March 22, 2003

Boycot Domain Registry of America

Today I received a bill from Domain Registry of America. (I won't give them the satisfaction of providing a link to their web site, but if you care, it is droa dot com.) It was for the renewal of my domain name,, which, they claim, is to expire on May 24, 2003. Two things are important here. First, the domain is not scheduled to expire on the stated date. Secondly, it is not registered with, nor has it ever been registered with, this registrar. This tactic is intentionally designed to mislead busy people into thinking that it is merely a bill, missing the fine print, and transferring their domain to these swindlers. Not only are they being unethical, but their prices are outlandish - $25 for a year, $40 for two years.

I encourage you to boycot this den of thieves, and, if you have any domains registered there, to transfer them to Dotster, or any of the other registrars that actually conduct themselves ethically.

Posted by rbowen at March 22, 2003 05:22 PM | TrackBack

Actually, I'm sorry, but I have to disagree. I did recieve a bill from droa even though my domain is registered (or was) with Network Solutions. Upon accepting their offer, I was impressed with their customer service and technical support. Not only that, but it's relatively a lot easier to get them on the phone. I personally hate talking to a machine and the fact that I get to talk to a live human makes all the difference. So, if you recieved something with an incorrect expiration, who knows, honest mistake?

Posted by: John on May 21, 2003 05:52 PM

Then perhaps you missed the reason that I dislike them. They could have the most wonderful service in the world, but their business practices are dishonest. I try really hard not to do business with folks that are openly dishonest like that.

To be honest though, in all the years that I've owned domain names, I've never had a need to speak with a technical support rep regarding a domain, so that's a bit of a non-issue for me. Except for when Network Solutions screwed up the password on my account, but, then, at least one of the reasons that I despise Network Solutions is the same as the reason I dislike DORA.

Posted by: DrBacchus on May 21, 2003 06:24 PM

I am a webmaster, and one of my clients contacted me today because he received a highly questionable email from Domain Registry of America. Although he never initiated contact with them, they wrote:

"Thank you for choosing to transfer and renew [domain name - removed to respect my client's privacy] with the Domain Registry of America. Upon testing your current administrative email address [removed - they used client's old email address] we have not been able to contact you to complete your transfer and renewal with Domain Registry of America. This may be because [old email address] is no longer in use, or misspelled. Your current administrative email address must be valid in order to complete the transfer and renewal process.

If these changes have yet to be made, please follow the directions below, to have the administrative email address corrected. Failure to do so may prevent you from being able to transfer and renew your domain name with Domain Registry of America. Call your current registrar and have these changes made to your administrative email address.

Your current registrar is [removed]..
See below for a list of the most common registrars.

1) Introduce yourself as the person responsible for the domain name [domain name - removed]

2) Ask them to change your Administrative Contact email address to the one you are now using. (You may be asked to present them with personal information, so that they may confirm your identity as the owner)

Please note that, unfortunately, Domain Registry of America cannot make these changes on your behalf. Only the owner of the domain name is authorized to make these changes.

Up to this date your changes have yet to be reflected in the WHOIS database. If this is your first notice please follow the directions above, otherwise this is to serve as a reminder."

This is beyond sleazy. I wouldn't touch these guys with a ten foot pole.

Posted by: Another John on June 21, 2003 12:14 AM

Just got one of these today.

We understand that your domain name expires on September 25, 2003. /You must renew your domain name to retain exclusive rights to it on the Web/.

Not at all deceptive. Nope. Doesn't make it sound like you're going to lose your domain if you don't send it back immediately or anything, seeing as how those are the first two lines of the thing.

Posted by: Colin Snover on June 21, 2003 09:56 PM

I got a letter myself and if you read the disclamer on their web site and the terms and conditions. I think if you "renew" with them, then own the domain name and the content from then on. It sounds like they can advertise on your site if they want too. Maybe I'm wrong, check their website, the information on the back of the snail mail "bill" is way too small for my eyes

Posted by: mike on June 24, 2003 08:13 AM

Check this web page out about Domain Registry of America. These guys are sleezballs!

Posted by: allan on June 26, 2003 12:01 PM

I received a letter too, they are lamers and "john" (the second message in this thread) must work for them !!!!! I definitely hate this kind of people.

Posted by: Mickael on July 2, 2003 04:14 AM

Hello there, I am working for a company that has a web site. The owner of the company recently recieved a message from DORA Domain Registry of America saying that they had to pay to transfer and renew their web site. We have suspictions that the company is a fake, seeing as we are in the UK and they are in America, and our web host is nothing to do with DORA or America. Could any one tell me if this company is some sort of scam company trying to steal people's money. (I know that the answer to my questions may be in the above, but I have no time left and can't read them all until tomorrow morning.
Thanks Rob Talks

Posted by: Rob Talks on July 2, 2003 05:30 PM

I got snail spam form them today... Anyone know where you should call to report this blatant fraud? And isn't it some kind of federal offense to use WHOIS information in this way?

Posted by: Randy ribarchak on July 4, 2003 04:03 PM

I also received the DORA letter and was appalled by the blatant deceptiveness of the message. As a Dotster customer, it suggests writing the Federal Trade Commission ( and/or your local Consumer Protection Office, which I intend to do. "Sleazy" doesn't even begin to describe this company.

Posted by: Nik on July 6, 2003 09:14 AM

These people are sleeze balls. Unfortunately I found out to late. I did however file a complaint with the FTC.

Posted by: Denis on July 6, 2003 03:39 PM

They got Verisign on this last year, so why can't they nab DROA?

It is causing lot's of problems with our customers also. Mostly because they don't actually get the domain transferred. DROA
just takes the money and leaves it at that.
Domain is not getting renewed as person thinks
it is.

Posted by: Rebecca on July 23, 2003 06:06 PM

What I fail to understand is why these theives can continue to get away with this after so many months of the FTC being aware of the situation.

I feel these people are among the worst kind of criminals, and allowing them to continue without punishment simply encourages other firms to employ such tactics in order to make money.

What a world........

Posted by: Nick on July 29, 2003 07:06 AM

I am a professional Web designer and have a client who has four domain names with Domains Registery of America (how slanderous)sent a snail mail directly to my client's bookkeeper asking for "Renew" and transfer. She made the mistake of responding with a $100 check. When I received the emails to confirm the transfer, I jumped on it with all four feet.

In results, I called DROA on the phone and Emanuel in effect told me he had a right to market this way and that I was rude and unprofessional. (I didn't use foul language but I was very insistant that he stop contacting us. He said he WOULD NOT!!!

I am very angry!!! ya know?

Does anyone know a law firm who wants a class action suit?

Posted by: Kenan Branam on July 31, 2003 12:14 PM

Yeah, this really is bad practice. I received 4 of these snail mails yesterday and was just looking around for others with the same experience... looks like they have struck quite a few people.

Anyone know who this should be reported to in the UK?

Posted by: Danny on July 31, 2003 02:45 PM

You guys are morons, first of all its "DROA" not "DORA", second of all you all chose to list one sentence of the "Solicitation" not "BILL"...

If you read the notice it is clearly stated in BOLD lettering that it is NOT a BILL, on top of the fact that there are 3 paragraphs saying it is a transfer from your current registrar.

If you fools learned how to read and weren't so busy blaming others for your ignorance possibly you wouldn't have problems like this ot begin with.

If you took 1 minute to read the notice you would have saved yourself the time and pain of having to pretend like you have been victimised by some eloborate scam.

Silly yankees, reading is for ADULTS!

