I recently spent over an hour trying to determine why my browser was suddenly returning a market-oriented search page instead of a plain white error page when I mis-typed a domain name. As they say, "The technical problems I may have encountered do not lie with my browser!"
Instead of seeing a generic error page I am now being re-directed to Site Finder, which is a for-profit search page run by VeriSign. When I get there I am told that I am subject to their terms and conditions and privacy statement. I have a problem with that:
* I did not choose to use the Site Finder service but I am forced to use it.
* When I reach Site Finder I am advised that I am bound by their terms and conditions and privacy statement.
* Site Finder offers no means of not using their so-called service.
* Site Finder offers no means of contacting them.
I don't want to be there, I am being bound by their terms and conditions and privacy statement, and I am not offered a means of avoid this situation in the future. Furthermore, I cannot contact them. I have a real problem with this!
I have found a very effective means of dealing with this situation. I am voting with my pocketbook. I currently have all of my domains registered with NameSecure, which is now a VeriSign company, and up to this point I have been very happy with their services.
I am now in the process of moving these domains to another registrar. I am also recommending to my clients that they do the same. I invite anyone reading this note to consider moving their domains to non-VeriSign registrars.
There are a number of domain registry services available, including those offered on my Website, www.PlanetEagle.Com, that will gladly transfer your domain to their registry. Our service charges a $7.75 transfer fee that includes a one year extension to your present registration and I would imagine other registrars have similar plans. Just make certain the registrar you choose is not a VeriSign company.
If VeriSign can pull this off with impunity then other top level domains may try to do the same thing. This needs to be stopped before it gets out of control.
If ICANN cannot or will not put a stop to VeriSign then they will have proven their total irrelevance. Let's hope they will do the right thing. In the mean time, vote with your pocketbook!