The .be registry has carried out a survey to dropcatching within the .be domain. Dropcatching is the re-registering of an expired domain name the second that domain name becomes available for registration. The most striking result was that dropcatching of .be domain names is rising rapidly. While in 2009 and 2010 less than 5% of the expired domain names were registered again by a dropcatcher, in 2011 this amount has more than doubled to over 10%.
A very interesting result of this investigation also showed that almost 90% of the domain names being re-registered close after their expiration were being put up for sale by their new owner. So only a small amount of the domain names were put into actual use. This means that every year over 10.000 interesting .be domain names are registered by somebody who doesn’t actually use the domain name, but hopes to be able to sell it for a large fee to somebody who does have an actual use for the name.
Dns.be has from their start about 10 years ago, always tried to prevent such registrations, which is also known as ‘warehousing’ (buying large amounts of domain names, preventing others to use them, hoping to be able to sell some of them for a larger amount). They for example forbid direct .be-registrars to warehouse. And they tried to prevent people from getting hold of lists of domain names that would become available for registration soon. But specialised companies have since a while now been able to create pretty accurate lists of domain names that would become available and warehousing companies simply work with external .be-registrars to register their .be domain names. Like that, the warehousing company itself is not bound to the “no warehousing” clause in the .be-registrar contract.
So the .be-registry finds that it’s time for some now procedure to be put into place to better prevent warehousing activities. What these procedures will be isn’t known yet. While the registry is considering whether they could implement some technical hurdles to make warehousing less easier, it is assumed that most of those hurdles will simply be bypassed shortly after they are put into place. One of the other possibilities thought of is to charge a larger amount for domain names that are only just becoming available again or maybe auctioning such domain names like the .nu-registry does. Since the .be-registry is a not for profit organisation, extra income generated by such procedures might for example be given to a charity.
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This post was written by admin on December 21, 2011