Archive for July 2015

Google Making Changes To Google +

TUESDAY,28 JULY 2015 The Domains
According to the news from Domain.cn on July 28th,in a blog post today Google announced some changes upcoming to Google + and how users can use just a Google account to create accounts and share info. There have been complaints over the last couple of years that you needed a Google + profile to act as your identity. Your Google + profile for example if public, is searchable. Not everyone likes that aspect of Google + and now it looks like just a regular Google account which is non-searchable will be all that is needed.

From the blog post:

Using Google without a Google+ profile
People have told us that accessing all of their Google stuff with one account makes life a whole lot easier. But we’ve also heard that it doesn’t make sense for your Google+ profile to be your identity in all the other Google products you use.

So in the coming months, a Google Account will be all you’ll need to share content, communicate with contacts, create a YouTube channel and more, all across Google. YouTube will be one of the first products to make this change, and you can learn more on their blog. As always, your underlying Google Account won’t be searchable or followable, unlike public Google+ profiles. And for people who already created Google+ profiles but don’t plan to use Google+ itself, we’ll offer better options for managing and removing those public profiles.

You’ll see these changes roll out in stages over several months. While they won’t happen overnight, they’re right for Google’s users—both the people who are on Google+ every single day, and the people who aren’t.

Donuts Becomes 1st new gTLD Registry to Join The Internet Commerce Association (ICA)

TUESDAY,28 JULY 2015 The Domains
According to the news from Domain.cn on July 28th,Donuts has become the 1st new gTLD registry to join the Internet Commerce Association (ICA) as a Silver member.

The ICA is a non-profit advocating for the rights and interests of domain name owners and related service providers.

Although Donuts is also a member of the DNA (As is a company I’m a Director of,  RightoftheDot.com) the DNA and the ICA have different mission statements.

The ICA is the only organization which is “concentrated on protecting the rights of domain name registrants” while the DNA is more of a trade group promoting the usage and promotion of the new gTLD’s.

In a Statement Nat Cohen of the ICA told TheDomains.com:

“We are Pleased to welcome Donuts, the biggest player in the new gTLD space, as a member of the ICA”

“The ICA continues to grow and evolve along with the dynamic industry it represents. Donuts will bring a fresh perspective in support of ICA’s advocacy on behalf of the entire domain industry”.

Jon Nevett of Donuts issued a statement to thedomains.com about joining the ICA:

“”Donuts is proud to be joining the ICA to  support the beneficial work it does representing domain holders. It is important to us to engage with our various customer segments and their respective trade associations.

I think its a big step for the ICA and all domain holders not just in financial backing but in having the largest new gTLD registry as its newest member.”

In full disclosure my company Worldwide Media, Inc is also a Silver member of the ICA and we welcome Donuts aboard.

You can see on the screenshot the other major contributors to the ICA whose mission is to protect all domain holders rights and interests.

Did OnlineEducation.com Sell for $3.3 million ?

TUESDAY,28 JULY 2015 The Domains
According to the news from Domain Forum of China on July 28th,I want to point out the tip for this article came courtesy of JS Lascary, he noticed some info related to QuinStreet a publicly traded company (QNST (NASDAQ) $6.03 -0.15 (-2.43%) that is an online performance marketing company providing technologies for businesses to identify their targeted audiences.

They have purchased a number of high profile domains over the years, back in 2010 they paid $35.6 million for insurance.com, JS noticed they mentioned in a recent filing:

This additional income of $3.2 million, or 112%, was due to the sale of non-strategic domain names for a gain of $3.3 million and lower interest expense due to decreased debt obligations, partially offset by the accelerated amortization of $0.3 million of unamortized deferred upfront costs incurred in connection with the Second Amendment to Credit Agreement.

source : http://investor.quinstreet.com/secfi…3125-15-177129

Now looking at domain history on DomainTools.com shows that in March of 2015 the whois changed from Quin Street to

Registrant Name: A Tooley Registrant Organization: Online Education Research, LLC Registrant Street: 4512 Martin Street Registrant City: Union City Registrant State/Province: California.

Now did the OnlineEducation.com account for the whole $3.3 million ? We don’t know as they did say domain names but it would make sense that this was the lion’s share.

We will update with any further info.

