Who owns .com domain

Governing authority for the TLDs


Governed by

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) - https://www.icann.org/

Root zone file contains ~1000 TLDs. This one https://data.iana.org/TLD/tlds-alpha-by-domain.txt .

Owned by

United States Department of Commerce

Registry Operator

VeriSign, Inc. (Verisign)

Verisign's operation of the .COM TLD is governed by two separate agreements: the .COM RA, and the Cooperative Agreement between Verisign and the U.S. Department of Commerce. In 2016, Verisign and ICANN formally agreed that if and when the Department of Commerce and Verisign made changes to the Cooperative Agreement, ICANN and Verisign would negotiate in good faith to ensure those changes were reflected in the .COM RA.

Binding documents between United States Department of Commerce and Verisign https://www.ntia.doc.gov/page/verisign-cooperative-agreement

Domain Registrar

Google Domains

As per https://payments.google.com/payments/apis-secure/get_legal_document?ldi=335152

PROVISIONS SPECIFIC TO .COM, .CC, .NAME, .NET AND .TV REGISTRATIONS. Verisign, the Registry Operator for .COM, .CC, .NAME, .NET and .TV, reserves the right to deny, cancel or transfer any registration or transaction, or place any domain name(s) on registry lock, hold, or similar status, as it deems necessary, in its unlimited and sole discretion: (a) to comply with specifications adopted by any industry group generally recognized as authoritative with respect to the Internet (e.g., RFCs); (b) to correct mistakes made by Verisign or any registrar in connection with a domain name registration; or (c) for the non-payment of fees to Verisign. If Registrant is registering a .NAME domain, Registrant certifies that it complies with the .NAME Eligibility Requirements.


Concerns with Verisign

Verisign has operated in the grey areas of its contract with ICANN. Verisign is leveraging some subtle law suit tactics to gain monopoly over the registry business with ICANN.

One important thing to note is for the last 20+ years Verisign managed to keep the stability. But, this should not be taken for granted. A new competitive bidding process with better negotiating terms are required.

US Sanctions

The economic and trade sanctions program administered by the Office of the Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the US Department of Treasury.

As per the ICANN blog post,

U.S. sanctions are set not through an agreement between the international community, but through the unilateral decision of the U.S. to assert sanctions on certain countries, mainly due to mutual conflicts that do not affect the rest of the world. The U.S. has some of the harshest and limiting sanctions against some countries, due to its historical conflicts. If we consider the Internet as a global resource, then actions that hamper access to that resource should not be imposed by one country.


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