Namibia’s Internet Country Code Top-Level Domain (ccTLD) .NA Could Generate More Than N$533 Million or N$27 Million Per Year for Namibia’s Ministry of Education for the Next 20 Years

Countries such as the Republic of Colombia (.co), the Island of Tuvalu (.tv), the Island of Samoa (.ws), the Cocos (Keeling) Islands (.cc), the Republic of Cameroon (.cm) have monetized their Internet country code Top-Level Domains (ccTLD) to generate millions of dollars for their economic and infrastructure development.

For years, Tuvalu used the revenue from its .tv ccTLD to build schools, roads, and hospitals, as well as to finance their membership application to the United Nations.

And Namibia, the country is sitting on gold with its ccTLD .NA.

In the US, banks such as PNC, NA; Chase, NA; Citibank, NA, etc., use the abbreviation “NA” which stands for “National Association” to indicate that the bank is national. Similarly, Namibia’s Internet country code Top-Level Domain (ccTLD) .NA domain names could be developed and branded as “National” to indicate “national” for anything, and can be made available for registration globally through companies commonly referred to as accredited registrars, such as GoDaddy.com, Network Solutions, and eNom. So that any company, organization, or entrepreneur can register and use a .NA domain for their online branding needs, such as “iway.na” (already in use), unam.na (already in use), and can be example; “bank.na”, “money.na”, “food.na”, etc.

There are currently more than 200 million domain names registered globally, and .NA could capture at least 2% of that to generate about 2 million of new registered .NA domain names. The potential customers who would be interested in registering the .NA domain name could be the current owners of .com domain names, who most of them would register .NA domain names in order to protect their online branding and identity. Other users could register their .NA domain names for their new online branding and identity needs.

If the pricing of the .NA domain name is set at the minimum of at least US$15 per each new registered .NA domain name and for the annual renewal fee of the same price amount, then that could generate about US$450 million annually.

There are however fees for administering and managing Top-Level Domains. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) which is responsible for managing the Internet Protocol address spaces (IPv4 and IPv6) and assignment of address blocks to regional Internet registries charges a certain fee per each registered and renewed domain name. Likewise, VeriSign which operates two of the Internet’s 13 “root servers” which are identified by the letters A-M and also manage a database for the domain name registry also charges a certain fee for their service.

And that does not include the fee for the Registrar, an organization accredited by both ICANN and generic top-level domain registry (gTLD) to sell gTLDs and/or by a country code top-level domain (ccTLD) registry to sell ccTLDs and to manage the reservation of Internet domain names in accordance with the guidelines of the designated domain name registries and to offer such services to the public.

Let’s take for example, that per each .NA new domain name registered or renewed, that US$1.85 should go to the Republic of Namibia’s Ministry of Education, with at least 2 million .NA domain name registered, that will be about US$3.7 million (N$27 million) per year for the next 20+ years or about N$533 million in total, per a possible signed Agreement, and that’s money that the Ministry of Education could use to help revamp and upgrade Namibia’ schools or other educational infrastructure.

I’m teaming up with a powerful Consortium of Namibians to take over the management of the .NA ccTLD and develop it to offer .NA domain name for registration worldwide and help generate some serious cash for the Namibia’s Ministry of Education, which I certainly know that the Ministry urgently need to build new schools, revamp and repair schools. If you don’t believe me, go drive around and look at some schools especially those in rural areas in Namibia.

The .NA ccTLD is assigned to the Republic of Namibia, as its Internet country code, and not to an individual body. Hence it should be developed to benefit all of the Namibian people, not for individuals to solely benefit from it.

I’m currently talking with some of the world’s largest domain name Registrars such as GoDaddy, Network Solutions, VeriSign, eNom, etc., to partner up with our Consortium for the development and management of the .NA ccTLD, and more than N$27 million, as the first installment, could be instantly paid to the Namibia’s Ministry of Education upon the signing of the Agreement for managing Namibia’s .NA ccTLD.

In our current ecosystem development, Groot, we are looking at all viable options, which will add great value to Namibia. Thankfully, the Government of Namibia, under SWAPO, has already setup and developed favorable infrastructure and institutions conducive to good business environment, and it’s up to us, the Namibians, to become more innovative and entrepreneurial, and develop tools and services that will help exponentially improve Namibia’s economy, sustainable employment creation, and help improve the well-being of all the Namibians. So, let’s make it happen for Namibia.

If you are a Company interested in the opportunity to partner with us in managing and administering the .NA ccTLD, please email me now at simon@grootgroup.com.

Moving Back to Network Solutions, for Domain Name Registrations

I haven’t checked out Network Solutions’ web site (http://www.nsi.com) in ages, but for some reason today, I decided to check it out, and daaaank, their site looks good. Its color scheme and layout is just marvelously perfect. Plus, its pricing for domain name registration has gone lower.

(UPDATE: September 4, 2009 – 5:08 PM EST) – Oops, I might have been mistaken, because when I checked out the NSI site today, September 4, 2009, their registration fee per each new .com domain name is $34.99, which freakin’ high compare to GoDaddy.com and 1and1.com, and many other Registrars, who charge no more than $10 per each new .com domain name.)