.CO Turns Five: With 1.8M Domains: 120 .CO Startups Raised $460M In Funding in 2015

TUESDAY,28 JULY 2015 The Domains
According to the news from Domain.cn  on July 28th,Neustar, Inc. (NYSE: NSR), sent out a press release today in celebration of the fifth birthday of the .CO web extension and there are released some pretty interesting stats:

• Over 1.8 Million .CO domains under currently under management

• 120 companies using the .Co domain name extension raised $460 million in funding in 2015 (1st half of year)

• Over 55% of .CO registrants are from the United States

• New York City is the top U.S. city with the most .CO domains registered

• Twitter® (T.co), AngelList® (Angel.co) and 500 Startups® (500.co), as well as by innovative Fortune 500 companies, such as Google® (g.co) and American Express® (amex.co) are all using a .Co domain and startups like
Meerkat, Brit + Co, Hinge, Vine, VSCO and NewCo

.Co is the ccTLD for the country of Colombia and at 1.8 million registrations beats the number of .US registrations by 100,000.

According to RegistrarStats.com .US has just over 1.7 million domain names registered.

.US if of course the ccTLD for the United States.

However .CO rebranded itself to represent a generic extension and concentrated its efforts on the startup community like some other ccTLD’s; .TV, .Me. .IO

Neustar bought the .Co domain name extension for $109 million dollars in March 2014.

Here are a couple of Infographics published to celebrate the 5th birthday of .Co.

Congrats guys and Happy Birthday

DomainX Conference Crosses 700 Attendee Mark: Announces Awards & Additional Speakers

THURSDAY,23 JULY 2015 The Domains
According to the news from Domain.cn on July 23th,The organizers of the DomainX 2015 domain conference will be held August 7-8 at the Taj West End in Bangalore, India told Thedomains.com that they have over 700 attendees signed up and expect close to 1,000 attendees.

DomainX is seeking nominations for the recognition of budding Indian Domain Name investor who will be awarded and recognized as the DomainX™ Rising Star 2015 for the Domain Name Magazine 2015 .

The nominations for both awards are now open and can be submitted here: Domainxevents.com/conference/#awards

DomainX has also updated our speaker list and received final confirmations from over 15+ speakers with Ron Jackson, Brandon Abbey, Ned Omeara etc to name few. The Current list can be found here:

Escrow.com & INForum are supporting the DomainX 2015 as Platinum sponsors this year with Tucows, Uniregistry, .Desi Registry, Domaining.com, Airfare.in, also supporting at the lower sponsorship levels. Godaddy & Verisign will also be Event Sponsors pending final approvals.

It sounds like a great conference and is looking to be the second largest domain conference of the year.

DomainX “aims to bring investors, hosting providers, startups & entrepreneurs to discuss industry, and be the largest domain name event in India”.

The conference will feature a dozen domain name related sessions.

For more information check out Domainxevents.com/conference/

Neuron SA of Paris Guilty Of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking On 19 Yr Old Neurones.com

THURSDAY,23 JULY 2015 The Domains
According to the news from Domain.cn on July 23th,Luc Chammard of Nanterre, France, and the company Neuron SA of Paris, France, represented by Mr. Cohen, Lawyer, France was just found guilty of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking (RDNH) on the domain name Neurones.com in a decision handed down by a three member WIPO UDRP panel

The domain holder was represented by UDRP POLICE DBS, United Kingdom

The three member panel consisted of Philippe Gilliéron, Richard G. Lyons and Christiane Feral-Schuhl.

It should be noted that the decision was published in French and I used Google translate:

The Complainant has a registered trademark on the term NEURONES since July 11, 2008 the domain name neurones.com was registered on December 25th 1996. The domain holder registered the domain in connection with a business he operated for many years so the panel found not only was the domain not registered in bad faith but it was registered and used in good faith.

The panel also called out the Complainants for waiting 8 years after the domain was registered to even contact the domain owner:

“”Finally, the Panel notes that the disputed domain name was registered in 1996 and that, subject to a first contact initiated eight years later by the Applicants in 2004, no contact has occurred between the parties.

In this case, there is nothing to explain why the Applicants waited in first eight years before entering a first contact with the Respondent to obtain the transfer of the disputed domain name their favor and, even more, nine years before resuming again contact while having so some knowledge of the disputed domain name, fifteen years after its registration. During this period, the Respondent appears to have a legitimate use of the disputed domain name in connection with its Neural Technologies.””

Here are the highlights:

The Complainant owns the domain names neurones.fr and neurones.net which were registered on December 4th, 1996 and July 26th, 1999 respectively.

The group which it belongs had at 31 December 2014, 4,100 employees for a turnover of around EUR 355 million.

The Respondent is a graduate engineer of the Ecole Centrale in Paris, where he studied from 1987 to 1990.

The Respondent is one of the founding members of the company Neural Technologies, based in Rabat, Morocco.

This company was incorporated as a limited liability company and registered in the commercial register of Casablanca, Morocco 22 January 1992; it has especially designed the provision of electrical and computer facilities.

