Pool shutting down registrars effective January 10 – Domains in limbo

Pool is shutting down many of it’s registrars effective January 10, 2013. These are registrars that have been used drop catching for the Pool backordering service. Pool has not been so successful in acquiring dropped domains lately and registrars are very expensive to keep. So this seems like a logical move by Pool.

All domains caught by Pool using these registrars are managed through Namescout.com. Pool.com asked ICANN to transfer these domains to Namescout.com but ICANN denied that request. These domains should be either renewed at Namescout (and this will move them from the affected registrars to Namescout) or simply transfer to your preferred registrar.If your domains are older than 60 days you should transfer/renew all your domains ASAP.

These 2 options can NOT be used for domains that have been registered in the last 60 days. ICANN will take steps to allocate the domains in inventory to another registrar through a public bid process and will make public announcements.

I have a few domains in this situation and I will be following this very closely. Here is the complete email from Pool:

Dear ,

The impending launch of new gTLDs has led Pool.com to refocus its business away from an emphasis on the secondary market and to a broader range of on-going services.  As a result, we will be shutting down a number of our registrar threads effective January 10, 2013.  This will have an effect on some of your domains acquired through Pool.com (a list of names is included below).

The names that Pool.com caught for you in the Drop using the registrars we are shutting down are managed through your account at Namescout.com.  Pool.com had asked ICANN that we be allowed to transfer these domains to Namescout.com at no cost to you in order to preserve the ability for your management of those names through the single Namescout.com interface.

ICANN has so far denied our request.  As a result, you have the following two options with regards to your domains provided they are older than 60 days:

1. Login to your Namescout.com account and submit a “Renew Now” order for each of the names listed below. Namescout.com is  offering 1 year renewals at a significant discount which will be applied automatically upon checkout. (com, org, info are $9.50, net $7.85 and mobi $15.00)  This renewal will also transfer your domain to Namescout.com as the Registrar of record such that you will be able to continue to manage them through the current interface without any changes.

2. Submit a routine transfer through your preferred registrar.

If you choose neither of these options in the next few days, ICANN will take steps to allocate the domains in inventory to another registrar through a public bid process.  We cannot predict which registrar they will choose; if all your names will end up in a single registrar; or, whether there will be an interruption in your ability to manage your names while ICANN conducts this process.

Pool.com and Namescout.com are committed to working with you to ensure smooth, orderly and uninterrupted operation of your domains.  Contact service@pool.com if you have additional questions.

Yours truly,

Richard Schreier
CEO, Pool.com

Affected Domains:


About Konstantinos Zournas

I studied Computer Engineering and Computer Science in London, UK and I am now living in Athens, Greece. I went online in 1995, started coding in 1996 and began buying domain names and creating websites in 2000. I started the OnlineDomain.com blog in 2012.


  1. $25 transfer fee to namescout makes it a bad deal and although they tell me my domains are unlocked nobody else agrees, so I cant transfer them. No mention of a refund for having to transfer out either

  2. @tom

    Namescout was actually offering renewals at $9.50 which i think is pretty competitive. You can verify if a domain is locked at the Registry by just querying the whois record at VeriSign. The only lock you wont see there, I believe, is the 60 day hold on new registrations. And there is no obligation to do anything (i.e. you dont HAVE to transfer away). The worst that should happen to any of the domain holders in this issue is the domains will be managed by a new registrar (likely only 1 if ICANN has its preference). All registrants will receive new credentials from the new registrar and your domain(s) will be in the same status they were prior to the move.


    If you (or you know of anyone) has any issues managing your names after ICANN has selected the new registrar(s), please get in touch with me and I will personally investigate and help you resolve any such issues.

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