The Rick Schwartz 20th Anniversary Post. Trust Numbers Not People.

December 26, 1995-December 26, 2015

Morning Folks!

It is early November as I start to write this blog post; my first in about one and a half years and since my retirement over a year ago, and what a year it has been. But this post was 20-years in the making and it may be years before my next. When I look back to that period, the "Dark ages" as I call them, never in my wildest dreams did I expect the success I have enjoyed and the great folks I have met along the way. Thousands of folks. Some that have been helped and influenced by my words and thoughts and I by theirs as well. Some that were provoked by those same thoughts but also might be motivated by them.

That is the most rewarding part of the journey. To make an impact in the life of a family is how I define success. The by-product of their success is good karma. And that goes a long way because I truly believe that whatever you give out in life comes back 10 fold or more. Good or bad. I just learned early on that it was much better to have the good come back; I avoid the bad. I shut out the negative and I annihilate the evil. That's how I think and that's how I roll. It pisses off the evil. The negative get angry. And I focus on the good because they are focused on doing it right. Like I have said for years, "There is the right way to do something and there is every other way". My search is to find right not be right.

We are not politicians that have to stand by every belief. Some think they need to speak for me by twisting my words to suit.  As a businessman I have to reassess things whenever there is new information. It can never be ignored. Good, bad or ugly, it must be factored in. And truthfully, many ignore the bad and ugly and oversell the good. They don't want to hear what they don't want to hear.  That is a recipe for disaster on any level. If you believe something and proof comes that you are wrong, you must pause. It may be time for an about face and a reality check. If not, that's the definition of being lost.

20-years ago TODAY I saw something so big and so life changing that I just wanted to share it with the world. It could easily pay off the liabilities and so much more. I look back to what things looked like then and where we are today and it is like being in outer space. We have come so far. But the Galaxy is massive and we have barely scratched the surface. But the 20-year plan is intact and you are witnessing the booster rocket this year. The rocket that takes us all into the next 20 years.

Think of a 20-year old young man or young lady and ask what will they accomplish in their next 20 years? The point is their best years and our best years are just starting not ending. Domains ARE the real estate of the future. It was true 20 years ago and it is FACT today. The only difference is no one understood or cared  about that FACT 20 years ago when it happened. They do now . China is just the first of many frenzy's coming as different groups and different businesses and industries realize the power a great domain has. The power comes from EXTRA sales and growth. Massive sales. Boundless and borderless. Treasures to be unlocked like gushing oil wells.

Is a domain a commodity? An investment? A safe haven? Real estate? Yes and much more. It is the most portable asset the world has ever known. But bigger than all that is that a great domain name is an equalizer. When you see the world through my eyes you will see what I see. That was why I spent so many years publicly writing about it and each with a time stamp and my real name or trademarked handle.

I saw something and related to something that most folks did not see or relate to and THIS was the basis for my entire outlook on the Internet. I realized from the get go that this was an opportunity my father did not have, my grandfather did not have my great grandfather did not have nor his father before him. This was life-changing and there was no mistaking it.

I just wondered day after day, month after month, year after year, how could so many miss something so big? How is it possible? Where were the CEO's and Sales Managers? My jaw would just drop thinking about it.

More than anything else I knew the Internet gave power to the powerless. The greatest equalizer ever invented and the price of admission was low and if you were poor, you could access for free via the library. That leveled the playing field for everyone. And the first words I ever wrote on the Internet were based on Martin Luther King's words. Because when we were behind a keyboard, no one could see us they could only judge a person by the content of our words and thoughts and over time on our deeds and our character. White, black, rich, poor, New York or Timbuktu. Clean or dirty. Dressed nice or not at all. A new swiss army knife that would change lives in a way that few have still quite understood. But how long would it take for those very people to realize what was in front of them? 1 month? 6 months? A year? 3 years? Brick and mortar stores did not embrace the Internet. They saw it as a threat not an opportunity. It was attacked a s a "Fad" back then.

3 years had always been my horizon for watching a business mature and run smoothly and profitable. No, that would just not be enough time for this one. Very few businesses were online and not all even used email at that point in life and the 35-50 year old still were computerless because they were working too hard to have time to get that far. But their kids had computers and their own parents had computers. When do the people in the middle come? 10 years? Well I figured it would have to be an entire generation, 20 years! Yup. That would be about right. But 20 years was the START of the race not the end of the race. 20 years just to get to a place that I could begin to demonstrate what I had seen and why it was so strong and therefore the reason I would never waiver. 20 years before I actually started to earn money. The question for me was how do I pay for domains at $100 each knowing it might be 20 years? So when they paid for themselves and more, I had to adjust my game accordingly and there was not a moment to lose. I think that was when I stated to get time wasters out of my life. I had no time for nonsense. I had an empire to build.

I KNEW my theory was right because I saw something real, tangible and marvelous. Grandparents and grandchildren now had a daily way to communicate in a new medium. It was less intrusive because email allowed you time to respond on your own terms and maybe with a little more thought. Well when I saw this, I knew we were not looking at a fad. I knew at that moment that how we interact was about to change and relationships would change and it was a great thing that would happen. 1n 1995 the masses were not yet online. And while folks will laugh at things like Prodigy and AOL, those were the "training wheels" that many of us non techies needed. I remember early versions of CompuServe. Really?? It was very frustrating to even dial up and get online let alone navigate. There was not much to navigate either. We are several years before Google was even founded.

I saw it unfold and layout in my mind. I started writing about it in 1996. I was discovering things by the day. I never saw anything like this or as big as this or a more powerful equalizer than this. And for the folks that say they have no opportunity today. REALLY??? For a $10 bill you can put yourself in front of the world and make an impact. For the cost of a pair of Nike's you can become a domain investor. To this very minute. There is more opportunity than any 1 person or 1000 people could reap at anytime. I have watched people come into this field and make a mark quickly. I have seen people flail and fail year after year. Much more of those. But they fail because they have a basis that is not understood by anyone but them. They don't understand the masses and when it comes to sales and profits it gets even dimmer. If you have a solid business background, if you understand real estate, if you are a market investor, then you should be able to learn about domains in a very short time today.

The conversation now is much different than the conversation of 20 years ago. Now I come to the table with some level of credibility. Friends and foes may exist but my reputation is untarnished because I had the character to understand that reputation is everything on and off the net. And 20 years later I may be a foe but chances are they got screwed by their friends along the way. I never screwed them. I always tried to help them. And I love when someone realizes their foe has been a better friend than many "Friends" that crossed their paths over the past 20 years. And that is my single greatest accomplishment. I know I helped to influence many willing minds along the way. I get more satisfaction in that then almost anything else. But I have enjoyed riding the wave and in my first year of retirement having a plan come together and take a victory lap of sorts. What a ride, what a parade. The message about domains has been received worldwide and now there are thousands more that will spread that message.

And it just gets better from here. There is a time to reap and a time to sow. I saw that getting the right Internet real estate was the most urgent and time sensitive of all things. And I knew there was plenty of time to build. Just like oceanfront land or land in Times Square. Securing the location was the key and time was of the essence. I wrote many times about how I literally slept on my computer. My fingers hurt so badly from 16 or 18 hours of searching Network Solutions for available names. There were no tools. Nothing else to look them up. No one knew in the real world what a domain name was. But I pounded away day after day in the 2nd half of 1996 because by that time I was pumping out gold. Then the sense of urgency grew exponentially. By 1997 I was buying 3rd party domains. I was not alone. I was competing with a host of others. Not many. But enough to lose a domain by seconds. Literally. 5 seconds one time I remember. But that just gave me even more fuel to keep going. My fingers were in pain every day. But I used different fingers and slowly kept going. And of course I was laughed at and ridiculed along the way. I was told I had more money than brains on more than one occasion. After this year, they are finally right!!! lol

I LOVE this medium called the Internet. My words are all on record with my real name or known moniker since the day I came online. They are date stamped and they may be copied or circulated but all can be tracked back right to me and my thoughts. Even along the way I was mostly retired. I looked forward to every Monday and I could not believe people would not check their websites or their email from 5PM Friday to 9AM Monday. They were running 24/7 businesses, they were AWOL during business hours. Their sites would go down for days at a time and no one minding the store! Then they complained about business not being good and losing other people's money.