This company holds the Moroccan word mark NEURON TECHNOLOGIES, recorded with a priority date back to 18 September 1998 in Class 9 of the Nice Classification.

Two years later, on December 11, 1995, the Respondent founded the company Elan Online, based in Casablanca in Morocco and entered in the commercial register of this city in the form of a limited liability company, of which he is the one of the two managers.

The Respondent registered the disputed domain name  December 25th, 1996.

Both the company that the company Neural Technologies Elan Online continuing their activities to date. T

he Respondent states that the company Neural Technologies partners include companies such as HP, Cisco and provides its services to include offices of public administration including several ministries, various public institutions whether university hospitals, universities or even Casablanca or Agadir airports, banks whose business or Agricole Credit as Microsoft, Oracle, Dell, Novartis, Pfizer and Roche to name a few. This is especially under the disputed domain name  Neural Technologies as the company has operated until 2009.

In July 2009, the Respondent sold his shares in the company Neural Technologies while maintaining the disputed domain name  which it is the owner, he was later sent to the unit Gandi SAS recording while continuing to meet expenses relating thereto, before being transferred recently to the registrar GoDaddy.com, LLC. More no active site is linked to the disputed domain name since.

In 2004, the Applicants have first contacted the Respondent to propose to exchange the domain name  Neurons whose company holds with the disputed domain name .

The Respondent refused the offer.

Nine years later, by letters of 1 and 7 March 2013, the Applicants have addressed the Respondent through their counsel a letter of formal notice sent by registered mail with return receipt, drawing attention to the existence of NEURONES mark, that the disputed domain name neurones.com manifestly of no interest to the Respondent, and violated the rights of the Petitioners. They invited the Respondent therefore said to transfer their domain name within eight days.

The letters, however, are income back without reaching the recipient.

In this case, it is established that the Respondent has used the disputed domain name  in connection with the activities of the company Neural Technologies until 2009, when he sold his shares in this company . There can therefore be at least no doubt that, to date, the Respondent had a right if not at least a legitimate interest in conducting business under the disputed domain name and that it was known by that name. Contacted by the Applicants for the transfer of the disputed domain name in 2004, the Respondent is the remains opposed to it.

The question of how far the Respondent continues to have a legitimate interest in preserving the disputed domain name since then despite its lack of connection to any website whatsoever since 2009 can be left undecided, the Applicants have not all if not shown that the disputed domain name neurones.com was registered in bad faith as demonstrated below.

Far from having occurred in bad faith, the Respondent has demonstrated to have used the disputed domain name  in good faith in connection with the activities developed by the company Neural Technologies until 2009.

His subsequent detention without relating the disputed domain name to an active website is not enough in itself to build detention in a bad faith use.

Finally the Administrative Commission notes that the site results in a PPC parked page with links to Web sites not targeted in any case the Applicants and their activities.

Finally, the Panel notes that the disputed domain name was registered in 1996 and that, subject to a first contact initiated eight years later by the Applicants in 2004, no contact has occurred between the parties.

In this case, there is nothing to explain why the Applicants waited in first eight years before entering a first contact with the Respondent to obtain the transfer of the disputed domain name their favor and, even more, nine years before resuming again contact while having so some knowledge of the disputed domain name, fifteen years after its registration. During this period, the Respondent appears to have a legitimate use of the disputed domain name in connection with its Neural Technologies.

The Panel considers that given the specific circumstances of this case, the complaint was filed in bad faith.

Petitioners in their complaint forward any argument or evidence to show that the disputed domain name was registered or used in bad faith would and simply paraphrase two sentences, paragraphs 4 (a) (ii) and (iii) of the Policy without any factual circumstances to substantiate their allegations.

This element is the fact that the Petitioners did not explain why they waited nine years after their first contact with the Respondent, respectively fifteen years after the registration of the disputed domain name to file their complaint . Taken together, these factors underscore the lightness with which the Applicants have filed such a complaint and thus their bad faith in the filing of such a complaint knowing that they were unable to establish the achievement of conditions set by the Guidelines (see paragraph 4.17, 2.0 Synthesis).

In view of the above, the Panel considers that the complaint was brought in bad faith within the meaning of paragraph 15 (e) of the Rules

Nat Cohen’s Telepathy Settles Federal Lawsuit On SDT.com Getting a $50K Settlement

THURSDAY,23 JULY 2015 The Domains
According to the news from Domain.cn on July 23th,Back in November we told you that Nat Cohen’s Telepathy filed a Federal Lawsuit over the domain name SDT.com which he owned after a UDRP was filed.

