Tag Archives: .NET

.ORG Sixth Largest TLD As Registrations Grow Strongly

Public Interest Registry .ORG logoThe number of .ORG domain names grew by 7.7 per cent in the first half of 2012 compared to the same period in 2011, with the total number of domains registered totalling 9.9 million at the end of June, the Public Interest Registry revealed in its latest bi-annual report The Dashboard.

The number of .ORG domain names now totals 10.064 million with the ten millionth registration happening on 24 June according to a PIR news release dated 11 July. So either registrations temporarily went backwards or there are several ways to count .ORG domain names!

The report also notes the number of registered .ORG domain names increased from 3.9 million in 2006 to 9.9 million by the end of June 2012 – a net gain of 305,948 for the first half of the year and an increase of 154 percent over seven years.

The largest TLD globally is naturally .COM with around 104.127m domain names registered. Second is .DE (Germany) with 15.159m registrations then .NET (14.767m). Following is .TK (Tokelau – 10.5m), .UK (United Kingdom – 10.179m), .ORG (10.055m), .INFO (8.118m).NL (Netherlands – 5.015m), .RU (Russian Federation – 3.928m), .EU (European Union – 3.644m) and then .BR (3m).

The blended renewal rate for .ORG, the average renewal rate from the first to the third year, of existing .ORG websites for the first half of 2012 was 75.4 per cent.

PIR has also applied for six new top level domains: .NGO, .ONG and four internationalised domains that translate into “organisation,” “org” or “structured organisation” in Devanagari, Cyrillic and Chinese-simplified scripts.

“We have seen tremendous growth of the .ORG domain over the last few years, underscoring the fact that .ORG remains the go-to online home for individuals and companies advancing their cause or mission,” said Brian Cute, CEO of Public Interest Registry. “What’s more is that the year ahead also promises to be an exciting one for PIR. Not only will we remain focused on continuing to expand the .ORG domain globally and in new markets such as India, Russia and China, but we will also be introducing complementary domain options – such as .NGO or .ONG – that will, like .ORG, serve as trusted online venues for nonprofit and nongovernmental communities worldwide.”

For more information on “The Dashboard” or to download a copy, see pir.org/news

ICANN Publishes New .COM/.NET Registry Agreements With 7% Annual Increases

ICANN have published the proposed new registry agreement with Verisign for the .COM and .NET TLDs. The main issue on everyone’s minds when this agreement is renewed is price. The new agreement sees a maximum price per .COM and .NET domain payable to ICANN for registry services, which will increase to $7.85 per domain, from the $6 per domain name as of 2006, as of 31 December 2012, and then a maximum of a seven per cent increase per year afterwards for the life of the agreement. Six months notice to ICANN is required for any fee increase.The new agreement for both .COM and .NET will also see the registry fee replaced with a lump sum quarterly fee based on an additional $0.25 per transaction in the TLD instead of a one-time lump sum payment of, in the case of .COM, $625,000. ICANN Notes this is a substantial increase in Verisign’s contribution.In Verisign’s current agreement with ICANN (Section 4.2), it specifies that the pricing and renewal provisions (among others) are not subject to change through the agreement renewal process. If the .com pricing provisions were to be changed to be similar to the other large gTLDs then that would most likely allow Verisign to raise prices by 10% per year in each of the six years of the agreement, as in the .biz, .info, .net, and .org agreements.The agreement is a 22 page document and also includes a number of other provisions including:

  • support for IPv6 and DNSSEC
  • publication of registry abuse contact information
  • to periodically negotiate in good faith regarding implementation of new escrow, Whois and technical specifications
  • compliance with IDNA and IDN guidelines
  • allow ICANN to use multiple monitoring locations for DNS and to monitor TCP queries.

There are also a number of changes to bring the registry agreement for .COM and .NET into line with other registry agreements in addition to the $0.25 fee per domain such as requiring the registry operator to implement ICANN ordered registrar suspensions to facilitate ICANN’s contractual compliance efforts. Another new provision allows the registry operator to temporarily prevent the registration of one or more names in the TLD in order to respond to an imminent threat to the security and/or stability of the TLD or the internet.The agreement also clarifies that the use of traffic data would be limited to “thin” registry model data even if registry were to follow the “thick” registry model as well as clarification that prohibition on “SiteFinder” or other universal wildcard functions does not prohibit provision of name service or any other non-registry service for a domain or zone used for other than registration services and broad indemnification rights in favour of ICANN.There will also be no requirement in the new agreement for Verisign to comply with the rights protection mechanisms (RPMs) developed for new gTLDs: Uniform Rapid Suspension (URS), Post-Delegation Dispute Resolution Process (PDDRP), and the Trademark Clearinghouse.There are six documents posted for public comment with more information and links at www.icann.org/en/news/announcements/announcement-27mar12-en.htm. Public comment is open until 26 April and the new agreements will be considered by the ICANN Board after public comment. Public comments will be posted at www.icann.org/en/news/public-comment/com-renewal-27mar12-en.htm.

