gTLD Advice: Feel Free to Ignore .Cloud…And Most Others

This is just a friendly reminder that just because something is newly available for purchase, or heralded as the next big thing, or advertised as eminently necessary, doesn’t mean you should buy it. This includes Snuggies, combination PB and J jars, and the .cloud extension. If you are someone who is wondering whether you need it, you don’t. If you need this domain, you’ll know it. Ever since hundreds of new gTLDs became available, we’ve been helping folks decide what to invest in and what to ignore. And because folks often... Read The Rest →

Google Turned a Domain Blunder into a Cute Joke?

Back in October, Sanmay Ved was browsing Google Domains when one domain caught his eye – google.com. He bought it and ended up owning what may be the most iconic domain name in the world for a grand total of one minute. Google cancelled the transaction and gave him $6,006.13, which I guess is ‘Google’ spelled with numbers? Cute, but looks more like ‘Booble’ to me. It’s unclear why google.com was even listed as available, but this blunder beckons the old adage – always set your domains to automatically renew! Countless... Read The Rest →

Naming experts’ 21 tips to choose the right domain name in the new top level domain space

With the rollout of over 700 new top level domain names, such as .xyz and .shop, brands have been left to wonder which of these new domains are actually important and how to best choose a domain in this new space. Our very own Maria Cypher had the pleasure of weighing in on the forum, which featured 20 other naming experts from around the world. Check out the article here

Cybersquatting on Trial

In 1999, the early years of the internet when the .com boom was still in full swing, Jason Kneen registered WorkBetter.com. Obviously recognizing the value of his domain, Kneen continued to renew ownership. Now, 16 years later, the New York Company Office Space Solutions Inc. has filed a cybersquatting lawsuit against Kneen. Office Space Solutions filed an intent-to-use TM application for the Work Better wordmark with the USPTO and began using the name in February 2015. Cybersquatting laws are meant to protect businesses from people who register domain names after the... Read The Rest →

.sucks sucks, .com rules

Before the rollout of the gTLDs, businesses were really only concerned about owning the domain names that allowed them to promote themselves. Target owns Target.com, Hillary Clinton owns HillaryClinton.com. But now, the crafty domain prospectors over at Vox Populi would like you to believe that the era of positivity has changed. With the rollout of the .sucks domain, all sorts of organizations are clamoring to register their name.sucks before someone who hates them does. And to make it an even bigger headache, Vox Populi is charging businesses an annual fee of $2,500 to... Read The Rest →

Walmart.horse Sent Back to the Livery

Did you know that there is now a .horse gTLD? Neither did we! But this was exciting news for equine enthusiasts as well as people who just thought that horses were pretty goofy. Horse! I dare you to keep a straight face after yelling it in a funny accent. Jeph Jacques, comic artist and horseplayer, thought that the .horse gTLD was so funny that he decided to register Walmart.horse and put up a picture of a horse in front of a Walmart. Why he targeted Walmart isn’t totally clear, but needless to... Read The Rest →

Lessons from #Domaingate: Register All Permutations of Your Domain Name

As election season approaches, we are preparing ourselves for the barrage of campaigning – both positive and negative. But one mudslinging tactic has come to the forefront: domain registration. Yesterday, reporters began to notice that HillaryClinton.net now redirects to CarlyForPresident.com. While many assumed that this was a move made by the Fiorina campaign, a spokeswoman denied that the campaign was behind the redirect. Read more here. Whether or not the Fiornia team was behind the redirect, it’s understandable that she’d be resentful. CarlyFiorina.org, instead of redirecting to her main website, pictures... Read The Rest →

.App: Going Once, Twice, Sold for 25 Million!

