Domain name retention
November 18, 2004 5:44 PM   Subscribe

My current host is closing down, and since I bought my domain through them it will be transferred into my name before they finally close at the end of the year. However, my domain expires on December 12, and they are so far unresponsive to my emails and have not transferred the domain (it has been two weeks since my initial request). I am worried that if I'm not able to renew it, it will be snapped up by a domain-sitter and I will lose it. In case it isn't transferred in time, is there a way I can beat the domain-sitters to it and reserve my domain? What are the more affordable options for doing this? Will I be guaranteed to get it?
posted by teem to Computers & Internet (6 answers total)
If I were you I would do some research into the available domain registrars, then call up a few of the best and talk over the situation with them. They can tell you exactly what is required to transfer the domain to you, under their care. That way when Bloghosts gets back to you you'll be able to take action immediately.
posted by Voivod at 5:54 PM on November 18, 2004

Does the whois database list that company as the registrant of the domain? If so, then you may have a bit of trouble.

There is a 30 day grace period after a domain expires, in which nobody can register that domain. After that there is a 30 day redemption period, in which the original registrant of the domain can seize control.

The rules are murky, especially considering you don't own the domain name. If you completely trust the owner to transfer the domain name, and are worried that they may be too swamped to get it done by Dec. 12th, they will probably have more time than you think.

If they don't change the registration over to you, then you may be in trouble, and have to worry about getting it before cybersquatters.

Try Searching Google to see what the exact rules are. You may also have to file a grievance with the registrar. You can get the registrar info from a whois search.
posted by stovenator at 5:58 PM on November 18, 2004

Is the domain in bloghost's name? That's pretty weird, if you ask me.

Look up the whois and if it's not in their name and has a valid email address of yours on file as the admin contact, simply go to a new registrar (I recommend and put in for a transfer. You'll receive an email inside an hour with a link to confirm and then you're done.
posted by dobbs at 7:02 PM on November 18, 2004

I use as my registrar, despite the dumb name. They do have a service where you can put dibs on a domain, although it's a little more than buying an open domain.

A human at godaddy picked up the phone when I called them with a tech question and gave me a helpful response--talking to someone on the phone might just work.
posted by adamrice at 7:19 PM on November 18, 2004

teem - do whatever you can to not let your domain name expire. This is especially true if it's a short .com address or something that is seemingly popular.

Once a domain name expires it can't be transferred to another registrar, and if your host is going under they aren't likely to want to do anything in the way of renewal. They look to be a domain reseller for DirectNIC. If after another few days you don't hear from them I would contact DirectNIC directly.
posted by FlamingBore at 7:33 PM on November 18, 2004

First confirm that you're not already the registrant of record. As dobbs noted, it's unsual. Normally the host would be listed as technical contact, but it's rare that an ethical host has itself listed as owner for the domain.

Second, if you aren't the registrant then get help from DirectNIC NOW. There's less time available than you realize. If you haven't gotten the transfer underway by approximately the 28th, the current registrar will have the right to block transfer.

If your bid for transfer/renewal fails, you can still try to reclaim it by using one of the legitimate domain poaching services. GoDaddy, for instance, is one of the registrars that offers a "backorder" service that monitors changes to a domain and will automatically try to register it for you as soon as it becomes available.
posted by nakedcodemonkey at 7:47 PM on November 18, 2004

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