Posted by: Vitamin on August 1, 2003 10:53 AM

The message board sounds like a lot of Webmasters who are angry that they are losing business to a competitor, if they're clients register directly with another company for a lower price how will they jack up the price to renew with
Kenan Branam. You even wrote in your post that and I quote:

"Domains Registery of America (how slanderous)sent a snail mail directly to my client's bookkeeper asking for "Renew" and transfer"

You even admit it asked them to transfer, people are stupid, that's the bottom line.

Posted by: carl on August 1, 2003 11:09 AM

Once again, someone has managed to completely miss the point that is being made. I'll restate it, and use small words, so that our friend "Vitamin" can understand.

They are intentionally being misleading. They are intentionally using fear, uncertainty and doubt to persuade the recipient that they must pay DROA, or lose their domain registration. This is couched in language that makes it *look* like a bill.

Clearly, I did read the letter, and did not send them any money. You'd realize this if you had taken the time to read my posting, rather than leaping in and frothing at the mouth about people not reading letters. I did not claim that I had been victimized, but merely that DROA is engaging in dishonest business practices, and should thus be spurned.

If businesses just have to utter the right incantations ("This is not a bill") and that this absolves them from fradulent tactics, then this is a problem with our methods of enforcing business ethics. If this is how your business operates, rest assured that I will not do business with you, either. I'm interested in integrity as well as adherence to the letter of the law. DROA is not showing integrity in this misguided advertising campaign.

Posted by: DrBacchus on August 1, 2003 11:12 AM

So let me get this straight Dr. Bacchus, you got the letter, read the letter, knew that it was an offer to transfer your domain name and you did accept it. You were obviously not influenced by any fear, uncertainty or doubt. Are we to believe you are some sort of super-human? That your intelligence and ability to assess a situation is far more advanced then the anyone elses. Are you the protector of mankind and all those who you feel can't help themselves?

It's this kind of arrogance that is the real problem with this country.

Posted by: on August 1, 2003 11:23 AM

So let me get this straight Dr. Bacchus, you got the letter, read the letter, knew that it was an offer to transfer your domain name and you did NOT accept it. You were obviously not influenced by any fear, uncertainty or doubt. Are we to believe you are some sort of super-human? That your intelligence and ability to assess a situation is far more advanced then the anyone elses. Are you the protector of mankind and all those who you feel can't help themselves?

It's this kind of arrogance that is the real problem with this country

Posted by: sorry- correction on August 1, 2003 11:24 AM

DrBacchus, so you had read the letter and understood it to be a transfer, upon doing so you realised you were not interested and did NOT send in the money...

This just proves the point that it is NOT misleading..

Can't say the same for the other people, the fact is its an advertisement, it's written on a grade 5 reading level.

Logic!, simple logic, how can you call something which has not MISLEAD you to be MISLEADING!?!?!?

it's not the notice that misleads, it's peoples arrogance and ignorance.

READ and though shalt be enlightened.

Posted by: Vitamin on August 1, 2003 11:26 AM

Last but not least, some more logic here..

You were not mislead and so you were not in any way hurt, you chose to read which was smart.

Yet you talk about Boycot?, thats funny when you are the one talking about integrity and honesty and ethics... Get a life.

Posted by: vitamin on August 1, 2003 11:46 AM

No, I'm suggesting that I know something about domain registration, and that by far the majority of those receiving this letter do not. I am a network professional, and most of those receiving this letter are not. The anecdotes related by several of the people who have posted here support this assumption. For me to believe that I know something about my business is not arrogance, it is simply professional sele-assurance. I'd be reluctant to hire a network administrator who was not able to tell the difference between one registrar and another. However, I would not expect the same from the secretary who receives the mail and opens the bills.

Something need not mislead the whole world in order for it to be misleading. The first time I received this notice, I did indeed have to do a double-take, because it certainly looked like a bill. It is clearly their intention for it to mislead people. Thus it is misleading. You youself admitted that it looks like a bill. Thus, it is misleading. This is not a logic problem.

I'm quite at a loss to understand why you are so vehemently attacking me, and supporting a company that is conducting business practices for which Network Solutions was sued not so very long ago. This company is very obviously making an intentional effort to trick people into thinking that they have received a bill, and getting them to transfer their domains. Every non-technical person, who is a domain owner, that I have spoken to, who received such a letter, thought this, until I explained to them what was going on.

Posted by: DrBacchus on August 1, 2003 03:33 PM

I too got one of these domain expiration notices and believing it was just a renewal I sent in a payment. When I found out that it was a transfer I phoned them up and asked them to cancel it, regardless of they're marketing practices they were very friendly and accomodating and issued me a refund to my credit card immediately. It wasn't the end of the world and I don't see why people are so worked up.

Posted by: David on August 4, 2003 10:07 AM

What a joke this whole company is. It is taking the people that know least about this stuff, shoving these things down thier throats...they are worried, don't know what to do...of course they are going to send money, anything to keep the site up. This is just like a mechanic at a shop...they use all this technical crap on someone that doesn't know a damn thing about cars to make it sound like major things are going wrong and they need to fix on it.

Posted by: Foo on August 4, 2003 07:13 PM

I renewed my domain name for 5 years at $85.00 after the Domain Name Expiration Notice :o)
Only three days later I perceived that my down- AND upload speed performed at approximately 97 dot 53Mbytes per second!!

Then I awakened from my almost enlasting dream :-(
"Domain Registry of America", 56 Gloucester Road, Suite 526, London, England SW7 4UB, HaHah!
Jerry from Holland.

Posted by: Jerry on September 13, 2003 04:53 PM

I have just had a client on the phone asking why I've emailed him to ask if he wants to renew his domain in 60 days.

His comment was that he had renewed with the central registrars (DROA) having had an invoice from them.

When I explained who they were (an agent) he was horrified and wanted to know what he could do. Need I say more

Posted by: John on September 17, 2003 03:54 PM

To Vitamin, Carl, John, 'sorry', et al.

US District Court Judge Buchwald has already determined that DROA's intentions and methods are "neither accidental nor innocuous, but calculated and intended to confuse and mislead consumers." You can claim that people can't read and are arrogant, but basically DROA is violating both US Postal regulations regarding sending mail masquerading as a "bill" without a 30 point type notice that it is not, and a federal judge's preliminary injunction regarding the fraudulent "renewal notices". The judge obviously doesn't believe DROA's claims that it sends out 'innocent' solicitations of business, just as most people posting here understand that this company is a fraud.

Posted by: Dickie on September 21, 2003 09:20 PM

This company sucks! Yet smart. They get a lot of people to just send in money without even thinking. I called my webhosting company to confirm this bill after reading the comments and I am so glad I did. This bill is fake and my expiration date is six months from the date they indicated.

Posted by: Kelly on September 23, 2003 02:11 PM

As a professional in the Internet business and the admin contact for a large number of domain names I have been long aware of the doubious business practices of the DROA. I dumped most of their very misleading letters into the bin and thought no more of them until I began getting frantic phone calls from clients. My clients pay me to handle their Internet business and do not expect to get letters and emails apparently demanding money to do something they have entrusted me to do. I do not need this hassle, I work hard enough as it is without having to waste my time calming down irate clients. The sooner this company gets shafted the better.

Posted by: Kelweb on September 25, 2003 12:46 PM

Thank you all!
It saved us 90$ !
It looks to me that some of the comments must have been written by the DROA people themselves.
Soren K.

Posted by: on September 28, 2003 07:33 PM

I also got one of these misleading letters from DROA. Was too easy to spot it actually but still.
I am one of those people that opens up their mail every now and then, sift through it and just pay all the bills immediately. I can imagine people falling for this trick. Even if only one in a hundred falls for it ...
Since I am not in the mood for justice, I am in the mood for revenge... will see if there is any way to have both their internet and normal address / phone number being spammed.

bunch of pathetic losers these kind of people.

