[NA-Discuss] Consumer information on domain "pre-registrations" -- well done

Beau Brendler beaubrendler at earthlink.net
Thu Sep 1 21:18:49 UTC 2011

   I wanted to share with the NA RALO this chain (below) that illustrates some
   inspiring co-operation among RALO, ALAC and ICANN staff on communications
   about the pre-registration issue.
   There may have been a fair amount of to-ing and fro-ing with e-mails and
   what not, but positive things emerged:
   1. Results.
   2. Opening up or strengthening issue communication to Scott Pinzon.
   3. Stepping back and setting down some actual procedures for "bottom up"
   policy communications.
   Thanks Evan, Darlene, Scott, Olivier et al for a semi-grueling procecural
   slog that hopefully will cut the work in half the next time around.

     -----Forwarded Message-----
     From: Scott Pinzon
     Sent: Sep 1, 2011 5:06 PM
     To: Beau Brendler , "Thompson,Darlene" , Evan Leibovitch
     Cc: Olivier MJ Crepin-Leblond , Cheryl Langdon-Orr , Seth Greene , Heidi
     Ullrich , Michele Jourdan
     Subject: Re: Consumer information on domain "pre-registrations"

   Thanks for asking, Beau. The text I reproduced below was already cleared by
   ICANNâs Legal Depât, so permission granted from my end.
   On 9/1/11 1:38 PM, "Beau Brendler" <[1]beaubrendler at earthlink.net> wrote:

     This is really great to see (not the bad behavior, of course, but us
     working together and being responsive).
     I would like permission to forward this exchange to the NA RALO list.

     -----Original Message-----
     From: Scott Pinzon
     Sent: Sep 1, 2011 3:39 PM
     To: "Thompson, Darlene" , Evan Leibovitch
     Cc: Beau Brendler , Olivier MJ Crepin-Leblond , Cheryl Langdon-Orr , Seth
     Greene , Heidi Ullrich , Michele Jourdan
     Subject: Re: Consumer information on domain "pre-registrations"
     Re: Consumer information on domain "pre-registrations" Wow, and here we go
     (with a link from there to:)
     Nine thousand+ âpre-ordersâ of non-existent domains. Compliance Depât and
     the Registrar Liaison have been made aware of this one, too.
     I  repeat:  thanks for surfacing the issue. I will bump up the user
     education materials a couple of notches in our lengthy queue of materials
     to create.
     Best Regards,
     On 9/1/11 11:14 AM, "Thompson, Darlene" <[4]DThompson1 at GOV.NU.CA> wrote:

     Thank you to Evan for brining this forward to Scott and thank you so much
     Scott for having this attended to so quickly!

