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CNET Surveys Registrars about GoDaddy Suspension

CNET sent surveys to 12 registrars asking them about their policies for suspending domains.

Last week GoDaddy changed the DNS on a customer’s domain name at the request of MySpace. MySpace complained that the site in question was displaying the usernames and passwords of its users. It turns out that this same file of usernames and passwords was available at numerous sites on the internet and could be found with a simple Google search. (I suspect GoDaddy was not aware of this.) The site in question was a mailing list archive site. A mailing list it archives had sent the list of usernames and passwords, so it was archived on the site.

GoDaddy’s terms of service point out that the company can suspend services at its will. But the company damaged its reputation by how it responded to the incident.

But what would other registrars have done in the same situation? CNET, one of the publications that broke the original story, surveyed 12 registrars and asked them that very question. Of the 12, the following responded to the survey: DirectNIC, Gandi.net, GoDaddy, and OnlineNIC. Many of the registrars did not respond to the survey questions, including Register.com, NameKing, Moniker, Melbourne IT, Dotster, and eNom. Two registrars, Network Solutions and Tucows, refused to participate.

Unfortunately, CNET’s article is titled “Are domain registrars free-speech friendly?” Free speech really isn’t the issue here, and it doesn’t summarize the actual survey. The survey asks if a registrar will suspend a registration without a court order. Articles are typically written by one person and headlines by another. Despite the headline, I highly recommend all domain owners read the survey responses.

I found it interesting that a couple of the registrars said they also received calls from MySpace but they were unable to confirm the origin of the calls and did not take action.

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  1. Ryan

    Crazyness. And what I found most unusual, was that Myspace.com never replied to a single message I left requesting more information about their complaint!

    I even called them from home a couple of times (at around 11:00 PM!) because of the time difference (Paris – California), so of course I totally feel like I was blown off, because I never heard back.

    MySpace seems to have an odd perception of reality…

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