Posted by: Maarten on September 29, 2003 02:42 PM

As a customer of DROA and not DORA, i feel that they have gave me the best support. I read their add and understood it. It clearly tells you that you are transfering and renewing your domain name from your current provider to domain registry of america. Was it it you dont understand. It also tells you that this is not a bill, for which people seem to be mistaken that letter for it. Small print? i am sorry but everything you need to know is all the same size of print. I transfered with them and yet never had a problem. Their customer service is better then any of the other company i was with before. I was able to get on the phone with them no problem, as in for Netsol...i could never get through and when i would they were always rude with me. I am happy with DROA and not DORA if you dont like them then maybe you should ignore the letter and stay with you current provider....WHO CARE!!!!! find something else to do.

Posted by: Sue on October 1, 2003 09:52 PM

Well, dear Sue, the fact of the matter is that the United States government disagrees with you, and finds their business practices to be unethical. Furthermore, as numeroous testimonials have demonstrated, the technique *does* mislead people, whether you think it does or not. The fact that you transferred your domain to them and were satisfied in no way demonstrates that the initial letter was ethical. They can have the best service and prices in the world, and I would still say that their practices are unethical

Posted by: DrBacchus on October 2, 2003 06:50 AM

You can think what you want to think...i wont sit here and argue with you but i stated my point of view so therefore let it be. People read letters and read it a way they want it to be. But to me, it was clear and i understood it. I am glad to have chose a company in canada cause i am canadian.Leave it as that...and reniew with whoever, as long as you are happy them get with it. I dont understand why you need to write this stuff about them. They are a good company and i have no complaints. Thank you

Posted by: sue on October 2, 2003 03:44 PM

I agree with DrBaccus. I just had to undo a transfer. They sent what looked like a bill to my boss indicating that the domain name was going to expire soon and we needed to renew. He filled-in the form and mailed payment.

Yes, he should have examined it very carefully and realized it wasn't a bill. But that still doesn't make their intentional deception ethical.

They might be a terrific registrar and it was refreshing to so promptly reach a human in customer service. That doesn't excuse their marketing/sales department's behaviour.

If they are otherwise such a terrific registrar (and they might be, I just don't know), word-of-mouth and good press will bring them the accounts without the headaches that come with anti-DROA sites, FTC investigations, and the general animosity their current practices garner.

Posted by: Doug on October 3, 2003 12:59 PM

Thanks everyone, I got one of these and found the wording of renew and transfer very misleading, especially when I saw the words 'must be renewed' so I jumped on google and found this site. My paper recycling bin has an extra sheet in it!

Posted by: Mark Clacy on October 3, 2003 10:46 PM

Can we contact anyone in the UK to report this companies ethics to ?

Posted by: on October 9, 2003 06:16 AM

So what happened with the preliminary injunction? I searched and found that there was one issued clear back in December of 2002.

The injunction must not still be in place, because they are up to the same old dirty tricks again.

I get dozens of those letters because I both own and manage many domains. They never send the letter to the administrative contact who actually knows what the heck is going on, they send it to the owner.

I just got an email notifing me that one of the domains that I manage was being transfered. I called the association that owns the website and the secretary just paid the "bill". Wish they paid me that easily. I told her that she probably just wasted $25.

Where can a complaint be filed?

Posted by: Kirk on October 9, 2003 12:29 PM

I just got one of these in the mail today myself. I take care of a bunch of domain names, but this is the first one I have received for my own one. Mine came from:
189 QUEEN ST., SUITE 209

Several of my clients have had them from other companies, but I have been fortunate that they have asked me before posting a cheque. (One time I'm actually happy servicing small businesses)

I am so going to call up and have a go at them. SODS. I might even pop over to Melbourne and have a go in person. These kinds of scams are just starting to piss me off.

The unfortunate thing is, though, that I'm in New Zealand (where there business would be so dismantled), and Australia has slightly more relaxed business laws - so I'm not even sure if this kind of marketing would be as against the law there as it would be in other places.


Posted by: Mathew on October 12, 2003 04:42 AM

I recieved this in the post today, "Domain Name Expiration Notice". It does say "When you switch to" but at first glance I thought it was a genuine renewal notice asking me to renew or lose my domain name. I thought it was odd because it was addressed to the website name not my name which I use on all official correspondence and the prices are twice as much as I paid for this year. I'm another UK resident who runs a personal website so I'm intrigued to know where they got my address from.

Posted by: Emma on October 13, 2003 01:45 PM

I too have had a 'bill' from these guys with an accommodtion address in London. I think this smacks of sharp practice and I am taking this matter further with an official complaint. When I phoned DROA they suggested that if I didn't like the way they operate I could take a walk (that's a polite version of what was actually said).

Posted by: Harry on October 14, 2003 09:10 AM

I got a letter from DROA and asked my provider about them. They said, that they are not allowed to send me a bill, so i didn't pay.
Interesting about my bil is, that i live in germany and i don't think i will buy my wbspace and my domain from the domain registry of america. I know the world is getting smaller, but i must say germany is in europe. Perhaps anyone should send DROA a worldmap :)
Hope these idiots will go to jail and loose their money!

Posted by: Taki on October 14, 2003 09:59 AM

What a pathetic way to have to try and get business DROA

Posted by: Shumba on October 24, 2003 06:45 PM

I got a notice today as well!

As soon as I saw it I new it was a fraud, I had just finished reading an article in GQ about fraud... How uncanny!

In the return address it says reply to:

Domain Registry of Americia
189 Queen St., Suite 209
Melbourne, 3000

I am located in Australia, so I thought it would be much easier to go through an Australian company. Rather then sending Foreign Currency checks, which by the way are very frustrating!

But then I looked a little closer...

- First of all the letter is on Americian Legal Letter sized paper, you cannot buy this in Australia. Our standard business paper size is A4.

- I checked and found out the address is actually a serviced office. I suspect these form letters are built using WHOIS info, then printed in the US and then finally couriered (FedEX, DHL etc.) to thier serviced office company in Melbourne. Where postage stamps are affixed and the letters are sent locally.

- The letter is obviously printed using an Ink Jet non-commerical printer.

- Check the fine print (on the back) they are justy a reseller of Verisign's services, so just go through Network Solutins -- It will be easier!

I am not the person to get scammed, hey!

Posted by: Jake on October 25, 2003 11:32 AM

I just got two of these in the course of a few weeks. Unfortunately, one check already got sent out directly from our billing department. It hasn't cleared yet, so we're going to try to cancel it.

I would like to point out that in my case, and probably in many other people's cases, the letter never even made it to me before payment was sent. The letter looked enough like a bill that it got handled as such. The only reason we realized something was up is that they needed to confirm our email address, which didn't make any sense, since I had no knowledge of us creating a new contact listing with a new company.

Anyway, having seen the letter, I don't think you can blame billing departments for not catching that this is a scam. For one thing, bills for domain registration only come up once every few years, so people are unlikely to realize that the mail is from a new company. The fact that the notice is not technically a bill does not mean it is not misleading. Consider that even if this were a notice from the current domain name registrar, the notice would still not technically be a bill, but rather a renewal notice like this is. Assuming you don't know who the current domain registrar is, the only way to know something is up is that the notice requests "transfer and renewal", not just renewal. I don't think it's reasonable to assume a billing department will understand the subtle difference well enough to interpret the notice correctly.

Anyway, this company sucks and I hate them.