Verisign Announces Strong Growth As .COM Passes 100m Registrations

Total registrations of .COM and .NET domain names increased to 113.8 million at the end of 2011 representing an eight per cent increase year-on-year Verisign announced. The company also announced the total number of .COM and .NET registrations increased by 7.9 million registrations in the final quarter of 2011.While Verisign does not report separate registration figures for .COM and .NET, Domain Tools announced they believe there are now well over 100 million .COM registrations.In their announcement, DomainTools said:
“Verisign publishes a daily ‘zone file’ of registered .com domain names with their associated nameservers. Yesterday the zone file listed 99,837548 .COM domain names and that number has been growing by an average of about 22,000 net new .com domain names per day so far in 2012. But there are two general categories of domain names that exist but are not listed in the zone files.”DomainTools describes the two categories as thus:
“The first category is well known, at least to people who work in and around the domain industry: domains in the Redemption or Pending Delete periods. Each day tens of thousands of .com domain names hit their renewal date. There are currently 2.1 million .com domain names in either Redemption or Pending Delete status.”The second category is much less well known, a category DomainTools refers to as ‘dark domains’. Domain names that exist, but are not pointed to nameservers, are not listed in the zone file and therefore not counted by most sites that track domain registration data. An example of such a domain is Spectrum.com; it exists but has no nameservers, and does not resolve to a website. Another example is theexpertcare.com; the Whois record indicates a fraud alert on the domain name and a ‘suspended’ status. This domain is also not in the zone file and yet is certainly not available for anyone to register.”Commenting on the Verisign results, Jim Bidzos, chairman and chief executive officer said:
“In a year that saw strong growth in global internet adoption, increased demand on our DNS infrastructure, and a growing need for network security services, Verisign delivered security and stability. We were able to both invest in strengthening our infrastructure, and manage our business for growth. Also in 2011, we completed four years of board-directed restructuring, including divesting non-core businesses, and relocating our corporate headquarters. We returned divestiture proceeds to our shareholders. This restructuring has resulted in a more efficient, focused Verisign that we believe is better prepared for the opportunities ahead. We delivered for both the global community of Internet users that increasingly rely on us, and for our shareholders.”

Verisign Reports 13% Growth In Year To End Q2

VeriSign logoVerisign reported financial results for the second quarter to end 30 June 2011 with reported revenue of $190 million for the quarter, up five per cent from the prior quarter and up 13 per cent from the same quarter in 2010.

Verisign Registry Services ended the quarter with 110 million active domain names in the adjusted zone for .COM and .NET, representing an eight per cent increase year-over-year.

In the second quarter of 2011, Verisign processed 8.1 million new domain name registrations, representing a two per cent increase year-over-year.

Other highlights of the report relating to domain names included:

  • On May 11, 2011, Verisign announced that it had entered into a Settlement Agreement and Mutual Release with the Coalition for ICANN Transparency, Inc. (CFIT), CFIT’s members and specified related parties that resolved the over five year long CFIT litigation
  • On June 28, 2011, Verisign announced that ICANN and Verisign have renewed Verisign’s contract to serve as the authoritative registry operator for the .NET registry for another six years
  • On 14 July, 2011, Verisign announced that as of 15 January, 2012, the registry fee for .COM domain names will increase from $7.34 to $7.85 and that the registry fee for .NET domain names will increase from $4.65 to $5.11, the maximum possible under the registry agreement with ICANN.

The full Verisign news release with further details of the financial results is available here.

VeriSign Ups .COM & .NET Registry Fees By Maximum Allowed

The registry fee for .COM and .NET domain names will increase from $7.34 to $7.85 and $4.65 to $5.11 respectively on 15 January 2012 VeriSign, the registry for both TLDs, announced.The increases are a smidgen under the maximum possible under the registry agreement with ICANN – seven per cent for .COM and ten per cent for .NET.The last increase was on 1 July 2010 when the registry fee for .COM domains increased from $6.86 to $7.34 and for .NET domains increased from $4.23 to $4.65.In justifying the increases, VeriSign said in a statement that:
Continued strong global Internet usage growth, along with increasingly powerful distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks leveled against all parts of the Internet’s critical infrastructure, have dramatically increased the demands on Internet infrastructure providers such as Verisign. In the last five years, the volume of Domain Name System (DNS) queries on Verisign’s global Internet infrastructure has more than doubled, increasing to an average daily query load of 57 billion in the first quarter of 2011. Future growth is expected to occur at an even faster pace. Verisign’s infrastructure has maintained 100 percent operational security, accuracy and stability for more than a decade due to continued innovation and investment in the infrastructure.To avoid the increases, registrants are able to register their .COM and .NET domains before 15 January.To register your .COM and .NET domain names, check out America Registry here.

