[sf-lug] sf-lug.net

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Sun Jul 27 14:34:00 PDT 2008

Quoting jim (jim at well.com):

>    their email to me seems to imply a registration fee. 
> i'm taking rick's language as morally-based sarcasm. 

In a way -- though gratuitous moralism is invariably a poor teacher:
It's more fruitful to make sure one understands the domain-expiration
process, and then there are no (or few) surprises.  

One of my heroes, the late Rep. Barbara Jordan (D-TX), used to say:  "If
you're going to play the game, you need to know every rule."

> once someone's used some corporate entity such as 
> network solutions to register a domain name, i'm 
> guessing if the domain name expires, the corporate 
> entity retains control at least for a little while. 
> the first hope would be to sell it to the original 
> registering owner. a second hope might be to sell 
> it to a squatter or to retain the domain name as 
> a squatter. 

There's supposed to be (per ICANN regulations for accredited registrars)
a level playing field for all comers, starting 75 days after expiration,
when the registrar releases such domains into the generally-available
pool, an event called "the drop".  Naturally, sundry interests heartily
dislike level playing fields, so there are complications.  (There's
money in the absence of commodity services.)

The really easy takeaway lesson is to not ever let any domain get less
than, say, 30 days away from expiration unless you're deliberately
intending to let it expire.  I run my domain-check script as a weekly
cronjob to help friends avoid _accidental_-expiration mishaps.

Arguably, one of the more practical courses of action, if you _do_
accidentally let a cherished domain expire, is to retroactively say "I
_meant_ to do that."  ;->

> [...] i'm guessing i could pay them their registration ransom and once
> i've regained legal control i could switch the entity with which the
> domain name is registered. 

BTW, there's an ICANN regulation prohibiting domain transfers within 60
days after renewal/registration or prior transfer.

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