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Land Grabs and Count Downs

Land Grabs and Count Downs

Facebook Countdown
Facebook Countdown

Ever feel like you are being manipulated into herd behavior?

Facebook is getting a lot of publicity right now about their vanity name deal. I am sure you have seen this already, if not check out this great post by the Facebook Queen, Mari Smith.

And then there is the domain name grab of top level domain extension liberalization which essentially means soon you might be seeing .coke, .apple, .microsoft and .garrett … well, maybe not the last one.

How do you spot a real gold rush? Which should we get up at early hours for and which should we let slide?

The sad truth is it is very difficult to tell when something will be a big hit ahead of time. I am fortunate in that I am such an early adopter that I have time to get things wrong, correct my mistake, and STILL be ahead of the major curve. I did this with the internet itself in the very early 90’s, and most recently with Twitter a couple of years back. How do I do this?

Grow a good network.

It’s not about size, although scale does help, but about connecting with people who truly have their ears to the ground, fingers on the pulse, and any other “well connected” cliche you can think of.

You need that early warning system. If more than a couple of your trusted friends and contacts are buzzing about something then take notice, even if it still seems absolutely daft and meaningless. The more scarcity is built in, the more you need to take note.

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Risk and reward are also important. How much will you risk for how much potential upside? It makes sense to grab your Facebook username, it makes sense to grab your .com and it is obvious now to most that you need your Twitter name. The risk is low (or zero) compared to the upside, which can be large.

With the tld domain liberalisation, I am on the fence right now. But I am listening to my trusted advisers.

What say you?

View Comments (5)
  • Don’t forget INTUITION, Chris. I’ve learned to listen to my inner voice, which I suspect has been honed and tuned by years of watching this turbulent marketplace grow and evolve. When my gut says ‘Watch this’, I’ve learned to listen to it.

    Like when it says ;-p

    All success

  • Yay, Chris!!! Many thanks for including my post and for your kind words. Tonight will be uber interesting for sure!! Lots of tweeting about Facebook Username… ;-)


  • I got my name as the username.

    You don’t need 1,000 Fans to get your own username.

    Your Facebook account must be registered before June 9 as the only criteria.


  • Hello,

    I’ve seen a few threads like this before, and will respond as I have in the past. While it is true that it is sometimes hard to obtain the 2nd level name you want in the best TLD for your purposes, I think this extension thing is getting out of hand. If you make the internet too complex to use because there are dozens of commonly used extensions in every country, then overall popularity of the net in the user community will decline, which will be bad for all concerned.

    I think a far sounder approach would be to have some extensions open for parking and reselling (such as is currently the case with .com), and others have busniness use and/or nexus requirements (to prevent so much speculation that nobody can obtain good domains without paying too high a price; example: .biz). We actually have this dual approach now, but I can’t honestly say that it is working very well. Although it may sound odd to hear this from a domain reseller, my opinion is that we probably need further restrictions to make good domains affordably available to those that are really going to use them. Extensions without business use requirements could possibly have limits on how many domains any one individual or domain reselling company can own at one time. This would strike a compromise between free enterprise and fairness to ultimate site owners.

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