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128 “binder” domains registered at GoDaddy.com after debate

October 17, 2012Domaining, Domainnamewire, GoDaddy, UncategorizedComments Off on 128 “binder” domains registered at GoDaddy.com after debate

Meme kicks of domain registration spree.

There’s nothing like a funny phrase in a debate to start a meme. And when there’s a meme, there are domains to be registered.

Earlier this year there was Clint Eastwood and his chair. That spurred dozens of domain registrations.

Last night there was Mitt Romney and his “binders full of women” comment at the debate.

A Super PAC was standing by for any possible meme moments in the debate and snapped up Bindersfullofwomen.com a couple minutes after the words were uttered.

They weren’t the only ones.

As of this afternoon people had registered 128 domains including the word “binder” at Go Daddy as the meme caught on.

The average number of domains registered at GoDaddy.com each day including the word “binder” is four.

I don’t know what’s more incredible: 128 binder domains since the debate, or that an average of four domains are registered with the word “binder” on a typical day.

Of course, it didn’t take long or some of these to hit eBay. BindersFullofWomen.XXX can be yours at a buy now price of $500.


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Top 5 domain name stories of September 2012

October 1, 2012Domaining, Domainnamewire, go daddy, GoDaddy, iphone 5, reverse domain name hijacking, UncategorizedComments Off on Top 5 domain name stories of September 2012

Patents, the Go Daddy outage, and the French.

Here are the top five stories from Domain Name Wire last month, ranked based on page views.

Go Daddy patents “announcing a domain name registration on a social website” – Go Daddy got a patent on a way to announce your latest domain name registration on a social networking web site, such as Twitter. (And this post got a lot of traffic from Hacker News.)

On day of iPhone 5 announcement, iPhone5.com sits dark – despite recovering the iPhone5.com domain name well in advance of the launch, the domain name didn’t resolve until late in the day that Apple announced the new product.

City of Paris ordered to pay $100k for reverse domain name hijacking – Ville de Paris was ordered to pay over $100,000 in a reverse domain name hijacking case. Paris has applied for the .paris top level domain name. I am curious to see if the plaintiff’s lawyers try to recover money related to the new top level domain application.

Is this the world’s worst web site name? – It’s pretty bad. And the owner could have bought a good domain for only $1,000 or so.

Like I was saying… Go Daddy wasn’t hacked or attacked – some guy claiming to by a member of Anonymous hacked the media with his claims of hacking Go Daddy.


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Class action lawsuit filed over Go Daddy downtime

September 20, 2012Domain Registrars, Domaining, Domainnamewire, go daddy class action, GoDaddy, godaddy class action, godaddy downComments Off on Class action lawsuit filed over Go Daddy downtime

Lawsuit claims seeks damages for downtime on September 10.

Well, that was quick.

The first federal lawsuit seeking class action status has been filed against GoDaddy for its downtime on September 10 (pdf). The outage affected GoDaddy.com and many people who used the company’s DNS and web hosting services.

The suit was filed by Eric Mitchell, who runs the web site StatedIncomeIsBack.com. He claims Go Daddy failed to “satisfy its guaranteed upload (sic) times for customers’ Domain Name Service (“DNS”), web sites and email accounts…”

Mitchell claims that Go Daddy violated its 99.9% uptime guarantee for hosting. The suit notes that Go Daddy’s services can only be down for 43.2 minutes in a thirty day period to meet the guarantee. He also cites the company’s 99.999% uptime guarantee for its Premium DNS Manager, a product that it’s not clear if he was using.

Of course, Go Daddy’s guarantees include language that defines what the customer is entitled to if the uptime guarantee is not met.

The legal agreement on GoDaddy.com refers to the 99.9% webhosting uptime guarantee and the remedy:

“you may contact Go Daddy and request a credit of 5% of your monthly hosting fee from Go Daddy for that month. The credit may be used only for the purchase of further products and services from Go Daddy, and is exclusive of any applicable taxes.”

For Premium DNS Manager, the guarantee states that customers will get a service credit for two months for any affected services. However, the terms note that you must open a ticket to request this credit.