So you see the seed of my frustration. They were losing more business than they were doing and choking and in trouble while the key was sitting right in front of them. When I would point it out they would get all nuts on me. That made them lazy morons in my book. I just pointed something out and they generally went bat shit crazy. lol

I think there are more things that bond us together than separate any of us. However some focus on the negative while others choose to focus on the positive. The positive is what bonds us together. We love our moms, dads, family and friends, and we protect them. But some decide to focus on what makes us different and those are negative thoughts and come with bad or negative results unless there is a constructive way forward. You must clear the old land to make way for the new structure. So it is okay to identify something negative but to do that you need something positive and structural to hold things up and make it even better. Some people identify and fix problems. Some people make problems. Some people ignore problems. Surrounding yourself with like minded people is empowering. And listening to dissent is good as long as it is based on reality and facts.

King said "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character." The Internet was the perfect place for that to occur and maybe in time it will. But for the first 20 or 30 years, it has also been a huge breeding ground for hate and bullying. An out of control epidemic that is just a tweet or post or comment away.

Here is a perfect example of a business theory or principal as I see it. Something I use to measure the overall long term all viability of a business. I have many of these. They are simple and act as my guide through all aspects of business:

You can sell average or even below average food at a great location (like an airport, stadium or boardwalk) and still stay in business. You can't serve lousy food at a lousy location and survive. Now you are free to disagree. But you would be wrong. Do I have a strong opinion? You bet! You don't stick to a plan this long and be a wet noodle that changes with the wind.

Here is another one. Let's say you had great food at that lousy location. Great food but it was difficult to stay in business. Despite the advertising it was out of the way. Simple remedy would scare most. His best hope for survival is to have 20 other restaurants open up all around him. That "flotilla" is what can save him. Now apply that to today and you will see why I used the word Flotilla".

Many real world examples have a perfect online parallel. Point is when you have BOTH, that is the ticket. So on the Internet great content matched with a great and easy to remember and spell domain name increases your bottom line in every respect. But since few can see it or measure it and extrapolate the sheer volume over a 10 year period, they ignore it. I am just saying that we are talking an invisible 15%-25% increase in business and  (or more) that is the cream of the crop because your expenses are all paid. But the beancounter never sees it on their excel spreadsheet. That 15% is a huge number (and it is so damn conservative because it could be 100% or more) if you do the math for your company. Want to argue? OK, make it a 2% increase. Do the math of what just a 2% increase would look like over a 10 year period. Once you make your nut, the next sales are the ones that grow your company and grow your wallet and propel companies and people to higher levels. Make hay when the sunshines. Means we work extra hard when things are good so when things are bad we can just take a lot of vacations and not worry or be stressed.

Sorry, I got a bit off track.....

Very little is talked about Highest and Best Use (HBU) for a domain name. The reason I TRY and get top dollar is I start at Highest and Best Use and work down from there. Very few of my domains will be used that way in my lifetime. But I don't care. I KNOW the value and until somebody gives me an offer that at least is on the path to HBU, I am not even going to respond. It s well known for a reason why my prices are high and stay high. But I am not unrealistic.

I tried to sell my names for $50k each. They all laughed because it was too much. When they stopped laughing and started paying I was already at $100k. When they reached $100k in offers I was at $250k. When they reached that level, I was $350k. Then $500k. Then $750k. Then they finally caught up to me at $800k. The ones now priced at $1 Million I am told are too high. Stay tuned.

My basic premise that I employ is asking one simple question. How much would just one location cost in the real world. Rent, insurance the whole 9 yards. So if a small store has a $2500/rent that is $30k a year and over 10 years is $300k plus the other 9 yards. And the domain has much greater value now and in the future! And you only need one location in the .com world. Just one! Now that is an example on a small store.

Let's talk about my favorite whipping boy, Sears. Sears who at one time was the world's largest retailer. Maybe for about 100 years. They could have afforded the forward thinking minds to buy the domains that would have insured their future. It's been a decade since I was in Sears. How about you? They formed a flotilla with K-mart. Whoopee! But the point here is how much does it cost to operate ONE STORE?? Folks need to answer and focus on this to see the value I see in a domain. Here is the post I wrote when they closed up their flagship store in Chicago and the posts I made before they did it in which I suggested they close.

Another restaurant example. Do you know what the difference is between a restaurant with 100 people in line all the time as opposed to just one person in line all the time if they both have the same amount of seats? NONE!!! Absolutely NONE! It has nothing to do with sales or profits. A full house is a full house. Period. So folks are free to disagree and they usually do. But it is a standard I use. A measuring stick that is universal to all businesses.

However you could argue that one may be more efficient than the other and can handle more people in a shorter time even without adding tables. You can argue that one has servers that suggests food faster to prepare or more expensive or more profitable. My point is adding more people to a line you can't even serve does not help and you need to look in other directions to correct that. A perfectly tuned machine would always have one party waiting for a table and serving them well and efficiently once they get in.

In the furniture industry it manifested it's self in a different way and I can help show what I mean by efficiency. If I sold a truckload of wall units to a store in Houston and it took my factory 6 weeks to manufacture and one week to ship and the store 4 weeks to sell and then they place a re-order and have to wait 7 weeks, how many times a year can they order and how much will they spend? Want to increase that number in a very big way? I would BEG my factory to build that ONE UNIT for inventory. It was universally our best selling item by far. They had the room and the material. That way when an order came at 4 weeks, they could have it in store in one week! That saves 5 -6 weeks. They would grow their business and be more efficient if they built their number one selling item for inventory instead of each order. Simple!

First order January 1 for $100,000 deliver February 15th and sells out on March 15th.

Second order comes in March 15th and delivers May 1 and sells out on June 1.

Third order comes in June 1 and delivers July 15th and sells out on August 15th

Fourth order comes in September 30th and sells out October 30th

Fifth order comes in December 15th and the year is done $500k total.

Now if they were efficient:

First order comes in January 1 and is delivered January 8th and sells out on February 8th

Second order comes in February 8th and delivered February 15th sells out on March 15th

Third order comes in March 15th and delivers March 22nd and sells out April 22nd.

Forth order comes in April 22nd and delivered April 29th and sells out by May 29th

Fifth order comes in on May 29th and delivers June 6th and sells out by July 6th.

Compare the two.

Efficiency is the key to business without being cheap or cutting corners. 2x the business with a simple adjustment. And then look at the invisible perks. HUGE perks!

They know you deliver fast and are reliable. You never lose your floor space when they run out of goods. They are more likely to expand their relationship with you by adding new items. Now multiply that by your number of customers. Getting the picture? Problem is beancounters see a different picture or none at all. The factory foreman sees a different picture. The techie sees a different picture. All I can do is try to paint the picture I see and persuade my counterparts that it is in everyone's best interest. This is about math and being smart. PERIOD!

It's an ego boost to have a line or a bunch of orders to fill. But in business while your ego is getting a boost, your wallet is not and that does not make a smart business or businessman. You are free to disagree with math. And of course there are other variables. But one can't miss big things like this. I come from a place and I look at things through a multitude of lenses. It never scares me to find a new truth. It only scares me to hang on to being inefficient with an old one.

There has never been a better time for financial equality in history. Those protesting on the street would be better served behind a keyboard and seeking their dreams. No one is responsible for their happiness and success. It's not your fault or my fault that they are misguided and miserable. The only thing that holds them back is their mind, attitude, how quick they can learn, adapt and their work ethic. Some will learn that, most will wallow in self pity as a way of life.

What would my life have looked like if I was a professional whiner instead of sacrificing early on and working until I fell over? What if I gave up? What if failure was something that could defeat me? Instead failure empowers me because I am likely one step away from a success. I feel sorry for those that have to blame and excuse. It takes up more effort and energy than actually learning, overcoming and succeeding. But they are in a rush to nowhere. So just get out of the way and let them get there.

Here is the secret of failing. Fail for a reason. Fail and then ALWAYS go back to the point before the failure. Usually decisions come down to an either/or. Go back and just go down the path you rejected and you will likely find success just laying there for the taking. Problem is most people keep going forward and that is where the road map goes off the chart and direction is lost. Secondly and even more importantly, define the most essential and largest part of your challenge. I wrote about that here with my "Pyramid Post". The top of the pyramid will define success or failure in nearly 100% of all cases. If you ignore that piece of the puzzle, save it for last, or get it wrong; you lose! 

