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GoDaddy review : Recommend I try GoDaddy?? Shady Auction Aftermarket???? You Decide...

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I found an interesting comment on my blog, from a business /img/avatar5.jpg who is frustrated with the way the domain aftermarket seems to work.

Summary: he wants to buy a domain that (according to him) is the name under which he does business (TM). To that end, he asked the sponsoring registrar to release the name so that he could buy it when it expired. The registrar (DirectNIC/Intercosmos) did, but then Snapnames caught it and put it up for auction. Apparently, a company called Protondomains bought it, but, according to the poster, Protondomains is a shadow company of Snapnames.

Read his comment here (but skip my post, for it's old and not related to what the commentator has to say): CommentIt's one side of the story, of course, but he's articulating what I have suspected for a long time.

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Comments (10)

Directnic shouldn't have canceled the domain in the first place. This sort of stuff needs to be handled through civil court or the WIPO process...

Comment #1

There has to be more to the story. The biggest problem I have is DirectNIC canceling a domain in the first place. There are processes in place now (UDRP) and regular court to plead your case if you think it has merit. I think they could possibly get in deep legal trouble, as well as trouble with ICANN for arbitrarily making a decision like that without due process.

Brad..

Comment #2

Why didn't registrar transfer it to the TM holder instead of letting it drop?..

Comment #3

That would be an even bigger problem IMO. It is not the registrars place to decide what is a TM violation and what isn't. That is to be decided in the correct channel.

Unless they owned the domain, I don't see what right they had to delete or transfer it. That kind of thing can open up a can of worms, if a registrar is trying to act as the judge and jury.

Brad..

Comment #4

There probably isn't more to the story. Directnic has a history of policing their client's sites be it the domain names or the content of the sites...

Comment #5

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I wondered, too, why the business owner didn't simply ask that the domain be transferred to him (instead of asking the registrar to drop it).

Of course, if I were the registrar, I would want proof from the guy before just handing it over.

If the TM holder has a valid case, could DirectNIC/Intercosmos be in legal hot water?.

It just seems to me that registrars ought to have some kind of SOP for dealing with TM complaints?.

I realize that registrars can't be responsible for policing the TM landscape (though I would argue that major TMs, such as Google, should be easy to root out), but, honestly, when someone with a legitimate claim files a complaint, I would think that registrars would want to comply.

I suspect that the courts will eventually weigh in (class-action suit?), and THAT could be a disaster.

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Comment #6

I'm sure the aftermarket is corrupt. Not naming any snap, sorry I mean names, but I backordered a snap, sorry I mean name, a few years ago, worthless to anyone else, but I got caught up in an auction and ended up paying $X,XXX for the name, as there was another one snapper, sorry I mean bidder for the name.

My point being I couldn't even sell this name for reg fee 2 years later when I had no further use for it. If someone was genuinely bidding me above 4 figures then logic tells me they would "SNAP" it up for reg fee 2 years later.

Does anyone see a theme to this post?.

Snap to it and let me know if you have had the same issues..

Comment #7

The auction industry is crooked. Nothing would surprise me, online or offline.

I worked with offline auctions many years ago. I have no doubt that the stuff I saw there is now happening online too.

A leather sofa sells for $400, but the winner pays only $150 because they worked something out with the auctioneer prior to the auction. And if this was a public storage or business bankruptcy auction, the chances of them getting caught by the client appeared to be very slim.

It would be even easier for the domain drop sites to pull this off since there is no outside item owner at all to get caught by. And in those cases the reported sale would actually be just over the maximum that the 2nd place bidder had been willing to pay.

So you end up with...

Bidder 1: $1,000 (fake bid).

Bidder 2: $950.

Bidder 3: $150.

Bidder 4: $100.

Now suddenly that $1,000 reported sale doesn't look as good because it would have been under $200 otherwise.

Is this going on online also? We may never know.....

Comment #8

As if only they have an absolute exclusive right to it...

Comment #9

I read the blog entry, and it amazes me the amount of work he put into contacting and researching companies involved. he did everything but the things that could actually work. Their are only two sure ways to get a name that you have exclusive rights to. One is UDRP/WIPO, the other is to file a lawsuit. It would appear he doesn't want to pay for the UDRP, or even a backorder to assure he got it when it dropped. If the domain is valuable to him, pay the UDRP costs.

If the case is strong enough, I"m convinced that most companies would hand over the domain if a suit were just filed with damages claimed. In some cases that cost might be less than UDRP. It can cost nothing to defend a UDRP, but it definitely costs to defend yourself in a lawsuit.

Yes, I think there are a LOT of shady backroom deals, fake companies and aliases, and probably even shill bidders. However, they also know all the rules and that threats alone don't work...

Comment #10


This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.

 

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