Mitchell says that he was only offered a 30% discount off of new products or renewals. According to the suit, other people were offered account credits but they were not applied automatically. (My reading of Go Daddy’s policies is that credits will not be automatically applied and the customer has to request them.)

The plaintiff in this case has a penchant for filing lawsuits whenever a service provider drops the ball. He appears to be the same plaintiff in an action against RIM for a blackberry outage. It’s also the same law firm.


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Go Daddy Auctions sells 31,481 domains in August

September 4, 2012Domain Sales, Domaining, Domainnamewire, go daddy auctions, GoDaddyComments Off on Go Daddy Auctions sells 31,481 domains in August

TeachingJobs.com heads list of domain name sales.

The monthly Go Daddy Auctions Domain Market Report is out, and the headline number is 31,481 domain names sold during August.

That’s lower than July’s 33,373 domains.

The top sale for August was TeachingJobs.com at a strong $89,250. The domain name appears to have been previously developed or used as a lead gen site.

Here are the top ten reported sales for the month:

teachingjobs.com $89,250
curio.com $60,000
ced.com $60,000
ffun.com $25,000
eduhelper.com $21,288
myeyes.com $19,777
mrcglobal.com $15,000
southernrecycling.com $13,100
officerentals.com $12,500
livecasinotv.com $12,000

Go Daddy’s report tends to be adjusted after its initial release. July’s original report showed fewer domains sold than are now reported. The higher number is good news — as is the addition of a new top sale from July: TMG.com for $80,000.


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Whitserv says it’s coming after domain registrars for sending renewal notices

August 10, 2012Domaining, Domainnamewire, GoDaddy, Policy & Law, whitservComments Off on Whitserv says it’s coming after domain registrars for sending renewal notices

Company claims it has patents related to sending renewal notices.

Whitserv, a company suing Go Daddy for alleged patent infringement related to sending renewal reminder notices, says it has put other domain registrars “on notice” as well.

Last year Whitserv filed suit against Go Daddy for how it sends reminder notices to renew domain names.

The company apparently got a victory related to the same patents against another company, so it just sent out a press release:

[Whitserv founder] Mr. Whitmyer stated that the Federal Circuit’s confirmation of validity and claim construction for WhitServe’s Professional Service Reminder Patents strengthens WhitServe’s position in its
pending litigation against domain registrar GoDaddy.com, Inc. for infringement of these same
patents. In addition to GoDaddy, WhitServe has put many other domain registrars on notice of
their infringement, as well as companies in the field of electronic subscriptions (Amazon, Zinio
and others) and the field of medical appointment software (RelayHealth, AthenaHealth and
others).


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Go Daddy creates process to eliminate 60 day transfer lock

June 1, 2012Domain Registrars, Domaining, Domainnamewire, go daddy, GoDaddy, godaddy 60 day transfer lockComments Off on Go Daddy creates process to eliminate 60 day transfer lock

GoDaddy.com offers way to remove 60 day lock on domain transfers after certain registrant changes.

Update: Read more about Go Daddy’s new transfer lock policy here.

Ah, the dreaded 60 day lock.

Go Daddy has taken quite a bit of flack over the years for rejecting transfers to other registrars if you changed certain registrant information within the previous 60 days.

But under a new policy, customers will have a formal way to request the sixty day hold be removed. Go Daddy will review the account for certain suspicious activity before removing the hold. If it removes the hold, Go Daddy will first change the registrant name back to what it was before the change was made that resulted in the 60 day lock.

“We understand our 60 day lock has been controversial,” said James Bladel, Director, Policy Planning for Go Daddy. “What is boils down to is, while it’s a very good tool for intercepting and preventing hijacking…we recognize that our efforts to address that problem shouldn’t be a hindrance to legitimate users of domain names that want transfers to be a little more simple.”

A new inter-registrar transfer policy goes into effect for all domain registrars today. It requires registrars to make an emergency contact available in the event of urgent transfer issues. Bladel said this should make it easier for registrars to work on reversing domain hijackings. Previously, half the battle was getting the other registrar on the phone, Bladel said.


