The new ICANN policy on domain WHOIS changes is active and the worst thing is that not even registrars and their support team know enough about the changes yet.
I wrote about the emails I started receiving on December 1st from Fabulous about completed whois changes on domain names behind privacy: “The new ICANN policy on domain WHOIS changes is active and crazy things are happening already“.
So I asked Fabulous support why I was receiving these emails and their initial reply was quite frightening. They told me that the emails were not from Fabulous and that they were spam and could just be ignored.
The frightening part was not that the emails were spam. It was that the emails were really coming from Fabulous and support knew nothing about them and they certainly didn’t know the meaning of the emails!
I explained to them that it was not possible for a spammer to know all my details (name, email etc.) from a domain I registered under privacy 10 days ago. I also send them the email headers showing that the email was from enom.com and Fabulous.com.
Fabulous support then apologized and told me that ICANN policy has recently changed and they have been sending out emails every time the Whois Changes.
“Whois privacy email changes every 3 months, we generate new WHois privacy email addresses to combat spam. So in those emails you can see the email address has changed slightly. A fix has gone live so that these emails won’t go out for WHois privacy anymore, just this first batch went out in error.”
The New ICANN Domain Transfer Policy
Then I asked to know more about the new ICANN domain transfer policy and how Fabulous was treating the new rules and got this reply:
“In answer to your other questions, we updated our T&C’s a few weeks ago that opted all Fabulous customers out of the new changes. So as far as you’re concerned, nothing will change in operation of your domains. There is no 60 day lock when Whois changes, or when domains are pushed.”
This is a difficult new rule to navigate since our own Industry Leaders and their support staff have no concrete idea about these rule changes. I just had a problem with a domain I just bought and paid for. The seller didn’t realize it was only in its 2nd week of a 60 day lock. he tried transferring to my GoDaddy account and they said it couldn’t be done because of the lock BUT just have the seller contact his Registrar and maybe they will unlock the domain. So, I asked them is that even an option, and the GD support staff member said Yes, because they have done it there at GD. News to me. Then why is there a rule if it can be broken??? Ok no problem, so I tell seller this info and have him ask his Registrar to do the same. By the time we were done emailing back n forth 20+ times. We just said F-it and he gave me funds back and I didn’t get the domain even though I still want it. I do not want to create an account at another 3rd tier Registrar just to add 1 more domain to my portfolio. So, we all have this new 60 day lock learning process to go thru and our leaders have no clue. Cant wait until everyone figures this whole mess out because it is definitely a deal breaker and that’s not cool in this Industry.
Most domain sellers have had to explain the transfer process to first-time buyers. For non-domainers, it could sometimes seem daunting; but for us it was simple enough, which allowed us to communicate accurately and instill confidence in the sale.
Now even industry pros will get tripped up because we don’t know how all the various companies are treating opt-outs, privacy refreshes, etc. And if sellers are unsure of the transfer process, buyers will get cold feet more often.