Private equity take-over of .ORG domain delayed

Some activists must have been heard, California's Attorney General has delayed the transaction wherein a private equity firm is buying the .ORG tld, seeking more information.

Mashable:

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra sent a letter to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) demanding more information about the private equity takeover of the .org domain registry. The attorney general is seeking answers to 35 questions concerning the sale as well as documents sent between ICANN, private equity firm Ethos Capital, and Public Interest Registry (PIR), which manages the .org domain.

Ethos Capital disclosed last year that it was acquiring PIR from its non-profit parent organization, the Internet Society, for $1.135 billion.

ICANN, the non-profit organization that oversees domain names, disclosed the letter on its website along with its own correspondence with PIR, informing it of the development. Previously, ICANN had until Feb. 17 to approve or deny the sale. According to ICANN, as a result of the California AG’s letter, it’s seeking to delay this deadline until April 20.

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ICANN hits pause on the sale of .ORG to Republican billionaires' private equity fund

Here's what's happened: first, ICANN (the legendarily opaque US corporation that runs the internet's Domain Name System) approved a change in pricing for .ORG domains, run by the nonprofit Internet Society (ISOC) through its Public Interest Registry (PIR), allowing the registry to raise prices. The change was done entirely by staff, without board approval. Read the rest