Dodgy Domains

A customer of mine and I have been waging a 2 month long battle against a domain registrant over a domain name he has owned for several years.

Through one reason or another, the domain expired and he didn’t notice until after the grace period. I rang up and the nice lady said that the domain was about to be auctioned and to email a particular email address and ask if we could have an exemption due to the mistake and the length of time he had owned the domain.

No reply. After about 12 emails from me, 12 from him and numerous phone calls from both of us, we still could not get through to anyone who was responsible for the domain.

Now, I assume coinciding with another grace period expiring, he has received a very polite email from “Brian”, and I quote:

“Our client owns this and current asking price is $22,788.

Please let me know if you’re interested in making a purchase.

Kind regards,

Brian”

I have a sneaky suspicion that they refused to talk to us until this time because they knew once it had passed they could resell him his domain name for this much money. (They actually can’t is only reaction was to laugh).

Is that unusual/wrong/dodgy or just one of those lessons you have to learn about domains?

3 thoughts on “Dodgy Domains”

  1. As someone who has tried to pick up an expiring domain[1], I have to say that the old owner is given every opportunity to come to their senses and renew in time.

    [1] I’m one of the core developers of compilers for the Dylan programming language. The dylan.org domain expired last year. It was owned by someone who’s hamster is called Dylan and the site hadn’t been updated since 2002. They’ve been kind enough to have a link on their site to us for many years now, but if the name was going to expire then I wanted it.

  2. yeah, I know people are given ample time and this should have been sorted… But it wasn’t.

    It was more the time after he noticed, through to now where emails were ignored that concerned me. My understanding was that for another period of time, the domain would be auctioned, and we wanted in on the auction.

    Anyway, learning curve etc. Just wondered

  3. The people that grab expired domains are pure freaking evil is all I have to say on the subject. You do *not* want to be in the business of trying to get back an expired domain. If you are in the grace period after your domain has expired but before you can sell it you need to get the domain back from the regsitrar as fast as you possibly can – usually by paying an extra large fee – but still something in the hundreds of dollars range.

    My domain utunga dot com expired acidentally yonks ago and someone is domain squatting it but – and here’s the thing that really gets my goat – the domain squatters have no interest in selling it or even making it look like they are selling it to the nearest buyer. They must get very minimal revenue for my domain through their google ads (since there was never any traffic to that name anyway – i mean who would go there?) but since they run a fully automated business (it seems) they just have no interest in trying to engage with epople that might want the domain name back.

    The dodgyness and evilness of some ISP’s and registrar’s involved in many aspects of domain napping and other dodgy practices makes my stomach churn. Pick your domain registrar carefully. Register.COM are evil. I have found that gandi.net behave with honor.

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