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RRPproxy and Hexonet offering new gTLD pre-regs

Kevin Murphy, October 2, 2012, 17:20:00 (UTC), Domain Registrars

Two reseller-oriented registrars this week have enabled their resellers to start taking new gTLD pre-registrations.

Key-Systems said its RRPproxy API and web interface now support pre-regs for hundreds of applied-for gTLDs, noting that the transactions are “an expression of interest without any commitment”.

The company seems to have filtered out the obvious dot-brands, but it’s still offering some gTLDs — such as .antivirus and .lifeinsurance — whose applicants are planning single-registrant models.

Separately today, Hexonet launched its Expressions Of Interest offering to enable its resellers to take “non-binding requests” for domains in possible forthcoming gTLDs.

Opinions are mixed about whether these kinds of services are good for the industry’s reputation. There’s no guarantee that these gTLDs will launch, or whether these registrars will qualify to sell them.

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Comments (10)

  1. Rubens Kuhl says:

    Hexonet has listed at least one closed registration TLD for “sale”…

  2. Tom G says:

    We are preparing some information to educate people about the pre registration landscape in New gTLDs. Hopefully to publish with our relaunch.

  3. Jean Guillon says:

    Today I wrote to Hexonet the following question: “how do I ensure, as a Registrant, that you will not generate yourself multiple registrations for them to go to private auctions directly?

    I am confident HEXONET would not behave in such a way but we have seen this in the past and a registrant cannot know if his request is not automatically sent to an auction because of a competitor coming out from nowhere.

    This is a threat for Registrants.

  4. Thank you very much for posting.

    Some insights/reasons as to why we opted to offer such a service:

    a.) As a registrar, we receive many inquiries from customers asking for additional information on newTLDs, as well as, them asking for pre-registrations. Since we believe that having a pre-registration system, in the traditional manner, is pre-mature, we decided to launch an Expression-of-Interest service, which is non-binding.

    b.) Clearly, some newTLDs will be tremendously successful while others will not. As a registrar, not knowing the future, we need some sort of mechanism for our customers to show us which newTLDs they are interested in. This information is important in letting us know which newTLDs we may need to obtain an accreditation for.

    c.) In the event HEXONET (respectively 1API) should not be permitted to obtain accreditation for a specific TLD, then naturally we would let all our respective EOI customers know how and where they can obtain their desired domain.

    @Rubens Kohl: We have responded to your email and will be removing the TLD in question. For the record, we are not “selling” newTLDs, our EOI system (expression of interest) is simply a way for us to record the interest from our customers. It is completely non-binding and it is completely free.

  5. @Jean
    You are confusing the launch of .SX, a newly available ccTLD for the new autonomous country of Saint Maarten, with our the EOI System.

    .SX is a ccTLD (Country-code Top-Level-Domain) and not a newTLD. HEXONET is participating in the “General Availability” launch (aka Go Live) of .SX.

    For multiple pre-registrations for the same .SX domain, the original customers who pre-registered the same .SX domain are invited to PRIVATE AUCTION amongst themselves. Again, this only happens if there are 2 or more customers contesting the same .SX domain. Whenever, there are no bids in the auction, the domain is automatically awarded to the first customer to pre-register the domain at the regular pre-registration price.

    This way you always see if there were actually more bidders or not.

  6. Jean Guillon says:

    Thank you Robbie for the clarification. I have 2 more questions:

    – Do customers know each other’s identity when entering in a private auction?
    – Why are auctions private?

    Thank you.

  7. @Jean:

    a. The customers do NOT know the identity of other bidders in a PRIVATE auction. This is common practice in the industry and is also preferred by the bidders themselves.

    b. Private Auctions: A public auction would probably result in a much higher auction price. With more bidders the higher the price is likely to go. We constantly get inquiries from people wanting to get access to our private auctions, especially for good domain names. Moreover, an open auction would also give us an opportunity to gain new customers. So in a nutshell, a public auction is much better from a registrar perspective.

    From our customer’s perspective, they prefer Private Auctions. Less bidders generally means a lower auction price. And customers want to be rewarded for putting in the time and effort in finding good expiring domain names. At HEXONET, we honor our customer’s efforts and their loyalty, so we run these auctions privately for their benefit.

    Industry wide it has been common practice for Registries to run Private Auctions for contested domains during their Land Rush. Of course, they too could make more money by making these Land Rush auctions public, but it is an industry courtesy to keep them private. HEXONET believes in following this tradition of courtesy.

  8. Jean Guillon says:

    I agree a public auction would probably result in a much higher auction but a bad service provider could also generate a fake client in a Private auction and have the price increased: no one could tell.

    It has happened in the past.

    But hey, you’re HEXONET.

    Thank you for your answers.

  9. David Taylor says:

    @Robbie and @Jean. I have come across some rather suspicious results from certain private auctions in my time, but I have only positive things to say about HEXONET. Scrupulously clean in my book! @Robbie, thanks for sharing the thinking behind your EOI. Logical.

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