VeriSign Announces 12% Growth In First Quarter 2011

VeriSign logoVeriSign, Inc., the registry for .COM and .NET domain names reported financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2011 on 28 April with reported revenue of $182 million for the first quarter of 2011, up two per cent from the prior quarter and up 12 per cent from the same quarter in 2010.

On the domain name front, Verisign Registry Services reported approximately 108 million active domain names in the adjusted zone for .COM and .NET, following with their typical reporting not breaking up .COM and .NET domain name numbers. This represented a nine per cent increase year-over-year.

In the first quarter, Verisign processed a record 8.3 million new domain name registrations, representing an approximate increase of three per cent year-over-year.

Verisign experienced an average daily query load of 57 billion during the first quarter, compared to 54 billion in the same quarter 2010.

“We are pleased to report another record quarter for Verisign in new domain name registrations and strong performance overall in the Naming Services business,” said Mark McLaughlin, president and chief executive officer of Verisign. “Our commitment to the continued availability and reliability of the Internet is core to our strategy, and we plan to leverage our extensive expertise and leadership in DNS management to help our customers improve the effectiveness and integrity of Internet communications.”

In other domain name news in the results, on 11 April, 2011, Verisign announced that ICANN posted renewal terms for the .NET Registry Agreement that were negotiated between Verisign and ICANN and are substantially the same terms contained in the .NET Agreement.

On 31 March, 2011, Verisign deployed Domain Name System Security (“DNSSEC”) in the .COM domain to provide origin authentication of Domain Name System (“DNS”) data, authenticated of existence, and data integrity.

Also announced announced during the quarter was that Verisign’s Managed DNS Service provides full support for DNSSEC compliance features and Geo-location capabilities, product enhancements which strengthen the and performance of DNS transactions.

Verisign ended the first quarter of 2011 with approximately 1,040 employees, compared to 1,050 employees at the end of the prior.

In addition, Verisign announced that its Board of Directors declared a special dividend of $2.75 per share of its common stock. The special dividend will be paid on May 18, 2011 to shareholders of record as of the close of business on May 9, 2011. The ex-dividend date will be May 5, 2011.

“Given the strength of our capital position following the restructuring of the business over the past several years, particularly as a result of the sale of the Authentication Services business last August, the Board voted at a regularly scheduled meeting to return approximately $463 million to the shareholders in the form of a special dividend,” said Jim Bidzos, chairman of the board.

Verisign’s Board of Directors has designated the special dividend as an extraordinary dividend for purposes of the indenture governing the company’s 3.25% Junior Subordinated Convertible Debentures due 2037 (the “Convertible Debentures”). As a result, contingent interest of approximately $100 million will also be paid on May 18, 2011 to holders of record of the Convertible Debentures at the close of business on May 9, 2011. Verisign expects that the aggregate amount of payments to be made in connection with the special dividend and the contingent interest will be approximately $563 million.

“We are committed to delivering value to our shareholders through disciplined operations and investment in growth opportunities for the company,” said Brian Robins, chief financial officer of Verisign. “During the first quarter, we utilized approximately $200 million to repurchase shares and we have share repurchase authorization of approximately $1.2 billion remaining under the current program.”

America Registry logoTo register your .COM and .NET domain names, check out America Registry here.

ICANN Proposes VeriSign .NET Agreement With 10% Annual Increase

ICANN logoVeriSign logoICANN has posted a proposed draft renewal agreement for the operation of the .NET registry that allows for an increase in the “service fee” for each new .NET registration and each renewal of ten per cent each year for the life of the agreement.

The proposed agreement says “the price to ICANN-accredited registrars for new and renewal domain name registrations and for transferring a domain name registration from one ICANN-accredited registrar to another, shall not exceed a total fee of US$5.40, which fee consists of (A) a Registry Operator service fee (“Service Fee”) equal to US$4.65, and (B) an ICANN fee equal to US$0.75.”

The proposed renewal agreement from Verisign includes modified provisions to bring the .NET agreement into line with other comparable agreements (e.g. BIZ, COM, INFO, ORG), including terms such as traffic data, limitation of liability, indemnification, assignment, and notice provisions.

In addition to the changes to bring .NET into conformance with other agreements, Verisign has requested a change to give more flexibility for the registry to take action to prevent the registration of particular domain names when necessary in order to protect the security and stability of the DNS and the Internet – such as the actions that were taken by Verisign and other registries in coordination with ICANN in order to mitigate the threat from the Conficker virus.