When and where Google dollops out serious dough is more than just a spectacle to gawk at or talk about; it is also a great indicator of the future of the technological landscape. That being said, Google just bought exclusive rights to the “.app” domain for a walloping 25 million scallops—by far the biggest amount spent on an auctioned gTLD thus far. It’s no secret that mobile usage is growing, and .app will be a useful tool for Google, however they employ it. Likely, Google intends to sell users domain... Read The Rest →

TOP 15 DOMAIN RENEWAL BLOOPERS AND LESSONS LEARNED

Most of the time, companies are good at keeping their domain registrations renewed. But, from time to time, renewals do fall through corporate cracks. Often, this is because expiry notification emails get lost because employees have left the company. With services like auto-renew, multi-year domain registrations, registrar notification emails, and domain management companies, domain expirations just shouldn’t be happening anymore! We’ve compiled the top 15 domain renewal bloopers, organized from kind of sad to totally tragic: #15     HOTMAIL.CO.UK (2003) Hotmail.co.uk expired in October 2003 and the domain was grabbed up... Read The Rest →

The Rise of .TV: A Drop in the .COM Bucket

We may have finally found a good reason to get off the couch and stop watching so much TV. Yes, the Red Hot Chili Peppers inspired millions when they sang “Throw Away Your Television,” although no one is actually throwing it away. They’re just getting up and walking over to the computer room. Over the past several years, cable companies have been losing subscriptions as consumers move to on-demand streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime. According to Bruce Leichtman, an analyst at Leichtman Research Group, more Americans... Read The Rest →

The Evolving Internet of New TLDs

Since by reading this you must be an active user of the Internet, you have probably noticed non-.com TLDs before. For one, country code TLDs, which associate web sites with specific countries using two letters like .us, .jp, or .me, are appearing more often. Companies like Bit.ly, Delicio.us, and Blip.tv are using country specific TLDs to form the name of their company. Furthermore, hundreds of new global top level domains (gTLDs) are currently being released, so besides the familiar extensions .edu, .gov, .net, .org, prepare to see extensions like .guru,... Read The Rest →

Insights Into the Belly of the Beast

With leading domain registrar GoDaddy’s planned IPO, the public has access to a lot of information and numbers–big numbers–previously undisclosed. And while I haven’t gotten around to analyzing the 250 page document, others certainly have. So, if you’re curious about just how many customers GoDaddy has, how much the CEO makes, or just want to gawk at the whole lot of $$$ related to domains and acquisitions of competitors, here you go, via Domain Name Wire. But for a more in depth analysis of GoDaddy’s planned IPO, the good and... Read The Rest →

Is there any recourse if your domain registration expires?

Of course all online businesses are going to be on top of renewing their own domain, right?   Not always.  Even though registrars send reminder emails, if the domain’s contact information is not up to date those reminders end up in a virtual black hole.  And, before you know it, the business no longer owns its own domain. Does that mean it’s game over, close up shop, go home?  Not necessarily.  If the name was trademarked, the business is protected by ICANN’s Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP). The UDRP... Read The Rest →

Brand Names, Domain Names, and Trademarks, Oh My!

There is a lot of overlap between brand names, domain names, and trademarks, but they are rarely identical. And unfortunately, the nuanced differences between them sometimes get people into hot water. The most common erroneous assumption is this: if I own the .com domain, I’ll have the right to the trademark as well, because who would trademark the name but not acquire the domain to go with it, right?  Wrong! Just because you can purchase the domain name or already own the domain name doesn’t mean that you have the... Read The Rest →

World Record Domains

  Without any ado, here it is, the longest domain name in the world: www.thelongestdomainnameintheworldandthensomeandthensomemoreandmore.com As the URL implies, this domain was created purposefully to be the longest domain name ever.  Unfortunately for the registrant, however, it is not acknowledged by Guinness as a world record, though not for lack of trying! If you click through the link, they explain how Guinness rejected their application on the grounds that this particular world record was pointless because it is too easily broken—all it would take is someone else registering a domain... Read The Rest →

CAN YOU MAKE SOMEONE GIVE UP A DOMAIN NAME THAT’S INACTIVE OR THAT INCORPORATES YOUR COMPANY NAME?