© DomainNameWire.com 2011.

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  1. More details about changes to Go Daddy’s 60 day lock
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Go Daddy applies for .home and .casa top level domains

May 30, 2012.casa, .home, Domain Registrars, Domaining, Domainnamewire, GoDaddyComments Off on Go Daddy applies for .home and .casa top level domains

Go Daddy applies for .home, .casa, and .godaddy top level domains.

Domain name registrar Go Daddy has applied for the .home and .casa top level domains, CEO Warren Adelman disclosed to Domain Name Wire. These two domains are in addition to .GoDaddy.

Adelman said the domains were chosen in part because they have multiple meanings with big market opportunities: they can be used in both a real estate context and personal context.

From a real estate perspective, Go Daddy has seen strong demand and an increasing importance of domain names in the real estate business, Adelman said.

The company hasn’t yet decided how it will go to market with the top level domains. It may choose to use partners for some markets and go direct for other markets. Although he did not specify, it’s easy to see how the company could work with real estate channels to market the .home/.casa domains or integrate the offering into a real estate agent product. GoDaddy.com is the perfect vehicle to market .home and .casa from a perspective of creating a home on the web.

Adelman is realistic about the challenges facing new top level domains. Go Daddy has experience working with a number of registries to market domains and has first hand experience with .me.

“Dot.com has been getting the lion’s share of branding since the dawn of the internet,” he said. “Any kind of new branding is heavy lifting.”

Go Daddy’s applications for just two non .brand domains caught some people — including me — by surprise. Demand Media, a competitor, has announced grand plans and is expected to apply for dozens of top level domains.

“We were very thoughtful over a period of years about what we wanted to do,” said Adelman. “At the end of the day we’re in the business of bringing services to end customers that meet their needs. We’re in a position to do that for TLDs we bring to market and other registries are bringing to market. Perhaps from our vantage point we looked at it differently.”

Adelman would not disclose who is providing back-end registry services for the domains. Go Daddy has the capabilities to do it in house, but with just three domains it’s possible they have selected a registry partner.


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Mayor arrested after illegally accessing GoDaddy account and cancelling domain

May 24, 2012Domaining, Domainnamewire, felix roque, GoDaddy, hacking, Policy & LawComments Off on Mayor arrested after illegally accessing GoDaddy account and cancelling domain

Mayor and his son accused of hacking into email and then illegally accessing GoDaddy account to cancel domain name registration.

West New York mayor Felix Roque and his son were arrested after allegedly working together to hack into an email account to gain access to a GoDaddy account and take down a domain name related to a recall effort against the mayor.

The complaint alleges that Roque’s son, Joseph Roque, was first able to compromise the email address for the owner of RecallRoque.com. Once he had access to the email he then was able to reset the password on the GoDaddy account that held the domain name. He subsequently logged in to cancel the registration, taking the recall web site down.

The complaint also alleges that the pair accessed communications from the registrant’s email account to harass people who were contributing information to Roque’s recall campaign.

It’s a rather fascinating read about how someone used the internet to figure out how to hack into an email account, and subsequently access a registrar account.

Forget worrying about losing your job as mayor. How does ending up in the slammer sound?

[note: the title of this post was updated to avoid confusion. The mayor's son compromised an email account which was then used to do a password reset at GoDaddy.]


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Why I switched to GoDaddy hosting

May 22, 2012Domain Services, Domaining, Domainnamewire, GoDaddy, web hostingComments Off on Why I switched to GoDaddy hosting

Domain Name Wire is now hosted by GoDaddy.com

A couple weeks ago I changed web hosts to GoDaddy.com. Several people have asked why I decided to change hosts in the first place and why I chose GoDaddy.

Why I changed hosts

When I started Domain Name Wire I hosted it with the same host I’d been using for my other sites for 5 years. I’m not going to mention the host by name because they’ve really been pretty good to me for the better part of a decade. It’s a small company and I still host a number of sites with them.

For the most part my host grew with the site. When traffic levels increased I moved to a dedicated server. And it worked, most of the time.

