Nominet to hand out £5m to online charity cases
New trust to divvy up domain sales surplus
Nominet, the not-for-profit in charge of the .uk domain registry, has approved a plan to distribute its multimillion-pound surplus among "education, research and development initiatives" to benefit the UK internet community.
The question of what to do with the spare cash has been bouncing around the domaining community for years.
Nominet doen't need all the money it brings in to run the registry, but its right-on constitution forbids divvying the surplus as a dividend to the domain sellers that form its membership.
After a members' vote and board approval, the newly-formed Nominet Foundation will kick off the philanthoparty this summer. Nominet proper will give it a first donation of £5m.
The foundation's structures and governance are still being settled and it isn't taking applications for funding yet. Keep an eye on the Nominet website here if you reckon you've got an idea for a worthy project.
Some domainers wanted Nominet to simply cut its prices in response to the surplus, or fund inhouse research into improving online security. ®
Good, UK domain costs are not expensive, and good that some deserving cases will benefit.
Old cynical me foresees the same happening here in a few years time though, as what happened with the mutual societies and building societies.
I feel that I am a worthwhile cause.
The initial £5million should keep me in the life to which I could become accustomed for a few years, where do I sign up?
I know it's a mere drop in the ocean for Paris but...
If the costs go up...
Surely if the costs go up - this surplus is reduced. Creating surplus is what not-for-profits are about. They spend the surplus on their 'cause' and if the surplus surplus is static, or increasing (money that cannot be spent on fulfilling their directions as a NfP) then it can't be divvied up internally.
It's good that nominet are going all philanthropic - they aren't reducing prices in case the cost of their activities increases.. then they'll just have less to spend on the Nominet foundation.
"Not for Profit" Profits
Calling extra money from trading activities a "surplus" is avoiding reality. In plain language Nominet have made a profit contrary to their remit. Rather than mess around with words and ploys to dispose of those profits, why don't they simply reduce the level of their fees? Too simple for a Quango type organisation?