Not often. It may not seem fair, but the registrant of a domain name can keep it until hell freezes over—or they forget to renew their registration by the expiration date—unless you can prove three things: • the domain name is the same or confusingly similar to a  service mark or trademark you have rights to • the registrant has neither a legitimate interest nor a right to the  domain name • the registrant has registered the name and is using it “in bad faith” What’s evidence of bad faith?... Read The Rest →

Are Shorter Domains Always Better?

When searching for a good domain for your business, shorter is generally better.  Shorter domains are more memorable, there’s less room for error when customers mention your site in conversation, and the URL is easier to type in to a browser. But if you peruse domain vendors across the web, you’ll notice there are plenty of longer domains priced higher than shorter domains.  Though evaluating a domain on brevity alone is easy (and objective), there are other subjective considerations that contribute to a domain’s worth. First of all, brandability—the potential for a name to carry strong,... Read The Rest →

A Brief History of the Domain Name

The folks over at Mashable have put together a nice timeline of important events in domain name history, from the first .com domain to the Truth in Domain Names Act of 2003 to the present day new gTLDs.  Check it out! http://mashable.com/2014/03/10/domain-names-history/  

Sneaky and Sneakier: An Introduction to Cybersquatting and Reverse-Cybersquatting

According to Wikipedia, cybersquatting is “registering, trafficking in, or using a domain name with bad faith intent to profit from the goodwill of a trademark belonging to someone else.”  This practice is not only greedy—it’s illegal.  For example, if you notice that ColdplayMusicSale.com is available, you can’t register it and then start buying their albums in bulk and then selling them for a profit out of your garage.   You also can’t register that domain and then post libelous material in an effort to get Chris Martin to buy the website... Read The Rest →

Owner Information: Domain Hijacking!

You may think that once you register a domain name, it’s yours, end of story. But like other kinds of valuable property, a domain name can be stolen, or “hijacked.” Here is the lowdown on domain hijacking, and how owners can help keep their domains secure. Put simply, domain name hijackers rely on identity theft to wrest control of valuable domain names away from their owners by convincing the registrar that they own the domain and want to change the password and access privileges.  They attempt this by hacking into... Read The Rest →

Not Your Typical Domain Name Negotiation: True Stories

An aftermarket domain name purchase is generally pretty straightforward. You find out who the owner is and if it’s for sale, initiate negotiations, and either you agree on a price or you don’t. Right? Well, usually. While most domain name negotiations follow that pattern, human nature can be decidedly unpredictable. Here are a few domain negotiations that got a little crazier, due to the quirks of the domain name seller—or buyer. (We’ve omitted names to protect the guilty.) Case #1: Too Sneaky By Half A domain-name-buying service was hired by... Read The Rest →

TOP TWO DOMAIN NAME SALES OF 2013 ARE TWO-LETTER .COMS

Talk about expensive alphabet soup: the two-letter domain name KK.com was resold this week by two domain name brokers for $2.7 million. Yikes. This made it the second-highest domain name sale so far in 2013, according to DN Journal, outperformed only by another two-letter .com, IG.com, which was sold by Igloo.com to the financial firm IG Group in September for a cool $4.7 million. So are two-letter dot-coms the hottest property on the domain name aftermarket? At least this autumn they are.

For how long should you register a domain name?

You face a confusing conundrum whether you are managing a huge portfolio of domain names or just registering one vanity domain to showcase pics of your cat. How long of a registration period should you choose? Should you register a new domain or renew an existing domain for the minimum of one year or go up to 10 years? Or opt for something in-between? The Importance of Domain Management The most important factor in making this decision relates to domain management. If you have a domain you intend to keep... Read The Rest →

The Numbers Game: Just How Dominant Are .COM Domains?