Posted by: Dave on November 3, 2003 01:49 PM

Hi, Dr Baccus! I am glad you posted this site. I too have been receiving the same "bill" style forms from DROA and sent them a message asking to be removed from their mail list and that I had turned them into the BBB and Internet Fraud Division . An employee there named Simon responded in a typical manner befitting a company that is operating in such a unprofessional manner. He basically taunted me saying that there was nothing anybody could do to them, and that they had done nothing wrong. The messages from Vitamin above are pretty much worded the same as DROA's to me. The one reader is correct, Vitamin and the other guy obviously are employed by DROA. CHEERS TO YOU Doc for posting this info here to help show that we are not alone in thinking DROA is using "Fraud" to market itself. Just type in their company name in Yahoo and you will see the complaints as well as a court case against them for the same practices. Droa lost of course. Good will always win against evil....because evil is dumb.

Posted by: Sindarin on November 5, 2003 11:25 AM

After reading the string of comments, I am angered and saddened by the comments from the unenlightened masses. Why are people so quick to side with a company using obviously fraudulent methods? And then have the audacity to attack the comments of others who are lifting the veil of ignorance?

KUDOS to Dr Bacchus for taking the time to manage this site, I am comforted that there are at least a few good souls out there.

Anyway, this one takes the cake. The letter we received from Domain Registry of America today did not even have the correct spelling of our organization's domain listed?!? That is what caught my eye first and resulted in my searching the web and finding this informative site.

And here is yet another business address of this scurrilous company to add to the list:

2316 Delaware Avenue #266
Buffalo, NY 14216-2687

Posted by: NonProfitOrg on November 7, 2003 07:02 PM

I just got one of these letters and was amused when I searched for DROA on Google that the vast majority of the page one listings were to sites exposing the company as unethical.

Who to complain to in the UK? I don't know about that, but as the editor of Marketing Karma (ezine for UK online marketers) I'm going to have fun with this one in the next edition (w/b 10th Nov). If you're interested in reading it it'll be online at

Cheers all.

Posted by: robinh on November 9, 2003 02:02 PM

I agree with rbowen. I registered the domain (and have it hosted) with for $35.00/yr. What the "domain registry of america" are doing is simply domain hosting theft. People are un-trusting of the internet anyway and this sort of practice does nothing to increase confidence. I wonder who "john" ( for? droa dot com perhaps?

Posted by: Chris on November 9, 2003 07:09 PM

I had a domain name for most of 10-years. Last week, a customer stated he attempted access and it was now a re-seller of books, travel, services, etc. (Same domain name My firm is Vocational Consulting. Inc. that is why the associated vc-inc. exists. Now some unknow firm stole this and I have NOT IDEA what to do. I have a endorsed check paid on 5-26-03 for "5-years to renew domain name" on the BILL. What can I do? Who do I contact to attempt to GET IT BACK!!! This "Domain Registry of America took the money and did NOT PROTECT the name ownership. Pissed in Seattle. John F. Berg 206-933-8870

Posted by: JOHN BERG on November 11, 2003 06:05 PM

I registered my domain with dotster (1 yeag ago) and also received a letter from Droa. I thought to renew my domain name by paying $85 for 5 years past october. As it seems no my expiration date still hasn't been updated, though the money has been payed.

Can anyone explain me what's going to happen? Please reply or email.


Posted by: Giorgio on November 12, 2003 04:10 AM

DROA sent me four renewal notices this morning, saying my domains were due for renewal February '04. They are actually due Feb '05. This does not smell good, I recommend not dealing with them.

Posted by: on November 12, 2003 06:00 AM

I think these people saying good things about DROA work for DROA. And, aren't they actually a Canadian based company?

Posted by: Stephen on November 13, 2003 05:24 PM

Today I couldn't access my site. I called my hosting service. No problems there. By chance, I checked with my domain registrar. Expired? No way, I just paid to have the damn thing renewed last month. Little did I know that it was a fraudulent bill from DROA. And mine did not say "This is not a bill."

I didn't pay enough attention to it. That much is clear. I was in the middle of packing to move to a new house and just wrote a check, figuring it would be one less thing I'd have to worry about.

When I spoke with my registrar about it, they told me that in addition to just taking money with no intention of domain name renewal, DROA is now attempting to charge a $5 fee for refund! That might be one of the most unscrupulous things I've ever heard.

They promised my money back within 4-5 weeks. I don't have alot of hope that I'll ever see it. I filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and a few other places.

Posted by: Mac on November 14, 2003 11:01 PM DROA is affiliated with Enom. DROA uses its' common name ''domain registry of America'' in order to fool out people. They send out regular mail to all people who's info that have taken from public whois. And, it is not just in USA, they send their letters all around the world. Their letters say that the domain name is about to expire and people need to renew it with DROA. My regular mail-box is full of letters from DROA. They do not even care that the address is the same on my domain names. They address letters to particular domain. Other Enom affiliated companies spam by e-mails. I keep all of the letters and if needed I can provide them in the court. DROA is demanding from me $25 for the one year extension, it's an absurd. I pay $6.95 to and get the best service I could ever imagine.

Posted by: Steve Sylvester on November 29, 2003 12:16 PM

Count me in, been getting their mail spam for months. I get one for virtually every one of my domains (about a dozen). They use the whois address info.

Posted by: Elliot Lee on December 10, 2003 08:49 PM

Same here - I emailed a client requesting their annual renewal fee and they told me they'd already had a bill from Domain Registry of America, which they'd paid.

I googled and found this site and a dozen similar ones. Phoned to tell them the bad news. Fortunately DROA hasn't actually renewed the domain and we still have time to renew it ourselves - if it had expired anyone could have snatched it.

If you're a webmaster I'd recommend emailing all your clients and warning them of this company and their deliberatey misleading tactics.

Posted by: John Kershaw on December 15, 2003 03:02 AM

Was just looking up information about DROA...I manage several hundred sites for a company, and our problems with DROA have been awful.

I currently have 6 domains (just in the past 2 weeks) where clients have sent in those "invoices." It's frustrating because it's misleading, but I've also warned our clients about the invoices. They just cause more work...and despite the incessant complaints, they continue the practice.

Which means they're making more money from people giving up/not trying to fight than they would as a legitimate registrar with marketing that was much less nebulous. Slime.

Posted by: on December 15, 2003 05:18 PM

Dr.Bacchus, surely someone as "educated" as you, who is a doctor would be able to read through a simple 2 paragraphs of text, one assumes that someone who read much more literature to obtain the title of "doctor" would have no problem reading through 2 paragraphs.

In any event I understand that you have issues with this business practice as do I, however note that this practice has been used by many other companies as well Domain registry still employees these tactics after being in business for over 2 yrs, and no court injunction has stopped them yet indicating obviously there is no law stopping them.

Stop crying over spilt milk, you didn't send them money great for you my domain is with them and I have had nothing but ease and comfort without a problem.

Posted by: Bobby on December 17, 2003 12:23 PM

Once again, someone appears to have entirely missed the point. But, I don't guess there's a whole lot of advantage of trying to explain it yet again.

However, just yesterday, yet another customer called in a panic, telling me that they had received notification that their domain was expiring, and that they needed to renew immediately or they were going to lose it. And it turns out it was, yet again, DRoA misleading someone.

So it's not about whether *I* can read their letters and determine that it's deceitful. It's more about unethical business practice and misleading people into paying what they do not owe.

Finally, the fact that it is legal, in the sense that the courts have not made them stop, in no way makes me any more fond of what they are doing. And it is *certainly* not about whether they give you good service. That is very far from being relevant. They are unethical, and I will not do business with them. I recognize that a number of the people that were duped into changing to their service justify this by saying that they have good service. I'm happy for you. Quit telling me that my ethical objections are unfounded. You yourself say that their business practices are shady.

