Domain Renewal Group – BOGUS MARKETING ALERT!

The “Domain Renewal Group” with an address listed in Buffalo appears to be like other shady firms preying on unsuspecting domain name holders.    They have sent me a “Domain Name Expiration Notice” with a “Reply Requested by July 27” for  1)  A domain they have nothing to do with and 2) a domain name that does not expire until November.

This common tactic preys on the fact that people either routinely pay bills or don’t understand the system well enough to know that most renewals are handled online anyway.    These letters make it appear as if you need to work with them to renew when in fact they will *move* your domain from current registrar and will generally charge much more per year for the fees.

In the case of the Domain Renewal Group they charge a whopping $30 per year so I’d be looking at an increase in my domain fees of some 400%

General rule for domain name holders:   Use great caution with any renewal notices, but also MAKE SURE your names will be automatically renewed with your current registrar if you forget, change email, or miss the notices which are generally NOT sent via real mail.     In typical internet irony the real paper mail domain notices are generally scams where the half-assed email renewal note may be legitimate.

Many registrars including the one I use (Godaddy) make it too easy to lose domain names if you don’t pay for them by expiration, often whisking them away into auction after only a few weeks.  For this reason “auto renewal” is generally a very good idea.

Note:  If you work for DOMAIN RENEWAL GROUP feel free to contact me – I’ll print your response to this.

Domain name auction at SES San Jose

I’ve heard of these auctions but never attended on before. The idea is to have a live event that is also online, so anybody who has registered can participate from anywhere.

I’ve got hundreds of names aquired over the years so it’ll be interesting to see how much these names fetch here at auction.

Monte, Moniker’s top guy, is introducing the event now.

Hey, I just won a $200 credit for having signed up online. (didn’t use it – few name I’d want in this batch) and just sold for 200 each… $300

Wow, just fetched 30,000 from room bidding.

They closed , not going to allow bigs under 50k . closed at 100k! Seems very, very high to me. Wow, this just went for $350,000 after an online bid for 300k.

Update – this did NOT sell and I’m not understanding what happened. The process is frantic and I think designed more to get people in the frenzy of bidding than anything.

I’m wondering how you regulate the ease with which you could boost prices with fake bids (I do NOT think they are doing that since the credibility hit would ruin them forever, but it’s odd seeing bids come in from the internet, invisible).

OK, so the auction went way over time, then to add an insult to the deal when I got to the Vivid party thrown by Moniker and Webmaster Radio at 9pm the place was way too loud to talk, the “open bar” was not open, the plentiful food was not there, and there was some VIP thing going for … the special people?

Not impressed at all.

.travel domains – beware your expirations!

Attention .Travel domain owners!   

If you own a .travel domain you’ll want to make sure you renew it.   Many are coming up for renewal about now due to the auction format that was used to distribute the .travels two years ago.    

It’s still not clear to me if this format is worth the usurous $99 annual registration fee  (compared to about $8 per year for .com, .net, .org, .info, .biz).   However as things shake out one of the ways search engines may determine site legitimacy will be using new barriers to cheap spammy entries, and one of these could be specialized domain names for special niches.  

In any case, if you have a .travel I’d recommend you contact your registrar ASAP.   I use Stargate for my only .travel domain:   “”, and their system is making it very hard to renew the .travel even after emails and phone calls and account logins that show no activity pending.