Identify the most important and time sensitive THING first. That is how I can spot failure a minute away; an hour away, a day or week away; a year away; 5 years away; 20 years away. And if I get it right, I can spot a success a year away; 5 years away; 20 years away as well. That top piece is worth at least 50%. Get it wrong, you automatically fail because all the other pieces of the pyramid add up to 50%. Where I come from, 50% is a failing grade on almost any level. It makes one directionless when they miss the top piece.

So with one 20 year plan in the books, It is now time to enjoy and capitalize on what the next 20 years may bring. OMG!!!! 20 years in which I employed the Rip Van Winkle and Rope a Dope strategies.

read the other day that if you bought $1000 of Apple stock in 1980 after the IPO you would have over $90,000 today plus the dividends along the way. "Since the Companies initial IPO in 1980, Apple stock has delivered a 9.072% return, excluding dividends."

So looks like my sales alone eclipsed that many times over in a much shorter time span. About 18 years shorter and about 80X the return since it was a $100 investment vs a $1000 then in the world's #1 stock. Even my smallest sale this year provided a larger return than Apple in HALF the time. And I also made dividends along the way via pay-per-click many times more than all the dividends with Apple.

Then you would have to factor in that the value of $1000 in 1980 vs $1000 in 1998. Adjusted for 18 years of inflation and you could easily be talking about $2500-$3500 or more. The price of a new basic Cadillac in 1980 was about $10,000. The price of a new Cadillac in 1998 was about $35,000. home prices went up even more percentage wise.

And what do I do with the money I earn? I'll buy APPLE!!!

Let me just end with this. I am in no rush to sell appreciating assets but you may see my sales in often. Each time trying to set new records and blaze new trails that others can come and reap the rewards from. Domains, like land and developed real estate, will be passed on from generation to generation; from merger to merger. The content may be scrapped but the domain will always survive. It is fireproof but it is far from theft proof.

I believed one simple and basic fact 20 years ago. I guess that was the top of the pyramid for me; "Domains are a unique opportunity in time and will go up in value faster than any other commodity ever known to mankind." I identified getting the domain as the single most important, time sensitive and urgent part of the puzzle. That was a race against the clock and everything else could wait. Wait 20 years for the dust to settle and then decide what and where to build and expand. And for the record, I am referring to .com domains only and specifically. I think collectively we have more than proven that theory and can now establish that as fact. But it may take another 20 years for that part of the equation to be recognized by the "Experts".


Have a GREAT Day!

Until next we meet......Be healthy, happy and

Rick Schwartz

20-Year Post Part 2; gTLD’s

Morning Folks!! 12/21

Tomorrow is my last post to celebrate my 20 years and then I am back off to being retired, silent and enjoying life. Hope to see you for the 25th in 2020.

If you have read my writings over the years you will know that I like to look at both sides of an issue. I can play devil's advocate. I enjoy balancing information and coming to a conclusion. Many close their eyes to new information. They get threatened by it. They have to lash out. Never understood why. Let the weight of what is discovered be the map forward not a meandering way to a dead end. I always adjust accordingly.

I may not be to the leading edge of technology but I have tried to keep up with it throughout my life because I always devised ways to work less and make more. I still have my original 12.5LB Radio Shack Cell Phone from 1981 and my collections of phones is over 100 including 12 iPhones. Cell service was expensive back then, but I devised ways to make it pay for itself and then some. Each new gadget I would buy may have been a bit speculative and some would say wasteful, but I always figured out a way to make whatever it was pay for itself. That way I could justify my purchases and continue to nourish my appetite for cutting edge whatever.

I have watched the evolution of the cell phone from a "Wasteful luxury" to one of the most important necessities in life. I have watched necessities of life reduced to complete insignificance. They still have a place, but their importance has been greatly diminished. Knowing the difference is key. Recognizing which items are candidates for that and which are not. Which have staying power and which will evaporate.

I have been is sales for 50 years. I understand the art and science of sales. I have seen sales through the eyes of 55 different industries. But what you sell is always what determines your level of success. That is where Need, Want and Desire are filters I use to qualify or disqualify any item that I might see. It was how I found success when traveling to Hong Kong and Taiwan and hundreds of trade shows.

What I knew in the years 1995 and 1996 was everything I had done in my life, everything I learned, every success or failure I had, was to prepare me for this domain name journey.

When it comes to the gTLD's, I just don't see the same thing. The demand is being driven by the sellers and domainers and end users are more focused on their .Brand as they should be. THAT is smart and that will keep them in the game no matter what happens. But domainers can't play in that pond. So for me, the top of the pyramid is not even in play.

The USA is .com centric. I don't see that changing to any degree. They will go to any url if it is in their self interest. Content will be what it is all about. Trust may become a big issue.

The reality is that 2 years into this experiment I have yet to see a single commercial on TV in the USA using anything other than .com with only a few exceptions for .org, .net and .tv. I have seen 3 and 4 words .com advertised. I have seen a number of things ending in advertised. I have seen domains with "dashes" in them .com advertised. I have seen one commercial with a .tv and I would expect more at this point. Sorry, that is directly related to the new gtld's. .TV vs .Horse. You decide which one is going to be used to advertise first and most. Lots of folks still waiting for .tv to take off. But no extension will have great value like .com until you see them used in real and long term advertising campaigns by folks that advertise all day long.

What do I see coming? My last post called the "Rick Schwartz Equation" is still fully intact. Still too early to see any clear winners. But there are several hundred losers and their carcuses are there for all to see. They are much easier to spot. The story really won't unfold until a truly strong new gtld comes along. In my mind .web still has the single best chance to shake things up. I think when .web is released you will see more registrations in their first week than whoever holds the number one spot the week before. That's what I see. And even that won't guarantee a success. But if .web were already out, it is my opinion half of the gTLDs would be on life support if they are not already. .web could become the next .com or the next .net. Either position is stronger than all others imo.

And speaking of the poor orphan .net. The stepbrother to .com. There are more .nets registered than all gTLD's combined. .nets that have a 1% value of their brother .com and 1/1000 the demand. We all have some .nets. So what? I get more inquiries on my .orgs. .Nets have been a piss poor investment. Thankfully they were all hand registered. You should see the arguments I had with folks about .com vs .net back in the day because techies looked down on .com. Does not mean there are not some .nets sold. So what? Who cares? But I would be scooping up .nets and .orgs today before .horse and most of the others. When they go into the boardroom, all the old extensions will be reviewed and .net, .org, .tv, .me, .info, .biz and others will be discussed and carry weight. It means that one may eventually break out as an alternative. Just not sure what happens to all the others. And when push comes to shove, .brand may be the way to go.

Despite what some say, I have welcomed new gtld's in the sense that it brings thousands of domain evangelists out into the public square spreading the word about domain names. There was a time there was only ONE doing that. Now there are thousands. That helps me and you. But that is a different discussion than taking hard earned money and reinvesting in a riskier side of things. Sorry, just not a path that interests me. Some believe that hurts .com and other extensions. Sorry, I don't believe that one either. Awareness is the key and that's what they bring. Whether the gtld flotilla will each fly on their own? Two words come to mind. Massive consolidation.

That said, the number of registrations will not determine value. The consumer and end user will decide their fate and therefore value not domainers selling to each other. Domainers are financially and emotionally invested. That is fine. But when you have that much emotion in something, you might not be open to the information you need. I am sure great collections are being put together. But the question is will those collections increase in value or become irrelevant in time? For every 1 gtld success there may be a minimum of 35- 40 failures the way I calculate. Possibly much more. Sorry, same or worse odds as Roulette. Gambling vs investing. Yes there will be winners and you will hear about them. But the losers will be a much larger group and they will multiply faster and they will be silent.

Then I always hear they are for "Start-ups." Well if I was looking at a startup and arguably the name you choose and your website are among the most important decisions you will make early on, and you chose a non .com at this moment in history, I would question your judgment. I would say you gave up looking too soon. I would say that for less than $1000 you can find a suitable and very good .com name. The headwinds in the way of lost sales will be more than you can afford. So if you can't afford a grand for a .com, you certainly can't afford a new gTLD. So cheap, misguided and lazy is the picture I see; Sorry. 

