The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) has recently announced the renewal of its contract with Verisign, the registry operator for the .net domain extension. The new agreement will take effect on February 1, 2021, and will last for six years.

The .net domain is one of the oldest and most popular top-level domains (TLDs) on the internet. It was originally intended for network infrastructure, but it has since been repurposed for general use. As of September 2020, there were over 13 million registered .net domain names.

Under the new registry agreement, Verisign will continue to manage the technical infrastructure of the .net TLD, including the registration, maintenance, and distribution of .net domain names. Verisign will also be required to comply with certain security and stability standards set by ICANN.

One notable change in the new agreement is the removal of price controls for .net domain names. Previously, Verisign was required to limit price increases to 10% per year. However, under the new agreement, Verisign will be allowed to increase prices on .net domain names by up to 10% per year in each of the last four years of the agreement.

This change has sparked some controversy among domain name registrars and website owners, who are concerned about the potential for price hikes and the impact it could have on their businesses. However, ICANN has stated that it believes the removal of price controls will encourage competition among registry operators and lead to a more sustainable domain name system.

Another change in the new agreement is the requirement for Verisign to provide enhanced reporting on its activities and financial performance. This includes quarterly reports on key performance indicators such as domain name registrations and revenue.

Overall, the renewal of the .net registry agreement marks an important milestone in the ongoing evolution of the internet. The new agreement reflects the changing needs and priorities of the internet community, and it sets the stage for continued growth and innovation in the years to come.

by July 8, 2023