How to make a company buy a domain name from you? The administrators of the domain zone .feedback have found a wonderful and legal way to do this. First, the idea of creating such a domain zone for “feedback” was brilliant. This is where people are invited to express their opinions about companies. Want to say something about Adidas - go to adidas.feedback. Want to read reviews about Ryzen processors - go to ryzen.feedback, and so on. That was the idea.
The second stage of the magnificent plan of modern Ostap Bender is the preliminary registration of domains for all known brands. What for? Obviously, for the purpose of selling them. Companies are simply forced to
buy these domains, as they buy hundreds of domain names in other domain zones with similar spellings and abusive words next to their name. They do this for the sake of reducing the risks so that the domains are not inherited by ill-wishers who can place unpleasant remarks about the company there.
The same has to be done not only by companies, but also by famous people. For example, the unfortunate singer Taylor Swift had to buy the domains TaylorSwift.porn, TaylorSwift.adult and TaylorSwift.sucks, which now belong to her.
The administrators of the new domain zone. Feedback registered in advance the domains of 5,000 large companies for free. Already, reviews and ratings are posted there: you can see them by going to sites like http://www.stackoverflow.feedback/
Such “feedback” is by definition not a feedback. The company does not own the domain and will not receive this "feedback". It is unlikely that the company even knows about the existence of this domain. And after the PR department detects this uncontrollable chaos, the domain zone administrators will offer them two options: pay from $ 20 a year just to get feedback or pay $ 50 a month, that is, $ 600 a year
to close the site for this time or put arbitrary redirect A good scheme of earnings for administrators, do not say anything. Just an ideal scheme of fraud, do not undermine, everything is absolutely legal. Not surprisingly, some experts consider it a shame for ICANN
that it approved this domain zone. They call on ICANN to correct their mistake - and withdraw this gTLD.
Most domains on the Internet cost $ 10-12 per year, so $ 600 per year is a premium service that borders on extortion.
For companies that fall into the list of 5,000 extortionist targets, they would like to be steadfast and patient - and not pay a cent. If they all agree to blackmail, the scammers will receive 5,000 * 600 = 3 million dollars a year
for non-working sites, that is, for nothing.
The question here is whether the administrators, the Feedback SAAS LLC
and Top Level Spectrum companies, violate the original working conditions of the domain zone, which they described in the registration application ( ICANN Registry Request Service, pdf
). If violated, ICANN would have the right to cancel the application. But such conditions were described initially and agreed with ICANN, so with this, it will probably be difficult to do something. In the end, as already mentioned, such fraud schemes are very difficult to fit into any article of the criminal code, if everything happens under a contract and “by mutual consent of the parties.”
The administrators of the domain zone .feedback initially announced their plans to take an annual fee from the companies, including for non-working sites
. This questionable practice of gTLD administrators was discussed back in 2015
. Formally, the conditions sounded like this: if a company pays $ 600 a year, it has the right to redirect anywhere from the site or close it, and if it does not pay a fee, then the site should redirect to a forum where visitors can express their opinions about the company and exhibit her grades. That is, formally, this is not a “payment for a non-working site,” here you will not dig too. But this is definitely a new business model.
The .feedback domain zone is somewhat similar in monetization to the .sucks domain zone (“total”), which ICANN also managed to register at the time. She began working in 2015 under the management of a small private Canadian company Vox Populi ("Voice of the People"). There, the administrators had the same logic: companies like Apple would not allow domains like apple.sucks (apple.otney) to exist under any pretext, so they would have to buy this domain. And not only commercial companies, but also other organizations, as well as politicians and parties - all those who do not want to be “suck”, become potential customers and buyers of domains. There, domains were initially offered at $ 2,499 per year (apple.sucks soon appeared on the secondary market at an increased price).
Since the .sucks domain zone successfully exists to this day, it seems that this story has not taught ICANN anything, and the organization considers this business model to be normal. So .feedback is probably not the last enrichment scheme that creative businessmen will try to implement.