I think the keyword for the future is despite massive expansion is also massive consolidation. Folks that ignore the math will eventually be consumed by the math. But numbers don't have emotion or feelings. They are one of the few absolutes we have. That does not make me likable or charming. It makes me focused on facts and value. And if that pisses off those with skin in the game, they need thicker skin. The main fact of my focus is value, and you always must factor in circumstance and life expectancy. So if something is going to have great value in 85 years that's great! But you will be dead and so will your kids!  So it's more important to eat, pay the mortgage now and enjoy each day.

Clearly 3 out of 4 new gtld's are underwater by number of registrations. Of course the number of registrations may have little to do with the actual commercial success of a gtld. It just happens to be one of the only pieces of data we can judge by early on. Number of registrations may not matter to an end user. Then again, it may! I will judge by the total amount of money spent to advertise and promote any single gtld. That includes all Radio, TV, Magazine, Billboards etc.

Let me tell you how I define success...When I see 3 or more different corporations using the same extension to heavily and consistently advertise on TV and billboards etc. and promote their products and the campaigns last more than 90 days. That to me would be how I define a success. .Net is not what I would define as a success. But it has many millions of registrations. More than all the gtlds added together.

A registrar success is not a domain investor success and that has always been my main point. But through the lens of the registry game there are only a few clear winners out of the 400 extensions released so far IMO. And again many of the stronger extensions have yet to hit the market.

Here is a perfect example from just a few weeks ago and it is quite stunning. This headline from says it all when it comes to efficiency:

".XYZ Has More Domain Registrations Than Donuts 183 gTLD’s Combined"

Simply put one company has done better than another at this stage. Numbers don't lie even if they are skewed by people. You just have to factor that in. You can't discount it 100%.  10 extensions control 51% of all gtld registrations. The other 400 share the other half. The top 50 account for 75% leaving the other 350 sharing 25%. That is before we even have the other 1000 extensions.

As I write this the top 10 gTLD's have about 5.5 Million registrations.

That is more than 5.2 Million the next 400 gTLD's COMBINED!!!

Remember when .Kiwi was going to have millions of registrations? Well nearly 2-YEARS later, they just broke the 10,000 mark ranking them at #140. That means nearly 300 extensions have yet to even reach 10,000 registrations. By the time you get to the 5000 registration level you are at #220. Meaning over 200 have not even gotten to 5000 registrations. Sorry, these numbers are pitiful. MANY will die on the vine regardless of what is being said. They will most probably be propped up by consolidation for the purpose of saving face by others in the space. But don't kid yourself, they are bleeding dollars on a daily basis. Numbers don't lie.

No one is in business to lose money and the numbers paint a picture that are VERY clear to me regardless of the spin.

When you factor in the fact that most registrations are domainers, then you can easily see the collapse coming.

They may be lucky to see consolidation. There is little room for the end user. The oxygen in the room has been consumed by domainers. Sorry, it was much different with .com so why would folks expect the same result. So many factors that are different.

See everyone is looking for the second coming but there is a HUGE difference.

With .com 98% were registered by businesses with the intent of having an online presence.

Practically every business in the Fortune 10,000 had a .com

Practically every business had and still has a .com

And for the vast majority of business, one domain is all they will ever need.

And my single biggest point during all these years is the collective advertising dollars spent promoting .com. From almost every TV commercial, to almost every advertisement, to almost every piece of literature printed, to almost every promotion piece, etc. etc. etc. If you were to add up all dollars spent, it would wipe out the $19 trillion national debt. In the history of mankind no other anything has ever been promoted that heavily by so many for so long with no end in site. I made this up of course because no one measures such a thing. I have to fill in the blanks beforehand. I don't have the luxury as a businessman of using 20/20 hindsight. I have to come to strong conclusions and stick with them. Folks are free to argue a point like this, but I won't budge an inch and one day it will be proven. It's a fact in my mind and I know it is accurate.

With gTLD's it is the reverse. 98% or more are registered by speculators. You really can't see the picture of what is coming and why it is so different? What is the total global spend on advertising new gTLD's? What is the total spend of 400+ registries promoting them? It would not put a ripple in a pond. THAT my friends is what many are missing. That is the key.

I can sit here and pick apart these numbers like a vulture on a carcass all day long.

I can come at it from a multitude of different angles and directions.

I can make grown men cry.

My posts on gTLD's were written early on, many of them and are time stamped.

How long will it be before hundreds of these extensions die on the vine? Numbers don't lie. These folks have ongoing expenses and many have peaked in their registrations. Sorry, but 5 registrations a day won't pay a single salary and dozens and dozens are doing 0-5 registrations a day. Will the other profitable operators pick them up just to help save themselves? That clusters*ck I have been talking about is starting to take shape. Can't see it? Have too much invested to want to see it?

Brands and Geo's have the best shot at success in my view and I have been on record with that for years. But .Brands are not a domain investor play. Plus many .brands will be internal and no one will be giving up their .com in lieu of their .brand.

Even Geo's with all the fanfare of the likes of .Vegas,  are stuck under 15,000 registrations.and declining after peaking at 17,000. That may be enough to keep them in business. It is not enough to make them important. The only thing that can make it important is heavy and consistent advertising by many. The entire advertising spend. That is the oxygen that can breathe life into an extension. The other is fantastic content available nowhere else. So until that happens, this is much ado about nothing and the entire domain industry is being consumed by tumbleweeds.

Once you factor in domainers that are not buying billboards and not buying TV time, how many registrations are from  businesses that are? And .vegas is a strong geo extension. I do believe we will see advertising by end users in time.

.Horse? Not so much. 4500 registrations in over 2 years and nearly 50% were registered in 1 day indicating a domainer.

Take away that day. .Horse averages about 3-4 registrations a day at best. And now I will make some cry. .Horse has nearly 200 gtld's that are doing even worse!

Kleenex anyone?

Give me a break! Success? Really??

Who is kidding who? Don't be too gullible. Don't let greed get in the way of common sense,

When you strip out the domain investor registrations, you have a pile of NOTHING! If you don't know about TULIP crash you are in the wrong business. "Human beings have always been prone to want things that are difficult to get, especially if everyone else seems to be doing it. Nutty behavior becomes commonplace when enough people are following along. It’s only afterwards that we stand back and shake our heads and wonder what came over us."

They will trample each other just getting to 5000 registrations. Pitiful. It takes TIME to shake out success. But failure is like a big full moon. Hard to miss unless you are invested. And now you see why the keyword is consolidation and the other is collapse. I would hate to be the fool that built a successful business on a bad extension and have it go dark one day. They may be putting some of these on the endangered species list pretty soon.

And while ICANN has so-called plans for this, it is not perpetual. Extensions will go dark unless they are propped up by those that are heavily invested. Numbers don't have emotion. They have no motivation. They are perfect and absolute. They are universal. They paint a VIVID picture that says more than the loudest voice or the best salesperson. Numbers don't lie. People lie.

When .web comes out, it may suck ALL the oxygen out of the room to the point where we might see mass casualties and huge consolidation. That could be the end of the party for many. I have a multitude of extensions and still waiting for the second coming.

Let me be clear on what I see in gtld land. If you want to point to .xyz as a success, then so be it. If you think .horse is the future. So be it. Everyone is free to believe what they want and invest as they choose. All I can do is share my vantage point and give it some basis. You can choose to ignore or embrace or even employ. No one is pointing a gun to your head. Take it or leave it. If my view threatens your view, that is your problem not mine because I don't care either way.

The current aftermarket, if there is one, is domainer to domainer and speculator to speculator by a huge margin when compared to end users. The demand by the end user is VERY SOFT! With 11 million gTLD's registered that is a minimum of $100-200 Million on the primary market possibly much more with the various premium and pricing schemes. The ratio between the primary market and the aftermarket is growing not shrinking. The aftermarket has yet to develop. Will it? I don't know. There is certainly strong evidence that it is very weak. Until that gap closes, IF that gap closes, is an important tipping point to watch and track. This is just another way to track what direction things are moving. Especially since now we are entering the third year of this.

What I see is based on the countless emails I get to sell me .whatever that would have no value if it were .com. What they are really trying to do is look for a bigger sucker than they are. Unfortunately most are suckers for one main reason. They still don't understand what makes one domain valuable and another domain worthless. Imagine jewelers that could not differentiate between diamonds and glass. Between tin and gold. You would laugh. Well when I get spammed everyday with the crap I see, oh my!!! Truly swampland and quicksand have much more value.

