Registrant Agreements revisited

Registrant Agreements revisited

From: Ron Stark <ronstark§>
Date: Wed, 25 Jun 2003 13:28:15 +1000
You're confusing the issues.  In the domain name space, the contract is
between the registrar and the registrant - the reseller does not exist.
In respect of domain names, a reseller acquires registrar customers, not
customers of their own.

In peripheral services (hosting, websites et al, the contract is between
the reseller and the registrant, and the registrar doesn't exist.  In
this respect, the reseller acquires his own customers.

The weakness is that you (as in a registrar - not necessarily you as
Enetica) say that you never approach a reseller's customer directly by
way of direct marketing.  But you can (and are obligated to) contact
registrants with respect to domain names.  Now how do you deal with
that?  You use that vehicle to direct _your_ client (the registrar) to
your website, where you can now regail _my_ client with offers of
hosting, email services, websites etc - in other words, you are
immediately my competitor.

If a prospect goes to your website, then mine, and decides to use your
services, that's fine - that's competition.  If a client that _I_ have
given you goes to your website because of a commnication from you about
domain names, and becomes your client for non-domain name services,
that's unfair advantage.

I'm not suggesting that registrars are crooks, nor am I suggesting that
resellers should band together to become registrars.  I'm groping for
ways to redress a fundamentally flawed model, in which in the process of
getting business for myself I am compelled to hand it over to a

I'm not sure the answer lies in changing auDA's process either, because
either way you end up either restricting registrars' business, or you
are disenfranchesising resellers.

Resellers and registrars need each other, and there will always be a
(sometimes) uneasy co-existence.  My initial suggestion of an
Assocciation of Resellers had several motivations:

- To create clout through collective buying and bargaining power, where
there is none at the moment
- To give credence to being a reseller, since in auDA's eyes resellers
don't officially exist
- To create a vehicle through which resellers can establish their own
codes of conduct (which naturally include auDA's) but are extended to
cover non-domain issues.
- To create an entity whereby resellers can have their own

auDA has, by and large, jumped on rogues and charlatans in the domain
name space.  Outside of that very specific area, however, auDA has
neither say nor jurisdiction.  A rogue reseller can do what they like
outside of the narrowly-defined auDA area of responsibility, and we've
already seen that loophole in the last couple of weeks.

Ron Stark

-----Original Message-----
From: Deus Ex Machina [mailto:vicc&#167;] 
Sent: Wednesday, 25 June 2003 12:34 PM
To: dns&#167;
Subject: Re: [DNS] Registrant Agreements

Ron Stark [ronstark&#167;] wrote:
> In respect of the domain name, the only contract is between the 
> registrar and the registrant.  Resellers don't exist.  That's the auDA

> model.

thats not entirely correct, there are contracts between the registrar
and resellers and between registrants and resellers.  what isnt allowed
is an indirect contract with a registrant.

For example Enetica's reseller contract binds the reseller to auda
policies thus including them in the whole process. auda specifically
require that anyone doing more then 10 domains a month is officially a

Given that auda will not change anything in a rush, resellers should
make the most of the situation, rather then trying to hide the
registrar, where the registrar has a good reputation and a strong brand
they should leverage off it.

Just like you dont buy joe blogs rebranded shoes at the local shoe store
you buy nikes, addidas etc. even though nike has company owned stores.
unlike shoes a domain is not a physical product but a licence.  imo the
whole branding concept still applies. the actual licence is identical
between registrars but the service and support and additional services
are not and that is where the key diferentiators are for registrars and
thus resellers.

the same scenario happens everywhere I walk down my local plaza and half
the small store brands are sold accross the path in grace bros. where I
end up buying something depends on more factors then just price. if I am
after advice I will go to the small store, if I know what I want and
know there is a sale I will probably buy from GB.

selling the knowledge that if there is an issue you may be sitting on a
phone queue for 30 mintues with registrar XYZ or have to make
international calls with registrar DEF but get rapid help with registrar
ABC is just an obvious selling point that resellers can use to say this
is why we use registrar ABC. as an example.

if the concern for not letting customers see a registrars retail site is
price then selecting registrars with high retail price is an obvious
tactic provided they give you a good margin. Enetica specifically has a
high retail price for this reason, to ensure reseller have a decent
margin, higher in almost all cases then Enetica itself.

imo the registrars that have a good reputation and service will dominate
the ones which dont.


List policy, unsubscribing and archives => Please do not retransmit articles on
this list without permission of the 
author, further information at the above URL.  (368 subscribers.)
Received on Fri Oct 03 2003 - 00:00:00 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Sat Sep 09 2017 - 22:00:06 UTC