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  1. #21
    TheCPA's Avatar
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    US Based registrars need to step up to the plate on this one as well.
    yes,....ABSOLUTELY!!!!!!!!

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by yorktown View Post
    US Based registrars need to step up to the plate on this one as well.

    Godaddy alone expects to lose millions in revenue alone if this goes through. They would be foolish not to throw their legal hats into the ring.

    Marc Lesnick
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    Agreed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheCPA View Post
    My wife was looking over my shoulder, and she said, YEP, you're fast at a lot things, but TYPING isn't one of them!
    What do you say to that...


    But, seriously, thank you for the informative posts guys!
    Teresa Adam

  4. #24
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    What do you say to that...
    I retaliated with "I'm not as good once was, but I'm as good once as I ever was, and besides that, you can't stay in that position long enough anymore to make it to round two anyway"!

  5. #25
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    Some of the Affiliate Programs like Star Partner, Referback have changed the URL extensions from .com to .co.uk or .net. But will that be enough to byepass the seizure?

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by yorktown View Post
    US Based registrars need to step up to the plate on this one as well.
    I concur - they should also be fighting this, but I think most of the onus lies with those who are having their domains hijacked.

    Kentucky has no jurisdiction to do what they have done! Further, since when was simply viewing content a crime? Shouldn't the governor seeked to have had registrations from his state blocked instead of entire websites? For that matter are there actually any online gambling laws on the books in his state?

    I am interested in learning how the major domains on the initial list are handling this ... any reports on that?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nandakishore View Post
    Some of the Affiliate Programs like Star Partner, Referback have changed the URL extensions from .com to .co.uk or .net. But will that be enough to byepass the seizure?
    Well if those new extensions are registered with registrants who will not honor future forfeiture demands the efforts might be good enough to get by for now, but IMO unless those companies are also fighthing tooth and nail for their rightful .com domains it makes them look like the crooks that some in the government consider them.
    Last edited by arkyt; 17 October 2008 at 7:28 pm.

  7. #27
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    Some of the Affiliate Programs like Star Partner, Referback have changed the URL extensions from .com to .co.uk or .net. But will that be enough to byepass the seizure?
    IMO as a precaution. Again domain seizures simply will not happen. If Kentucky felt so strongly one would think they would apply the censorship.

    JMO

    greek39

  8. #28
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    arkyt. Agreed - Online gaming has powerful lawyers, and cash to burn. It does defend itself.

    But for this one it needs strong allies. Godaddy, Verisign and other US ICANN accredited registrars represent such a powerful ally.

    Casino domainers don't own 1-2 domain names. Most I know own hundreds, if not thousands of domains.

    Figure it out:

    1000 casino domains at USD $7 per year is USD $7000.
    ....That's just ONE customer.

    My account exec from Godaddy quit the day the decision came down. That tells me he quit because his bonus would be significantly reduced.... enough to warrant resigning.

    Godaddy has thousands of customers with hundreds of thousands or even millions of gaming domains. I figure they would lose somewhere between $4 to 12 million per year. Layoffs would be certain. Verisign's domain division must be similar.

    Any US Registrar with half a brain would activate their legal teams and make it a top priority. If I were CEO of Godaddy, I would say to my in-house legal counsel, 'either you fix this and reverse the decision, or you're fired.'

    There is more pressure on the Registrars than ever before. Thus, a great ally for the industry.

    Marc Lesnick
    Conference Organizer
    Casino Affiliate Convention

    PS: As for the co.uk and others domains.....how will that do seo-wise? Branding-wise? Dot.com is king. We all know that.

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by yorktown View Post
    PS: As for the co.uk and others domains.....how will that do seo-wise? Branding-wise? Dot.com is king. We all know that.
    Is any of us, webmasters, thinking of changing his .com domain to co.uk or .net or something else?

  10. #30
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    Nandakishore: changing over to .co.uk is not the issue in reality. Its the registrar.

    I am understanding that several of the 141 domains are held with registrars based abroad. For example, one UK based registrar intends to give Kentucky hell on this. They do not intend to hand it over. It is a case of jurisdiction: the domain case would need to be taken to the jurisdiction where the company has control over the domain. So Kentucky will have to take their case to the UK courts to force a UK based registrar to hand over the specific domains. Kentucky taking their case abroad is highly unlikely.

    The problem is for registrars like Godaddy (based in Arizona), Veirsign (based in California). They are subject to the laws of Kentucky, albeit thievery. They have to most to lose now. Casino domainers are big business for them. I don't know about you, but most domainers consolidate with a single registrar.

    My suggestion last week was to look for registrars that are non-USA based that are friendly to online gaming. Then transfer the domains over. I came up with a list HERE with prices.

    ....This would add an additional legal hurdle for a state like Kentucky, should they go after your domains next. And unlikely for them to take the case abroad.

    SEO: .co.uk will get you better results in the UK iitself, but you may harm your results elsewhere. .COM is universal...and generally has the best SEO with google. Its also the easiest to brand. So changing the .TLD extension from.com to another TLD is counter-productive.

    Marc Lesnick
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    March 30-April 1, 2009
    NH Grand Krasnapolsky Hotel
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  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by yorktown View Post
    Nandakishore: changing over to .co.uk is not the issue in reality. Its the registrar.

    I am understanding that several of the 141 domains are held with registrars based abroad. For example, one UK based registrar intends to give Kentucky hell on this. They do not intend to hand it over. It is a case of jurisdiction: the domain case would need to be taken to the jurisdiction where the company has control over the domain. So Kentucky will have to take their case to the UK courts to force a UK based registrar to hand over the specific domains. Kentucky taking their case abroad is highly unlikely.
    This is also my understanding of the case. Therefore, what puzzles me is the change of .com extensions of the casinos to .co.uk etc. by Star Partner, Referback etc., which costs us webmasters huge amount of work to change the afftags. Why can't they just change their registrar?