If you want to even be in the game of a gLLD success, I would focus on strong one word domains that are a known phrases and have commercial meaning. I have never posed a list of anyone's domain name that they have tried to sell me. If I did, it would make any professional domainer pee in their pants from laughing so hard. Remember, one domain that means something has more value than 1000 domains that don't.

The one thing I have stressed for years is to know the difference between an asset and a liability.  If you don't understand the difference, go learn it, understand it, then apply it. Your nice car may be an asset or it may be a liability. Depends on you. If it is paid off, it is an asset. If it is worth $20,000 and you owe $30,000, it is a liability.

My main point is please don't compare this to the domain rush of 20 years ago. The factors are so much different. The times are different. The world is different. Supply vs demand and Need, want, desire. Sorry, no one can hide from theses truths. Most importantly, the consumer has to embrace them and still holds the ultimate trump card. They will have the final say so. They may be more apt to adapt in areas where cctld's are used than the USA market which is dominated by .com. So region may play a role in this. is still to this day the only canary in the mine we have seen using a non .com extension in a heavy advertising blitz. They failed miserably. But that was years ago and I am anxious to see the next big splurge by a non .com and see the results. Maybe the Super Bowl  will provide us that chance.  So if you want to look at a barometer each year and keep score, THAT my friends is the place to do it. The Super Bowl and Times Square Billboards. These are "Ground Zero" for forward thinking advertising. So until those venues are populated with gTLD's on their signs, and they are there long term, we still have a long way to go.

Let me end with this. I have never seen so many negative variables in any business in my life. Does not mean there won't be a HANDFUL of successes. Does not mean they won't be trumpeted loud and by as many as possible. But I would focus on eliminating the hundreds and hundreds of losers, that many want to just ignore, from the few with success. At least ask the question which ones can survive the long term? Ask what happens when a true and dominant extension like .web comes along? Will you have the funds to invest if ones does come along and catch on fire and is embraced?

I wish everyone great success in whatever path you choose. The surprises along the way will be many if you only see blue skies. The key is not being surprised but being prepared as to what will unfold; when and if it will unfold; and also get it right.

Tomorrow is the actual anniversary post I started with and then as I added these elements, realized it would be too long for just a single blog entry.

Have a GREAT Day!
Rick Schwartz


The Rick Schwartz 20th Anniversary Post! Domain Names Then Now and Beyond. Part 3

Morning Folks!!


It's been a while. Just a couple fun things as I countdown to my 20-year anniversary in the domain investment business this coming week on December 26th.  A 3-part series before I go back to retired life waiting for the 25th. But just like it was 20 years ago, people will be distracted with their holiday vacations. Today, just a little silly fun and humor. Hope you enjoy it!


Twas the day after Christmas when all through the house not a phone line was ringing so I just clicked my mouse.

My numbers were done and a spreadsheet confirmed that 1995 was over and 96 had begun.

The kitty-kat was nestled on top of my bed.  While visions of millions danced in my head.

I went out on a limb and there arose such a chatter, I sprang to my feet to climb the tall ladder.

Away to Windows I flew like a flash, tore open my mind and was just a bit brash.

To the moon and beyond in the new fallen idea the luster of money should soon appear.

With a few extra dollars so lively and quick, I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick

More rapid than eagles the coins they came and I whistled and shouted and called them by name.

Dot Com this and Dot Com that. Oh my goodness and look at dat!

Now pennies then nickels and dimes all day led me to discover new ways to make hay.

I plowed and plowed and plowed til May thinking of a time a score away.

I planted the seed to grow a tree and planted another to frame the sun. Oh my what a forrest it has become.

Two decades later I survived the zoo, Know one thing you never knew.

Whoever reads this and whatever they do. I'll promise right now to never bore you.

Domains to the rescue and on to the stars, to the moon and beyond and even Mars.

And time right now to fly away, I think I've had my my final say.

Good luck to all and to all a good night!


And here is a little extra bonus to twist your brain. I know it twisted mine!!

In 1996 I started writing using domain names I owned in a post I made that actually made sense. It was a little more colorful using only adult domains as you will see below and a bit easier confining it to one basic subject. So here is my modern day version: RATED R++. So be warned! 333 domains (at last count) used possibly making this the longest domain speak in history. Where is Guinness?

So while sitting with my who was wearing that I bought at the, sipping some singing on my having a little and watching some,  I got off my to go into where I figured I could make some It was like all over again. It would help and the take down their sign to be able to in or get and become so they could get the Maybe someday make and make the or even the That might send the looking their way and they will never

So let's and then then so we can on the way to and and make new Some were born in while others were born in or or even I thought of all the that would need to and who the would be and how that might impact the who can

Some wanted to I wanted to do Some thought I was But I thought of all the and I was not looking for a

So first I went to the where I saw and then to find the with on the way to the next to the where I thought of some for the but I still wanted the

I looked at the and the worn by the and going to the hanging with the but I was still focused on the The in their and want to go to the They get the at the and eat at the But I am still looking for the on the at the But the are going to the with the on the all because they are and make the and and become the usually started by the and then they have to leave by finding the and wherever they go they will still be the in town.

I saw domains as and and focused on I saw domains as to I saw domains as that would aid and capable of The in the world and wanted to be the

I had but I had to worry about them as they were from the and It forced me to become an expert on Because these were the and and would need a issued by a and then because or a silly letter was just going to be my They were nothing more than a to me and I became their Thanks to and RDNH I was able to give some to the instead of

They would that I was a and and that was but I was just not even posting

The came to and it cost many thousands in me and you and hopefully the would support that. My vs Campbell's;  My vs Lilly Inc.; My vs Carnival Cruise Lines; My vs Warner Brothers; My vs Toronto Star Newspapers. vs who even cares? Slam Bam!! I won the  because I had the before there was a UDRP process and vs the world when there was one! NEXT!

What I was doing was but I had a to as I could and reside in the because I wanted to go to the and knew that if I had long term aspirations the Internet, the, who may be the, would understand the and sense of urgency at making my stake and would like to be rich too. It's a that most people understand just like folks like and the I decided to on it because and I could because Netsol had no to pay for and that gave me that I would have never had.

When I was born was It was all sold and owned. There was no more or But I did see that could be planted throughout the world and I could compete with the with the That gave me the that would help me and then use by at and to about the where companies were

I don't eat but I can sell some. I don't wear but I can sell some. I know nothing about but it could become a full time career. I am not into but I can get the with and and even a I can and then  I can and I could and I can, and look for the and and then and and like and with in 100 different that for a then and with with the to send my to and

I may have had the but the that led to the made me millions by and I was still getting by the with the They never saw before and that provoked a good and every so often for my "Fake" traffic. I would say and tell them if they continue with like me that they will earn a spot on and I would make them the on the internet with their and let folks know what they were and that gave me the power to be an and I was not They put me in the business.

I guess I was a who was with a of money and looking for honest so I could become an and promote and add to my I started buying at looking at because I knew wanted to look for and The only way to make back then was with because there was no in 1996 and 1997. Google did not exist. So a would not even get you a or if you are like on the way to see with,  and a doing Some liked and and the and became They would, then go to and and look at the in the as they their while that they are their before the showed up. and were everywhere. think they can because they think they are a, get and start the and if I write anymore it will be and the will get upset even tho and etc. are used all day everyday on TV that our kids and they are not them and either are the because they are just to the to have a and make

Makes you so and by so you can so that you can not being a because you and then you can get, speak to and become a and maybe even a and as you the ladder.

So after 20 years they can at the idea because has written on his that many a like me have used to make the year's I'm not and I can make you that can give me some rights while relaxing on my and watching

This all just that were not a and by a capable of finding and and at the  looking for and someday folks could even have a then start at the  Just That's says

And now that you made it through all of that I hope it brought a few smiles to your face and a few memories. Now on to my 20-year anniversary  posts next week..... Happy Holidays and the best to you in 2016 and beyond!

BREAKING!! Former CEO of Procter and Gamble During Reverse Hijacking set to be Named Obama V.A. Secretary!

Afternoon Folks!!

