GoDaddy complies with ICANN advisory for transferring domain names.
Last September I wrote that GoDaddy might have to end its controversial practice of denying transfers-out when a domain owner changes whois information in the preceding 60 days.
A few weeks ago ICANN finalized the advisory that I wrote about, and it seems to target GoDaddy specifically. The advisory basically says that registrars can’t deny transfer requests due to changes in whois information, as this would violate ICANN rules that require registrants to keep their data up-to-date. Furthermore, it specifically says registrars can’t make users “opt-in” to the lock when they change whois information (something that GoDaddy did).
I contacted GoDaddy earlier this month to see if it was complying with the advisory. Tim Ruiz, Go Daddy’s Vice President of Corporate Development & Policy, said in a statement “Go Daddy always has and will continue to comply with ICANN rules and regulations.”
Fair enough, but I decided to test it by changing my whois information for FileVirtualization.com and then transferring it to Moniker the next day. I’m happy to report that the transfer was successful.
Network Solutions is the only other major registrar I know that put 60 day locks on domains. The company has not responded to repeated requests for comment about this issue.
It’s worth noting that ICANN’s advisory lacks teeth. The only thing ICANN can do to stop a registrar from a practice like this is to take away its accreditation. This is a “nucleur option” and rarely practiced until it’s too late — and wouldn’t be used against the world’s biggest registrar unless the situation was dire. ICANN needs the power to levy fines against registrars who fail to comply.