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The Lowdown
March 2010 Archive
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Here's the The Lowdown from DN Journal,
updated daily
to fill you in on the latest buzz going around the domain name industry. 

The Lowdown is compiled by DN Journal Editor & Publisher Ron Jackson.

Digital Marketers Tell Sedo Owning the Right Domain Name is a Key Factor in Successful Marketing Campaigns + Yahoo Publisher Network Shutting Down

At last month's Technology for Marketing & Advertising Show in London, Sedo surveyed 100 of the digital marketers on hand to gauge their views on how important domain names and websites are in determining the success of marketing campaigns. Sedo released the results of that survey today. 

73% of respondents said that owning the right domain name is a determining factor in the success of a marketing campaign. 70% of marketers said they use domains to build micro sites to support specific campaigns. In addition, in another sign that purse strings are starting to loosen up after a long recession, 52% of the respondents predicted that their marketing budgets will increase over the next 12 months.   

While the marketers recognized the importance of domain names, they had varied opinions on the best way to drive traffic to their sites. While a vast majority (78%) consider Google Adwords to be one of the most effective means of doing so, many also felt that LinkedIn and Facebook groups (48%), affiliate marketing (48%) and internet domain names (44%) were also useful tools in increasing traffic volumes. 

Jeremiah Johnston
Sedo COO

The trend to use domain names as an integral part to a marketing campaign is mirrored by findings from Sedo’s 2009 Domain Market Study (.pdf file). The study revealed that the top ten selling .co.uk addresses were made up of generic keyword names, serving as a further indication of the speed at which marketers are snapping up domain names to establish their brand as an authority in a given industry and improve conversion on search marketing. 

Sedo COO Jeremiah Johnston said, “We’re encouraged by these findings and it’s clear that the use of internet domain names is being more widely used by the marketing sector. However, there are some noted discrepancies, especially when it comes to traffic and driving eyeballs to particular sites. As an industry this is an area we should tackle head on by taking the necessary steps to educate marketers on the best ways to achieve optimum results online; whether it is to increase traffic, enhanced branding or overall online sales success. “

Elsewhere today, the Yahoo Publisher Network sent a letter to publishers telling them the service is shutting down effective April 30, 2010. YPN was set up in 2005 to compete with Google's Adsense program but after a promising start it quickly lost altitude. I tried it myself

when the service launched but stopped using it within a few months after watching revenues go into a tailspin. Yahoo is recommending that their remaining clients try Chitika as a replacement.

(Posted March 31, 2010) To refer others to the post above only you can use this URL:
http://www.dnjournal.com/archive/lowdown/2010/dailyposts/20100331.htm

GeoDomain Owners Organization Associated Cities Reboots as a Non-Profit Trade Association

Associated Cities, the association of geodomain owners that stages the annual GeoDomain Expo, has completed an important transformation. In the past AC has been operated by a 

for-profit partnership controlled by a limited number of founding shareholders. Today Chicago.com owner Josh Metnick, the man who came with the idea for a global association of .com city domain owners in 2003, said "Associated Cities, the world’s largest association of geographical domain (geodomain) owners, has reconstituted itself as a non-profit trade association.  With the fast growth in both the geodomain industry and local digital media, it became clear that the mission had outgrown the operating structure. It is important that all members have a voice.”

Since starting up seven years ago, Associated Cities has provided group advertising services to intuitively-branded metropolitan websites and over the years its membership has grown to include most major cities in North America and many throughout the world. 

Josh Metnick
Associated Cities Co-Founder

Dan Pulcrano
Boulevards New Media

Dan Pulcrano , whose company, Boulevards New Media, participates in Associated Cities with twenty member cities including LosAngeles.com, SanFrancisco.com and Philadelphia.com, said  “These are among the most valuable assets on the Web, and the media properties of the future. By organizing into an industry, we hope to benefit local communities by promoting local businesses, organizations, tourism, economic development and cultural activities under the best possible brand that any locality can have: the .com version of their natural city name."

AC participants include websites that represent cities both large and small with examples ranging from New York City to Kelowna, British Columbia, Vancouver to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, New Orleans to Albany, Hilton Head to Chula Vista, San Diego to Toledo. Latin America is represented by members such 

as Acapulco.com and BuenosAires.com while leading European members include sites such as Barcelona.com, Glasgow.com and Stockholm.com.

While Associated Cities is an organization devoted to a single sector of the overall domain industry (geodomains), I have always felt that the group's unique focus on development has made it a vitally important "guiding light" for the industry at large. 

Finding ways to efficiently develop their assets into useful websites appears to be the best way for domain owners to free themselves from dependence on the whims of Google and Yahoo and insulate themselves from ICANN policy changes and legal machinations aimed at making it easier for covetous parties to take currently undeveloped domains away from their rightful owners.

AC's next annual Geodomain Expo® is coming up next month at the historic Roosevelt Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New Orleans. The event will run April 28-30 and will feature a keynote address from David Litman, the founder of Hotels.com and current CEO of Getaroom.com. The conference will also include an online auction of geographical domain names as well as sessions on commerce, monetization, editorial development and other topics of interest to city domain operators. For more details check out the first draft of the show's agenda that is now online.

(Posted March 29, 2010) To refer others to the post above only you can use this URL:
http://www.dnjournal.com/archive/lowdown/2010/dailyposts/20100329.htm

DOMAINfest Expands With Two New One-Day Shows & T.R.A.F.F.I.C. Milan Adds a Second Domain Auction

The DOMAINfest conference series, presented by Oversee.net's DomainSponsor monetization service, expanded today with the announcement of two new one-day regional power networking events to be held in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and New York City. Each conference will also include a live Moniker domain auction.

The Ft. Lauderdale show will be held at the W Hotel on May 13, 2010 while the New York City event will be staged at the Grand Hyatt in Manhattan on August 18, 2010 (immediately following the Affiliate Summit East conference in New York). Registration for both of the new DOMAINfest shows will be available online at www.domainfest.com starting Monday, April 12, 2010.  The registration fee will be $175 per event.

Earlier this year, conference organizers announced a DOMAINfest Eur ope show that will be held in Prague, Czech Republic October 6-7, 2010. Each of these new events came after a successful DOMAINfest Global conference in Santa Monica, California in January that drew the biggest crowd to date for a DOMAINfest show. 

The agenda for each of the new regional shows will kick off at 1:30pm with a free-flowing two-hour power networking session. The Moniker auction will follow from 4-7pm with with a private dinner party hosted by DomainSponsor closing the event. Details on how to submit domains and bid either in-person or remotely in any of the Moniker live auction can be found at http://domainauctions.moniker.com

Peter Celeste, the Senior Vice President of Oversee.net (and General Manger, Monetization Services) said “These one-day power networking events are specifically designed to encourage more participation from local and regional professionals who may not be able to afford the time and expense to travel to a distant city for a two or three-day event." 