In just a few minutes President Obama is set to nominate Bob McDonald to head the Department of Veteran Affairs whom you might remember was the CEO of Procter and Gamble when they were convicted of trying to reverse hijack the domain name

In what was I believe the greatest shakeup in 100 years at Procter and Gamble when then CEO Bob McDonald and his nearly entire army of executives were forced to step down.  I contend it was over the Reverse Domain Name Hijacking decision as a final straw in which I wrote about extensively. Below is that exact post.

But I also called for his resignation as you can read below as well back in March of 2013:


Morning Folks!!

I am not happy that Procter and Gamble has been found guilty of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking but I am going to milk this story for every ounce it is worth and it may take me YEARS to do it. When it comes to Domain Names, Procter and Gamble was a guiding light in my book. Great respect because they figured it out. Even tho I vaguely recall them dumping a bunch of domains years ago. I think I might have gotten 1 or 2.

Reverse domain name hijacking (also known as reverse cybersquatting), occurs where a trademark owner attempts to secure a domain name by making false cybersquatting claims against a domain name's rightful owner. In this case not only did P&G make false claims, they also lied outright to the governing panel and got caught!

See when I started, P&G was already out there getting domain names or soon thereafter. So they understood about domain names very early. It is that reason that what they did is particularly troubling. I always liked and respected Procter and Gamble because they always moved well with the time and of course I like everyone else use a lot of their products. But all our lives. All my parents lives. All my grandparents lives and half of the life's of their parents before them. Whew!

They are the warm and fuzzy company that gave us many soap operas and toothpaste and all types of other things we use each and every day. They perfected the TV commercial long before any of us were even in the game or born. So it makes me sad to learn one of my heroes is now a would-be thief had the other party not fought back and exposed their fraud! Well done John Berryhill!

Who made that decision? Who was responsible for P&G overstepping in this outrageous manner? So outrageous that a 3 member panel called them out in a way I don't think I have seen before. case had very strong language. But this language seemed to be harsher in tone. I guess it is open to interpretation. But maybe because it was slapping a business giant as if he had no more standing than you and me. BRAVO!!

I am not mad at them. I am going to use Procter and Gamble to make many points over the next YEARS! Let companies KNOW if P&G is convicted of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking, you will be too if you engage in this despicable act. But I would just as well have them tell the story. I'd like to ask why a company worth billions would STAIN their reputation with this act that the common man would find appalling? Why would they not just come to an agreement with the owner? Now they pay the price and the price is priceless. How stupid is that??

I am angry, upset and most of all disappointed in a company that wrote the book on marketing and other things. They were true leaders of an era. Of many eras.

So what MORONIC company wants to be NEXT!!?? Who made the decision to do this? Why did they do it? What transpired that allowed them to risk so much for so little?? That's what I really don't get.

I am very disappointed. I am still going to use their products but they can't force me to look at their company the same ever again. These companies are playing with fire.

Maybe they should do some research into history and see what some little old ladies did to big companies that tried to build malls where their homes were located. This is akin to that. But in an age like this news flies and it is in ink.

Some SCHMUCK working at SOME DEPARTMENT at Procter and Gamble, decided it was worth GAMBLING the reputation of a 172 year old company. 135,000 employees. $79 BILLION in sales in 80 countries. And they had to try and muscle some guy with a domain? What would you call that Mr. CEO of Procter and Gamble?? I CHALLENGE you Mr. McDonald to come to our trade show and explain it to this audience and the wider audience? I CHALLENGE YOU!!??

Wow! What a HUGE blunder. What have you learned? Are you going to use the same tactics again? Are you pissed at me? Maybe you should be pissed but I am not the one you should be pissed at. I would be pissed at the person, department or firm that put the reputation of your 172 year old company on the line and LOST!!??

Besides all this your company, P & G, was found to misrepresent facts to the panel. Nice touch! Were you personally involved in that decision? You should RESIGN TODAY if you were. This is all my personal as well as professional opinion. I'll assume you were not involved in a low level decision that was this stupid and worse.

What say you Mr. McDonald? Personally I am just disappointed that a company I have always looked up to would stoop to this. I am sorry for the bluntness of this post but our industry has suffered from corporate bullies for nearly 20 years and this time the giant of em all went down and went down very hard. Very hard! A company that otherwise has been very wise in their domains and how they have conducted themselves. But now this STAIN and none of your STAIN REMOVERS will be effective on this.

Mr. Berkens points out that your folks LIED to the panel when your company said they did $40 Million in business on the 'swash' product.

“The entire Panel finds it more extraordinary still that in its Complaint the Complainant represented the SWASH brand to be a worldwide brand of longstanding with multi-million dollar sales, stating that over the last 4 years alone the brand had gained sales of over USD 40,000,000.”

“When this was challenged by the Respondent, the Complainant was forced to admit that the brand had only been on the market for 4 years, that sales had been restricted to the USA and that sales over those four years had totaled under USD 60,000.”

Most importantly Mr. Berkens points out one last thing:

Had the Respondent failed to respond, there is a very real risk that the Panel, relying upon the 1993 International registration and the substantial sales volumes claimed for the brand, would have found in favor of the Complainant. This Complaint fell very far short of what the Panel was entitled to expect from a Complainant of this stature.

So your company LIED Mr. McDonald in an effort to STEAL a domain that belongs to another company, Marchex, which just as easily could have been some mom and pop in Iowa that could not defend themselves and let you have the domain. You now join our 'Hall of Shame' and each time somebody is convicted of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking, we repost the entire list. Congrats!

So let me ask you directly Mr. McDonald, How many domains has your company gotten that it had to LIE about? Or that they had to make folks spend money they did not have to defend what was rightfully theirs and is now yours? Tell us that. Isn't that a fair question in light of what has happened? Maybe you should WANT to find out. WANT to make it right. If I have something wrong, please let me know.

Sir, I have been doing this for 18 years and what your company did is troubling and it is something that we as risk takers have had to UNFAIRLY endure. There is a free market place. Use it, don't abuse it. Right now you and your 172 year old company have to live with this. It probably means nothing to you but it may mean the WORLD to somebody else. So to get our message out we need to SHAME companies that engage in this abuse as there is no penalty for what we just saw happen. They just walk away.

McdonaldBob McDonald. CEO since 2009

Here is a list of Procter and Gamble Products. The asterisk are their *Billion Dollar Brands*. Come on Mr. McDonald. What say you about this? You sound like a stand up guy that served your country and company well. You have been with the company for 33 years. Don't you want to get to the bottom of this as well? Who put the companies good name in jeopardy for this? Who lied? What idiot is responsible? Marketing? Legal? Finance? Who? How many? Why would you allow this embarrassment to occur again or are you too big to be embarrassed? Any other abuse in the name of your 172 year old company. I sure as hell would want to know if I were in your position.

So we are forced to use Procter and Gamble as an example to sway the next MORON or the next company not to get involved with this despicable act of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking (RDNH). Help us do that Mr. McDonald and you will find an ally and we can call it a great day!

And as I read the history of the company I stopped as it described the 'Joint Venture' that started this company back in 1837. Wonder what Mr. Procter and Mr. Gamble would have done given the same circumstance? Before they even had billions? My instinct says they would have acted in a different manner and somebody there violated a 172 year old trust just because he or she was a cheap bastard that played fast and loose with the facts and refused to pay either fair market value or find an alternative.


Rick Schwartz


And here is the original post on the hijacking:


Morning Folks!!

Let's not minimize or maximize the Reverse Domain Name hijacking (RDNH) decision that came down against Procter and Gamble (P&G) over back in March. But for a stellar company like P&G it is a black eye they should have never gotten.

So lets just deal with a few facts. This was what I wrote about the fallout back then.

This was my open letter to the CEO Bob McDonald that followed.

That was besides personally contacting each and every communications director for a comment without a single response.

But let's look and see what has happened in the days since. Exactly 90 days if you are counting.

The CEO, Mr.McDonald, steps down "effective immediately" at the beginning of Memorial Day weekend on May 23rd.  "Robert McDonald's four-year struggle to adapt Procter & Gamble Co. to a new world of more frugal consumers and tougher global competition has come to an abrupt end."


Did "Frugal" (another word for CHEAP) include giving him or those that report to him the order to try and grab

But that is not all. Then just DAYS later P&G announces "Organization changes". MASSIVE changes. I then asked myself when in my lifetime did I ever see a shakeup like this at Procter and Gamble and I just can't remember one. Can you? They even picked the former ceo A.G. Lafley to get the compnay back on track. Both men in the industry for well in excess of 30 years.