But that changed over the past year. More and more often, whenever I’d get a spike in traffic my site would slow to a crawl or stop altogether. It’s painful to miss out on traffic like that.

Worse, the company didn’t offer any phone support. Its chat support was limited as well and only offered for part of the day. That’s to be expected with an inexpensive host, but remember that I was on a dedicated server.

I put off moving Domain Name Wire over the years because I knew it would be a pain. But after my most recent site outage I knew it was time to make a move.

My criteria

1. 24/7 phone support

2. Redundancy/cloud solution in case one server had a problem

3. Systems that will help load DNW quickly

3. Cost was not a concern – I’m willing to pay what it takes for peace of mind.

Decision

I was originally leaning toward WPEngine. It’s based here in Austin and has financial backing from the creators of WordPress. All they do is host WordPress sites. The monthly fee for my site would be $99, which isn’t bad. They also have a number of built in mechanisms for speeding up WordPress sites. One thing that’s missing is 24/7 phone support.

GoDaddy wasn’t on my original list. But the more I thought about it the more it made sense. They’re big and have a good infrastructure. They call their shared plans 4GH, which basically means your site is replicated across multiple servers in case one goes down. (The idea of hosting a site like this on a dedicated server doesn’t make sense any more.) They have 24/7 support. I also have a dedicated account manager for my domains. So if something goes wrong, I know I can reach someone who will help.

Honestly, the only reason I found to not go with GoDaddy was price. It’s too low. I generally wouldn’t feel comfortable trusting my site to a $10/month hosting plan.

Making the switch

I’m going to be honest: switching hosts is a big pain. There are some solutions out there that apparently make porting WordPress easier. But we’re talking about over 5,000 posts, 3,500 files (images, pdfs, etc), and lots of database tables. It’s not something to do except out of necessity.

I use WordPress’s own solution for backups, VaultPress, which made it a little be easier. Unfortunately VaultPress does not yet help you port from one host to another (they say they’re working on it), but I was able to transfer the site using a VaultPress backup.

Then there’s the nameserver switch and the time it takes that to resolve across the internet. That resulted in about 24 hours of “dead” time in which the site loaded fine but I didn’t want to post.

Results

I’m not going to pass judgment on GoDaddy hosting after just a couple weeks. But so far, so good. The site loads faster than on my previous host, and that’s without making any changes. And I know that if I do need support, it will be easy to contact someone at the company.


© DomainNameWire.com 2011.

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DailyChanges.com data is widely misunderstood

December 26, 2011Domain Registrars, Domaining, Domainnamewire, GoDaddyComments Off on DailyChanges.com data is widely misunderstood

Don’t look to DailyChanges.com to see how many domains GoDaddy has lost.

Ever since GoDaddy faced a boycott of its services over its (since changed) position on SOPA, people have been trying to quantify domain losses for the company.

A typical data source is DailyChanges.com, which monitors changes to nameservers.

This is a bad source in this case for two reasons:

1. Domain names typically take 5 or more days to transfer, so the full effect won’t be evident for five plus days after someone decides to transfer their names.

2. DailyChanges tracks nameserver changes, not domain transfers.

I’m not writing this to blast the people who have used DailyChanges as a proxy. After all, I kept an eye on it during the elephant boycott and called it a “proxy” for domain transfers.

But looking at the data this time I think it’s actually a poor proxy.

The number people will quote is the number of domains transferred off of GoDaddy’s “domaincontrol.com” nameservers. For December 26, domaincontrol.com had 22,542 domains transferred out.

A closer look at this 22,542 number shows that it has little do do with people transferring their domains from GoDaddy to a competitor. I took at a look at the first 3,878 domains in the alphabet transferred away from domaincontrol.com on December 26, and found that a whopping 2,454 were transferred to internettraffic.com. This is the nameserver for Frank Schilling’s parking service. In other words, these domains weren’t transferred away from GoDaddy. They were merely moved to a parking service.

I have no idea if this is an anomaly, but I think it proves a point: DailyChanges.com is actually a poor proxy for GoDaddy’s domain transfers.


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