Earlier this afternoon, I speculated that FB.com could possibly be used by Facebook for the expected launch of the Facebook mail client/platform next week. About an hour ago, Andrew Allemann published an article that confirmed Facebook was the buyer of FB.com after a Whois update.
I am now going to take a guess that Facebook may have acquired or worked out a deal for FB.CO from the .CO Registry. This is more of guess than was the FB.com purchase since the Whois still maintains the default “Restricted and Reserved names .COInternet”, but here’s why I am speculating:
If you visit FB.CO right now, you’ll see a MediaTemple server default page. If you visit many other 2 letter .CO domain names, they don’t resolve to anything. Strange that this appears to be pending set up but the other names don’t have any DNS settings at all.
Just before the O.CO acquisition for $350,00 by Overstock was announced, I had been looking at one letter .CO domain names to see if I noticed anything. As I recall, the e.CO domain name had a page announcing the upcoming auction, but just about every other domain name didn’t resolve… except for O.CO. That name had a Media Temple server default page.
So… will Facebook or the .CO Registry have an announcement about FB.CO on Monday? If Facebook did acquire FB.CO in addition to FB.com, did they do it for protective measures or to do something different? Monday is going to be a very interesting day,
At the end of September, I wrote an article speculating that perhaps Facebook purchased FB.com in private. There hasn’t been any public acknowledgement about whether the company bought it or not (or who may have bought it if Facebook didn’t), and the domain name still does not resolve. See update below.
Multiple websites are reporting that Facebook will be holding an invite-only event in San Francisco on Monday, November 15th, and it is expected they will announce a new email system or platform that Techcrunch has dubbed “Facebook’s Gmail Killer.” According to the folks at Techcrunch, this project has been referred to internally as “Project Titan.”
This is pure speculation, but it would be pretty neat if they launched this mail service on FB.com (if they own this domain name now confirmed that Facebook owns it). Assuming it is a mail service they intend to launch on Monday, they could also use another name like FacebookMail.com (which they already own), or they could just tie it in with Facebook.com.
In my opinion, launching a mail service on FB.com would be a great idea. I am sure there are still plenty of people who still think Facebook is just for social networking, despite the company’s growth and evolution. By using FB.com, they could somewhat disassociate from the Facebook brand, which could make a mail service @FB.com look more professional and serious. I think it would look strange to receive a job application from someone emailing me from Facebook, perhaps somewhat unprofessional in my opinion.
Google moved away from the Google name when it started its GMail platform, and I think it would be a smart idea for Facebook to use FB.com for mail, if they did in fact acquire the domain name.
As Andrew pointed out within the last hour, the Whois information for FB.com has changed, and Facebook is now listed as the owner (see screenshot below). Additionally, FB.com is now forwarding to Facebook.com.
Domain Name Implications as Company Fights Over New Hampshire Geographical Trademark: Mount Washington
I grew up in southern New Hampshire and I skied in NH’s White Mountains many times, so this story was interesting for business and personal reasons. It’s also something that Dark Blue Sea should note because of a domain name in its portfolio.
According to ABC television affiliate WMUR, it looks like the owner of the Mt. Washington Hotel (a landmark hotel in the region) is fighting to prevent other lodging businesses from using the term, “Mount Washington.” The interesting aspect of this is that there is a mountain called Mount Washington where the hotels are located, hence the geographical descriptor.
If you live on the East Coast, you’ve probably seen the bumper stickers that say, “This car has climbed Mt. Washington,” and that’s the term that is being battled for right now (specifically related to lodging according to the article).
One reason this is interesting from a domain standpoint is that the company could come after seemingly generic domain names like MountWashingtonHotels.com, which happens to be owned by DBS subsidiary Protopixel.
Although Mt. Washington isn’t that big, imagine if a hotel/resort named the the Las Vegas Resort or the Europe Spa tried to trademark those regional terms with regards to lodging. High value domain names like LasVegasHotels.com or EuropeVacations.com could conceivably come under pressure from the trademark owner if they were permitted to do so.
This may be a big leap, but if a precedent is set legally, I am sure others will attempt to follow suit. It’s just some food for thought.