Posted by: DrBacchus on December 17, 2003 01:06 PM

Dr.Bacchus, this process of sending mail or "solicitation" is as old as time itself. Wether it was door-to-door or through email, or through postal mail, its been going on forever, and if no court has deemed this to be "illegal" than why not just let it be? it seems as if you have something personal against this one company shows that you are being completely ignorant of other companies that have the same practices, visa-vi telecommunications and long-distance carriers. Keep in mind there are over 300 hundred domain name registars in the world today, and as that notice (which I am looking @ right now) clearly states " domain name holders are under no obligation to renew with their existing provider or with Domain Registry of America) also in the 3rd paragraph it clearly states in BOLD LETTERS "This Notice is not a Bill".

Also in the second line of the bill the line appears " When you switch today to the Domain Registry of America" the word swith is a dead give away i beleive.

The problem here is that most of society today fails to be alert and tends to want to be spoonfed everything, i beleive television has alot to do with it. They want to be spoon-fed their ideas on war without thinking and thinking CNN is the Gospel of News which it is far from.

Posted by: on December 17, 2003 03:04 PM

I don't quite get why you are insisting on missing my point. "Other people are doing it" has never made something ethical. The fact that I posted a single article about DROA does not in any fashion mean that I am condoning all other companies that engage in the same practice. I resent the companies that send a "check" which, when you deposit it, cause you to agree to a contract. That, too, is misleading. But I have not commented here about it because it hasn't happened that much to me.

My point is that it is unethical, not that it is illegal. They are being intentionally misleading, sending notices that are intended to be misunderstood, and are indeed misunderstood a significant amount of the time. I'm not claiming that I was misled. I'm stating that *many* of my customers have been misled. This is not opinion. This is fact.

I don't know why what I'm saying is so hard to understand. And, clearly, the majority of other people commenting here are in agreement with my position. And the fact that this is the most-commented article on my entire web site, 9 months after initially posting it, attests to the fact that a *lot* of people are dealing with this problem.

Posted by: DrBacchus on December 17, 2003 03:37 PM

I was today's lucky recepient for a DRoA letter!

The expiration date was correct, the prices rediculous and the letter was total and utter SPAM!

The thing that disturbs me most is that they now have my contact details on record for any future spamming that they want to do. If I find the time, I'll try to read the small print to see how I can get my details deleted from their records and stop any future letters.

Does anyone know how they actually find out about the people they spam? Do they trawl through the WHOIS database and send letters to random people?

When it comes time to renew my domain name, I'll transfer it to :)

Posted by: Jess on December 18, 2003 02:21 PM

I had one of these letters today, addressed to a trading name and in respect of two website addresses that I've never used.They've now started operating in the UK, using the same US letter-size paper and a service address at Suite 526, 56 Gloucester Road, London. The telephone number given for this address is actually in the USA (though the letter doesn't say so).

What marks this letter (or "Expiration Notice")out is the small print on the back, at 4.5 points spacing (16 lines to the inch), which means the actual type size is much smaller. Not being extremely short-sighted, I needed a high-powered magnifying glass to read the mass of disclaimers etc, which mean the customer indemnifies DRoA if anything goes wrong, rather than vice versa. And I agree that the average secretary or junior clerk (male or female), who'd never read the small print anyway, wouldn't understand the jargon if they did. I don't think the document would stand up in a British court, but by then they'd have the money and wouldn't care.

Trouble is, the people who most need the excellent advice (from this website and others) to have nothing to do with this company are those who are least likely to see it.

I'm using an ancient e-mail address rather than have even more scam cluttering the one I really use.

Posted by: Ken Brookes on December 19, 2003 10:45 AM

Why do these so called thieves keep getting away with their actions? because lazy, ignorant and ileterate morons like yourselves are making it all possible..

Moral of the story, learn to read and take responsibility for your actions... And stop crying about everything, you all disgust me...

Damn monkeys!!!

Posted by: Dr.zaius on December 19, 2003 01:00 PM

I agree as well, you all disgust me
learn how to read english you stupid morons

Posted by: Rolf on December 19, 2003 01:48 PM

DOTSTER.COM IS A SCAM, I had my domain with them and forgot to renew it so it expired, guess what!
they put it on their main page so people can bid on it!!!!!
goto and see for yourself on how these guys are full of a scam!

how would you like to register with a such company like dotster and next thing you know that your domain name is up for bidding on their site???
I wouldn't do this.

The views expressed on this comment are my own and are based strictly on my opinion.

Posted by: Mike on December 19, 2003 02:05 PM

you guys disgust me

Posted by: on December 19, 2003 02:38 PM

Amusingly, the last 4 of those very negative remarks were all posted by someone at the same IP address. I'll bet that's just a coincidence, right?


Posted by: DrBacchus on December 19, 2003 02:45 PM

first of all the letter clearly says on it that its THIS NOTICE IS NOT A BILL and before i will send money to anyone or anywhere i will do my best to find out who i'm sending money to and what i'm paying for.
Seriously the letter is only half a page long and you can't tell me that u have no time to read it and notice that its not a bill.

Posted by: thegreatone on December 19, 2003 03:08 PM

I don't care if it's a bill or not -- IT'S STILL UNSOLICITED (SPAM) MAIL!!

Point 10 on the back says that they "reserve the right to spam you" (put simply). How can a company make up it's own rules, especially ones that 'allow' it to spam people?

I'm in the UK and my letter came from the UK address, as stated above. I've thought about sending the letter back to the sender or maybe just putting 'F*CK YOU' inside the envelope provided and posting that, although I'd have to pay for the postage (stamp) in that case. Another thing to do with it is print out the definition of 'spam' and send it their way.

Has anyone else done something in retaliation? (I've only read the first/last few postings, none of the middle ones)

Posted by: Jess on December 20, 2003 04:51 AM

"Mike", how is it as scam for Dotster to auction off a domain which had already expired. At least as of 6 months ago when one of my domains expired, they would have sent you 3-4 notices and given you a month after the exparation date to renew.

Posted by: Pitt on December 23, 2003 04:41 PM

I haven't posted a message here before, but was simply trying to find other complaints about ENOM (they have really gone downhill with their services - must have sold out.) Anyway, about these letters from DRoA ... Any so-called company that must resort to marketing by trickery, obviously has a pretty lame loser running the show. Since they can't succeed in business on their own, they resort to stealing business from others. You would have to be an idiot to knowingly do business with such losers. I enjoy getting their letters, as it gives me pleasure to waste their money as I throw their correspondence in the trash! What these people need is a real job, because they obviously have nothing to offer and can't run a sucessful business on their own.
Keep getting the word out!! Just think, by warning people, you are depriving these losers of unearned money and that is the best way to fight back ... you know these complaints really tick them off. Sorry losers!

Posted by: AL Crawford on December 27, 2003 05:27 PM


To answer your question about verisign/netsol getting stopped for the same suppose same practises as droa is because netsol sent solicitation notices to other registrar clients about renewal notices and did not state they were not their original registrars. For Droa they do state an quote again "You must renew your domain name to retain exclusive rights to it on the web, and now is the time to transfer and renew your name from your current registrar to the Domain Registry of America.

Its obvious you dont want to hear other satified customers positive comments as your bent on all the negative things about it, however if they do mention that it is a transfer from your original registrar in the same fonts.. and they clear have the name of their company on the registrar.. please explain to me again exactly that they are scamming people. and you state that it is a bill, please tell me where on the notice that it says its a bill and you must pay with them..

