WikiLeaks.com Update: GoDaddy Does The Right Thing | DomainInvesting.com
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WikiLeaks.com Update: GoDaddy Does The Right Thing

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I wrote an article last Sunday about the WikiLeaks.com domain name. It’s owned by a company called Wikia, Inc. and it recently had a coming soon landing page with pay per click advertising links. Every time someone clicked on one of the Sponsored Links, Godaddy would earn some revenue (and possibly Wikia, too, if they were parking the domain name with Godaddy).

Apparently someone at Wikia, Inc. or Godaddy decided to change this landing page, and there are no more PPC links showing.

Bob Parsons is known to be a proud patriotic American. He is also a very, very wealthy man, and as the owner of one of the largest and most generous companies in the state of Arizona (maybe even the US), I don’t think the money that was being generated was substantial to Godaddy’s bottom line.

Kudos to Parsons, Godaddy, and/or Wikia for opting to not monetize traffic that was looking for the WikiLeaks.org website, which has certainly damaged the reputation of the US and others in the world.


About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of DomainInvesting.com. Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has sold seven figures worth of domain names in the last five years. Please read the DomainInvesting.com Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest.


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Comments (25)

    Mike

    If I were hosting, serving the DNS and/or the registrar of Wikileaks, AND I was a U.S. company — I’d shut it down. Also, notice how wikileaks.org has “privacy” on it? Maybe the privacy company should LEAK the owner’s details for the world to see.

    December 1st, 2010 at 3:44 pm

    Adam

    I don’t think having it go to their godady home page rather than a ppc lander is actually a better solution. They’re still making money off that traffic

    December 1st, 2010 at 4:48 pm

    James

    Of course it’s monetized – they will make more from the page that’s now showing than before!

    December 1st, 2010 at 4:50 pm

    Elliot

    I disagree… I think it’s less targeted traffic for Godaddy products (harder to monetize), where the PPC links were probably more targeted. They obviously have larger margins on their own products, but if the CTR is much, much lower, they ultimately fare poorer without PPC links.

    I also think there’s not much else Godaddy can do since they don’t own the domain name. They can’t forward it to a patriotic website and they can’t kill the DNS or anything.

    December 1st, 2010 at 4:54 pm

    Adam

    Sure it won’t convert much but it’s still branding and pimping godaddy even if it doesn’t have any immediate conversions. Godaddy is syphoning the good will there.

    Any page that has any sort of commercial interest (ie selling or branding a product or service) or advertising on it is gaining, targeted or not.

    They most certainly have other options . They have the capability to make this domain go to a blank page and aren’t.

    Sorry dude. This is not a solution. At best it’s 1/2 of one.

    December 1st, 2010 at 5:00 pm

    Elliot

    @ Adam

    I think this is better than before.

    December 1st, 2010 at 5:04 pm

    allison

    Seriously people, anyone that is looking for wikileaks and accidentally goes to the .com page, is not saying “ooh, I should totally buy a domain name, since I’m here and all!”

    December 1st, 2010 at 5:32 pm

    Larry

    @Elliot – “I also think there’s not much else Godaddy can do since they don’t own the domain name. They can’t forward it to a patriotic website and they can’t kill the DNS or anything.”

    As the registrar of the domain name they can absolutely kill the dns
    (that would direct to a web page) and/or redirect the name to a blank page.

    There is a MX record set so there might be mail service possibly but there is no “web page” so there is no problem killing that.

    Almost certainly their TOS contains a clause that allows them to redirect to a site if the customer doesn’t set it (which they haven’t) so they actually would be free to redirect for that matter to a “patriotic” page.

    (This comment is being made by a registrar that would prefer to remain anonymous…)

    December 1st, 2010 at 5:32 pm

    wannadevelop.com

    This wikileaks crap is just wild :)

    43rd most visited site according to alexa because everywhere you look, people are talking about it.

    http://www.alexa.com/siteinfo/wikileaks.org

    I’d say at least a few million people are logging onto wikileaks.com each and every day for now at least.

    Not so good for the U.S… Very good for GoDaddy ;)

    December 1st, 2010 at 7:17 pm

    Adi

    @allison

    ahahaha!!!!!

    December 1st, 2010 at 11:51 pm

    Stan

    This is hardly about being patriotic Wiki leaks simple shows us the reality that most governments in the World can’t be trusted. Everyone seems intent on shooting the messenger the actual information leaked is all factual. Anyone with the ability to think for themselves can see the transparency of this supposed ‘rape charge’ as a witch hunt …the hazards of annoying enough powerful people off with the truth I guess.