We all know that .COM domains are the most prevalent, but ever wonder how other TLDs (top-level domains) stack up against them, numbers-wise? Well, according to Whois, as of 10/28/13 there were 111,352,755 .COM domains compared to 15,207,765 .NET domains—or over seven times as many .COM as .NET domains. When it comes to .ORG domains, the number’s even lower: 10,394,319 domains. And the total number of domains for .INFO, .BIZ and .US extensions combined was less than 11,000,000. Bottom line: as a TLD, .COM continues to reign supreme—by a huge... Read The Rest →

Domain Name Hall of Shame: 15 Domain Name Bloopers

Because domain names don’t have spacing between words or capitalization to cue readers in, it’s extremely important when picking a domain name to consider all possible ways your domain name might be read by someone not familiar with your business. Here are some domain names whose owners clearly didn’t think it through, with unintentionally hilarious or off-putting results: penisland.net: A site for a pen company. (“We Specialize in Wood.”) itscrap.com: Site for disposal of IT assets. (“Where IT is going.”) lesbocages.com: An arborist business (“Les Bocages” is French for “the... Read The Rest →

The First New TLDs Are Launching!

It’s official. The first four TLDs to go live since ICANN flung the door wide open to new TLD applicants in 2011 were just announced, and they’re…well, probably not what you’d expect. The four TLDs are: شبكة (Arabic for “web” or “network”) онлайн (Cyrillic for “online”) сайт (Cyrillic for “site”) 游戏 (Chinese for “game(s)”) In fact, these lucky four are actually IDN (Internationalized Domain Names) TLDs. And Arabic, Cyrillic and Chinese are just some of the non-Latin scripts (including Greek and Hindi) that will be accommodated in this new wave of... Read The Rest →

You really do need the dot com domain name

When someone falls in love with a name, and finds out that the .com isn’t available, inevitably the question arises: Do I really need the .com domain name? Can I get away with a .biz or .net or other address? Acquiring a .com domain can be very expensive, of course, so another alternative would save not only the money but the hassle of negotiating a sale. Unfortunately, the .com matters. It matters a lot. If the .com isn’t available, or if it’s only available at a price above your budget,... Read The Rest →

How high can you go? A look at domain pricing of some of the world’s most valuable domains

Question: just how much will a company spend to get the domain name they want? Answer: a lot. When it comes to the right bunch of letters, usually with the magical .com at the end, domain pricing can go well into the millions of dollars. Here are some of the top figures for domain sales for each of the last ten years, according to the Domain Name Journal and Business Insider: with sex, money, booze and bling attracting some of the highest rollers. And before you gasp, you should know... Read The Rest →

What makes a domain name valuable?

If you’re looking to buy a domain name that’s owned by another company or individual, there are a number of criteria you can apply to help determine if the price is right. Here are some of the key factors that contribute to a domain’s value: It’s a .com. For now and the foreseeable future, this is the domain of choice for businesses. If you want to be taken seriously, you want a .com domain name. It’s distinctive and will help brand your business. Consider the difference between BokJoy and ChineseCabbage.... Read The Rest →

You love your new name but can’t have the domain. Now what?

When naming your company, you may come up with a great name but find that the .com domain is not for sale or beyond your budget. Don’t worry. That doesn’t mean you have to settle for the .net or .biz or a less appealing name. While owning the exact .com domain name is certainly preferred, it isn’t always necessary. You just have to modify or append the name for use as a domain.  Remember: most people will be finding your site through a web search, not by entering your URL.... Read The Rest →

dot-cor?

Today the suffix dot-com seems the most obvious and natural one in the world for business domains, and is attached to roughly 100 million websites. But it was not always thus. Check out this interesting article about how the most ubiquitous suffix on the Internet was almost dot-cor.

History of Domain TLDs

Welcome to Just The Word! As this is our first blog entry, let’s take a moment to review the relatively short history of domain names — specifically top-level domains (the part after the dot), and where things stand today. Six generic top-level domains (TLDs) made their debut in January 1985: .com – for commercial entities .net – for internet service providers .org – for non-profit organizations .edu – for educational institutions .gov – for US government entities .mil – for the US military As time passed, good domain names became... Read The Rest →

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