CAuse realistically if the people who receive the letter and read it they should know that it is not a bill they are not force to renew it.

I'll admit i am not a customer, and did receive their notices and as any sane person i read the notice before doing anything, and i am happy with tucows and just disregard the letter. They were right my domain is about to expire.... but i am not going to renew with droa (even though they were the ones who let me know my domain is about to expire, and not my registrar of tucows). I was kinda upset with tucows, but just stayed with them as i am comfortable with them.

Posted by: on December 29, 2003 10:30 PM


To answer your question about verisign/netsol getting stopped for the same suppose same practises as droa is because netsol sent solicitation notices to other registrar clients about renewal notices and did not state they were not their original registrars. For Droa they do state an quote again "You must renew your domain name to retain exclusive rights to it on the web, and now is the time to transfer and renew your name from your current registrar to the Domain Registry of America.

Its obvious you dont want to hear other satified customers positive comments as your bent on all the negative things about it, however if they do mention that it is a transfer from your original registrar in the same fonts.. and they clear have the name of their company on the registrar.. please explain to me again exactly that they are scamming people. and you state that it is a bill, please tell me where on the notice that it says its a bill and you must pay with them..

CAuse realistically if the people who receive the letter and read it they should know that it is not a bill they are not force to renew it.

I'll admit i am not a customer, and did receive their notices and as any sane person i read the notice before doing anything, and i am happy with tucows and just disregard the letter. They were right my domain is about to expire.... but i am not going to renew with droa (even though they were the ones who let me know my domain is about to expire, and not my registrar of tucows). I was kinda upset with tucows, but just stayed with them as i am comfortable with them.

Posted by: Kevin Wong on December 29, 2003 10:31 PM

As have millions of others, I too have received letters from DROA - I chuckled. However, there seem to have been many who believe they have been "mislead". So, it appears that the FTC has stepped in. See for more info.

Peace & Prosperity,

Denis R. Westphal

Posted by: Denis R. Westphal on January 5, 2004 11:44 PM

As soon as I opened the DROA "bill", I went into a panic state and was about to extract my credit card from my wallet when one of those mysterious red flags went up. Something didn't add up. I am am medico with a Ph.D., but they almost got me. After reading, "Domain Name Expiration Notice" at the top right of the letter I didn't read the rest with a critical eye...........but before doing anything I thought I would "google" and voila - spam and scam - my intuition pays off again. Really really shabby business practices. Someone has got to pull the rug out from these thieves.


Posted by: Dr.D. on January 21, 2004 05:50 PM

I got suckered into actually sending them money, but ignored the transfer emails. When my current hosting service sent me messages that my domain was coming up for renewal, I discovered the scam. When I asked for a refund, I was told I first would need to complete the transfer. Except according to their own FAQ refunds are NOT offered for completed transfers/renewals.

Given this clear and direct attempt at defrauding me, I contacted the Federal Trade Commission. May I suggest that everyone so caught by their business practices similarly file a complaint.

Posted by: Scout on January 22, 2004 05:38 PM

Has anyone transfered domain from DROA to someone else?

We can't transfer our domain from DROA. No matter who we try to transfer to, DROA will not release authorization codes to complete the transfer.

Posted by: Boris on February 2, 2004 10:40 AM

We received a Domain Name Expiration Notice for to our old address Sodapop Momentum Lönnrotinkatu 32 A 6, 00180 Finland. Please notice that we have moved to a following address
Sodapop Momentum, Pieni Roobertinkatu 1-3, 00130 Helsinki, Finland.
Kindest regards!
Anna Kerttula

Posted by: Anna Kerttula on February 4, 2004 04:52 AM

Thanks, Doc. You opened my eyes with this--my client and I will be cutting our losses ($40) and escaping NOW--if we gotta do a new website address, so be it. Yes, I'll be turning them in. Yes, I'll be asking for money back (tho I don't expect to see it).

Those bozos obviously working for DRoA--this is the way the modern world has become. If we ever have a situation where the authorities are tied up with far greater and grievious matters (God forbid, but...), I know what SOME of us old school folk will be doing! These predators should not be allowed to BREED!

Posted by: Debra on February 4, 2004 11:33 AM

FYI: Court Bars Canadian Company from Misleading Consumers in Marketing of Internet Domain Name Services

Posted by: Owner of ATEPC on February 9, 2004 04:41 AM

Where is David message gone?

Posted by: ip address on February 13, 2004 06:27 AM

There needs to be a correction made to this thread/claim. droa (the scammers) are resellers of enom. enom is not droa. enom is the parent, droa is the child. We are also resellers of enom, and so are hundreds (if not thousands) of others. Please do not equate the gutter level tactics of one reseller (droa, and I agree it's fraud what they do) with all the other resellers of enom services. Most resellers sell for much less than Verisign or (we sell at $9.95 to $14.95 compared to Verisign or's $35) and in no way endorse what droa does.

Thanks for reading.

Posted by: another domain names reseller on February 19, 2004 04:40 AM

All this bleating by DROA employees on this board (yes you know who you are) about people not "reading" and their "bills" not being misleading is utter garbage.

My client recently received an email which started like this:

"To [name],

Thank you for choosing to transfer and renew [domain name]with the Domain Registry of America.

Your transfer and renewal of [domain name] is not yet complete.

Due to the changes in the .biz renewal process, you will need to obtain an EPP key code from your current registrar...."

As my client had NEVER chosen to "transfer and renew" she thankfully said "what's this?" and sought my advice.

And they try tell us they're not misleading anyone!

Posted by: Janet on February 22, 2004 06:09 AM

I have also received bogus billing from DROA soon after my domain name was renewed with the proper registra.

Posted by: Bill Kirby on February 24, 2004 10:43 AM

Janet and the rest of you need to learn, not to be or act stupid and to start reading things!

Posted by: on February 25, 2004 05:57 PM

that's right! don't blame this shit on someone else, blame it on yourself because you are the one who made a mistake not them.

Posted by: on February 25, 2004 06:01 PM

I find it very amusing when people post a comment, and then respond to their own comment in a "different voice" as though to give it additional credibility. Those last two remarks are from the same IP address, and are 4 minutes apart. That's not the first time that's happened in this thread. I suppose I should not reveal where the IP address traces back to. :-)

Posted by: DrBacchus on February 26, 2004 07:57 AM

I renewed my domain name in 2002 for ten years.
DROA has contacted me for the last two years infering that my domain will expire shortly unless I quote "Act today" unquote. ie: send them a payment.
They have now got an office in London so they seem to be expanding...

Posted by: Peter on February 27, 2004 04:03 AM

Do a search on the address DROA use. I googled the London one - "56 Gloucester Road" London - and yes, it is in use by a surprising number of companies and organisations. So it is a PO box-style virtual office. Nothing inherently wrong with that, but not exactly confidence-inspiring... make of that what you will! ;-)

MacUser Magazine

Posted by: keith on March 1, 2004 06:45 AM

The intelligent remarks above are certainly very comforting. I'm jubilated to read that others who are providing guidance, direction, and other information are deemed "stupid". Perhaps a mirror will show the writer the true meaning of the word.

As for the DRoA, I personally feel that people who do not know much about the Internet should always question. Many people at my work handle the incoming mail. If there is a question related to computers/Internet/telephones/etc, they quickly pass the request to me for approval before going back to the money-handlers. It's almost like virus emails: some people don't think and simply open the attachments.

It's all a matter of education and processes. If education doesn't work in the circumstance, there can always be a process. Small business owners who get duped into a DRoA-type scheme *should* always consult with a friend/relative/professional who can reliably inform them of such traps.

