Registerfly, a Domain Name Disaster
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Any business that goes under is a serious personal tragedy for those who worked diligently to try to make it a success. When the business going under is a registrar, a cascade effect can cause ripples through the Internet as other businesses are threatened. That’s exactly what is happening with Registerfly.
If you put Registerfly’s name into Google you will find tons of complaints about the company. Oddly enough, at least at the time I ran the search, you won’t run into Registerflies.com on the first few pages; this is the web site that serves as a focus for disgruntled customers. On the fourth or fifth page you will find a link for the ICANNWiki entry for Registerfly – clearly edited by some of those disgruntled customers at the time of this writing.
Registerfly has been in existence since 2000. It was a domain name reseller for eNom until fairly recently, when it became accredited as a registrar with ICANN in its own right. The interesting thing about this is that eNom terminated Registerfly’s reseller agreement on February 6 -- although, along with everything else about this situation, that seems to be a matter of dispute, with some saying that eNom is still the registrar of record for Registerfly. In any case, the reason that eNom terminated said agreement makes one wonder what ICANN was thinking in accrediting Registerfly.
To quote from eNom’s FAQ covering the termination: “As an eNom reseller, Registerfly is contractually bound to adhere to certain standards of customer service in a speedy and diligent manner. Despite our warnings, Registerfly has elected not to abide by the agreed standards as outlined in their eNom reseller agreement. Effective March 9th, Registerfly will be terminated as an eNom reseller.”
At present, Registerfly supposedly controls two million domain names held by about 900,000 owners scattered throughout the U.S. and in 120 countries. How much longer they will hold those domain names is open to debate – though with all the stories I’ve been reading about owners not being able to get the authorization codes required to let them transfer their domains to a different registrar, it could be quite some time.
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