't stand a chance against the ultsearch's of this world.

It'll be interesting to see what auction model they go with.

Lord Majestic




msg:685280
 12:03 am on Jan 25, 2005 (gmt 0)

And I'd rather have miriad of top level domains, anything in fact: this would kill the idea of domain speculation since there will always be a combination of goodword1.goodword2 domain rather than gooodword1.com. And more importantly -- concept of domain ownership. Why should people pay a lot of money for something that they can't own?!?!

Manga




msg:685281
 3:37 am on Jan 25, 2005 (gmt 0)

Hopefully the auction system they choose will be fairer than the sealed bid scam some expiring domain auction houses are using.

skibum




msg:685282
 3:46 am on Jan 25, 2005 (gmt 0)

Why should people pay a lot of money for something that they can't own?!?!

At least in the US, people pay tons of money for real estate too but they never actually own it, at least not that I'm aware of, but the price keeps going up and up and up. Same thing with domains.

peted




msg:685283
 2:20 am on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

For a long time I assumed when I registered a domain name that I had a license to use it and I was therefore a licensee. Implicit in this assumption was that some other entity was the licensor/owner. But I'm not so sure anymore. I think one does own a domain name during the term of its registration. The best discussion to date (of which I am aware) of the legal nature of a domain name is the Network Solutions v. Umbro case, which is published at [gigalaw.com...] In my opinion, the Virginia Supreme Court clearly got it wrong, but the dissenting Chief Justice and the Senior Justice nailed it in their dissent. Unfortunately, dissents aren't the law. So the legal nature of domain names is still unresolved, and no one seems to be able to figure out just what they are. If the registrant doesn't own the name, then who does? I'd like to hear some opinions on this. * The great aspect of a bona fide auction is that everyone gets a bite at the apple. No sub rosa stuff.

davezan




msg:685284
 3:08 pm on Jan 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

Not an attorney either but I'll share my thoughts.

For a long time I assumed when I registered a domain name that I had a license to use it and I was therefore a licensee. Implicit in this assumption was that some other entity was the licensor/owner. But I'm not so sure anymore.

You could say that. What many people don't know (and I'm sure want to hear, either) is
that, in reality, they don't really own the domain name.

The registrar is selling you the right to use a name and manage it for you. But you create
the name and can do with it as you see fit as long as it's still paid.

I think one does own a domain name during the term of its registration.

As long as it's paid, you have rights to it. Once expired, you don't have rights except to
renew it or let it go.

An analogy would be club membership: if you don't pay your monthly or annual dues, you
eventually won't be able to avail of the club's amenities.

Unfortunately, dissents aren't the law. So the legal nature of domain names is still unresolved, and no one seems to be able to figure out just what they are.

If you're referring to the question as to whether domain names are property, that should
be irrelevant.

Why?

Imagine this: if domain names are declared property just like your house, and your spouse
decides to divorce you, your spouse can include your domain name among the items to
take from you, don't you think?

How many people have considered that aside from the attorneys?

If the registrant doesn't own the name, then who does? I'd like to hear some opinions on this.

In the registrar's viewpoint, whoever is listed as the registrant is the legal owner, no ifs
ands or buts.

peted




msg:685285
 10:36 pm on Feb 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

One very important aspect of what a domain name is or is not, is the tax treatment of its purchase. If a domain name is intangible property purchased and owned by a taxpayer, he can amortize its purchase price over a 15 year period, instead of having the treat the entire purchase price as an expense of the period in which it was purchased. As an example, if I buy buziness.com for $15M, that means I can spread that expense over 15 years, $1M per year, instead of having to take a $15M hit in one year. The effects on yearly profitability and tax liability are enormous. There is another issue in the trademark/tradename area. I understand that the USPTO (patent and trademark office) is permitting the registration of certain domain names. What if the trademark registration period exceeds the domain name registration period, that is, the registration of the domain name expires? Does that mean one can have an exclusive claim to the domain name, even if the domain name registration expires? From my point of view, in light of how the domain name registration system works, I don't see how a domain name can become registered as a trademark. Also, I note that nowhere in the domain name registration system is the word "owner" used. Why isn't a domain name holder referred to as "owner" rather than "registrant"? It's all still unsettled, it seems like no one knows what a domain name is.

davezan




msg:685286
 3:42 pm on Feb 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

There is another issue in the trademark/tradename area. I understand that the USPTO (patent and trademark office) is permitting the registration of certain domain names. What if the trademark registration period exceeds the domain name registration period, that is, the registration of the domain name expires? Does that mean one can have an exclusive claim to the domain name, even if the domain name registration expires? From my point of view, in light of how the domain name registration system works, I don't see how a domain name can become registered as a trademark.

While not an attorney, I'll offer some "unprofessional" feedback.

For instance, this recent UDRP case came in: mess.com [arbiter.wipo.int]

The complainant attempted to convince the UDRP panelists (in this case WIPO) due to their registered trademark
"mess.com". But if you read thoroughly, you'll see why it was denied.

Having a registered trademark doesn't necessarily grant its applicant absolute exclusive rights to the word/s no
matter what its usage except in the class where it's registered.

Also, I note that nowhere in the domain name registration system is the word "owner" used. Why isn't a domain name holder referred to as "owner" rather than "registrant"? It's all still unsettled, it seems like no one knows what a domain name is.

Registrars view domain names as service contracts that are governed by their respective registration agreements,
and not as property.

Also, anyone can claim ownership of a domain name. It then becomes a matter of proving such.

Registrars treat whoever is listed as the registrant as the legal owner, no ifs ands or buts. So if your name or that
of your holding/s isn't list there, better check fast.

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