India might ban .in domain investing

Retroactive ban could make it harder to trade .in domains.

The words domain investing crossed out

NIXI, the non-profit organization that manages India’s .in country code domain, is proposing a significant change to registration rules: no more domain investing.

Currently, there’s a prohibition against domain name registrars involving themselves in any way in the “squatting, grabbing, hoarding, infringement, auctioning, drop catch or selling of the .IN domain names at a exceptionally higher price than the published MRP they are regularly charging from the public”. Now it might retroactively apply this rule to registrants.

NIXI is concerned that some registrars are getting around its rule by using registrants as proxies. So it proposes throwing out the legitimate domain investors with the bath water.

This would obviously be a massive blow to people who invest in .in domains, including many people in India.

.In has always been a risky market for domain investing. Decisions under NIXI’s UDRP-like system can be baffling, and it even removed published decisions at one point. And NIXI’s management has made strange and arbitrary rules, such as limiting registrants to just two domain registrations at once.

It’s how I would imagine Elon Musk running a domain registry. It’s not a predictable and safe environment for those trying to do business.

Internet Commerce Association has written to NIXI opposing the new rule.

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