Coincidentally the new shows were announced at the same time we have a Cover Story running titled The Rise (and Fall?) of Domain Conferences - For Years They Have Thrived But Can They Survive Oversaturation? That article explores the complete history of domain conferences and explosion of industry events over the past five years.  

The T.R.A.F.F.I.C. conference coming up in Milan, Italy next month also released some news today, announcing that a second domain auction has been added to the show schedule. That sale, to be held on April 27, will feature the best 50 .eu domain names submitted for the event with all having a minimum reserve price of 500 euros.  

To submit .eu names for consideration, domain investors are being asked to use this form at RickLatona.com until the website at Latonas.com gets updated to include the auction.  

Latonas.com CEO Rick Latona said, "Over 200 names have been submitted just from word of mouth, but with this announcement, we are hoping to see thousands of submissions. The goal here is to have 50 names good enough to generate some real excitement. Only the best 50 names submitted will be accepted for this auction.  We will release a preliminary list once enough submissions have been sent in."

(Posted March 25, 2010) To refer others to the post above only you can use this URL:
http://www.dnjournal.com/archive/lowdown/2010/dailyposts/20100325.htm

Companies in the News: Sedo.com, DomainConsultant.com, SocialDomainers.com and Domainbie.com

Sedo's parent company, Adlink Group has changed its name and will now be officially known as Sedo Holding. The company's two big brands, Sedo and Affilinet, will continue to function independently under Sedo Holding. The move away from they Adlink name comes in the wake of the company selling its AdlinkMedia display ad business to Hi Media

Sedo Holding will also trade under the new stock symbol SEDO on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange starting in late May after a former stockholders meeting scheduled for May 19. Sedo officials believe this exposure on the stock exchange will give both Sedo and the entire domain industry much greater awareness among both the general public and potential investors. 

Elsewhere, the second annual Domain Madness auction ended with a live webcast from The Palms Hotel in Las Vegas Tuesday. The event organized by DomainConsultant.com generated over $209,000 in sales with the blockbuster $151,000 sale of CamRoulette.com accounting for the lion's share of that total. 

Two others hit the five-figure mark; SecurityGuards.com at $20,000 and PalmSpringsHomes.com at $14,000. A total of 21 domains were sold during the event with an average sales price of over $9,900.

Apple Computer will make their latest product, the Ipad tablet computer, available next month. If you would like a chance to win a free one, SocialDomainers.com is inviting you to sign up for a drawing that will be 

shown on the weekly video podcast at ChefPatrick.com on Friday, April 2nd. You have to sign up by April 1 to be eligible. SocialDomainers.com is a Facebook-style network geared towards the domaining community. Founder Tony Kanakaris said, "Members can create groups, events, etc. to help them network with local domainers."

A new ebook available from Domainbie.com is another new resource that beginning domainers might like to check out. The author of this A to Z beginners guide, Neaz Mh, is so confident that you will like the book he has taken a unique marketing approach. You can download the entire book and read before you decide whether or not it is worth the $29.95 Mh is asking for it. If you find the information valuable, only then do you send him the money.   

I read the book myself and it is obvious that Neaz put a lot of work into the project. If you are just starting out I think a lot of the information in this book will help you get a better grasp on how the domain business works. 

(Posted March 24, 2010) To refer others to the post above only you can use this URL:
http://www.dnjournal.com/archive/lowdown/2010/dailyposts/20100324.htm

T.R.A.F.F.I.C. Co-Founder Howard Neu Enters the Blogosphere With HowardNeu.com + Sendori Gets Two Patents Related to Domain Leasing  

T.R.A.F.F.I.C. Co-Founder Howard Neu celebrated his birthday today by launching a personal blog at HowardNeu.com. The thing that will probably surprise you the most is the 

fact that Howard, who was featured in our April 2009 Cover Story, plans to write about many things other than domains. In the introductory post on his new site today, Neu wrote, "I am not going to write about what others write about, but rather, I will either be reporting on matters that no one else is writing about, or give my opinion on those matters."

While Neu will be happy to answer reader's questions about the T.R.A.F.F.I.C. conference or domain investing, he is encouraging visitors to join in discussions he will generate devoted to other areas in which he has gained expertise over the years. Those include UDRP or ACPA law suits, general law, politics (he has been a mayor, a councilman, a municipal judge and has run a number of political campaigns), music (he has sung professionally and semi-professionally throughout his life), theater (he has appeared many times on South Florida stages) and movies (he has had roles in films like  Smokey 

Howard Neu
He is now blogging at HowardNeu.com

and the Bandit II and Porky's 2). Neu will also touch on radio and TV talk shows (he produced and hosted his own shows for many years) as well as Jewish Liturgy (he was a choir director for 35 years and his father was a Cantor). Clearly, he will have no shortage of subjects to talk about.

Neu just acquired HowardNeu.com as a gift from his son Ray who, unbeknownst to Howard, had been quietly pursuing the domain for several years. Ray finally succeeded in acquiring the name a few weeks ago, just in time to present it to his surprised dad as the perfect birthday present. Ray got Danny Pryor to design a site for Howard so his dad could hit the ground running once he learned he was the new owner of HowardNeu.com. We wish Howard a Happy Birthday and best of luck with his latest endeavor. 

Also today, Sendori announced the company's applications for two individual U.S. patents relating to its web navigation redirect technology have been approved.  

The patents relate to “an electronic marketplace which allows owners of unused domain names to lease their domains to bidding advertisers." Advertisers receive visitors redirected from domains which match their keywords. Sendori’s patent application numbers on file with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office are 11/532,833 and 12/048,991

Ofer Ronen, Co-Founder of Sendori (now an operating business of IAC (Nasdaq: IACI) and a division of Ask Sponsored Listings) said, "We are thrilled to have the Sendori patent approved. It cements our position as innovators in the domain monetization space." 

(Posted March 22, 2010) To refer others to the post above only you can use this URL:
http://www.dnjournal.com/archive/lowdown/2010/dailyposts/20100322.htm

Verisign Blows Up the .TV Business Model - Prices Slashed on Premium Domains and Renewal Fees Dropped to Standard Rates for New Registrants

Verisign, who operates the .TV registry dropped a bomb over night - but it was a smart bomb, one that should sow dividends rather than destruction for the registry, registrars and new .TV registrants (it may however be a different story for existing .TV "premium" registrants 

- something we'll address in a moment). As most of you know, .TV domains have been unique (in my opinion, in a bad way) in that terms the registry deemed to be "premium" names carried hefty price tags and far worse, those same prices had to be paid every year when the domains came up for renewal. 

That all changed after midnight last night for people who register premium .TV domains starting today (Macrh 19). For starters, Verisign slashed the prices for every "premium" domain in their inventory, a change that affected more than 22,000 names. You can download the entire list of repriced domains from this page at EnomCentral.com (click on the link titled "Download Premium .TV List" to the right of the Search box). 

