The market for catching dropping .UK domains is overrun by many companies, thus making it often a matter of luck who catches the released names. The reason for this is apparently the drop times and order picked at random by the registry along with the low fees for becoming a .UK registrar.

The registry just sent a message to one of it’s mailing lists soliciting feedback from stakeholders for a potential reform of how expired domain names are treated. Nominet also published a document (PDF) that explains the context of the request. The summary mentions and explains issues like expired domain tasting by the registrar, expired domain auctions and drop catching.

The main questions asked by the registry operator are:

  1. What should the principles of the expired period be?
  2. What should Nominet’s and the registrar’s obligations be to the registrant in the renewal of domain names?
  3. Many registrars will have provisions in their terms and conditions which outline what the registrar will do when a domain name expires. What type of notice and level of transparency should registrants reasonably expect where specific practices are undertaken in the expired period?
  4. In the context of encouraging innovation within the industry, how should Nominet’s  policies support the development of new business models whilst ensuring registrants’ expectations are met?
  5. What further background information would it be helpful for Nominet to provide to the issue group members to assist their discussions?

Instructions on how to participate can be found on the Nominet Website. Participation is open to all interested parties.

(c) 2011 (6)

DomainConvergence 2011, May 12-13, Montreal, Canada