Network Solutions, Inc. (NSI), was the original registrar and has held a monopoly over the .com and basically the .org and .net TLD domain registration as initially authorized by the U.S. government, when the registrations for the domain names were made available for commercial registration and general use. Only after Register.com lobbied and was granted permission to become the second TLD registrar. Not sure whatever happened to Register.com, deadpooled?

However, NSI was later acquired by VeriSign, which ended up just making it a mess, and awfully lowsy. Kept its domain pricing awfully high and awful to manage, and that paved a way for GoDaddy.com, and other upcoming registrars to take over the leadership from NSI.

I used to have hundreds of domain names registered under NSI, but since VeriSign took over the control of NSI and messed it up, like most other domain name owners, we migrated to other registrars. For me, I moved all my domains to GoDaddy.com.

A few years ago, VeriSign sold NSI to a private equity firm, and I wasn’t sure about the future of NSI, I thought that was the end of it, but when I stumbled back on to its web site today, I really like what I see. Their site looks good and their domain pricing is as low as GoDaddy.com (sorry, but check my updated inserts above).

I will now move all my domains back to NSI, because as you can read from my previous posts on here about GoDaddy.com, I have not been a happy camper with GoDaddy.com.

I recommend NSI for domain name registration to anyone, anywhere.

(Except that they charge $12 a year per domain name forwarding, which sucks my breath out, because most Registrars don’t charge fees for domain forwarding any more.)

Latest Update: GoDaddy.com’s Shady and Unethical Domain Names’ Renewal Process

The following is my latest update on my two previous posts regarding GoDaddy.com’s possible unethical European domain name expiration and renewal procedures.

Since my last update here, I have had numerous email exchanges with an executive from GoDaddy.com, trying to amicably negotiate with GoDaddy.com in regard to their European domain name unethical expiration, renewal, and cancellation procedure. And, after numerous email exchanges, GoDaddy.com finally agreed to give me back, two of my domain names, Rentersq.co.uk, and Tipmart.co.uk, by renewing them for additional two years at no cost to me. But there are other .DE domain names that I have lost because of their renewal procedure.

The way GoDaddy.com registers and manages European domain names, such as .co.uk, .de, etc., it’s like having a retail store that you own and manage, and your livelihood depends on your retail store’s revenue. However, your retail store’s landlord, who after you’ve signed a one-year lease, always comes to your store, once a year, at least 60 – 90 days before the end of your lease agreement, asking you to pay for the lease term, and if you decide to wait until the actual due date of your lease agreement, then your landlord instantly locks up your retail store, closes it down, and redirects your customers to the landlord’s store elsewhere, leaving you to lose business as your customers are redirected elsewhere.

And, that’s exactly how GoDaddy.com operates when coming to registering and managing the European domain names as I have it explained here. Also, you may want to read here what other customers are saying about similar problem with GoDaddy.com.

I have written to GoDaddy.com several times, but with no amicable solution. And some of my requests are for GoDaddy;

– To instantly change its policies and procedures for its European domain names’ expiration procedures, invoicing and renewal process, and not to ever redirect expiring domain names for any customer to the GoDaddy’s parking pages with paid advertisement.

– To stop cancelling domain names from its customers account prior to the actual expiration dates.

– To adopt similar industry domain name expiration and renewal standard such as that of Yahoo! Domains’ expiration and renewal procedure, that GoDaddy must only cancel any domain name from any user’s account only after the actual expiration due date. And if for any reason whatsoever, that GoDaddy.com is unable to do so, then it must stop registering European domain names, directly or indirectly.

– Not to deactivate, cancel and then forward or redirect any expiring or expired domain names for any customer to any of the GoDaddy’s parking page with or without any paid and or sponsored advertisement.

– To publicly announce, by whatever form of written public announcement, such as a press release or posting on GoDaddy’s official blog, that GoDaddy.com has agreed to make changes to GoDaddy’s Universal Terms of Services in regard to its expiration, invoicing, and renewal procedures for the European Domain Names, and that GoDaddy will no longer cancel and redirect expiring or expired domain names to GoDaddy’s parking pages with paid or sponsored advertisement.

– To offer a discount price of $9.99 per each European Domain name for any and all of GoDaddy’s past and current customers, who may want to purchase any new European domain name through GoDaddy.com.

I have a long list and I am still collecting names of those, anyone, past or current customer of GoDaddy.com, who have been affected by GoDaddy.com’s European Domain Names’ expiration and renewal procedure as explained above for a possible class action against GoDaddy.com. So, please get in touch with me the soonest.

Latest Update: GoDaddy.com’s Shady and Unethical Domain Names’ Renewal Process

I recently wrote about how unhappy I am about GoDaddy.com’s possibly shady and unethical domain name expiration procedure. And, today, I received an email from someone ,named, Alon, from The Office of the President at GoDaddy.com, who wants to talk to me about my concern.