The current .NET Registry Agreement between ICANN and VeriSign is due to expire on 30 June 2011. Public comment may be submitted to net-agreement-renewal@icann.org through 10 May 2011 and viewed at forum.icann.org/lists/net-agreement-renewal.

America Registry logoTo register your .NET domain name, check out America Registry here.

ICANN Public Comment: Proposal for Renewal of the .NET Registry Agreement

ICANN logoICANN is today posting a proposed draft renewal agreement for the operation of the .NET registry. The current .NET Registry Agreement is due to expire on 30 June 2011.

ICANN’s gTLD registry agreements provide for presumptive renewal so long as certain requirements are met. The agreements also provide that upon renewal, changes may be made in the agreement to render the terms similar to other comparable agreements. The proposed renewal agreement from Verisign includes modified provisions to bring the .NET agreement into line with other comparable agreements (e.g. BIZ, COM, INFO, ORG), including terms such as traffic data, limitation of liability, indemnification, assignment, and notice provisions.

In addition to the changes to bring .NET into conformance with other agreements, Verisign has requested a change to give more flexibility for the registry to take action to prevent the registration of particular domain names when necessary in order to protect the security and stability of the DNS and the Internet – such as the actions that were taken by Verisign and other registries in coordination with ICANN in order to mitigate the threat from the Conficker virus.

One other significant change to the agreement would give the registry operator more flexibility to offer training, technical support, marketing or incentive programs for the purpose of supporting the development of the Internet in underserved markets.

The appendices to the agreement are also generally consistent with the current agreement. There are limited updates and deletion of obsolete provisions to Appendices 4, 7 and 10 – readily apparent in the redline document. These updates reflect changes to technical protocols and refinement of reporting requirements.

The following documents are provided for public comment:

Public comment may be submitted to net-agreement-renewal@icann.org through 10 May 2011 and viewed at forum.icann.org/lists/net-agreement-renewal/.

This ICANN announcement was sourced from:
icann.org/en/announcements/announcement-11apr11-en.htm

America Registry logoTo register your .NET domain name, check out America Registry here.

VeriSign Court Case Loss Could Shake Up Registry for .COM and .NET Domains

“VeriSign has suffered another legal setback in its antitrust court battle with the Coalition For ICANN Transparency (CFIT), after an appeals court ruled that CFIT has a case to be heard,” writes Kevin Murphy on his Domain Incite blog.The CFIT believes VeriSign’s deal with ICANN to run the .COM registry, which has a presumptive right of renewal and allows annual price increases, breaks US competition law, says Murphy in his report.Domain Name Wire summarised the case as thus: The CFIT sued VeriSign for its no-bid contract with ICANN, among other things. The district court dismissed the case, and CFIT appealed. Last year the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the district court had erred. VeriSign essentially appealed that ruling, asking for a rehearing. Today the court of appeals denied that motion for a rehearing.And in a comment on the case, Bret Fausett told Domain Name Wire the case has the potential to do one of two things: either VeriSign will petition the Supreme Court to hear the case, or it will go back to the district court for a trial.A worst case scenario could see VeriSign lose its right to operate the registry for .COM and .NET domain names. However whichever way it goes, there is a good chance the wholesale price of .COM and .NET domains could be reduced.For more information see:
domainincite.com/verisign-antitrust-claims-will-be-heard-in-court/
domainnamewire.com/2010/07/09/verisign-loses-big-in-court-on-com-domains/To register your .COM or .NET domain names, check out America Registry here.

VeriSign Increases Registry Fee for .COM and .NET Domains

VeriSign, the registry operator for .COM and .NET domain names announced this week that effective 1 July 2010 there will be an increase in registry domain name fees, effectively the wholesale price to registrars, for the Top Level Domains as per its agreements with ICANN.The increase will see the registry fee for .COM domains will increase from $6.86 to $7.34 and that the registry fee for .NET domain names will increase from $4.23 to $4.65.VeriSign has justified the increase on the economy and society becoming increasingly dependent on digital technology With this they say it is imperative that investment in the underlying infrastructure, including .COM and .NET, continue to keep pace with the robust growth of the Internet and ensure its continued security and reliability. Over the last decade, the volume of Internet traffic and domain name system (DNS) queries on VeriSign’s global infrastructure has increased from an average of approximately 2 billion queries per day in the year 2000 to more than 50 billion queries per day today while maintaining 100 percent operational accuracy and stability for the last eleven years.Over the next decade, VeriSign claims they will continue investment to build out the .COM and .NET infrastructures to manage the increasing demands on the infrastructure brought on by the proliferation of Internet-enabled phones and devices and the emergence of DNS-centric technologies and services. VeriSign also continues to scale and fortify the .com and .net infrastructures globally to defend against increasingly sophisticated cyber attacks.To register your .COM or .NET domain names, check out Europe Registry here.