I think of even more importance is the registry decision to stop charging inflated renewal prices year after year. Instead, anyone who registers a premium name from this point forward will pay just the standard renewal fee that their registrar charges for non-premium domain names. That makes the .TV proposition a much more compelling one for developers and  potential investors alike.

Now, I mentioned in the first paragraph that current holders of premium .TV domains may not be as cheerful about today's announcement as others because those who registered their names prior to March 19 not only paid a higher price but apparently will continue to be stuck paying that same high price over and over again at renewal time. I don't really see how that policy will be able to stand in the long run. Those early adopters should be rewarded with the same break at renewal time that the premium buyers who came long after them are getting now. 

Demand Media VP Chris Sheridan

I'll be surprised if Verisign doesn't extend equal treatment to those older registrants in the near future. Aside from that sticky wicket, I like Verisign's new direction with .TV and expect it to give the extension a nice boost.  

Chris Sheridan, a VP with Demand Media (the parent company of one of the biggest .tv registrars, eNom.tv) likes it too. He said "The updated pricing structure for .TV premium domains is a great response to the market.  We expect that significantly more customers will now enter the .TV market, and that existing .TV customers will add names to their portfolios.  As such, these changes mark an extremely positive and welcomed step in the right direction for the .TV community."

You can read more about eNom's take on the new .TV policy in a press release they put out soon after the news broke.

(Posted March 19, 2010) To refer others to the post above only you can use this URL:
http://www.dnjournal.com/archive/lowdown/2010/dailyposts/20100319.htm

Auction Action Heating Up: Domain Madness 2 and a New GreatDomains Auction Get Underway and SnapNames Logs a $335,000 Sale

The Sex.com foreclosure auction scheduled today was cancelled but the auction action remains heavy on several other fronts. SnapNames announced today that Screensavers.com went for $335,000 in their March Showcase Auction. When payment and transfer are completed that will rank as the fifth highest sale reported so far this year.  

Meanwhile two other major auction events have just gotten underway. GreatDomains.com opened their latest monthly online auction today with a roster than includes Changes.com, Concerts.net and several nice 3-letter .coms including MEC.com. That auction will continue until 12 noon on Thursday, March 25

On Tuesday the second annual Domain Madness auction got underway with online bidding on an impressive catalog of domains including HappyBirthday.com, Strawberries.com, Mad.com, Idol.com and Music.net to name just a few. This unique event will continue until next Tuesday afternoon (March 23) when the final bidding will be broadcast over the web live from the Palms Hotel in Las Vegas starting at 3pm (U.S. Central Daylight time). 

If you watched the debut edition of Domain Madness on the web last year you know that Mike Fiol and his crew from DomainConsultant.com (the firm that stages the annual premium domain name auction) will present an entertaining show as the final minutes count down on each lot. It doesn't cost anything to register, so go ahead and sign up now so you will be ready to bid if a name catches your eye. 

You can review the full Domain Madness 2 catalog here and once you have registered you can bid on domains from the same page by clicking on the individual domain name you are interested in to access that lot.

Mike Fiol

(Posted March 18, 2010) To refer others to the post above only you can use this URL:
http://www.dnjournal.com/archive/lowdown/2010/dailyposts/20100318.htm

Former Moniker VP Victor Pitts Takes New Position as VP at DomainIt.com + Sex.com Auction Called Off

Domain industry veteran Victor Pitts, who recently left his position as a Vice President at Oversee.net's Moniker.com, has accepted a new executive position with Cincinnati, Ohio 

based registrar DomainIt.com. In his new role, Pitts will be responsible for growing market share and profits for DomainIt’s core domain registration business, as well as evaluating and overseeing new business ventures for the company. 

During Pitts's years at Moniker.com, domain registrations grew from 300,000 to 3 million. Prior to joining Moniker, Pitts ran Nexlook Designs, his own web hosting and development company, and also had a successful career as a national sales executive with Motorola.

Pitts said, “In addition to helping grow core services, I’ll be working to better understand and harness some of DomainIt’s impressive intellectual property to better serve clients. This company has a strong foundation of providing quality services for nearly 15 years, and CEO/Founder Paul Goldstone's vision of 

Victor Pitts
Vice President, DomainIT.com

the future is ambitious. Together, we have an excellent opportunity to grow the business by providing better services for both domain investors and business owners.”

Paul Goldstone
DomainIt.com Founder & CEO

Goldstone said, “We think there are some significant opportunities being overlooked in the current business climate. Bringing Victor on board was an opportunity we couldn’t pass up. He will be working on some exciting new business ventures, where his leadership experience and industry connections can benefit DomainIt tremendously. We fully expect him to hit the ground running.”

DomainIt is an ICANN-accredited registration and hosting company that was founded in 1996. The company developed the first ever domain search interface to determine if a particular domain was available for registration. 

As a domain investor with more than 1,000 names in his portfolio, Goldstone said he knows what a professional domain investor is looking for in a Registrar. In addition to running DomainIt, he also operates DomainSearch.com  

and domain industry directory, iGoldrush.com. Goldstone is also a  member of the ICANN Registrar Stakeholder Group. He designed and maintains the official ICANN website for that group. 

Elsewhere, the Sex.com foreclosure auction that had been scheduled for Thursday (March 18) has been cancelled. The move came after creditors of current Sex.com owner Escom, LLC filed an involuntary Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition against Escom today in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California (San Fernando Valley Division). 

A press release says the petitioners took this action to protect their interests and to maximize value for all other creditors and equity holders.  The filing will stay the public auction foreclosure proceedings which petitioners believe would have diminished the value of Escom's assets. With the fate of Sex.com now in court, it will likely be some time before the domain's future is determined.

In another important legal note, a confidential settlement has been reached in the lawsuit between Thought Convergence Inc. (parent company of TrafficZ.com) and Jay Westerdal. A dispute developed after Thought Convergence acquired Westerdal's company, Name Intelligence for $16 million in 2008. DomainNameWire.com released the settlement news Sunday night but since it broke over the weekend we wanted to bring it your attention in case you missed it as this is an important positive development for both sides.

One other note today -  Francois Carrillo, the owner of brandable domains sales site Mocus.com, has decided the site needs a new brand of its own. As a result Carrillo (who also owns the popular domain news aggregation site Domaining.com) announced that Mocus.com will be reborn as Catchy.com within the next few days. Carrillo said he was able to acquire the new domain name for an undisclosed amount. 

"The site will be redesigned and the service improved," Carrillo said, adding, "the core will continue to be the promotion and sale of catchy domains."