A.G. Lafley. Chairman, CEO, President

Straw that broke the camels back? I guess we will never know. But it was a straw and that STAIN remains with this company FOREVER! It happened and somebody in their organization made a very costly and unfortunate mistake. A mistake that could rise to the level of ending a career.

So as domain name investors this is a case we can point other would-be hijackers to which will let them know that no company no matter how big or small are immune to a decision like this and the repercussions that come both personally and professionally. Ignorance is no longer an excuse.

Have a GREAT Day!

Rick Schwartz

All that said, and without being too political, I certainly wish him well in trying to fix the problems that loom at the V.A. that really has a lot of people upset across the political spectrum.

The Rick Schwartz Equation

Morning Folks!!

Go brew a pot of coffee, this is going to take a few minutes. What started as a simple equation blossomed into all types of adventures and mis-steps and examples in real-time that absolutely support my equation. An equation that may be all but lost in the clutter of events that just had great timing and so here we are. I think the word "Clusterf*ck" is just going to be more spot on with every passing day. I thought it would happen in very slow motion, but it is accelerating even faster than I would have imagined and I suggest there will be popcorn to replace the coffee by the end of this post.

We all see what we see and we all know what we know.  I come to conclusions early based on certain elements that fit in my personal equation. This equation filters out CRAP, HYPE and NOISE. It filters out the losers FIRST and spotlights the winners NEXT. That makes my job easier and pisses off the ones that don't win and/or don't count as much. Those folks have a tougher job to convince me and other people whether domainers or end users to buy into their vision.

Each new gTLD has or SHOULD HAVE a separate vision.  Is that not a reasonable assumption? I have learned many do not as stunning as it sounds. So is it my fault for asking about the "Vision" thing?

I have been writing this blog post for over 2 weeks now and I have been deciding whether to post it or not. Meanwhile I just keep working on it and whether it sees the light of day will just depend on who knows what. But events just keep unfolding that dovetail with what I have been saying.

I have written extensively about the new gTLD's EARLY to be on record and to be REAL and that showed a vivid difference in how and WHEN  I view the world compared to many others. And in my view of the world, nothing happens until a sale is made and I did my best to explain that. And while people throw around invisible sales numbers without actually ever making a sale, well, that is a MAJOR red flag to me. I know how hard sales is. I know how hard sustaining sales is. I know how hard growing sales is. I also know the difference between a solid sale and a weak sale. A sale that will survive and a sale that will collapse or end up being a loss.

I see things early for a reason and it is based on an equation.

I have gotten several emails about and their problems this week and folks want me to write about it. Well I did, 3 YEARS ago when I transferred all my domains out. It was not my first post on the subject as you will see. The Moniker mess happened 3 YEARS ago but the train wreck happened last week. Folks had AMPLE opportunity to heed the warnings. I still have about 14 domains there. Mostly .tel. But thousands were moved away. 

There will be a lot of elbows flying in gTLD land as we have seen with the firestorm of last week with Negari and Network Solutions, that just continues and now the plot thickens as Berryhill, Corwin, Negari and the ICA join others in the industry for a circular firing squad.

The skirmishes will intensify and broaden as there are a lot of competing interests. There are a lot of ponies in this horse race and the rails on either side are not enough to contain them. So you are going to see a vivid example of some raw nerves between other gTLD operators develop. You can't see this coming? Really?? REALLY????

Why is this a sure bet???

SALES BABY! SALES! They NEED sales. They are drowning without sales. They are choking for cash as it is in many cases. That is THEIR reality.

Not only that, but If you play in a game you set up with no rules, then don't complain when somebody breaks the rules or extends the boundary lines. Where does HYPE turn the corner and become DECEPTION? There are the nuances that are in play here. The debate is wide and the fallout is still in progress. The answers are murky. Deal with it. It's just part of the clusterf*ck that will play out in time.

I also understand that many bloggers are under a lot of pressure from different camps to write positive stories about them or gTLD's in general. Some have just about lost their entire credibility. Even Howard is pressuring me not to post things I am about to say. But I could give a rats ass about getting another sponsor or not. I won't sell my soul for that. If they can't figure it out, so be it. I will say what I BELIEVE and not what my FRIENDS want me to say.

Hats off to those like Konstantinos Zournas, MIke Berkens, Ron Jackson,  Kevin Murphy and others that report whatever facts they can find and I know for a fact that the pressure these bloggers are under is IMMENSE. And they are getting it from both sides. 

Sales have to be created and WE and everyone else has a RIGHT and a DUTY as well as an obligation to be skeptical if you are a serious investor.  You should EXPECT to have you feet held to the fire. Especially since we already had prior evidence that only a fool would ignore of how previous tld's have fared in our short history.

How do you create a sale?

You start with NEED, WANT and DESIRE. And in our case you can add SUPPLY and DEMAND. Other variables as well as you are about to see. And there are even more obstacles than I am going to discuss that is why I wrote so many posts coming at things from various ways and all of them had huge pitfalls. These are compounded obstacles and I am not sure any can survive them all. Especially when they are blind to them.

That said......

How do you create sales when you don't start with NEED, WANT and DESIRE from the right party and the supply is unlimited and the demand is almost non-existent and self-made??? And keep in mind, over 80% of all registrations are by domainers and the Registry's themselves or closely held companies. aka, Bag of smoke. Some say 90%. They say 33% and that is just laughable.

How do folks KNOW they need something they don't even know exists to begin with? This is the tip of the iceberg when it comes to exponential. Many icebergs because everyone at least gets hungry. Of course business may suck if you are a hamburger stand setting up shop at a vegetarian convention and you have no veggie burgers.

Hold on to your horses, it will all make sense soon to anyone that can have a warped thinking process like me.

This is NOT bashing gTLD's. It may as well be zoombibie stands. The RESULT would be almost the same.  What's a "Zoombibie stand"? A Zoombibie stand is as foreign and unknown to you as gTLD's are to the end-user.  Got that? Do you need one??? How long have you lived without a zoombibie?? Really?? Whose job is it to sell you that Zoombibie that you don't know about and probably could care less about? What color is yours? What happens when a competitor comes in and they have to SPLIT the zoombibie market?? Are only distributors buying zoombibies and they can't resell to the end-user?

The commodity you have does not matter. Coffee shops, hamburger stands. Lemonade stands, pizza joints. You name it. The thing with gTLD's, they are exponentially harder and few want to take the time to truly examine why.

The keyword is CREATE.

Zoombibie has to CREATE sales!

But to create sales, there has to be a DEMAND to begin with.

And you do that with REASONS.

(Reasons have to be valid. In sales, when you get caught in a lie, game over)

But first you have to CIRCULATE.

And you have to know how big your AUDIENCE is.

So that you can TARGET them properly.

Assuming there is DEMAND

We know there is DEMAND by several groups. The Registry, the Registrar and the speculative domainer. The speculative domainer is not the customer of the Registry as they have made pretty clear. But the same Registry is depending on the market makers who are the speculative domainers to make things happen. Sounds like a HUGE disconnect to me and many are starting to pay the price for that wrong-minded thinking process.

How big is the zoombibie audience? You still don't know what a zoombibie is? This isn't your grandfathers zoombibie. This is a much better and bigger zoombibie that will allow you to do more things. Just don't ask about what specific things they are. Way too deep.

Sorry for the caps in this post but this is more of an equation and a theory than paragraphs. And you also have to know that THEY (the consumer in any form they come in) are in control of all of their destiny's. If they don't eat the smelly fish or the rotten meat, the restaurant closes and goes out of business. PERIOD! No matter the hype.

Nobody on this planet woke up this morning looking for a zoombibie. But you NEED it because I said so. Isn't that a good reason?? 

Today alone we say .Berlin start giving their extension away for FREE! When you can't sell something, you give it away. They more than doubled their 48,000 registrations in less than 24 hours. EXPECT others to follow suit. That is definitely going to screw up the marketing plans of other registries that are already choking for cash. It gets UGLY from here on out folks. Can't see that one either?? REALLY??