  12. #32
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    Nandakishore: An operator looks at it from a different perspective than an affiliate. Change the TLD to a non dot com and country based, you weaken the argument a US State will have over jurisdiction.

    An affiliate should stay with what he/she has.

    BTW: J Todd's video on Perspective's weekly was hysterical. Calling Gov Steve Breshear a 'dumb hick' was the highlight.

    Marc Lesnick
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  14. #33
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    I thought I read somewhere that ICANN said they would comply to any US law, intimating that if Kentucky asked, they'd oblige. It struck me as odd they would do that bearing in mind they aren't exactly popular as it is, but that's what I'd read. In which case, owning the com/net root servers, surely registrar would be irrelevant?

  15. #34
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    Simmo.....

    ICANN really wouldn't be involved directly, (see the last several paragraphs of this).

    It would first be the registrars. If it had to go up the ladder, then it would get to the the TLD operator. As you can see from this link, dot com is ultimately controlled by Verisign (based in California). So if you were an accredited dot.com registrar in, lets say Gibraltar, and you decided to protect your client and refuse to release unless they brought the case to Gibraltar, Verisign (theoretically) could pull it from you. They ultimately have the keys to the .com world.

    That situation would be unlikely, as Verisign made it clear of their unwillingness to cooperate unless it is completely legal. So they will probably say, 'Hey, take your case to the jurisdiction where the domain is regitrared.'

    As for ccTLDs (ex: .co.uk, .fr., .nl, .de, etc) this list shows who is in charge of those extensions. Again, another legal hurdle, and unlikely. But, you hurt yourself SEO-wise, unless you are targeting those regions.

    J. Todd was correct in his latest APCW Perspectives Weekly video. He said Kentucky in the end has accomplished nothing and also called the Kentucky Governor a 'dumb hick.'

    This industry is incredibly resilient. We've taken Mike Tyson sized punches over the years. Other industries would have gone down for the count. Instead, we take the hit, adapt, get back up and are immune to the same punch. It reminds me of The Borg from Star Trek. We're not an evil industry, but we do adapt quickly.

    Marc Lesnick
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  16. #35
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    The Wall Street Journal has a story about this in its Business Technology blog.

    None of the online businesses—such as GoldenPalace.com, PokerStars.com and UltimateBet.com—are based in Kentucky or rely on technical equipment located in the state. Still, the sites readily accept bets placed by users in Kentucky and process payments from banks based there. That is what triggered Judge Wingate to seize control of the Web addresses.

    “Seizing,” it should be noted, sounds more ominous than it is when applied to the Internet realm. It prevents an Internet registrar that issues Web site names from transferring a Web address to a different registrar, even if the owner of the address, such as a gambling site, requests it. The gambling sites will remain operational until the judge issues a forfeiture order, at which point they will become state property.

    The court said it will lift its seizure order for online casinos if they implement technology that would block Kentucky residents from accessing their sites.
    Groups affiliated with the online casinos are worried about the precedent the ruling sets. “If you’re a business operator, you should be subject to the laws where you do and pursue business, and not have to worry about a state halfway around the world taking away your storefront,” says Jeremiah Johnston, president of the Internet Commerce Association, which monitors legal matters for online businesses. He adds that there is no reason that other governments couldn’t use the same technique to challenge online businesses for whatever reason they choose.

    In the Kentucky case, many of the registrars are based in the U.S. even if the Web sites aren’t, meaning that they have to comply with the court’s order, says Todd Greene, an attorney for Oversee.net, which has a subsidiary called Moniker Online Services that is the registrar for two of the gambling sites.
    Full story here ... http://blogs.wsj.com/biztech/2008/10...googlenews_wsj

  17. #36
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    Reason.com, a libertarian web site, has posted an editorial blasting the Kentucky governor and judge for their actions.

    In a fairly stunning ruling, Kentucky Franklin Circuit Judge Thomas Wingate wrote that, "The Internet, with all its benefits and advantages to modern-day commerce and life, is still not above the law, whether on an international or municipal level."

    The implications of that sentence are pretty profound. If it's upheld, it would mean that web-based businesses would have to familiarize themselves with the laws of every government entity in the world, then tailor their websites to conform to local law. Otherwise, they'd risk having their domains seized by local governments.
    http://reason.com/blog/show/129578.html

  18. #37
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    IMEGA's attorneys have appealed the decision and have asked a Kentucky court to throw out the case.

    Attorneys for an Internet gambling industry trade group, Interactive Media Entertainment and Gaming Association, on Wednesday filed a petition asking the Court of Appeals to vacate Wingate's order and dismiss the case because he lacks jurisdiction.

    "The reason we are going down this road is, frankly, enough is enough," said Edward Leyden, attorney for the group.

    He said attorneys could not wait until after a forfeiture hearing to appeal the case, which is the usual process, because "irreparable harm" would be done if the state won control and immediately moved to shut down the sites to users across the globe.

    "We can't afford to wait for that," Leyden said.

    The petition filed in the Court of Appeals will be considered by a panel of three judges.

    Defense attorneys have argued the state does not have jurisdiction because the Web sites are owned by companies located outside Kentucky and in some cases, outside the country.

    They also say Web sites should not be considered gambling devices under state law and that the court has failed to follow due process.

    Wingate last week addressed those issues and ruled in favor of the state.

    He originally scheduled a forfeiture hearing for Nov. 17 but this week pushed the date back to Dec. 3.

    Justice Cabinet spokeswoman Jennifer Brislin said the appeal was expected.

    "We will continue to proceed as the judge has outlined," she said.
    Full story ... http://www.courier-journal.com/artic...EWS01/81023045

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