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Thank You to Our PMC Jersey Sponsors!

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Our 2017 Pan-Mass Challenge jerseys have arrived and they look great. With the help of several fantastic domain industry sponsors, John Berryhill and I have helped to raise over $17,000 for Dana-Farber Cancer Institute via our PMC fundraisers! My goal is to raise $12,000 and John’s goal is to raise $9,000, so we still have a bit of a ways to go before we can call this a complete success.

Thanks to the following domain industry sponsors, John and I will be wearing snazzy cycling jerseys with the logos of domain industry companies who have sponsored our ride with donations of $500 or more. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that we have had great support from others in the domain industry.

Here are the companies who made large donations to DFCI to sponsor our jerseys:

Uniregistry
TheDomains.com
.Buzz Registry
GoDaddy
.Club Registry
BuyDomains
Donuts
Igloo
Telepathy
NameCorp
NameJet
.XYZ Registry
DSAD.com
.Art Registry

This weekend, I will be doing two 75 mile training rides in the MetroWest region of Boston. I will be riding with a few other people who are also training for the Pan-Mass Challenge. My bet is that I will be the only one wearing a custom jersey this weekend, and I will proudly tell the other riders why I am wearing the jersey and that it was a big factor in our fundraising. I am sure John will do the same on his training rides.

Here are a couple of photos of John in his jersey and a couple of photos of me in my jersey:


‘There is Only Value if They Are Used’

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While looking through my Twitter feed this morning, I saw that Alan Dunn posted a link to an article that I bookmarked and will share with people who inquire about my “unused” domain names:

For those with limited time, the article is about singer Julio Iglesias listing 4 connected waterfront lots on the Miami Beach island of Indian Creek Village for sale for $150 million. There are no houses or buildings on these undeveloped lots, but the large property would be a fantastic spot to build a huge home with a couple of smaller villas for family and friends.  I think this is a perfect illustration of the value of a great undeveloped domain name.

In between the time I saw the article and my wife and I got the kids ready for the day, I received a serendipitous domain name inquiry that → Read More


Air France Announces JOON Without Joon.com or Joon.fr

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Earlier today, Air France-KLM announced the launch of a new airline called JOON. According to a Bloomberg article, JOON “will initially offer medium-haul services from the airline’s Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport base and begin long-haul routes in mid-2018.”

The airline does not appear to have acquired either the Joon.com domain name or the Joon.fr ccTLD domain name. The Joon.com domain name is owned by Canada-based Netincome Ventures, Inc. and Joon.fr is owned by a French event firm. Joon.com is currently monetized with advertising links, and the top of the landing page indicates that the domain name may be available for sale via the Uniregistry domain brokerage. Joon.fr is being used by the event firm.

According to the brand’s Facebook page, the company plans to use the FlyJoon.com domain name for its website. When I visited FlyJoon.com, I was forwarded to a page within Air France’s website. Here’s how Air France described the brand name on its website:

“Short, powerful and international, JOON’s name was conceived to speak to people all around the world.”

The brand name is interesting because of the pronunciation of the word. In the US (and possibly other English speaking countries), the word JOON sounds like the word June. In French, I believe the JOON sound would be spelled Juin → Read More


Brand Names Are Important for Startups

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This may seem like it should be obvious to people who operate startup businesses, but brand names are important. This is especially true for startups that are seeking outside funding to grow their business. Not only does this seem intuitive, but there is a study that shows the importance of choosing a brand name.

Check out this tweet from Evergreen, a domain brokerage and consulting firm:

The tweet links to a Business Insider Australia article that cites an industry study with insight about how brand names can impact the funding a startup receives at different stages. From the Business Insider article:

“Names are are easily pronounced, such as Uber and Lyft, are preferred by both early and late stage investors. They tend to be offered more money, whether its through crowd funders, angel investors, VCs or IPO investors.

Uniqueness is also virtue, but only with early-stage investors. The study found that since very little is known about a company in the early stages, unique names give the impression there is something special about the company.”

Evergreen and others in the domain consulting space could probably share more insight than I can, but when it comes to naming, I believe → Read More


Some Advice for NameJet

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I have been following along the NamePros thread and article on TheDomains.com about alleged bidding irregularities at NameJet. I have also been in communication with NameJet General Manager Jonathan Tenenbaum, asking to receive updates as the company addresses the allegations and investigates the situation.

A few minutes ago, Jonathan emailed me a statement with a status update from the auction platform:

“In an effort to keep everyone current as to where we stand on this matter, I wanted to share the following update. There have been some inaccuracies and misconceptions that have been brought forth by such a spirited discussion. And it would be a challenge to respond to all of them – therefore, I want to bring the discussion back to the heart of the matter.

As stated earlier, we take the issue of shill bidding on NameJet very seriously and we are conducting a thorough investigation, keeping in mind that the integrity of our platform is of utmost importance to us. As I have said repeatedly, we do not condone shill bidding of any kind. We would never encourage, promote or otherwise be involved in any such thing and our position is clear – it is never allowed on NameJet!

In our current investigation certain auction activity has come to light that we deem questionable and a possible violation of our terms. This kind of activity is not acceptable to us and we are taking steps to deal with it. We have suspended several accounts while working through the information we have available.

I thank everyone for their patience as we work through these issues. Our goal is to best serve our customers and we are working hard to that effect.”

When it comes to auction venues and domain name marketplaces, trust is the most important component. As a NameJet customer and someone who writes about the domain investment business, I want to share some advice for NameJet: → Read More


UDRP Filed Against PayPals.com “Gripe Site”

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A UDRP was filed against the PayPals.com domain name at the National Arbitration Forum (NAF). The UDRP is case #1740061, and because it was filed at the NAF, I can only assume that the UDRP was filed by PayPal since the complainant is not revealed until the decision is published. Once the decision is published, we will know for certain who filed this UDRP.

Judging solely by the name PayPals.com and not looking at how the domain name is being used, one might assume PayPal would have a strong case. PayPal owns quite a few trademarks, and one might look at this and say it should be a win for PayPal. As with many legal situations, there seems to be much more to this story, and I do not think this will be a cut and dry case (assuming PayPal is the complainant).

PayPals.com was created in 2003. According to DomainTools, back then, the domain name was owned by the late Igal Lichtman, whose company is called Mrs Jello, LLC. Another DomainTools Whois History tool search shows that the domain name appears to have been acquired by the → Read More


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