The Complexity of Domains

As one who has recently tried to switch a domain from one registrar to another, I’m astounded at the intricacy of this simple sounding process. When I purchased my domain, I believed that as long as I paid the annual fee the domain was mine to have and to hold and to move about as I saw fit.

Mr. G II

That may be true in the final analysis, but what I didn’t see was the vast array of supervisors any one of whom could negate my intent.

Here’s the story. I worked with a Website designer and together we created a handsome, practical, useful site that I was anxious to publish. It was to become my home site and therefore needed my home domain, which I had already purchased from a registrar. It was active and waiting.

However, since I had another domain being hosted elsewhere I thought it best to have both reside with the same registrar and so set about transferring my domain from one registrar to another.  Several days later I received an Email reminding me that I had secured (locked) the domain and it must be unlocked to be moved. I did that. Then I waited. And waited.

My site designer checked progress with the receiving registrar several times and found only that the transfer was in progress. Many days after that she suggested I check on it myself. I learned that there was no impediment to the transfer that the technician could see. He went on to comment that I was approaching a record with their site for longest transfer. As you can imagine, I was delighted (not!).

It was around then that I began to research the procedure to try to understand what might have gone wrong. On line I located a PDF of a many-paged booklet that listed procedures for every possible scenario during a transfer, the many authorities who needed to sign off on each leg of the journey, and the many, many things that one could have unwittingly done to prevent it from happening. I slowly began to understand that my process could have hung up in any number of places, and that by now the likelihood of success was slim.

Then, a full 21 days after our initial request my designer suggested we bite the bullet and either use another domain or have the original registrar host my new site. In other words, the domain might be mine, but I had not to been allowed to do anything with it.

My ire significantly raised, I called a technician at the receiving registry to announce my intention to stop the transfer.  But he conferred with another authority and found that it wasn’t a human responsible for the problem, it was an automated procedure that had misfired. And nobody noticed –  or else nobody cared.

The technician set about arranging to have the domain transferred manually and assured me it could happen as soon as twenty-four hours. And I had been waiting almost a month!

I’m not there yet. And until I actually see my site nesting in my domain, I won’t be counting any chickens.

I wish I had contacted a human at the beginning of my attempt. Not to ask that he/she do the transfer, just to supervise all the supervisors in case the more efficient automated process simply takes too long or hits a snag.

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