(Posted March 17, 2010) To refer others to the post above only you can use this URL:
http://www.dnjournal.com/archive/lowdown/2010/dailyposts/20100317.htm

Sedo and Verisign Teaming Up to Auction Off the Entire Available Catalog of Premium .TV Domains

Sedo announced today that they are teaming up with Verisign (the operator of the .tv registry) to stage an exclusive auction for the entire available catalog of 115 premium .tv domain names. Unlike other premium .tv domains, those sold in this auction will have a 

standard registry renewal fee. The standard fess are significantly less than the hefty .tv renewal fees usually charged for domains Verisign designates as "premium" in their variable pricing structure for the extension. 

The week-long online auction, set to begin April 1, 2010 at Noon (Eastern time) and end on April 8, 2010 at Noon, will offer a broad selection of generic, numeric and geographic .tv domains. The catalog includes Beauty.tv, Bloopers.tv, Business.tv, Cable.tv, Films.tv, Finance.tv, Home.tv, Jobs.tv, and Vacation.tv, to name a few. This marks the first time that these .tv domain names have been offered in a public auction, free of high annual renewal fees.

Sedo's announcement noted "the prevalence of television and video on the internet makes .tv a relevant and desirable extension for many companies and brands. The extension has been successfully used by high profile brands such as MTV Networks and Major League Baseball to extend their reach to targeted audiences and visitors."

Sedo COO Jeremiah Johnston

Sedo's Chief Operating Officer Jeremiah Johnston said, “Descriptive and numeric domains are some of the most valuable and sought-after online destinations and there are many excellent .tv choices in this auction. Sedo is honored to work with VeriSign to give the business community, content creators, portfolio managers, and online marketers the rare opportunity to register these .tv domain names at affordable price points.”

VeriSign’s .tv Product Manager Tom Correia said, “VeriSign is pleased to offer these highly desired .tv domain names through auction. These web addresses have tremendous appeal, as they are industry neutral, with a great number of possible applications for each name. We selected Sedo, an industry leader with a large global reach, to be the auction platform for our first-ever .tv Registry auction.”

(Posted March 16, 2010) To refer others to the post above only you can use this URL:
http://www.dnjournal.com/archive/lowdown/2010/dailyposts/20100316.htm

Demand Media Featured in Special Annual Issue of Time Magazine + Today is the 25th Anniversary of the First .Com Domain Registration

I just received the latest issue of Time Magazine, an Annual Special Issue (cover date March 22, 2010) that featured an article about one of the biggest companies in the domain industry, Demand Media (the parent company of popular registrar Enom.com). The article 

by Dan Fletcher titled "Building the Web's Biggest, Smartest, Scariest Article Machine" focuses on Demand's innovative mass content development operation. 

Demand pays some 7,000 freelance writers $3-$15 per article (depending on length) to feed a vast network of websites that receive over 100 million hits a month - more than any of the digital properties operated by Disney, NBC, ESPN and yes, Fletcher pointed out, even Time Inc

For subject matter, Fletcher said the company zeroes in on topics they are sure they can turn a profit on from advertising revenue. Some of their content is also being licensed by traditional media outlets, including major newspaper like the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The strategy seems to be working as Demand estimates it took in $200 million in revenue in 2009.

In addition to paying writers, Demand pays copy editors $3.50 each for proof reading and fact checking articles that are also software checked for plagiarism. A few more cents go to editors for writing keyword rich headlines.  

New March 22 issue of Time Magazine 
features domain industry giant Demand Media

Time noted that the content operation is the brainchild of Demand Media Co-Founder Richard Rosenblatt whom we profiled in our April 2007 Cover Story. Rosenblatt told Time he got the idea after serving as the CEO of Intermix Media, the company that sold MySpace.com to News Corp. for $580 millon in 2005. Rosenblatt said he learned from his experience with social media that people were producing reams of data online, however "only 1% of that was relevant to more than just people's friends." He thought "What if we would find a way to find those content creators, tell them what to write and create a broader audience?"

That is exactly what Demand is doing now and the plan seems to be going just as they envisioned. Even the Time writer said he was penning short pieces for the Demand machine in his spare time! It's is a very interesting article and you can read the entire piece online here

Aron Meystedt
Current owner of the first .com domain 
ever registered - Symbolics.com.

Mainstream media is also paying a lot of attention to the fact that today (March 15) is the 25th anniversary of the first .com domain registration back in 1985. That domain was Symbolics.com, a name that Aron Meystedt of XF.com acquired from the original owner last year at an undisclosed price. Meystedt, who was profiled in our September 2009 Cover Story, now uses Symbolics.com for an industry blog. 

This story at CNN is just one of the many appearing in mainstream media today to mark the historic occasion. In our September article Meystedt told us, "Owning the first registered domain name is very special to me and my company. It’s the first of nearly 200 million names. That will never change. No alternate TLD, legislation or technology will change this fact. There are no comparables for this name. The name is Internet history. To me, this is the crown jewel of our portfolio."

One other note today. On Sunday we published our latest monthly newsletter (sent by email to opt-in subscribers, but also available online here.) The latest issue features the first detailed account of a domain industry climb team's conquest of Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa just over a week ago. In her own words one of the climbers, Emily Hale, described what it took to scale the 19,340 foot mountain. The grueling 6-day mission raised almost $200,000 for a very worthy charity - The Water School. Check out the story, I think you will find it to be very interesting reading and it will give you a full appreciation of what these selfless people from our industry went through to raise those funds. 

(Posted March 15, 2010) To refer others to the post above only you can use this URL:
http://www.dnjournal.com/archive/lowdown/2010/dailyposts/20100315.htm

New Online Magazine Will Focus Entirely on ccTLDs + ICANN Closes Its Latest Meeting By Announcing a New Trademark Clearinghouse Database

Morgan Linton has just rolled out a new online magazine for country code domain aficionados called  ccTLD Investors.  The ccTLD space has exploded over the past couple of years and with

the rapid growth of the internet in markets around the world interest in country codes will undoubtedly continue to expand. Linton said "The market is there, we’ve already seen some huge sales this year, the problem is that there are very few resources for ccTLD Investors. In 2009 ccTLD sales doubled making it the quickest growing segment in the Domain Investing space."

Linton added that while .com is the focus of attention in the U.S. it is different in many other markets around the globe. For example, "In Canada owning a brand means owning the corresponding .ca domain, in Germany it means owning the corresponding .de domain," Linton 

said. " ccTLDs give investors the chance to buy into a market before it takes off. Markets like India's .in and Mexico's .mx are just starting to see some larger sales but have mostly stayed below the five-figure range. Just think, at this very moment India already has more Internet users than the United States. In India, .com is not as strong as .co.in or .in but the market for buying and selling these domains has just started."

Morgan Linton (left) interviewing 
Rick Silver
(N49 Interactive) for 
his Domainvestor TV series.

