Stolen domain names : The ethics of brokering stolen assets

Domain names have been stolen since the early days of the commercial Internet. The most known case involves the hijacking of Sex.com, a domain that was "milked" for its traffic, before it was returned via a court order to its registrant. There are thousands of domain names that have been stolen in the 25 years since, for a variety of reasons: Financial reasons - the most obvious Political reasons - to inflict harm in the political arena Criminal and extortion reasons - to use someone else's domain as a criminal launchpad Revenge reasons - as a means of personal revenge against the domain registrant Since the early 2000's I've assisted with the identification and recovery of dozens of stolen domain names, in a process that became increasingly challenging. Some had been … [Continue reading]

Uniregistry “affiliate plus” payouts update

As shared by Uniregistry, all affiliate earnings balances are to be paid by the end of this month, as the Affiliate Plus program was terminated. Today, I received my final payment from the program, and plan to use my "check" to buy more domains - that's what domain investors do! It was a good revenue stream and once again it comes to show how Uniregistry pioneered many aspects of domain monetization, via the commissions for the registration and renewal of new gTLDs. On a separate note, a GoDaddy commission-based program for revenue earned via auctions, was recently terminated. It might have been more of a glitch than a feature, but as I did not participate I don't have a first hand experience. Read this thread over at NamePros for more information. … [Continue reading]

Recycling Mike Mann’s domains: Thanks Konstantinos!

Querying Mike Mann's domain droplist was a herculean task, but Konstantinos of Online Domain delivered! Fifty thousand domains, or about 16% of Mike Mann's portfolio dropped recently, and Konstantinos shared those that became available, along with a separate list of upcoming deletes at the time. Perusing thousands of domains "by hand" reminded me of the good old days of Domainsbot, almost 20 years ago. Konstantinos did all the heavy lifting, and all I had to do was sort the domains by length and start checking the most interesting ones. I ended up registering 20 domains, almost all of them two word .com's and one "brandable." Ten days later, all of them have an amount of traffic that varies from low teens to several dozen uniques per day. I went after domains that existed in … [Continue reading]

Domain sob stories: Should I feel sorry for your political mess?

An increasing number of businesses produce "sob stories" in order to usurp domain names on the aftermarket. The usual excuses involve using a company's status as a start-up or as a non-profit to … [Continue reading]

Affiliate program no more at Uniregistry

As a beta tester at Uniregistry, I opened one of the first accounts for its Affiliate Plus Program, six years ago. The program paid handsomely, with 20% being standard on domain registrations, … [Continue reading]