The following is the email copy I received from him;

Go Daddy – concerns about domain expiration procedures

Friday, January 2, 2009 3:38 PM

From: “**********@godaddy.com” *************@godaddy.com

To: simon@rentersq.com

Dear Mr. Kapenda,

I recently came across an article you posted to your blog regarding Go Daddy’s domain name expiration procedures:

https://princesimon.wordpress.com/2008/12/30/godaddycoms-shady-and-unethical-domain-names-renewal-process/

Specifically, you stated that Go Daddy parks domain names approximately 40 days prior to expiration if not renewed. I would greatly appreciate the opportunity to speak with you about your concerns because I can assure you that Go Daddy does not normally do this. I’d like to learn more about your experience to see if anything occurred that should not have or if there is simply some confusion that needs to be cleared up.

If you can find a moment, please contact me by phone at your earliest convenience. Of course, I’d be happy to call you, if you’d prefer; just provide a phone number and let me know when would be a good time to call. If you’re unable to speak by phone, please respond via email and let me know at least one domain name that you believe was handled this way so that I can investigate.

If you have any other concerns or questions, please also feel free to contact me.

Regards,

Alon
Twitter: GoDaddy*****
G*********@GoDaddy.com
Office of the President, GoDaddy.com
10am – 7pm, US Mountain Standard Time
(480) 505-8828 Phone
(480) 275-3975 Fax

I emailed him back, telling him that I will call him early next week.

I appreciate the fact that GoDaddy contacted me the soonest I posted that blog. I give them credit for that, but the fact is, I am not happy how they do business when coming to their domain name expiration procedure.

My request is for GoDaddy to change the way they do business, in regard to their expiration processing procedure, because it’s not just hurting me, it’s probably hurting everyone who registers domain names with GoDaddy.com.

I will keep posting here any and all the updates on this subject matter.

Example of one my domains that are expiring soon, and have already been forwarded to GoDaddy’s parking page with paid ads, is Tipmart.co.uk (www.tipmart.co.uk). This domain expires on January 9, 2009, but since mid November 2008, this domain has been redirected from my web site; Tipmart.com, to GoDaddy’s parking page. I have had several domain names, including .com’s, which GoDaddy has done the same thing, and I have lost several of them as explained in my previous post.

Stumble It!

GoDaddy.com’s Shady and Unethical Domain Names’ Renewal Process

If you own a domain that you’ve registered through GoDaddy.com, then you’ve probably been invoiced at least 60 days prior to the actual expiration due date of your domain name. They usually send you two or three more invoice reminders thereafter, inviting you to renew your domain.

However, if you fail to renew your domain per invoice at about 40 days prior to the actual due date of the expiration, then GoDaddy simply cancels your domain, and you can no longer renew it, and then GoDaddy immediately forwards it to GoDaddy’s own parking page with paid advertisement.

That’s nearly 40 days prior to the actual due date of the expiration of your domain name. In doing this, GoDaddy does two things; they redirect your site traffic to their own parking page, and then capitalize from your traffic from the paid ads on their parking page.

Is this really an ethical business practice? Even if their Universal Terms of Service dictates so, does that really emphasize good business ethic? How about ICANN’s gTLDs terms of service for registrars’ business practice? Terms are just written terms, which can be changed and revised at any time to suit the targeted consumers. So, GoDaddy can definitely revise their universal terms of service, if they want to, except that they have purposely set their domain names’ renewal process in order to cheat and steal from us, the consumers.

Yahoo Domains serves me the best. They invoice me several days prior to the due date of my domains’ expiration, and then they follow up with a few reminders, at least two or three more, so as GoDaddy.com, but Yahoo does not deactivate the expired domain names for another week, and then they give me another chance to renew my deactivated domain, before they completely cancel it. And when they simply cancel the domain, they don’t forward or redirect it to their parking page with paid ads, unlike GoDaddy.com.

Last week, TechCrunch published an article on how GoDaddy warehouses expired domain names, read the article here, but a few days later, after the community negatively reacted to their shady tactics, GoDaddy immediately closed down their business division which was tasked to hide their unethical domain name warehousing.

For years, I have been registering and managing my domains through Network Solutions, but after it was sold to VeriSign, I started not liking their service, so I moved my domains to Yahoo! Domains, but there are certain tools in Yahoo! Domains’ Control Panel that I didn’t like, such as using dedicated server hosting through another hosting company, other than Yahoo!, so I moved some of them to GoDaddy.com. I have also tried Netfirms and Register.com, but I didn’t like their control panel. I however still like GoDaddy’s CP, but I severly detest their renewal process. There just don’t seem to be another better registrar out there right now, other than GoDaddy.com.

In the process, I have lost many domains through GoDaddy because of this shady invoicing practice, and I have three more domains expiring today and in January 2009, and I am not going to renew them, just because.

What I want to do is to hear from anyone who has experienced and doesn’t like the way GoDaddy does business in terms of invoicing, deactivating domain names prior to expiration dates, and then redirecting them to their parking page with paid ads.

I am talking to a lawyer about this, and I want to have a few more people, anyone, who may have experienced this shameful, unethical, and shady business by GoDaddy. So, if you have experienced the same problem with GoDaddy.com, please email me the soonest at simon@rentersq.com. I am going to try to do something about this, but I need to compile a large file.