Linton said he has put together a team of industry experts for his magazine that will provide detailed insight into markets very few people have experience with. He plans to publish weekly at ccTLDInvestors.com at the start to give readers the opportunity to interact directly with the writers through an online comment system making the magazine more accessible. Linton also plans to continue to add more writers throughout the year to reach even more markets. 

This is the third media project for Linton who has already made a splash with an ebook titled Domain Flipping: How To Profit From The Domain Name Boom and a series of Domainvestor TV video interviews with industry leaders that are available at MorganLinton.com.

Linton's ccTLD magazine in the latest in a line of new domain blogs and publications that are making information about all facets of the industry available to people around the world and spurring additional growth in our business.  Some of those that I have added to my own reading list in recent weeks include Shane Cultra's DomainShane.com, FacingTheAbsurd.com (written by a successful domain investor from the Czech Republic) and DomainConsultant.com - a site that was recently relaunched as a blog by veteran domainer Mike Fiol. If you are new to the industry, Domaining.com is a great place to familiarize yourself with the many informative  resources now available at your fingertips.

Elsewhere, ICANN closed its 37th international meeting in Nairobi, Kenya today by announcing the organization would maintain a Trademark Clearinghouse database that ICANN says will improve trademark protection on the web. During this week's meeting ICANN also rejected a proposal to implement a system of "Expressions of Interest" (EOI), which would have been a pre-registration process for those wishing to apply for the new generic top-level domains they expect to roll out one day (the process has repeatedly been delayed). The Board also decided to postpone action on the controversial .XXX sponsored TLD they previously rejected but are now reconsidering. 

(Posted March 12, 2010) To refer others to the post above only you can use this URL:
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ShopCity.com Rolls Out New Shopping Network Offering Career Opportunities to Local Partners - Founder Colin Pape to Talk About Platform on Friday Webcast

The latest  interview coming up in Owen Frager's Domain Success series tomorrow (Friday, March 12) at 12 Noon (U.S. Eastern time) looks like an especially interesting one. The guest 

for the one hour Power Lunch program, hosted by Jeff Zbar, will be Colin Pape, the Founder and CEO of ShopCity.com

I got to know Colin when we sat next to each other at a dinner party hosted by Skip Hoagland on the final night of the 2009 GeoDomain Expo in San Diego last April. Colin is a very smart and creative guy so I was not surprised to see him invited to appear on  Domain Success to talk about his new ShopCity.com network of local shopping marketplaces.

The show synopsis explains that the ShopCity platform "provides all the tools that local business 

(L to R) Skip Hoagland, Ron Jackson and Colin Pape 
in San Diego last April for the 2009 GeoDomain Expo

owners who lack the knowledge or time for web marketing need to succeed. Consumers save time and money by purchasing gift certificates on the web, shopping online and downloading coupons from their favorite mom & pop shops. The company’s network of 7,500 internet addresses such as ShopNewYork.com, ShopBoston.com and ShopMiami.com contain more than 13 million local business listings. Each of the company’s addresses come with a built-in call-to-action to shop in that city, attracting partnerships with local Chambers of Commerce."

"Colin and his team are in the field working with these chambers to help get small businesses online and, as a result, bring business, tax revenue and jobs back to the local landscape. Colin has more than a decade’s experience providing small to medium sized businesses with e-business solutions."

Host Zbar said "Pape has created a powerful business model and career opportunity for people ready to build an online universe with their city or region at its center. ShopCity is a franchise-like system where owners manage the community, leverage relationships to line up local marketers, and support the model with online and traditional marketing."  

Now, you might think that will be more than enough to talk about for an hour, but it looks like they will have even more ground to cover.  I've learned about a new initiative from Pape and Mountainview, California based ShopCity that has not been make public until now. It is called "Work from Phone" and it is a program that Pape says is aimed at giving Americans "a career opportunity that requires nothing more than ambition and a mobile phone."

Pape said, “Work From Phone", which is open to anyone looking for either a primary or supplemental income— whether a student, sales person, middle manager, executive, entrepreneur or retiree - puts participants totally in control of their economic destiny, and affords them an attractive work-life balance that they could never achieve in the corporate grind. Right now, the World Wide Web represents one of the best opportunities for ordinary workers to turn themselves into successful entrepreneurs. That begins with having the right partner.” 

"With over 20,000 cities soon to be launched — and sites already pre-populated with leads — there are terrific local territory ShopCity partnerships available to first responders who can leverage existing relationships into a lifetime income stream. As a ShopCity Partner, participants 

receive tools, training, support and marketing resources including a unique iPhone application they can use to launch or help build a thriving shop local campaign," Pape said.

Pape added, “Many of our partners previously worked in companies where the perception was that it took years, millions of dollars and tremendous manpower to build an online presence and

acquire enough customers to drive success. So they have insight and perspective to feel, sell and believe that the solution they represent truly levels the playing field for the little guys."

If you want to hear more about Colin and ShopCity check out Friday's 12 Noon (EST) Domain Success show. Free registration is all that is required to sit in and you can sign up for your seat here

By the way, Colin Pape will be back in San Diego later this month to speak at BIA Kelsey Group’s MarketPlaces 2010 conference that runs March 22-24 at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina.

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T.R.A.F.F.I.C. Milan Puts Out Call for Test Track Participants and Live Auction Domain Submissions + GoDaddy Reaches a Huge Milestone

The next T.R.A.F.F.I.C. conference is coming up April 27-29 in Milan, Italy and show organizers are accepting applications from companies that want to make a pitch for investment 

funds in their Test Track session. Latonas.com President David Clements said, "If you have an early stage company with a great domain, great idea, or both, and you are looking for investors to help you reach the next level, take the time to fill out the online application form.  If selected, you will have the chance to pitch to a group of angels that are looking for people just like you." Clements said premium domain submissions are also being sought for the Latonas.com live auction in Milan. Those can be submitted here

Clements also reminded those interested in 

attending T.R.A.F.F.I.C. Milan that only six days remain to take advantage of early bird pricing of €449 (about $680 at current exchange rates). Discounted hotel rates at the show venue - the Marriott Milan - will also be ending in two weeks. 

 

In another news note, Monster domain registrar GoDaddy .com announced that they crossed the 40 million registrations mark today.  The company said that for the past two years it has 

been registering, renewing or transferring a domain name an average once every second! They are adding about 1 million registrations every month and now hold almost 50% of the domain registration market. That is mind boggling and has to be a great point of pride for GoDaddy employees. By the way, if you would like to work there, the company is growing so fast they are looking to fill more than 100 job openings.

GoDaddy Founder and CEO Bob Parsons said, "The Internet is the heart of the new economy. The Internet is one of the few sectors showing monumental growth and Go Daddy is positioned in the sweet spot of the expansion. Think about it, to have your own Web site, you need a domain name and no one can deliver on a domain like Go Daddy. Our growth is essentially a window into what's happening with the Internet." 

