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VeriSign and Go Daddy Increase Government Lobbying

May 25, 2011Domaining, Domainnamewire, GoDaddy, lobbying, Policy & Law, VeriSignComments Off on VeriSign and Go Daddy Increase Government Lobbying

Two domain name industry heavyweights spend more on government lobbying in 2010.

2010 domain name lobbyingBoth VeriSign and Go Daddy substantially increased their spending on U.S. government lobbying over the past year, data collected by Domain Name Wire show.

The numbers are based on public records filed with the U.S. Senate under the Lobbying Disclosure Act.

VeriSign spent $3.315 million on lobbying last year, up from $2.4 million in 2009. Go Daddy Group, which owns domain name registrar GoDaddy.com, spent $1.162 million in 2010. That’s up from $715,500 in 2009. Among the issues Go Daddy lobbied were piracy, privacy, and rogue internet pharmacies. Go Daddy has been a strong advocate of shutting down these pharmacies and suspended 150,000 domains related to rogue online pharmacies last year.

Most other domain name related companies either held lobbying expenditures steady or decreased them, as the chart in this post shows.

Non-domain companies also spent money lobbying the federal government about domain names. For example, Christian Coalition of America was at it again, lobbying the government to stop the .xxx domain name. (ICM Registry, which operates .xxx, just registered to start lobbying the government this year).


© DomainNameWire.com 2011.

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Who Will Throw Domain Investors Under the Bus?

April 28, 2010Domaining, Domainnamewire, Internet Commerce Association, lobbying, Policy & LawComments Off on Who Will Throw Domain Investors Under the Bus?

When will Washington decide to screw domain investors?

When the U.S. health care bill passed, one of the provisions that got some attention is a tax on indoor tanning salons. The 10% tax goes into effect in July.

When I saw this provision, I realized right away why this particular provision was added. Sure, it raises some money (defrays the cost of the health care bill). And it is somewhat related to health, since tanning can have some negative health consequences. But the first thing that popped into my mind was how the tanning salon business got picked on because it’s not big enough to put up a good defense.

Just about everyone else in the health care debate threw millions of dollars at shaping the policy. But the Indoor Tanning Association couldn’t keep up with that. It reminds me of the domain name industry, which can’t beat the big pockets of sometimes competing interests.

Last night I read an article in Forbes (Pole Dancing and Other Sins, May 10) that shows how another medical interest threw the tanning salons under the bus:

Dermatologists, arguing that heavy use of indoor tanning has been linked to a higher risk of deadly skin cancer, convinced the Senate that revenues from the tanning tax should replace a tax on cosmetic surgery (the so-called Bo-Tax) adopted by the House. “We were rolled by the doctors,” laments John Overstreet, executive director of the Indoor Tanning Association.

That’s how Washington works.

The domain industry doesn’t have a lot of money, but fortunately it still has a presence in Washington. We should support that.


© DomainNameWire.com 2009.

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