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Network Solutions’ scammy bullshit signup funnel (easydns.com)
77 points by StuntPope on May 3, 2019 | hide | past | favorite | 26 comments

I've been watching NetSol devolve in this direction. It started when they were acquired by web.com. They have really gone downhill. I had to teach their escalation support how to use "dig" against external / authoritative servers.

That said, I have found they are still better than most of the registrars that have popped up since. Some of the registrars can't even handle apex names as NS records. The scammy upselling appears to be a trend and isn't limited to registrars. Comcast did that to me as well with their bandwidth plans.

NetSol were scammy long before the web.com purchase. Back in 2007/2008 they were "front-running" meaning that if you searched for a domain name and didn't buy immediately, those dickheads would buy the domain and then demand a much higher price to sell it to you. Then when they got called out for it they tried to act all "oh, this is for YOUR benefit."[1] And they blatantly lied about the details of what they were doing.

[1] https://arstechnica.com/uncategorized/2008/01/network-soluti...

Your source doesn't support your assertion.

> He acknowledged that the company does, indeed, put a hold on the domain name after a search is performed and reserves it for four days, but that if a customer searches for the same domain within that time at networksolutions.com, it will be available to register. After the four days is up, the domain is released.

I'm the source because I experienced this firsthand in 2007. I found the article because I needed to validate an almost 12 year old memory. :)

As for the quote you picked out, it's a partial truth.

The partial truth is that sure, the domain was "available to register"...at a multiple of the standard price. I don't remember what the multiple was. And if you wanted to purchase through another registrar you couldn't because NetSol held the domain.

This all resulted in a class action lawsuit: https://techcrunch.com/2008/02/25/network-solutions-icann-su...

That was settled a year later: https://domainnamewire.com/2009/04/29/network-solutions-sett...

Edit: I removed where I said the part about the domain being released after four days was a lie. I remember it being much much longer but at the same time, I don't remember all the details well enough to make a statement of that potency.

There was no net transfer of money from NetSol to the registry for those domains, except when a customer would accept the offer for the domain.

They registered the name, and just before the 5-day ICANN Add Grace Period would end, they reversed the registration and received full credit for the registration fee.

At that time the domain would immediately become available for registration again through any registrar with no grace/redemption/deletion periods.

That sounds like it supports @crikli's assertion.

My experience with NetSol was they were bad to begin with when they were given a monopoly to charge for DNS registrations in 1995.

NetSol was the only bidder when the government solicited for a registrar to manage registrations for the domain name registry, and was again the sole bidder when the government privatized the registry itself two years later.

I've been an American consumer all of my life. Everything in here is business as usual for American consumers (and this comment is clearly hyperbole). Thank you for pointing it all out though.

In seriousness though; I sure wish these practices were illegal.

Most of that stuff is horribly illegal in the EU. Explicitly even.

Plus if you took them to court after getting a surprise-bill, I'd imagine even a US court siding with you.

This is just fraudulent.

Man, I have only heard horror stories about Network Solutions. When I started out I was using 1&1, turned out they weren't that great either so switched to hover.com and have been very happy there. Not sure if it is true but I have heard people say they check if a domain is available on Network Solutions, then check the next day and suddenly it is more expensive, very shady if true.

I have been very happy with hover.com as well

Mark may be bombastic, but he's not usually wrong.

It's hard to believe they actually did the pre-auth - anybody here at PayPal reading this?

Right? It's blowing my mind that it's possible to pre-approve PayPal payments without knowing how much you're going to be billed. The system should not allow users to hand a blank check to a retailer.

What you document solidly here are definitely deceptive practices. The adding on of services and labeling them "FREE" when they will result in ongoing recurring charges is highly deceptive.

The prices aren't listed in the dropdowns, but if you choose an option, then the price should be displayed on the right: < https://imgur.com/a/1hSJOUq >

Added an update to post to acknowledge this.

So, "FREE" == $2640.90

(eyes bulge out like the guy in a warner bros cartoon)

NetSol is a plague. Web.com was garbage and bought them to consolidate even more garbage in house. They don’t even encrypt customers passwords. I was asked to confirm a plaintext password once on behalf of a client. No identity confirmation required!

Typically I login and simply want to change nameservers for clients and I’m prompted to buy services while I navigate through their convoluted portal for a simple change. It’s almost amusing how pathetic it is.

Kinda off topic.. but does anybody here have any experience with the registrar dynadot?

I have a few domains with them since last year and it's been uneventful. But I was just wondering if anybody else had any good/bad stories about them?

>Netsol charges $35 for a 1-year .com renewal! (It’s $15 here).

And $8 at cloudflare.

Just to note however that they only do renewals and transfers, no new registrations

Is this kind of behavior legal in the EU?

Remember when they put a wildcard in the gLTDs? Assholes.

This was Verisign, which acquired Network Solutions in 2000. Verisign had already spun off the registry unit from Network Solutions when this incident happened. The remaining registrar business of Network Solutions, along with the name, was sold less than a month later.

As of today, the registry unit is still part of Verisign, while Network Solutions changed hands many more times.

You're right, it was in 2003.

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