Parsons added, "Over the next twenty-five years, I see the Internet growing exponentially. Think about it - whether you are communicating, learning or conducting business, being on the Internet is where it's all happening. I'd say if you aren't online with your business, you really aren't in the game."

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For the First Time Ever Digital Advertising To Earn More Revenue Than Print in 2010 + .CO Launch Plan Unveiled

We've been talking about the migration of advertising revenue from print to the web for years now. A landmark tipping point where advertisers actually start spending more on 

electronic platforms than print will finally arrive this year according to a new study from consulting and research group Outsell. Erik Sass at MediaDailyNews summarized the Outsell report in a column Monday, noting that the data came from a survey of over 1,000 U.S. advertisers and marketers that was conducted in December. 

The study revealed that 32.5% of the $368 billion that American advertisers and marketers plan to spend in 2010 will got to digital with print dropping to a 30.3% share of the pie (digital expenditures include display ads, search, direct email marketing and development of company websites). 

The biggest losers in the continuing decline of print media will be newspapers and printed directories (like yellow pages) according to Outsell. The firm says newspapers can expect to see their already decimated revenue stream fall another 8% in 2010. Directories are also expected to fall 8% but Outsell predicts magazines will defy the trend and actually see a 2% increase

Traditional electronic media also continues to lose ground to digital media which surpassed radio spending in 2008. TV is now seeing its market share steadily erode as well and Outsell said TV ad revenues would drop 6.5% this year as eyeballs continue to gravitate to the web. 

In other news today, the .CO registry, .CO Internet S.A.S., announced their upcoming launch plan for the re-purposed extension. .CO is Colombia's country code, but it is going to be opened up to worldwide registration with expectations that the CO initials will appeal to many buyers as an abbreviation for "company" (as well as corporate, commerce or community). 

The Sunrise period (in which eligible trademark holders can apply for the .CO domains that correspond to their marks before registration is open to the general public) 

will run from April 26 through June 10. Land rush (open to anyone interested in acquiring higher profile names at a higher price) will be from June 21 through July13, then general availability starts July 20

An interesting new wrinkle in the .CO rollout plan is a Founders Program that opened today to all interested applicants from individuals to businesses and big brands.  It is described as an 

initiative to help qualified “first movers” to proactively develop and maintain .CO domains prior to the public launch in July. 

Those interested can submit an application at www.COinternet.co/cofounders explaining the .CO domain they’d like to develop and providing details about themselves and their launch proposal. The registry will review the applications and approve those that they feel will best contribute to the .CO community, subject to certain terms and conditions. 

.CO Internet CEO Juan Calle said, "The .CO Founders Program provides an excellent opportunity for early adopters to secure short and memorable domain names and truly help shape the .CO name space. Participants in the program will benefit by potentially being featured in an aggressive .CO advertising and marketing program; likewise they will be expected to actively promote their domain to benefit the broader .COmmunity.” 

Juan Calle
CEO, .CO Internet S.A.S.

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Guns.com Sell for $800,000 at Moniker - Ranks as One of the Three Biggest Sales So Far in 2010

We have learned that Moniker.com has completed the sale of Guns.com for $800,000 to an unidentified buyer. That ranks as the highest .com sale of the new year and is the third highest 

sale overall, trailing only Poker.org at $1,000,000 and Credit.fr at €587,500 ($851,875). Quite an odd twist to have the biggest .com sale of the year ranking only third among all extension sales. You can review all of the Year To Date Top Sales here

You might recall that Guns.com was in Moniker's 

live auction at the DOMAINfest Global conference in January but did not meet reserve. After that event Moniker brokers continued to work hard to close a deal for the category defining domain and have now succeeded. The name was transferred on Friday and the WhoIs record currently has privacy listings. 

Speaking of conferences, we have just published a new cover story - The Rise (and Fall?) of Domain Conferences - For Years They Have Thrived But Can They Survive Oversaturation? - that includes a detailed history of the domain conference business and a look at its future prospects in an increasingly crowded field. I think you will find it interesting, especially some of the previously under reported details of the events that, over a period of several years, led up to the first major conference (T.R.A.F.F.I.C. in Delray Beach, Florida) in October 2004.

One other note today, the 37th international ICANN meeting is underway in Nairobi, Kenya. Computer World reports that 800 people had registered by this morning, about 20% less than the usual 1,000 attendees. The fall off has been attributed to security concerns after the Al Shabab terrorist group based in Somalia issued threats against the conference venue. The meeting will run  through Friday and new gTLDs are expected to be a prime topic at the meeting.

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Domain Industry Climb Team Reaches the Summit of Mount Kilimanjaro and Returns Safely to Base

The group of more than two dozen domain industry pros who went to Tanzania, Africa to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in a fund raising effort for The Water School have finished their

mission. 26 of the 27 climbers reached the 19,340 foot peak and in the process raised approximately $180,000 for the non-profit organization that has developed a cost effective water purification program that is saving lives in Africa and other developing nations around the world.

The team was led by Gregg McNair (PPX International) and Rick Latona (Latonas.com). I just got a email from Gregg to let me know everyone was safely off the mountain, completing a successful mission. More details and photos will be coming soon. The first picture I saw from the summit was one posted by climber Jazmin Carillo of Parked.com on her Facebook page. 

Jazmin Carillo (Parked.com) at the summit of Mount 
Kilimanjaro
Friday (March 5). Over 2 dozen members 
 of a domain industry climb team also reached the peak  
and raised approximately $180,000 for the Water School.

Congratulations to all of the remarkable members of this climb team (the full list is here). This was a great achievement that will save many people from illnesses and death spread by unsafe drinking water. I know this was a difficult task that took a physical toll on many of the participants. On the way back down from the summit, McNair said that his feet were so blistered he could no longer keep up with the group so had to call for help to carry him down the final stretch to base camp. McNair had told everyone going in that this was not going to be a walk in the park for anyone and it surely wasn't.  

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Skip Hoagland Adds Another .Com GeoDomain to His World Class Collection and New .CA Marketplace Opens for Business

Skip Hoagland of Domains New Media LLC has joined with Linda and Corky Gifford of Island Communications LLC to purchase PanamaCityBeach.com from Charles Mason for an undisclosed price. Domains New Media and Island Communications acquired the domain

name, the website and its customer base in the transaction. Hoagland, who was profiled in our July 2008 Cover Story, already owns some of the world's top developed geodomains including Atlanta.com, MyrtleBeach.com and BuenosAires.com,  to name just a few. 

Regarding PanamaCityBeach.com, a site that represents the top resort town in Florida's panhandle, Hoagland said "We are starting with an excellent platform -  the current site has a great layout, is easy to navigate and even works on the iPhone. It will be further improved as we switch over to the new improved GeoDomain platforms that we are developing."

