Re-sending TXT form of Proposed IDNA2008 Transition Idea

Steve Crocker steve at
Mon Dec 14 21:44:51 CET 2009


With the caveat that I haven't given this deep and lengthy thought and  
I haven't discussed this with anyone else, the model and value  
proposition I have in mind is the following.

The variants represent a potential for new revenue if either the  
existing registrant or a new registrant is willing to pay for it.  As  
a marketing strategy, the registrar can choose to register the  
variants for a period of time.  This would be a loss leader, but the  
costs would be minimal if the registry and ICANN cooperated to waive  
their fees.

The technical detail would be for the registrar to send to the  
registry the same set of records associated with the base name.  This  
would be independent of whether the registrar were also the DNS  
operator or web service provider for the registrant.

The registrants would all be notified but wouldn't have to do  
anything.  When the time period expires, the registrant could choose  
to keep none, some or all of the variants.  Whether this is a good  
deal for the registrars depends on the retention rate.  I'm not expert  
in this, but it seems to me it's *much* more attractive to sell a  
renewal of something the registrant has already been using than it is  
to sell him something new.  That's why free trial periods are included  
for software, XM radio, etc., etc.

The cost for the registrars is a mass operation that does not require  
any buy in from the registrants in advance.  The cost for the registry  
is support for the additional names.  Pat Kane points out that some of  
the IDNs have an explosive number of variants.  I was focused just on  
the sharp-s situation, and the expansion factor there is likely to be  
pretty modest.


On Dec 14, 2009, at 3:34 PM, John C Klensin wrote:

> --On Monday, December 14, 2009 15:17 -0500 Steve Crocker
> <steve at> wrote:
>> Patrik,
>> Thanks.  Let me say this a bit more carefully.  My wording was
>> indeed   imprecise.  The meaning I intended, particularly in
>> the ICANN arena   where the registries are restricted from
>> initiating registrations, is   that the registrar would
>> registrar the variants on behalf of the   existing registrant
>> at no cost for a limited period of time.
>> ...
> Steve,
> I'm trying to figure out how this would work, at least other
> than on a case-by-case basis.  For the registries, ICANN could
> do some persuading, could waive the per-name fee, or offer other
> incentives.   And there aren't very many of them.   But it seems
> to me that the registrars are a different matter: There are many
> of them.  We know that a large number of them are in it
> primarily for the money, with "smooth, stable, and secure
> operation of the Internet" as not a very high priority.   Having
> this be "no cost" means that they have to go to significant
> effort to identify appropriate registrations and create new ones
> without any expectation of compensation.  Worse, they then
> either have to track the registrants down and work out with them
> how the new zones are going to be delegated and supported
> (costly) or have to support those delegations themselves (also
> costly and with the potential of all sorts of interesting
> security problems since, by definition, that means that the two
> zone files are different except in the case in which the
> registrar is already the registrant's zone admin (and maybe web
> and mail service provider).  I don't see our being able to
> persuade them to do that work for the general good as being very
> likely.
> Do you have a different model in mind?
>    john
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