Customers voice frustration over paying for whois privacy.
When you give something away for free, it’s really hard to then start charging for it. Just ask Name.com.
On April 21 the company announced via its blog that new domain name registrations would no longer come with free whois privacy. Domains that already have privacy turned on will continue to receive the service for free; new registrations must pay $1.99 per year for the service as “promotional price”. But the company also disclosed a coupon code to get the service for free for the first year of each domain registration.
Five days later, the blog post has 92 comments, and many of them are rather angry.
A typical comment: “This really blows. In the past 30 days I moved over 60 domains over to you because of the privacy being free AND was about to move another 160 domains.”
Increasing prices is difficult — but increasing them from $0 is even harder. Name.com offered freebies to existing customers but a vocal crowd is still upset. When making a move like this, sometimes it’s easiest to take a grandfathered approach. For example, when unions agree to health care concessions, they try to apply the changes only to new members. That way their existing members aren’t affected and don’t raise a fuss.