Comments on: My Snapnames Theory Domain blog featuring domain investing strategy, domain valuation, and domain development commentary from Elliot Silver, founder of Top Notch Domains, LLC. Mon, 28 Jul 2014 12:11:43 +0000 hourly 1 By: anon Sat, 14 Nov 2009 21:31:29 +0000 keep moving, keep moving, thats right nothing to see here folks, keep moving-
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By: Russ Wed, 11 Nov 2009 21:00:34 +0000 Elliott, halvarez had help from another domainer monetizing (via his google feed) and selling the domains. Chances are ireit had no idea it was Brady.

By: pitbullstew Tue, 10 Nov 2009 12:53:58 +0000 Can you spell class action suit?
Michael J. Aschenbrener | KamberEdelson LLC
350 N. LaSalle St., Suite 1300
Chicago, IL 60654
1.312.589.6379 (direct) | 1.312.589.6370 (firm) | 1.312.589.6378 (fax) |

By: pitbullstew Tue, 10 Nov 2009 00:53:03 +0000 Interesting theories here, over thought none the less, this guy Nelson Brady?
A common pick pocket, not much else.
Snapnames deserves all it gets for not discovering this when the complaints began to pour in?
Even mine.
Why do I get the suspicion this is not the only incident of its kind?

By: Jimbo Jones Mon, 09 Nov 2009 12:22:18 +0000 Are there not any detailed logging files that could lead one to know where the IP address was for most of Halvarez’s bids? Would this type of IP logging not be used for most actions (login, bid, pay, refund, support) and traceable over time to the end-user?

Seems a forensic investigation is in order to really “scrub” the SnapNames systems and uncover the real culprit. If this was in fact fraud, and if the data suggest that SnapNames looked the other way while this was going on, it surely leaves them complicit and seemingly “OK with the bidder’s actions”.

Throwing one person under the bus (Nelson) does little to alleviate the fact that there is much evidence now that does in fact suggest that this was “a conspiracy to commit fraud”.

Being a domainner since 1995, and seeing the industry changes throughout that time, it was evident (consistently lower CPC over time, higher, more competitive bidders in drop, and aftermarket auctions, and the hoarding of domains by registrars) it was the right time a few years ago to sell out…

Warning: If you think this industry will clean it self up because of the SnapNames debacle, think again…this is just the tip of the iceberg, and I expect various “nefarious” anecdotes to surface over the next few months, of registrars, parking companies, or the BIG guys manipulating, and perhaps cheating the smaller guys out of the lions share of the market. I am not making any accusations, but this is probably the largest “black-box” industry going, and to get to the bottom of anything will need the blessing of ICANN, and the justice system – of which neither seem to have given much attention to it so far, as far as I have read…

Good luck domainners!

By: joe bloe Mon, 09 Nov 2009 06:30:58 +0000 he hasn’t coded for over ten years. just because he has a phd in ee and can fly several types of aircraft, he can’t (on his own) code something that would be able to (in real time) manage the concurrency of multiple bids. mutltithreaded apps are beyond his scope. nor the subsecond timing requirements to “sabotage” [sic] the daily drop with vrsn. but to add to your theory: what happened to snapnames accounting department last summer?? what about those kpmg audits??

By: My Three Favorite Domaining Blog Posts: Week of 11/1/2009 | Domaining Manual Mon, 09 Nov 2009 05:46:22 +0000 [...] – My Snapnames Theory [...]

By: Chris Beach Mon, 09 Nov 2009 04:42:11 +0000 Hmmm, that doesn’t really sound correct. Nelson has a Doctorate in Computer Science and Engineering from the University of Texas – trust me, you don’t get a degree in computer science (bachelor, master’s or doctorate) without being able to code.

By: joe bloe Mon, 09 Nov 2009 04:32:40 +0000 nelson did not “build” snapnames, nor was he a founder (ray and ron were the founders; but he was there from the git-go). nelson did manage the technical staff that built snapnames. writing a “script” to manipulate the snapnames auction platform is beyond nelsons programing abilities. he’s a smart man, but not a programmer.

By: My Three Favorite Domaining Blog Posts: Week of 11/1/2009 | Mon, 09 Nov 2009 04:04:11 +0000 [...] – My Snapnames Theory [...]

