Domain Name Association chair Adrian Kinderis has called for the industry to “grow up”.
The former ARI CEO, now Neustar veep, said Monday it’s time for the industry to kick out the handful of bad actors that ruin its reputation, and to quit the “bullshit bickering” about which TLDs are best.
“For far too long this industry has turned a blind eye to the less than scrupulous activities,” he said, “and these activities have plagued this industry. Bad actors have tarnished the perception of this industry.”
“This may have been acceptable when it was a few insiders first grasping at a fledgling product in the early nineties but… we are now front and center of the internet,” he said.
“These practices of a few bad actors have led to the frustration of consumers. We have not served the best interests of our consumers at all times,” he said. “This has to change.”
He was speaking to an audience of registries, registrars and investors at the opening session of the NamesCon conference in Las Vegas on Monday.
It was a fairly standard DNA sales pitch, the kind Kinderis has given before, but few could deny the truth of his remarks.
He called upon the industry to more effectively self-regulate, working with ICANN, to keep the boogeymen of government legislators and law enforcement agencies at bay.
“It’s time to grow up and show that we can regulates ourselves and build a strong sustainable industry with integrity,” he said.
He also called for unity among industry participants, pointing out that the threats to their businesses are external to the domain industry.
“The domain name war must be over,” he said. “The infighting and bullshit bickering has to stop. The .coms, the not-.coms, the IDNs, the g’s versus the cc’s… this must stop.”
“As an industry we have been very lucky. We’ve stumbled through 20 years without a collective strategy nor cohesion,” he said. “Outside forces have not had a massive impact on us, yet. QR codes have tried. Apps are trying.”
He pointed to the recent positive “bump” that many domain companies have experienced as a result of investment from China, but attributed to “dumb luck” rather than the result of any smart marketing or outreach.
The 10-minute speech can be viewed below or on the NamePros YouTube channel.