Nat has informed us that the case has now been settled and SDT paid $50,000 to settle it.

After a UDRP was filed on SDT.com, Telepathy filed a federal lawsuit in federal court requesting statutory damages for Reverse Domain Name Hijacking, a statement that its ownership of SDT.com was lawful, and attorney’s fees.

SDT was advised by represented by Novagraaf.

Novagraaf had previously been censured twice by UDRP panels for bringing frivolous complaints.

SDT filed the UDRP complaint after failed purchase negotiations, and after it represented that it had no legal rights to the SDT.com domain name.

Telepathy was represented by David Weslow of Wiley Rein.

This is excellent news for all domain owners especially those with generic domains that get hit with frivolous UDRP’s and spending money to defend them

SnapNames Catches The Dropping Domain 358.com & Bidding Is At $80,000

THURSDAY,23 JULY 2015 The Domains
According to the news from Domain.cn on July 23th,the domain name 358.com dropped today and Snapnames.com won the lottery grabbing the domain where its currently in closed auction with 221 bidders.

The high bid as of time of publication is $80,000 and the auction has almost 3 days left.

I’m not sure the last time I saw a pure dropping three numbered domain (NNN.com) but its pretty rare and there is no vertical in the domain space hotter right now than three number domains (well two letter domains).

We are going to open up the poll to see what you think the domain will sell for.

As usual for bragging rights you can also place you exact number in the comments below

The SnapNames.com auction for 358.com closes on Saturday at 3:15 PM EST

The domain was registered at Enom so I’m not sure how the domain did not  go to Namejet.com for auction but it seems to have a been a free drop domain meaning available to first come, first served

The last listed owner was GUI WANG CHEN of Beijing.

UDRP Panel Returns Stolen Domain EHT.com To Owner: Privacy Creates Presumption Of Bad Faith

THURSDAY,23 JULY 2015 The Domains
According to the news from Domain.cn on July 23th,John Dilks represented by John Berryhill, just won control of the domain name EHT.com in a UDRP, which was stolen from Mr. Dilks account at Tucows.

The UDRP panel of Houston Putnam Lowry, ordered the domain returned to the owner finding that “A domain holder cannot have legitimate interests in a domain name acquired by theft.”

However the panel gives some disturbing language for those that use privacy on their domain name registrations and I’m not sure where the panelist gets the authority for his opinion regarding privacy:

“”Respondent registered the domain name using a privacy service. In the commercial context, this raises a rebuttable presumption of bad faith registration and use.””

“For this reason alone, the Panel will find bad faith registration and use.”

The domain name traveled around the world changing registrars several times all along keeping the owner nameserver active to avoid detection.

The panel went on to find that the:

Respondent has illegally hijacked the domain name and listed itself as the registrant, rather than Complainant.

Respondent continues to transfer the domain name to different registrars in an effort to conceal Respondent’s true identity and to prevent easy recovery of the domain name.

In an effort to conceal the hijacking, the disputed domain name has resolved to Complainant’s own website at all times.

Where the complainant was the former owner of the domain name, this raises a rebuttable presumption of bad faith registration and use even when the domain name still resolves to Complainant’s web site.

Respondent registered the domain name using a privacy service.

In the commercial context, this raises a rebuttable presumption of bad faith registration and use.

Respondent has done nothing to rebut this presumption.

For this reason alone, the Panel will find bad faith registration and use.

Frankly, this Panel has never seen this set of facts before.

Respondent’s hijacking of a domain name in this manner should constitute per se bad faith registration and use of the domain name, even if the nameservers remain the same.

The Panel cannot conceive how such actions would ever constitute anything but bad faith.

Domain name owners should be vigilant to avoid such hijackings in the future.””

Google May Offer Custom Gmail Addresses for as low as $2 A Month

WEDNESDAY,22 JULY 2015 The Domains
According to the news from Domain.cn on July 22th,Kishalaya Kundu wrote on AndroidHeadlines.com that Google may start offering custom Gmail addresses for as low as $2 a month. Kundu referenced a report from GSM Arena who actually got screenshots before Google removed the information.
From the article:
Google is seemingly prepping to offer custom email addresses to Gmail users for as low as $2 per month, if a new report on GSMArena is to be believed. The website claims that Google is going to offer a whole new plan for $2 alongside its existing plans for business users, which cost either $5 or $10 per month for each user depending on the options chosen. Google however seems to have removed any mention of its rumored upcoming offering from its site soon after the news of the plan’s impending rollout started getting reported in the media. As for the rumored new plan, it will reportedly allow existing Gmail users to switch over to a custom ID (say, from yourname(at)gmail.com to yourname(at)yourdomainname.com).