Over the past few months I have been trying to wrest control of a .uk domain that I own from a company called “BritishNIC”. As far as I can tell, they have gone out of business, but you’d never know it because their website is still up, you can still login, and you can still (attempt to) make changes. But you can only attempt to, because nothing will actually work – including, crucially, trying to renew your domain, or transfer it somewhere else. If you’re unfortunate enough to have a domain registered there, you’re in trouble.
I had to engage the (expensive, unfriendly, and difficult to use) services of Nominet in order to forcibly rip my domain from the clutches of the corpse of BritishNIC, and this has taken far longer, and cost more money, than it really should. Nominet still list BritishNIC as one of their “approved” registrars, making the whole concept of a Nominet-approved registrar a complete joke.
I wanted to end this post by recommending a better UK registrar than BritishNIC, but as far as I can tell there really aren’t any good ones. I have switched to “Gandi”, because it was recommended by really quite a lot of people, but my initial experiences have been exceedingly poor. Still, they’re a big company that a lot of people seem to like, so I guess you could do worse.
Update August 2011: The situation with BritishNIC hasn’t changed, as you can see from the comments below. That Nominet haven’t shut them down is farcical. However, I can now recommend NameCheap as an alternative registrar. They’re great.