Published: April 17, 2015
If you haven’t heard, top level domains (such as .com, .net, .org) are in the process of dramatically expanding. Using name.com here’s a just a few choices that are available now – .wedding, .fashion, .rocks, .social, .how – all at varying prices.
Of course when things like this are created, inevitably there’s going to be a few trolls. That’s exactly what Vox Populi Registry which lists its address as the ‘Cayman Islands’ is doing. To be more specific, it’s Rob Hall, CEO of the Ottawa, Canada company ‘Momentous’ is doing.
Rob Hall and Momentous also own and operate the following companies, most which are related to domain names or technology –
- MAD Inc.
While they also own .design, .rip and .style, their proposed control of .sucks is the most troubling. As is typical with top level domain names (TLDs), many brands, out of fear will buy their brand name such as www.microsoft.sucks or www.envano.sucks as a form of defense against others buying these names.
The problem I have with .sucks is the ridiculous prices Mr. Hall and his associates are charging. The ‘early bird’ price and yearly renewal costs $2,500 (Originally it was to cost $25,000 but was reduced after complaints). After the early bird period ends and it’s opened up to the public it goes down to $250 a year.
Since Mr. Hall apparently assumed that brands would end up buying these domains names just to stop other companies or angry consumers from buying them, there’s also a special ‘blocking’ product that allows companies to spend $200 a year to simply block their domain from others to buy and it won’t actually point anywhere.
Finally, there’s the even more shady version which is consumer owned domain names that are to only cost $10 a year. The catch is they must point to a consumer complaint forum controlled and hosted by Mr. Hall and Momentous. I’m sure there won’t be any further upsells there [sarcasm].
While part of me supports their ability to do what they want with their gTLD (since they allegedly paid almost $3,000,000 for it). Part of me wishes these new gTLDs were open to everyone to register at and for the same price. Most of the brand related gTLDs have no plan to release them to the public and simply bought them as a defensive move such as .BMW .SUZUKI .WILLIAMHILL .GOOGLE .IBM & .MARRIOTT.
That same defensive move has propagated down to the .sucks level with many companies and individuals shelling out the $2,500 a year to protect their brand name.
The problem is, buying www.microsoft.sucks isn’t going to be enough.
With a couple minutes of thought, I was able to conjure up several alternatives to www.microsoft.sucks such as –
Also, what happens when another gTLD such as .stinks, .iscrappy or .complaints pops up? Is every company going to buy their brand name all over again? You see there’s no end to the English language with negative words or for that matter every language since domain names are now international friendly.
See, this is how brands are getting ‘sucked’ in via fear and making Rob Hall ‘momentaneously’ rich. With his $3,000,000 price tag for .sucks, he’ll only need 1,200 early bird purchases for .sucks domains to recoup that money or 12,000 $250 level purchases.
So I urge everyone to not feed the trolls and skip purchasing your brandname.sucks.