     NARALO Secretariat

     Darlene A. Thompson
     Community Access Program Administrator
     Nunavut Dept. of Education / N-CAP
     P.O. Box 1000, Station 910
     Iqaluit, NU  X0A 0H0
     Phone:  (867) 975-5631
     Fax:  (867) 975-5610
     E-mail: [5]dthompson at gov.nu.ca <[6]mailto:dthompson at gov.nu.ca>
     From: Scott Pinzon [[7]mailto:scott.pinzon at icann.org]
     Sent: Thursday, September 01, 2011 1:58 PM
     To: Evan Leibovitch
     Cc: Beau Brendler; Thompson, Darlene; Olivier MJ Crepin-Leblond; Cheryl
     Langdon-Orr; Seth Greene; Heidi Ullrich; Michele Jourdan
     Subject: Re: Consumer information on domain "pre-registrations"
     Hi Evan,
     Your United Domains example was really helpful. I have interacted with the
     ICANN Compliance Department, who responds in part:
     Scott, Thank you for bringing this to my attention. We will work with the
     registrar in question to make sure that they address the confusion about
     ICANN registrar accreditation and pre-registrations in speculative new
     gTLDs. ICANN has not authorized anyone to offer such pre-registrations.
     Our compliance and registrar liaison teams will work to make sure that
     registrars  understand  this, and we will be happy to work with the
     communications team on ways to better educate the public as suggested by
     In the spirit of the thread earlier, ICANN will send the word out to all
     registrars  (not  merely  United Domains) that they shouldnât offer
     âpre-registrationsâ and that claiming one is authorized to do so because
     the organization is âICANN-accreditedâ is off limits.
     This is not the end of this issue, but itâs a constructive step; thanks
     again for putting the issue front and center.
     Best Regards,
     On 8/29/11 11:45 AM, "Evan Leibovitch" <[8]evan at telly.org> wrote:
     Hi Scott,
     Thanks for the quick reply.
     So, next step where I would deeply appreciate ALAC help is if you can
     provide examples of such pre-registration offers being made. This will
     help us know how to outline our educational materials, as weâll know what
     kinds of tricks and come-ons are being attempted.
     The example of pre-registration which prompted the most recent policy
     discussions in NARALO is United Domains
     <[9]https://www.uniteddomains.com/ntld/pre-register-new-domains> .
     While this is indeed a specific example, I am concerned that concentrating
     on one specific instance may simply lead to a game of "whack-a-mole", in
     which one effort may go away just to be followed by another. In addition
     to specific examples I think it's necessary to alert the public to the
     practice  in  general,  as the effort will most certainly appear in
     marketplaces outside our direct view.
     And thanks, Beau, for offering to share the load on this -- and I hope you
     get your electricity back soon. :-)
     - Evan
     On 29 August 2011 13:49, Scott Pinzon <[10]scott.pinzon at icann.org> wrote:
     Hi Evan,
     Thanks for reaching out to me with your email.
     We are on the same page regarding this issue. I believe that the scope of
     ICANNâs communications about new gTLDs should include end-user education
     about potential frauds such as you describe. Since ICANNâs official stance
     is that no proposed new gTLD can be assumed to exist in the future until
     it goes through all the evaluations described in the Applicant Guidebook,
     of course reserving second-level domain names under non-existent top-level
     domains is improper.
     Iâve been keeping half an eye on this issue since I first saw a YouTube
     video from a fly-by-night company offering reservations in non-existent
     proposed TLDs. By the time I had alerted other ICANN staff about the
     issue, the YouTube video had been taken down, and the site it pointed to
     was also gone.
     So, next step where I would deeply appreciate ALAC help is if you can
     provide examples of such pre-registration offers being made. This will
     help us know how to outline our educational materials, as weâll know what
     kinds of tricks and come-ons are being attempted.
     Thanks  again  for raising the issue, and I look forward to working
     cooperatively with At-Large in defense of the Internetâs individual users.
     Best Regards,
     On   8/26/11   9:29   PM,   "Evan  Leibovitch"  <[11]evan at telly.org
     <[12]http://evan@telly.org> > wrote:
     Hi Scott,
     Currently in NARALO (the North American region of At-Large) a significant
     concern has been raised about the concept of "pre-registrations" ... that
     is, some companies are offering to reserve for potential registrants,
     domains in TLDs that don't yet exist (but are expected to be approved in
     the new gTLD process).
     Some in At-Large believe that offering non-existent domains constitutes a
     form of consumer fraud, even if no money changes hands initially. Others
     are concerned that if the companies doing this are neither registries,
     registrars  or  gTLD  applicants and they are beyond reach of ICANN
     regulatory mechanisms.
     While this issue is currently under debate as related to ICANN policy, I
     am wondering if I can interest you in it, as part of your mandate to have
     the public better educated about the domain registration process. Would it
     be possible to do some kind of public ICANN information that at very least
     describes what pre-registration is (and what it is not), from the point of
     view of having more-aware registrants? Whether or not there is escalation
     for ICANN to do anything at a regulatory or policy level, perhaps we can
     at  least tackle the educational component of this issue -- whether
     pre-registrations are legally fraud or not, they are most certainly (in my
     opinion at least) a significant source of registrant confusion. Some
     trusted factual information is certainly appropriate as a minimum.
     What do you think?
     PS: While I an a NARALO member and ALAC Vice-Chair, I am writing this on
     my own initiative as a personal request for your consideration based on my
     involvement in the issue so far. Should you be interested to pursue this
     further there are others far better versed on the issue than I to assist
     with the educational process.

                       Evan Leibovitch, Toronto Canada
                          Em: evan at telly dot org
                             Sk: evanleibovitch
                                  Tw: el56


   1. file://localhost/tmp/beaubrendler@earthlink.net
   2. http://www.key-systems.net/press/next_big_dot_thing.php
   3. http://www.preorderyourdomain.com/
   4. file://localhost/tmp/DThompson1@GOV.NU.CA
   5. file://localhost/tmp/dthompson@gov.nu.ca
   6. mailto:dthompson at gov.nu.ca
   7. mailto:scott.pinzon at icann.org
   8. file://localhost/tmp/evan@telly.org
   9. https://www.uniteddomains.com/ntld/pre-register-new-domains
  10. file://localhost/tmp/scott.pinzon@icann.org
  11. file://localhost/tmp/evan@telly.org
  12. http://evan@telly.org/

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