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Reader Comments on Aardvark Daily 26 July 2001

Note: the comments below are the unabridged submissions of readers and do
not necessarily reflect the opinions of the publisher.


From: David Farrar
For : The Editor (for publication)
Subj: Domain Name Fees

Just wanting to clarify a few things in your article about
domain name fees and DOMAINZ profits.

Firstly I personally agree fees should fall in the near
future and also that profits of $1.5 million should not
continue to be made.

However we are at somewhat of a transition.  The SRS should
bring a cheaper wholesale price for domain names and with
competition cheaper retail prices.

Competition has generally worked well in the gTLDs and as
you say are as cheap as NZ$25.  However there are some
economies of scale with 10,000,000 names compared to

Also some ISPs can now get dot nz domain names for their
customers at NZ$20/year + GST.

There have been some major costs at DOMAINZ which have been
regrettable.  Until it is known what the costs of moving to
the SRS will be plus what the cost of fixing or replacing
DOMAINZ's DRS is there is some conserativism about dropping

It is hoped the SRS will be operational in the first half
of 2002.  This should IMO trigger quite different pricing
structures - we may even get ISPs including a domain name
gratis as part of their minthly fee?

DPF (speaking just for himself)

From: Shane Walbran
For : The Editor (for publication)
Subj: Domainz Pricing

Bruce, you don't say where you come up with the $83 for
setting up a new domain name, and on a first glance at the
Domainz site I can't see any thing obvious.   Looking at
www.freeparking.co.nz I can get the cost up to $50-$60 but
not $80'ish.

Aardvark Responds:
I was working from Domainz' own figures quoted about half-way down this page:


From: Keith Davidson
For : The Editor (for publication)
Subj: Are .nz Domain Names Too Expensive? 

Your article this morning contains some information which
could be considered misleading if read in isolation.

You can register a new .nz name for considerably less than
$83.25 - and a quick look at some of .nz's largest name
agents shows new .nz names available at $34.95 plus GST.
Some name agents offer the service at even lesser costs
for .nz. The average price paid to Domainz last year for a
new .nz name is $39.00.

If you chose to register a .com/net/org name with the gTLD
registry, you would pay a minimum US$35.00 (that is about
NZ$83.00) per year.

So .nz is similar to .com/net/org, insofar as the registry
offers a tier of costs for individual name holders through
to large registrars / name agents.

Furthermore, it should be noted that Domainz's internal
costs have dropped from $34.49 per domain name the year
before last, to $20.83 per name last year.

You should also remeember there are economies of scale for
a registry dealing with tens of millions of names, compared
to the .nz registry with less than 100,000 names.

But in any case, the same answer applies to .nz as
to .com/net/org names, it does pay to shop around, to
obtain significantly better prices. It should also be noted
that many nameholders in .nz are aware that there are
cheaper prices available for their .nz names, yet they
elect to continue dealing directly with the registry.

The SRS is coming, and it certainly isn't the trivial task
that many hoped it would be (no-one has come up with the "5
lines of PERL" yet!). There will be some significant
expenditure required to cover the SRS project in its

You should also recall the demand that Domainz should be
primarily the operational arm of InternetNZ. If you like,
the profit made by Domainz is a gross amount, and dividends
that flow back to InternetNZ continue to be used for the
braoder ccTLD administration. Including international
representation to ICANN, SRS implementation costs, legal
and regulatory purposes etc, InternetNZ has an expense
budget for the forthcoming year (that was approved by its
membership 2 months ago) that contains more than $550,000
in expenditure.

Unfortunately, the passing of dividends from the Domainz
company to InternetNZ (an incorporated society) results in
further taxation of 33% on dividends passed, meaning an
$800,000 dividend from Domainz covers the $550,000
expenditure requirement for InternetNZ. The IRD are taking
a large slice of the overall profits through this "double
dip" on taxation. This is a matter of concern to InternetNZ
and expert tax advice is being sought to see if there is a
way to minimise these costs. But if InternetNZ remains an
Incorporated Society, which potentially is the best legal
structure for a true "bottom up", open and transperant
operation, this double tax situation probably remains the
only option.

Thanks for the opportunity to set the record straight.

Keith Davidson

From: Michael Hallager
For : The Editor (for publication)
Subj: US$35 domain names? - I don't think so!

I have purchased US TLD's .com/.net.org for as low as
US$6.50 (Aprox NZ$16.25) recently in a Bulkregister special.
Their normal price is US$12.00. (Aprox NZ$30.00 - Both low
quanity pricing).
Based on my many issues with Domainz I would surmise that we
are all paying for their former CEO and their massive stuff
up with the new online registration system. When I asked the
question why their system was coded with Windows/ASP: I was
told that although they used *.nix on the backend, the
choice to use Windows/ASP on the frontend (In preference to
*.nix/PHP) was made for "political reasons".
Further to this, Domainz recently had the cheek to charge me
high 20 something dollars to reinstate a domain name that
had lapsed because their system made it impossible for me to
renew. (Faults)... I explained the whole senario to them at
the time but they didn't care.
We MUST have real competition in the register market to
ensure that Domainz offers us all better deals and to keep
them honest.

Michael Hallager
Managing Director
Comsolve Networks (NZ) Limited

From: Mark Denholm
For : The Editor (for publication)
Subj: Domain Fees

Firstly $83.25 IS right for some ISPs who register domain
names, comprising of the first years fee + nameholder fee
with Domainz. Generic TLDs can be gotten at very
competitive pricing to .nz domain names if the person
registering shops around, places like register.com,
123cheapdomains and others offer generic TLDs at pricing
well below that of Network Solutions. (who generally charge
$35 USD)

Its also something to note that the nameholder "ID" gotten
when you register a TLD is included in that registration
price, in the .nz structure you pay for your ID seperately.
(And its not optional, unless you know someone with an ID
you're willing to use and also accept that you won't be
the "owner" of your domain or be able to request changes
through domainz because of that. This may also depend on
wether or not you're registering through a service or an
ISP though.)

One other small note of caution, if you are registering
an .nz domain cheaper through a "domain service" then
beware of transferring problems. Some services delay their
payments (or have late in the month payment schedules) with
Domainz that mean that when you register it isn't when the
domain is paid for. If you try moving these to your isp,
then expect a couple of headaches.

Now Have Your Say

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