Monday, February 13, 2017

"A Surreal Trip to a Domain-Names Conference"

Atl:

Before NamesCon, I thought of myself as a pretty serious domain names enthusiast.

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good TLDs and good words together don’t always work (as was explained to the owner of furs.io and lotions.io in one session). Long-time domainers also had oddly specific advice—”Hyphens make your domain less valuable—unless you’re in Germany” and “.info is a dead zone.”

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While cranberry.com doesn’t appear to be a particularly compelling domain, Cyger argued that if you “just search [the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office] for cranberry,” it becomes apparent that a lot of companies have hinged their brand to that one word. (Searching USPTO’s patents database for assignees with “cranberry” in their name actually only offers up three companies, so maybe it wasn’t the best example, but conceptually I guess it makes sense). There’s a whole vocabulary for these domain investments—”generics” like the word cranberry.com, “brandables” which are basically ideas for products that don’t exist yet but might eventually, the ultra-rare “numerics” which mostly seem useful for Chinese markets because of the use of numbers in pinyin, a transliteration of Chinese words into the Latin alphabet.