 

Seller Charles Mason, who will continue to work with the new owners, said "Skip and his partners and team members really understand the value of a geodomain and have the funding to take PanamaCityBeach.com to new levels. Their proven network of domain names can reach tourists that others only dream about. Skip's help, dedication, fairness and professionalism is and has been on the highest level and was unsurpassed by anyone or other proposals we received."

Skip Hoagland
Domains New Media LLC

Mason added, "Skip and I had been in discussion for many months and the most important concern was that the site remains relevant to the many small area businesses that make Panama City Beach such an inviting vacation family place. With their existing media experience. Island Communication LLC fully understands how to work with these small businesses and embrace the local economy by hiring locally for sales, photographers, videographers and reporters, etc."

"Also, only Domains New Media LLC can offer the advertisers access to a network covering some 51 City.com sites worldwide along with local drive by cities that include our largest market Atlanta."

Domain New Media LLC has been in business for over fifteen years specializing in geoomains and generic domains that cover popular subjects (one of the premier examples being Fishing.com).

Island Communications LLC has been in the tourism media business for over 35 years and they currently publish leading tourist magazines for the Savannah, Georgia and Hilton Head, South Carolina markets. Island also operates a brochure and magazine distribution network in hotel lobbies on Hilton Head and surrounding areas and they own and operate six pure city .com brands. 

One other note to pass along before we head into the weekend that will be of special interest to our Canadian friends -  MyID.ca has aunched a comprehensive .ca domain marketplace that is offering tens of thousands of .ca ccTLD domains for sale. The marketplace is devoted exclusively to Canada's country code domains - the first marketplace of this size to ever focus on a single extension.

The site's domain inventory spans more than 40 categories and covers a wide range of pricing from less than $100 to more than $100,000. If you are interested in .ca domains you will want to bookmark their URL, http://domainmarket.myid.ca.

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Domain Conference Will Take to the High Seas in October With a Carnival Cruise From Miami to Cozumel + An Update on the Domainer's Mount Kilimanjaro Climb

Domain conferences have been held on land in various corners of the globe over the past five years.  Later this year, a conference will be held on the high seas for the first time. This afternoon domain blogger Chef Patrick announced that he will host DNCruise, a 

conference/cruise aboard the Carnival Cruise Lines ship Imagination October 11-15, 2010. Now if we can just get Virgin Galactic billionaire Richard Branson to hold a conference in space the industry will have covered all of the bases!

Chef Patrick has booked 66 double occupancy cabins for the cruise that will leave Miami on Monday, October 11, make a stop in Key West, then go on to Cozumel, Mexico before returning to Miami on Friday, October 15. That will get people back to shore at just the right time and place to attend the big T.R.A.F.F.I.C. conference that will be held on Miami's South Beach October 17-20. That is the only T.R.A.F.F.I.C. show that co-founders Rick Schwartz and Howard Neu are producing in 2010 and I am sure they will make it something special (Rick Latona is staging all of the other T.R.A.F.F.I.C. events this year).

Prices for DNCruise start at $429 per person for a double occupancy interior cabin ($489 for ocean view). Patrick said the fare includes the cabin, all you can eat food, cruise taxes, port fees, gratuities, most cocktails and your conference pass. He also promises "a laid back atmosphere of fun and mingling mixed in with some speakers and sponsored parties. There will also be plenty of free time as well to enjoy the beautiful beach in Cozumel."  Patrick added, "If for some reason a guest cannot afford the pass, I am willing to work out fair payment arrangements. No one should miss an opportunity like this to network with fellow domain investors." You can get all of the details about the event at DNCruise.com.

Mount Kilimanjaro

Last week I told you about the two dozen domainers who were climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa to raise funds for the Water School. The climb team led by Gregg McNair and Rick Latona started the climb to the 19,340 foot peak on Monday (March 1). Today I got a text message from McNair telling me they were about to make the final assault on the mountain top.

McNair wrote, "We are at summit base and will attempt the final assault at midnight - climbing in the darkness for 7 hours, then beginning the descent by hiking another 7 hours! The whole team appears to be OK so far but we are bloody exhausted after 30 miles of incredibly difficult trekking. Still, the worst is yet to come."

I am impressed and amazed that these people put their bodies on the line like this to raise money for a cost effective water purification program that is saving lives in Africa and other developing nations around the world. You can still donate to the cause (any amount will be appreciated) by going to this page and selecting a climber to sponsor. If you just wish to make a general Water School contribution, that can be done here.  

We are looking forward to hearing that the climbers reached the summit and have all safely made it back down the mountain. They are expected to reach the finish line on Saturday (March 6).
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DOMAINfest Announces Return to Europe With Conference in Prague October 6-7, 2010

DomainSponsor announced today that they will stage a DOMAINfest Europe conference in Prague, Czech Republic October 6-7, 2010. A number of sites have reported that this will be the first DOMAINfest in Europe but that is not the case. Before the first DOMAINfest Global conference was held in Hollywood, California in January 2007, DomainSponsor had started the popular series with a pair of regional events, one in Los Angeles and another (in July 2006) in Barcelona, Spain. I was not able to attend the DOMAINfest Barcelona show but Jothan Frakes was there and described the event in a post on his blog a few days after it ended. 

Since those early shows DOMAINfest has grown by leaps and bounds and they just completed their fourth annual Global show with record attendance in Santa Monica, California in January. The Prague show at the Hotel Intercontinental will likely be at least ten times bigger than that friendly gathering in Barcelona four years ago. A return of DOMAINfest to Europe has been expected ever since November 2009 when DomainSponsor announced the establishment of a European head office in Frankfurt, Germany.

DomainSponsor organizers said "Subject-matter experts will be invited to facilitate the networking sessions on Wednesday, October 6th.  The first day will also include a Moniker® Premium Domain Name Auction.  Day 2 will be focused on social activities in and around Prague designed to provide the kind of shared experiences that can contribute to the building of long-term relationships between DOMAINfest Europe attendees.  Conference details, including the agenda and speakers, will be released in June 2010." 

Peter Celeste
Senior VP, Oversee.net

Peter Celeste, the Senior Vice President of DomainSponsor's parent, Oversee.net (and General Manger of Oversee's Monetization Services) said, “DOMAINfest Europe is an excellent opportunity for European publishers, online marketers, and domain-related service providers to meet and discuss ways to increase the value of domain names, which we like to refer to as Internet real estate." 

"The DomainSponsor team looks forward to becoming more engaged with the European domain investor community, and this forum is the perfect venue to exchange ideas and build relationships.  As with all DOMAINfest events, we will be offering affordable registration rates to encourage maximum participation from a wide range of talented professionals from both inside and outside our industry.”