Posted by: Chris on March 5, 2004 11:18 AM

Whoops, don't I look like a fool! I guess the comment I referred to in my first paragraph had been deleted from the system in the two minutes it took me to post. I won't worry though; I think you get the gist of what it stated.

Posted by: Chris on March 5, 2004 11:20 AM

Thanks a lot for your warning! I just received a letter today with above mentioned offer. It went directly into my shredder.

Posted by: Karl on March 6, 2004 02:24 AM

Received this email on 2/21/2004 ... sharing for your enjoyment

Important Notice Concerning Your Domain Registration

As part of a settlement between the Federal Trade Commission and Domain Registry of America , DROA has agreed to offer you the opportunity to switch your domain registration from DROA to a different registrar, and for you to receive $6.00 for each registration you transfer.

In its complaint, the FTC alleged that DROA misled consumers into transferring their domain name registrations from their then-current registrars to DROA. DROA denies the allegation.

If you would like to switch your registration from DROA to another registrar, you must contact the new registrar to arrange for the transfer, and pay the new registrar its fee. DROA cannot arrange the transfer for you. For a list of ICANN-accredited registrars, visit list.html. Once DROA confirms that you have successfully completed your transfer, we will send you a check for $6.00 for each registration transferred.

If you would like to send us a copy of your transfer request, you may mail a copy of this form to

Domain Registry of America
2316 Delaware Avenue #266
Buffalo, New York

or by email to

If you have any questions, please contact Customer Service at DROA or the FTC at 1-877-FTC-HELP (382-4357).

Posted by: Bill on March 7, 2004 04:03 PM

I have two such letters waiting for me when I get home. Obviously I will not be sending any money, one of the domains does not expire for a further 6 months. I might call them and see what is happening that is if there is a number on the letter (something I doubt)- I'll let you all know. I would love to know whether or not the OFT (Office of Fair Trading)or Tradind Standard in each county in the UK has anything to say on this. Watch this space

Posted by: Mike on March 9, 2004 09:23 AM

u guys are stupid
plain and simple, stupid.

Posted by: on March 16, 2004 04:42 PM

I got one of the DROA letters last week, and my first thought was "Woah, has something happened to my regular registrar? I thought I registered my domain for a couple of years?" (Along with many others, I suspect, DROA's very name made me think they were ICANN or somebody official.)

However, I quickly regained my senses and realised it was just a dupe scam, but I'm *really* worried about how many people won't read or understand these letters properly. My father, for instance, isn't stupid, but wouldn't realise that this was a scam letter because of the deliberate way it's written so it appears legitimate.

These guys are *clearly* deliberately and wilfully trying to mislead people. No, they're not lying in anything they say in the letter, but *they are deliberately trying to mislead people*. It's extremely dishonest.

I really hope the OFT and similar bodies in other countries smack these guys, and hard, and soon.

Posted by: Royston on March 17, 2004 09:48 AM

I just filed a formal complaint against DRoA with the FTC, as follows:
"This company tried to fool me into paying them for registering my website domain name. The heading of their letter states in bold, large print "Domain Name Expiration Notice". They infer that, unless I pay them, my domain name will expire. This is clearly an attempt to trick people into paying for a bogus service. It is clearly fraud. Please prosecute these crooks."

Posted by: Rich on March 26, 2004 08:03 PM

It is appropriate to complain about any company's fraudulent practices (which DROA has clearly engaged in), and poor services. Yes, every buyer should beware, however that does not in any way decrease the responsibility of companies to operate honestly. To defend dishonest practices with "buyer beware" is true stupidity; the two are independent discussions. In my opinion, ICANN ( should take a much more active role in monitoring the registrars they "accredit" (definition: bless with vast income).

Moreover, what some here forget is that registrars have been given a gift: they get to charge money for essentially producing nothing. Their product is a "namespace" which belongs to society. Despite the recent "competition" introduced, the hold a registrar has over you still leaves this very close to a monopoly. Like a cop handed a gun, the freebie these companies got gives us even more right to hold them to high standards.

Finally, it is not always roses once inside DROA as some have implied. As a customer of DROA, held hostage by their monopolistic grip on my domain which I can not afford to risk losing at this point, I have recently sent them the following letter. Yes, I should have switched to another registrar six months back. However, as I mentioned, that does not relieve them of the responsibly to provide service commensurate with their charges.

Sent: Sunday, March 28, 2004 1:48 PM
Subject: Poor domain registry service at Domain Registry of America (,

To whom it may concern:

While you may advertise $25.00 as a reasonable fee for domain renewal, I know as well as you that this is an exorbitant price for an essentially trivial service of handing out numbers - that you are getting filthy rich for little effort.

Given your lucrative operation, the least you could do is provide reasonable service.

I consider it completely unacceptable that:

- Domain Registry of AMERICA is billing out of CANADA without providing a merchant name to my credit card company.
- your customer support was already aware of this problem, and it has not been resolved.
- your simplistic online system provides no confirmation/tracking number following submit of the renewal form.
- your online system claims it will send follow up with email, but it did not.
- your service department could not immediately resolve your own billing failure when I called to inquire about email confirmation.

Again, my payment authorization rejected because YOU did not provide a merchant name to the credit card company.

All this results in far MORE work for me, despite my paying MORE than is reasonable for the service.

How would you feel?

You guys are the reason capitalism has a bad name.

At this point "" asks me to try and contact you directly to resolve such matters, and I hope you will resolve the billing issue immediately without further effort on my behalf, and without disruption of service.

Thanks for very little,
Cris Mooney,

Posted by: Cris Mooney on March 28, 2004 02:14 PM

Further to Bill's post on March 7, 2004 04:03 PM, the following page contains the same text:

Posted by: Cris Mooney on March 28, 2004 03:06 PM

I got this spammed from the droa regarding several of my domains - I got so annoyed which is why I'm here. I can't believe people here are actually defending this kind of practise. These guys are as bad as email spammers. Like other people said, people defending this must work for them. I refuse to believe "normal" people agree with the their ethics.

Posted by: John on April 3, 2004 08:09 AM

these 'people' are scum and make a mockery of the system. however, it is obvoiusly worth their while to continue this practice, either because the ftc does adequately enforce its findings and there are always a percentage of dumb users who will fall for the scam. hey, if a stranger knocks on your door and asks you for $25, will you give it to him? of course not! internet users must learn not to do any business with or provide any personal information to any company or individual they do not know! follow that simple rule and you will never be snookered.

Posted by: jeff on April 6, 2004 03:21 AM

Thanks for keeping this page current. My situation is a prime example of problems created by this type of spam: I, as a volunteer, maintain a Web site for a non-profit organization, for which the costs of hosting and domain registration are handled by others. When I received this notice (included below) I had to, at the very least, make two long distance phone calls. Luckily I was able to discover the common practise of this company before having to send out emails to the others committee members, which would have led to further confusion.

Whether efficient or not, it is a fact of volunteer committee work, or corporate departmental set-ups for that matter, that not everyone will be on the same page at all times, and there is always the possibility that a change could be legitmately made without all those involved having been informed. These types of misleading notifications take adavantage of that fact and should be outlawed.

Posted by: Jacki on April 6, 2004 06:57 AM

Forgot to include the most recent version of thier email:

To (Registered Name),

Thank you for choosing to transfer and renew (our domain) with the Domain Registry of America.

Your transfer and renewal of (our domain)is not yet complete.

Due to the changes in the .org renewal process, you will need to obtain an EPP key code from your current registrar.