    December 2nd, 2010 at 12:08 am

    Michael Hallisey

    The whole page is an advertisement and look at all the code that is generated after the wikileaks.com what kind of information do you think they are storing in there database?

    December 2nd, 2010 at 2:01 am

    Leo Sigh

    I’m loving the new WikiLeaks releases every day. Shows the US in its TRUE light.

    Can’t believe any “patriotic” American thinks murdering, assassinating, bombing, lying, cheating, bullying and thugery are traits to be proud of when it comes to the US government.

    WikiLeaks should win a Nobel Prize for this. Now the world can see what America is really like and it aint’ pretty.

    December 2nd, 2010 at 2:20 am

      Elliot

      @ Leo

      There is no other country in which I would rather live.

      December 2nd, 2010 at 8:31 am

    Adam

    Right Allison and I’m sure that nobody sitting and watching the Super Bowl and sees a Godaddy ad goes and buys domains either.

    Guess those ad impressions are worthless too.

    December 2nd, 2010 at 2:33 am

    Landon White

    Direct it to C-Span–

    Then you can watch Congress sleep on the Clock! :-)

    December 2nd, 2010 at 3:58 am

    bob

    People who thick wikileaks is doing a great job don’t know what they are talking about.Ask your self why didn’t he go and piss off his own country or countries like eg china.Because he knows he will be arrested or even kill without anyone noticing what he has done well he knows the only country you can attack and be famous and have some illitrates to support your couse is the US.Well,i will say the cia should do what they know how to do best.

    December 2nd, 2010 at 9:08 am

    AB

    Not to step on Elliot’s toes here, but a domain blog isn’t really an appropriate place to vent about politics.

    Disclaimer: I’m not even an American, just a loyal reader that would prefer not seeing this site overrun with off-topic posts

    Just my 2 cents

    December 2nd, 2010 at 9:12 am

    Elliot

    @ AB

    I agree with you. It seems whenever there’s any type of article with political ties, people come from out of the woodwork to post. I guess they think others will care, but it generally makes the issues even more polarizing to people who aren’t interested in public discussion.

    December 2nd, 2010 at 9:25 am

    TymB

    I thought the U.S. was the land of liberty and freedom?

    I don’t think the country’s founders meant “…except when it isn’t convenient or pleasant”.

    December 3rd, 2010 at 10:33 am

    Greg

    I read this blog regularly for domain news. I respect differences of opinion on politics. However, it is quite a stretch to say Wikileaks damaged the reputation of the United States. I think the United States manged that on its own. I also don’t understand the line of thinking that whistleblowers are somehow “criminals” but the actual criminals get a free pass. How twisted.

    There is NOTHING “patriotic” about being a blind statist and opponent of individual liberties.

    Should I look forward to future domain news tie-ins about how opponents of Dont Ask Dont Tell are un-patriotic or about how those who support police brutality are great patriots?

    There is also no country where I would rather live- BECAUSE the United States is supposed to be the type of place where state secrets and state violence are NOT celebrated.

    December 3rd, 2010 at 2:51 pm

      Elliot

      “Should I look forward to future domain news tie-ins about how opponents of Dont Ask Dont Tell are un-patriotic or about how those who support police brutality are great patriots?”

      @ Greg
      If I choose to write my opinion about that topic, sure, but I don’t foresee that being a topic of interest to me. This is a domain blog, and it’s my domain blog, so the things I write are my opinion and not necessarily fact. There are a plethora of other domain blogs out there, and if you don’t wish to read my opinion on certain topics, you can either read other blogs or start your own.

      December 3rd, 2010 at 2:56 pm

    Greg

    FWIW, The politics in the comments were only in response to the political posturing and judgments made in the actual post, which took a statist anti-liberty position and celebrated blind statism.

    December 3rd, 2010 at 2:53 pm

    LindaM

    The fact remains as I see it, if the US gov really wanted to get nasty they could simply declare the site illegal on various real or invented grounds, just pull the plug on the relevent entries in the 13 or whatever primary global dns zone file server thingy whatsanames, while at the same time fixing with verisign or whoeever runs .org to pull their plug there.

    If they did that though Im sure these highly enterprising people would simply fragment and set up further from US control which would be a less than optimal turn of events (for the US gov) and probably explains why it didnt happen straight off the bat.

    I’ll keep my personal opinion on the specific wikileaks case to myself for now, however I would like to add that if an entity, however much good stuff they do, does bad stuff and is then called on it, I have little sympathy in that entity claiming damages on its hurt reputation. If you dont like people saying you do bad stuff then dont do bad stuff.

    December 3rd, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    Adi

    At least they’re not lying…..all the info is true ;)

    December 3rd, 2010 at 4:43 pm

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