African domains left a comment on an earlier post on .ke. I thought its better to publish the piece, so that its just not me. Here we go ….

I always hear the same argument whenever I complain about the high prices: “It’s not that simplistic”. What’s not simplistic? The truth is that the domains are overpriced! Why doesn’t KENIC borrow from the examples of other nations like South Africa, Tunisia, Morocco etc where the domains are quite affordable?

Believe me , we all want all those .KE domains. There are thousands of attractive generic keyword domains names still available in .ke namespace. We covet them but we can’t afford them. They are just too costly for a local entrepreneur. When Kenyans build more quality websites using .ke names instead of .com or .org, it will add value and more visibility to the .ke namespace!!

It’s quite telling that those sitting on KENIC Board are not using .ke names. Why do they insist on selling to Kenyans domains that they can’t even afford themselves???

KENIC does not even try to offer advantageous pricing and marketing promotions to Kenyan web users. The last time I saw a promotion, they were offering red KENIC branded bags. Do we need bags or domains? In Singapore, they were celebrating their independence month in August and the Registry was selling domains at $3.90 for the whole month to ensure mass adoption and enable citizens to express themselves online using their identity.

Why doesn’t KENIC try these promotions and see if we won’t take up these domains? They can launch promotions for example for Madaraka Day, Jamhuri Day etc and offer even 10,000 .ke domains at Ksh.750 and watch what happens! Like Wanjiku says, if they lower prices, they still get sufficient revenue because of mass uptake! Why aren’t those registries offering low-priced ccTLD domains elsewhere going under?

By its stubborn refusal to listen to the local internet users, KENIC is stifling the Kenyan domain name industry, out of sheer stubbornness. From the stats on KENIC website, it seems KENIC adds an average of 600-700 domains per month, quite pathetic in a country with 10 million internet users.”

I think the argument “It’s not that simplistic” is used to shut off criticism and resist change and open Kenyan users to exploitation. Next time there’s an internet governance forum, Kenyans must loudly express their displeasure at this!!!