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Registration for T.R.A.F.F.I.C. Milan Opens With Very Attractive Early Bird Prices

Registration for the T.R.A.F.F.I.C. conference coming up in Milan, Italy April 27-29 opened today with some exceptionally low early bird prices offered to those who are quick on the 

draw. A rate of €499 ($679 at today's exchange rate) will be given to the first 50 people who register for the offer that expires March 15. Those who plan to attend both the Milan show and the T.R.A.F.F.I.C. conference that will be held in Dublin, Ireland August 24-26 can get an even better early bird deal - tickets to both shows for just €749 ($1,020)

You can access the Milan/Dublin offer by clicking the Buy Now button next to the $1,020 price on this registration page. However, we noticed this evening that a link to the Milan only early bird rate is not in place yet. A show official told us that link will be up tomorrow.

Milan, known as a world leader in fashion and design, is also the largest metropolitan area in Italy with an estimated population of 7.4 million. It will be the second European city to host a T.R.A.F.F.I.C. conference. The show made its debut on the Continent last June with the T.R.A.F.F.I.C. ccTLDs conference in Amsterdam. ccTLDs will again be on center stage in Milan.

The conference will be held at the Milan Marriott which is located just a short distance away from the center of the city. In addition to networking activities, panel sessions, and an exhibitor area the show will feature a live domain auction staged by Rick Latona Auctions.

Just six weeks after the Milan show, T.R.A.F.F.I.C. will return to this side of the pond for its first Canadian show - T.R.A.F.F.I.C. Vancouver, coming up June 8-10 in British Columbia's scenic capital city. The Vancouver area has spawned many domain pioneers including Garry Chernoff, Frank Schilling and Dr. Kevin Ham to name just a few. The city just finished hosting the 2010 Winter Olympics so many of you have already been given a sample of the spectacular Vancouver scenery that was featured nightly on TV screens around the world. Better yet - it will be much warmer in June than it was during the February games.

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Michael "Zappy" Zapolin's New PrescriptionDrugs.com Website Chosen to Compete in Harvard Business School Contest

Michael "Zappy" Zapolin, who was featured in our September 2005 Cover Story about the Internet Real Estate Group, has just scored a major honor for his latest category killing domain 

name development project - PrescriptionDrugs.com. The Harvard Business School has selected Zapolin's written plan for the site as a candidate for the top prize in their "New Ventures" competition. As a result he will be heading to Boston in a couple of weeks to present to a distinguished panel of judges, with the goal of being selected as one of three semi-finalists who will move on to compete for the top prize.

Zappy told us, "PrescriptionDrugs.com's site is dedicated to helping people find the information, and discounts they desperately need.  The opportunity for PrescriptionDrugs.com is in the data that people provide us when they tell us about their ailments, symptoms, and current 

Screenshot from PrescriptionDrugs.com

medications.  This information is extremely valuable to pharma companies and doctors, when searching for clinical trial subjects, or when launching a new, or competing drug.  Case in point, it costs pharma companies more than $1 Billion to launch a new drug, and clinical trial patients are worth between $3,000 and $20,000 to a doctor handling a study."

Zappy added, "We are also very excited about the fact that Sanjiv Chopra, Dean of Continuing Education at Harvard Medical School has joined our board of advisors!

PrescriptionDrugs.com isn't the only major project Zapolin has underway. Many of you have heard about his InternetWarrior.com website that is designed to teach people the ins and outs of the domain business. The site offers Zappy's Internet Warrior hard cover book, two tutorial DVDs and an annual membership to the website for $39.95 (+ $9.95 shipping and handling). A free domain appraisal and a three-month trial membership to the InternetWarrior.com Insider's Club is also included. Insider's Club benefits include access to live coaching calls with Zapolin.

I just received a copy of Zappy's book (written with Alys R. Yablon) and after I read it I'll follow up with some impressions of it for you. 

Zapolin has been involved in the sales and/or development of some of the best generic domain names on the web, including CreditCards.com, Computer.com, Telephone.com, Diamond.com, College.com and Beer.com to name just a few. 

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New Owner of UDRP.com Turns Out to Be Both a Domain Investor AND an End User

As you may have heard, Bido.com sold UDRP.com for $16,500 last week. Considering the important role the UDRP process plays in the domain industry and the fact that each side in a single UDRP dispute typically spends several thousand dollars for legal services I thought 

someone got a good deal on that domain. As it turns out the buyer was both a domain investor and an end user - noted domain attorney Ari Goldberger (who was profiled in our June 2006 Cover Story). Ari has been the winning attorney in some of the most important domain cases of all time, Including NewZealand.com and Mexico.com.

“NewZealand.com was the first case of a country trying to claim its domain," Goldberger told us. "The owner’s entire business could have collapsed if this case was lost, so the pressure was on big time.  It was a wonderful victory, particularly since the panel found that the Complainant engaged in Reverse Domain Name Hijacking.  The funny thing is that the case was in the name of HRM, the Queen of England, so CNN.com had the headline: 

Ari Goldberger

British Queen Loses Out on Cyber Name.” Mexico.com was another case where an individual had invested a lot and worked very hard could have lost an entire business if I had not won.”   

Goldberger is on just about every experienced domain owner's short list if they have to seek help to defend against an unjustified UDRP filing. Though he and his firm, ESQwire.com, are already well known, acquiring the category killing domain name for this particular corner of the legal arena should only strengthen his position further. The domain could be taken in several different directions including being used as a simple redirect to drive qualified traffic to his own website or developed into the ultimate guide to the UDRP process and/or qualified UDRP attorneys. As the owner of the defining domain name, Ari is now is a position to lead the UDRP discussion if he chooses to do so.

Elsewhere today, the special $795 early bird registration fee for the 2010 GeoDomain Expo - coming up April 28-30 in New Orleans was supposed to expire yesterday (Feb. 28), however since the deadline fell on a Sunday, show organizers decided to extend it through today. Starting tomorrow, the price goes up to $995 where it will remain until April 1 when it will go up again.

The show is going to be held at the historic Roosevelt Hotel, a showplace that just reopened in July 2009 after damage from  

Hurricane Katrina had shut it down for four years.  A $145 million restoration project has returned The Roosevelt to its place as the premier luxury hotel in New Orleans.  

The hotels’ world-famous Blue Room has hosted some of the greatest musicians and singers of all time including Louis Armstrong, Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Ray Charles and Ella Fitzgerald. The Roosevelt's Sazerac Bar is also known as the source of the first cocktail invented in America, an absinth powered concoction that is now the official drink of New Orleans. 

Room at the Roosevelt can be reserved at the show's guaranteed lowest rate of $229 per night by visiting the online booking engine or by calling 504-648 1200 and referencing the GeoDomain Expo group rate.

One other geodomain related note - Sedo is hosting a week long auction featuring travel and geo domains starting Friday (March 5th) at 9 a.m. EST and running until March 12th at 9 a.m. EST. Belgium.com, Souvenirs.net and Tourism.biz are a few of the domains slated to go on the block in this sale. You can visit Sedo.com/TravelAuction to view the current inventory.

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