This authorization key removes the need for the user to send in a fax or reply to an email to verify their transfer request. This is because these names are assigned a unique authorization key at the time of their registration. The key is created and held with your current registrar. You should be able to obtain your authorization key by contacting your current registrar.

Please contact your current registrar using the information below and request your EPP Key code.

Domain: (our domain)
Current Registrar: (our registar)
Registrar Phone Number: (registrar's number)

When you call provide them with your domain name (our domain included again), and ask for your EPP key.

Once obtained, please click the link below to input your EPP key code and confirm your email address.

You must click on the link above in order to continue the transfer and renewal process.

Yours truly
Domain Registry of America
Toll free 1-866-434-0212 or for International Callers, dial +1(905)479-2533

Posted by: Jacki on April 6, 2004 07:06 AM

We rec'd "the letter" and the exp. date was correct! Went so far as to fire off a check. When I got the email listed above (to click the link), I noticed for the first time that I was transferring from my current registrar, got suspicious and found this board. These folks prey on the busy. I stopped payment on the check, which should ring their bell a bit. Thanks all!

Posted by: evb on April 8, 2004 08:20 AM

I just recieved the letter today. After reading it I realized that this was in fact NOT A BILL, and simply a company offering its services at a cheaper price.

I can appreciate boycotting them for being unethical - I'm sure lots of people mistake it for something that needs their immediate attention and fire off a check.

But - I find their prices a lot better than the company I deal with now. Is there any harm in me taking advantage of this? I've read some posts of people sending money and they don't recieve the services promised - but it seems the bigger argument is the ethical debate.

Posted by: on April 10, 2004 10:09 PM

Having gotten one of these snail-mail renewal notices, I agree... just like all those mortgage companies who claim to know your rate, and offer a better one. First off, like DrBacchus said, they have the expiration date wrong (which a whois check confirmed), then those outlandish $25/yr prices (my current service charges $6.95 a year!). A quick web search on their name revealed them as the scammers they are. Down with deception!

Posted by: Rohrwerk on April 16, 2004 07:23 PM

Well, I think someone has gotten DROA's attention (the FTC, perhaps?). I just received another unsolicited letter today, and even though it still has the "Domain Name Expiration Notice" heading, the text is much different than in the past:

"As a courtesy to domain name holders, we are sending you this notification of the domain name registration that is due to expire in the next few months. When you switch today to the Domain Registry of mAmerican, you can take advantage of our best savings."

It goes on in the next paragraph:

"You must renew your domain name to retain exclusive rights to it on the Web, and now is the time to transfer and renew your name from your current Registrar to the Domain Registry of America."

And then...

"Privatization of Domain Registrations and Renewals now allows the consumer the choice of Registrars when initially registering and also when renewing a domain name. Domain name holder are not obligated to renew their domain name with their current Reistrar or with the Domain Registry of America... You are under no obligation to pay the amounts stated below, unless you accept this offer. This notice is not a bill, it is rather an easy means of payment should you decide to switch your domain name registration to the Domain Registry of America."

So, they've addressed the most egregious of their misleading (if not downright fraudulent) past practices, and rather well, in my opinion. Of course, they still charge too much, but that's a whole other issue.

Posted by: Eric on April 20, 2004 05:56 PM

Well, Eric got the wording right, but the next bit of fun is that I just got a "Domain Name Registration Notice" stating that I should renew soon to prevent losing my rights to Checking WHOIS, this seems to be a legimately registered site, but certainly not to me. I wonder what would happen if I paid the proposed fee.

I do not intend to find out.

I may start sending bills to these people for wasting my time, however.

Posted by: Paul on April 21, 2004 04:58 PM

I am a victim. I received the "notice of renewal" paid it, went thru some red tape trying to get our web site back on line after missing, and figured out they were not the original holder of our web site name. My host was very upset not so much at me for not contacting his company but because of DRoA, they deceived us, we are just a very small motorcycle repair shop - chopper builder shop, in which we had a web site for fun, and barely knew how it all works. Well we got a course in SCAM 101. Our check cleared earlier this month, I am in the process of DEMANDING our money back and our name - so much red tape for the little guy!

I found DRoA's people to be curtious until you tell them, you guys slammed us! Then they show you their real side! Wish us luck and if you have any ideas or suggestions how we can get our money/web name back, please let me know!

Posted by: Jessi on April 27, 2004 12:01 PM

For all you people that SUPPORT this annoying deceptive trade, i would like to point out that 5 minutes of googling reveals ALL of DROA's addresses to be BASED IN HOTEL SUITES!!!

What kind of honest and trustworthy company operates from a hotel suite?!

Posted by: Craig Edwards on May 10, 2004 08:57 AM

Uh, Craig, lots of office complexes are located in the same building as hotels, and so are listed as hotel suites. What's at issue is their unethical business practices, not whether they're paying too much for rent.

Posted by: DrBacchus on May 10, 2004 09:04 AM

I do not see here that the FTC ruled in December 2003, that DRoA was to stop its deceptive practices and to give refunds to its customers it got that way.

We are a domain name register and they still to this day are sending our customers this fake looking invoice / renewal form.... I got 2 of them today!

So if the FTC says you can not do it, then why does this Canadian company still send out letters with a return mailbox of a New York Hotel???

Filed my FTC complaint today, will see what happens... meanwhile, I will need to call all my customers again and explain to them that we are not the DRoA and to throw the bill out (my customers say they are getting billed ... even though its not a bill as the DRoA supporters say)

Knock Knock, its the Fed's here to shut you down!

Posted by: CD on May 17, 2004 03:50 PM

all of you complainants should take the same amount of time you did to post here and invoice droa for time wasted and nuisance plus whatever postage & phone call costs, re-registry fees etc; (by FAIR CREDIT AND COLLECTIONS ACT - USA you are entitled to recover 4 times the amount illicitly and fraudulently billed); itemize and send invoice copies to a common trustee; file business fraud suit with attorneys general; subsequently placing a lien on all property and equipment of droa AND its owners/perpetrators and either send them into recievership or jail.

Posted by: Juan on June 12, 2004 08:47 AM

furthermore I take issue with the entire concept of wholesaling unused domain names - sounds like Dire Straits' "Money for Nothin'.." very much like those genome researchers patenting whole dna segments.... like if you get a DNA fingerprinting for whatever personal reason the company servicing the testing could ostensibly patent the access rights to YOUR genome and whatever unique genetic advantages you alone posess - the entire field of International Property rights and ownership is soon coming to a head. Sites like this assure the wholesome evolution of the process. Sheep who accept common or frequent malpractices and defend them by attacking or insulting those who do not, are as guilty as the perpetrators themselves - this is not the intent of free-market (not free-for-all) capitalism; the whole scam sounds like another horrendously deformed badly birthed fetus that is allowed to survive an otherwise prudent abortion & something John Ashcroft and the current administration would either sanction or parent.

Domain and its very concept is a fundamental thing and should not be toyed with lightly - the concomitant/future ramifications could be devastating.

As a possible alternative to the huge business of Domain Name Scams - why not just Patent/Trademark/Copyright your business name with a federal agency and skirt the whole issue - Juan Junos (sometimes)

Posted by: juan on June 12, 2004 09:11 AM

Unfortunately, I've sent a check in for the 5 year at $85, just 4 months ago. I've only had my website for a year...and I'm still new in the web world. My website is currently down, due to the fact that it's not renewed. I'm very upset over this...I feel cheated. I wish I've researched and seen this site before sending out that check. Is there anything I can do to complain, etc.? I can't believe I was naive enough to fall for this scam. =(

Posted by: JT on June 25, 2004 03:22 AM
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