How difficult can it be to transfer a .name domain?
With a little more research I found that the sites only supported new registrations, unfortunately they did not support transfers.
Over the years the support for .name domains has declined, to the point where the Register.com domain control panel no longer exposed any controls for my pieter.viljoen.name domain.
Any changes, e.g. domain or email forwarding required a tech support contact.
I started looking for a new .name registrar, and to my surprise found very few, and even fewer that were accepting transfers.
I already have several domains registered with eNom, and fortunately eNom did offer .name transfers, and did actively support .name domains, or at least this is what they advertised.
I initiated an electronic domain transfer with eNom, but the transfer is denied with a message stating that the authorization code does not match.
I call Register.com support, and am told that .name transfers do not require an authorization code.
I call eNom support, and am told to just enter 00000.
I submit the order again using 00000 as the authorization code, and the same problem as before.
I call eNom support, explain the story, are transferred, and this time I am told that I really do require an authorization code.
I call Register.com support, explain the story, are transferred, and after authenticating myself I receive an email with the authorization code.
I submit the order again, this time using the authorization code.
I receive the email, using the whois information from my current registrar Register.com, asking for transfer permission, I approve.
Several days go by and the order status remains in a processing state.
I call eNum support, and are told to wait a few more days.
After a few more days I call eNom support, and I am told to open a trouble ticket using their online support system.
I open the ticket, and a few days later I get a reply email stating that the issue needs to be escalated to the developers.
Every few days I ask for a status update, and am told they are working on the problem.
After about two weeks the transfer completes.
For some reason eNom uses the whois email address I registered with them to contact me for support status updates.
It was by chance that I opened my hotmail account and noticed the support emails.
All previous eNom communications were done using my primary email address I registered with eNom.
Since eNom was not in my good books, I decided to open a support case with eNom complaining that they use the wrong email address for support emails.
After several exchanges, including them not believing me, and me having to show them screenshots of my hotmail account, and screenshots of Outlook with regular eNom email communications, they offer an excuse that the system uses whois emails because everybody must fill out a whois email address.
When reality is that the eNom account system uses your primary email address and the whois email address is inconsequential when using eNom identity protection plans.
I just gave up and closed the case.
Now I want to configure email forwarding, but unlike Register.com where email forwarding was part of the .name package, eNom wants an additional $21.95 per year for email forwarding.
I don’t use that email address, but I order the email forwarding anyway.
A few minutes later I get a confirmation email, but the order was cancelled, with a message stating that I must cancel my existing email forwarding.
I open a support ticket with eNom, and are told that the domain transfer is independent of the email forwarding, and that I must cancel the email forwarding with Register.com.
I login to my Register.com account, and I still see my pieter.viljoen.name listed as an active domain.
I start a support chat conversation Register.com, and I am told that they will open a support case and get back to me.
A day later I receive an email from Register.com, and they confirm that they have deleted my domain from the fronted and backed systems, I confirm that the domain is no longer listed on my account.
I order email forwarding with eNom again, and the same problem.
I call Register.com support, are transferred, and after some time while the agent conversed with technical support, am told that my new registrar, eNom, must contact the .name ICANN authority, and arrange for the transfer.
I am also told by the agent that .name registrations are problematic in that very few individuals or registrars really understand how it works.
On a whim I decide to see if email forwarding still works, and sure it does.
So given that neither Register.com nor eNom is capable of taking care of the problem, and that eNom wants to charge me $21.95 per year for forwarding, and that email forwarding is working, I decided to just do nothing.
I really cannot offer any advice for anybody with an existing .name domain, but what I would say is that if you decide to register a .name domain, make sure your registrar is really committed to supporting .name.