By: Chris Beach Mon, 09 Nov 2009 01:39:54 +0000 Joe Bloe, do you know Nelson? Is your statement based on actual knowledge or are you making assumptions?

“Halvarez” was definitely a script – this was clear to anyone who was watching him closely over the last few years – it simply wasn’t physically possible for a human to bid on that many closing auctions at one time. As the auction time was extended, halvarez would make multiple bids, sometimes on hundreds of domains at once. He was definitely using a script – are you suggesting someone else wrote it for him?

By: Chris Beach Mon, 09 Nov 2009 00:16:34 +0000 Elliot, Nelson was not only the VP of Engineering, he actually built the original SnapNames from the ground up back in December 2000.

What bothers me about this whole thing is, if he just wanted expired domains, he had the know-how to create his own registrars and his own personal backordering system, just for himself, without any risk, but he didn’t. He could have done so behind the scenes, with none of the risks he took (faking account refunds!), while still working for SnapNames and he could have even sabotaged SnapNames ability to catch the names he wanted so he had a better chance of grabbing them for himself, but he didn’t.

Why take the risk when he didn’t have to? My guess is that SnapNames knew he was doing it. I bet some lowly, pissed off ex-employee has threatened to blow the whistle and SnapNames have been forced to beat them to the punch.

By: joe bloe Sun, 08 Nov 2009 23:56:06 +0000 nelson couldn’t script himself out of a wet paper bag! he could “drinking bird” like a monkey. you guys are reading _WAY_ too much into his title. he was only involved with concepts, not the gears.

By: Morgan Sun, 08 Nov 2009 23:42:00 +0000 I completely agree that he used a script…what surprises me is that nobody in the company realized this was going on for so long.

By: Shane Sun, 08 Nov 2009 21:15:34 +0000 I find it hard to believe they didn’t find out who their best customer was. Looking away, yes, not knowing, I doubt it. Curiosity alone would have made them look into it

By: Yaron Sun, 08 Nov 2009 18:54:37 +0000 Elliot,
“halvarez” was Nelson Brady, the VP of Engineering at SnapNames.
Now think of this: VP OF ENGINEERING !
so it only make sense that they did have a script. one that place the first bid to begin with, and one that pushed it higher according to proxy bids.
The only thing that doesnt make sense is that SnapNames were not involved.
My gut feeling is that SnapNames not only knew about this, but also orchestrated the all operation.
I have never used SnapNames, but if I did I wouldnt take the “rebate” but instead take them to court.
I think this is a classic case for a class action, but I wont be surprise if Snap is working with all the big guys on a different settlement than the “rebate” they are offering the small guys…

By: Michael Sun, 08 Nov 2009 18:45:12 +0000 I agree that it was a bidding script, I find it hard to believe their VP of Engineering had time to place hundreds of thousands of bids across tens of thousands of auctions in his spare time.

However, I don’t agree that this means there wasn’t a conspiracy. It would have been VERY dangerous for him to write a script like that (or even do it manually) without having access to our max proxy bids. If his script was connecting to the database to get our max bids, then Snap definitely should have known about it. It would have either been sitting on their server, or establishing a connection from another server which SHOULD set off some red flags.

I would bet this was a script, but that there were other high-ups that knew about it and condoned it. I also think there were other usernames involved, it wouldn’t make sense for him to write the script and only have one bot doing the bidding, that would arouse suspicions quicker.

I don’t think we’re getting the whole story here, not by a long shot.

By: Upsetting Sun, 08 Nov 2009 17:55:18 +0000 I go back to the movie casino on this one and this applies to the banking cartels who own our gov anyways and back this good cop/bad cop puppet show behind the scenes..

Either you were in on it or were too stupid..both are unacceptable possibilities and you should get the boot

By: Elliot Sun, 08 Nov 2009 17:49:47 +0000 I’m not a technical person, so maybe script is the wrong terminology… LOL

It just seems to be an awful lot of auctions to be hands on every day and still perform daily tasks.

Again, this is all just my theory.

By: Yaron Sun, 08 Nov 2009 17:48:34 +0000 A script? maybe. but I find it hard to believe nobady at snaopnames didnt know whats going on.
maybe it was a script by Snapname make sense, because it seems to me that “halvarez” had some inside info, especially in regard to proxy bids.
maybe this VP was the one who ran this script?