US Domain -- County Delegations

Paul A Vixie paul at
Fri Jul 28 06:19:50 UTC 1995

> There's a wonderful, much more simple solution... charge for .com addresses
> on a fee scale which will discourage companies with under $X/yr business
> from getting straight .com addresses.  As a possible example, $25k/yr for
> a .com domain name is going to keep most 5-20 person companies out of it
> (unless they REALLY want it bad) but won't be noticable to most 100 person 
> companies and Sun and IBM. And $25k/site would fund a lot of NIC activity 8-)

A charging model for this makes a certain amount of sense, but there are still
some problems.  First, the IANA is not really empowered to collect fees, and
the NIC (who is funded to maintain R&E domains, not commercial ones) takes NSF
money and would therefore be in a difficult position if they charged fees not
clearly delineated in its contract.

In other words this is an ISOC/IESG/IAB problem, and a hard one at that.  This
is the kind of thing that's best done by (dare I say it?) a 501c6 nonprofit
trade association.  (Ahem.)

> If you want to be aggressively egalitarian about it, apply it retroactively
> (which will put my vanity domain out of action, but what the hey). is a vanity domain.  I suspect that yours is not one.

> A solution along these lines will let us keep a better engineering-side
> solution without having the customer or NIC have to jump through hoops
> to determine validity of applications.

That's certainly true.

> I think that rabidly renaming everyone would be overkill.  The problem 
> is not (basically) the existing .com, but the future million-plus-businesses
> case.  Establishing a policy now which manages the growth of the .com
> domain by discouraging its use, but not eliminating it, is a good thing.
> But we don't have to get all our customers angry at us all at once to
> do that... we just have to convince most of the new customers that
> they really don't want a .com address unless they *really* want it...

If we had used that argument the last time around, there would still be
hundreds of .ARPA "domains" floating around.  I'm against it, partly because
it violates the least astonishment principle (when guessing at a domain, one
would have to wonder whether the organization was named under the ancient or
recent rules), and partly because .COM as presently populated is terribly

The idea I've been kicking around would be relatively painless and should not
make very many people very angry all at the same time (that is, I'm all for
spreading the anger out across a longer schedule.)

	1. develope an alternative to .COM, get its infrastructure in place.

	2. close .COM to new entries, point folks at #1, set date for #3.

	3. replace all existing .COM entries with nonterminal CNAME's to
	   entries under #1's scheme.  delete anything not renewed under #1.
	   set date for #4.

	4. remove .COM.

I expect the delay between #2 and #3 to be about two years.
I expect the delay between #3 and #4 to be about two years.
We might be able to get it done before the turn of the century.

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