So if you subscribe to this quasi-equation, and I do, then many will be able to see what I see and why I don't take MOST of the gTLDs seriously at this point in time.  That does not mean I am right and that does not mean I can't be PERSUADED.  But my job is not to persuade myself. That's THEIR job and they need many reasons that are VALID to get there. Tough questions are survived by straight answers and that is how you tell a solid and good product or service. Then I might buy a zoombibie. Right now, I can live without it. 

This just means that I have a method behind my handicapping that has served me well for decades and I am just sharing my mental process of one of the ways I might reach a conclusion or form an opinion. But that does not mean I can not be persuaded. But that only comes with solid information and benefits. A VISION that holds up against reality and scrutiny. Imagine a car salesman being afraid to answer questions about the vehicle he is selling. He wants to make a quick buck and you are looking for long-term reliable transportation. Not exactly a win-win. Once he lies about one thing, you can only do one thing. LEAVE! And that is exactly what most folks would do.

Someone wins, someone loses. If you invest unwisely LIKE SO MANY DO, you are going to be at the wrong end of that equation. As long as you are prepared and EXPECT to lose 100%, then you are okay. No worries.  But expect to lose 100% TIMES however many years you keep each domain name.

Folks want to hear what they want and they want to ignore what they want. Folks are afraid to state the obvious or even truly examine both sides to get to a proper balance without forcing the wanted outcome. To me .ceo,.rich and .horse are extensions that are in real danger of dying on the vine. They will be joined by many others. How can I be so certain??? Please just study the equation. It is a roadmap. Look at the STALLED daily registrations. .Rich has had THREE registrations in the last FIVE WEEKS! STUDY the numbers, they are pathetic at best. This is their debut. Demand does not look very high and a new broom sweeps clean.

Just days before the original launch in January I posted this on my blog about .Club and how they were the ones doing it right and now you can look back and see how it DOVETAILED with REALITY! It appears they have the most human placed registrations.

Figuring it out and getting it RIGHT EARLY counts and it is the equation above that makes picking winners and losers EASIER! Cutting to the chase has value. Knowing the answer before the question is asked has value. Great value in some cases. And I am not conceding that the most registrations = the most valuable gTLD or the one to invest in if any. But this is the yard stick many seem to be using for the sake of discussion. So it is our only measuring stick at the moment since there is little else to point to. Just keep this yardstick in mind as well. .mobi as a Registry is a total success. .Mobi as an Investment is a total failure. Can't folks LEARN and understand that equation?? I could give a rats ass about the success of a Registry. We are talking about investing. Until you separate the two, good luck going broke!

With 1400 new extensions those that think they will all survive and then also be meaningful are either not dealing with reality or have not been in business long enough to understand how business works. How sheer numbers work. So if they were to LOGICALLY look at the 1400, and right now we have about 125 LIVE, they can already see which ones are in DANGER of either dying on the vine, never getting any recognition or traction or just not being meaningful or relevant at all. PigeonShit gTLD's for a lack of a better phrase. This is the first heat of TEN segments to get to that 1400 number. I think I clearly picked the winner of this phase. Until I see the CONSUMER actually EMBRACE these new extensions, it's all inside baseball. The consumer hold all the wildcards.  There are several layers of consumers. But I am talking about end users and the actual person on the street.

So the first thing to do logically is remove the DEAD HORSES OFF THE TRACK!

Did you watch the race on Saturday? Imagine that race with 1400 horses in the SAME gate and the LOGICAL first question would be how many would be TRAMPLED in the STAMPEDE getting out of the gate!?? How many other horses will trip on the dead horses and also go down? Just logical questions. The ultimate question is who will win the race? I guess if you were LOGICAL you would say to yourself that I may not be able to pick the winner right away but if I pick the top 10 horses and isolate them I have a much better chance. Most bet on one horse and MOST lost. Even the gtld tracker tracks the top 10 and all the "Others" are lumped into one category. "other". Why?? Who came in 10th in the race n Saturday? Nobody knows and nobody cares.

And that means that 1390 gTLD's will be NAGS  Or maybe it will be 1300. Not a huge difference. Most will be meaningless is the only point I am trying to make. MOST. The majority. So that means they did not die on the vine, they are just as irrelevant as .aero and .travel are today along with many more that nobody wants to really invest in. How many times do you have to see the same SAD movie and still hope for a HAPPY ENDING?

How many want to bet on California Chrome to win the Belmont and the Triple Crown today? Place your bets! He LOST! Sorry. We all rooted for him to win. But he LOST. REALITY! See that is not being against gTLD's folks, that's called not being stupid and dealing with reality. We can do the what ifs all day long. But he lost. Yes, he lost because of a GASH inflicted by another horse and we will see that with gTLD's as well.  So if a gash did the damage to change history imagine what 1000 dead horses will do to change it.

Sorry folks. There is no happy ending to this movie. Get your Kleenex out!

And then all this wraps right back around to:

How do you create NEED, WANT and DESIRE?

The keyword is CREATE.

And you do that with REASONS and BENEFITS.


BENEFITS are what is important to your customer not what is important to the seller.

And you make the sale with a LOGICAL argument to support your vision.

What grade would you like to give the marketing so far folks? Invisible marketing seems to be on top of that heap don't ya think? If you don't buy into my zoombibie, you are a moron and you are old school and you are an idiot. lol. GREAT marketing!

Efficacythe ability to produce a desired or intended result. I don't see that as a widespread ability when it comes to gTLD's.  Do you??

Besides all these GIVEN headwinds, it is my belief that many of these guys already missed their window of opportunity to market their extensions. As even Michael Berkens has said many times, these are the weaker extensions for the most part. So that means when they DID have their day in the sun they were incapable of taking advantage of THEIR "Unique Opportunity in time". The train is gone for many of them already. I hear they did not have the money to promote and all the rest. Whose fault is that? Whose lack of vision was that? Whose going to be holding the bag when it is all said and done?

Sure there were ICANN delays. Well in business you have to expect things like that and be prepared for it.

So that TRAIN leads DIRECTLY to consolidation. They can't see that one either?? Really? REALLY????

See in my silly view of the world I think it is unreasonable to see why .ceo would be a good investment because no coherent argument can be made for the viability and a REASON to PARK money there. And when the registry comes out with "Their" reasons, they don't dovetail with reality. Everyone laughs and dismisses.

Now I don't mean to pick on .ceo all the time but it is the most glaring example next to .Rich which is just too funny to even spend any time on. And I think .Horse has no better chance of being important and worthy to INVEST in as betting TODAY than California Chrome will win the Triple Crown last Saturday. In any test you usually look and set aside the top and bottom scores. .Web for me is the top score on the chart and .Rich is the bottom score on the chart for me.Actually the bottom is CRAMMED with losers yet to be declared DEAD ON THE VINE.

And let me also state for the record that number if registrations is not the yard stick for measuring success of ANY gTLD.

CONTENT is the key to the survival of any extension. And in this cases, BETTER content is going to be EXPECTED.  So when you look at this onion you can peel it so many different ways and into different conversations. Just be prepared to hold on to those as long as I have to hold on to .mobi. I have great keywords. Big deal!

And there are so many obstacles now after that. Consumer acceptance is always the key to any success. Beta was better. Did not matter. Ask Sony. So these obstacles and facts can even contradict each other. And my main point is the path forward is not straight it is splintered and the pitfalls immense. And as we have seen and as I have said for over a year now, one bad deed with one spills over to all. Anyone doubt that one now?? We have just seen the beginning of this show and the abuses. I am sure a site will pop up that will chronicle all the abuses that are taking place. I have already lost count. It WILL get MUCH worse.

I always started with my parents. They were my test cases throughout most of my life. They represented Mid-America and how the majority would react to any given new thing. Their input was more valuable than anyone else. So I do miss that part of my equation.

You can see once you talk about gTLD's one thing leads to another and the whole thing just has not been well thought out and with 1200 MORE to go, the ABUSE and the HYPE has not even started. I have written over a dozen posts just in regards to the horse race and how important and how hard it will be to pick the winners at THIS stage. And what happens to these "Weak" extensions when the strong ones like .web come to life?

We are an intelligent group and we get to ask tough questions and if folks don't like it because they have no answers, that is their choice. I say the numbers are pathetic. Let me define it with this. The day .Web comes to market (and I am not touting .web, but it is just the Odds on Favorite) is the day you will see pathetic defined.  That is an extension we will be counting by the millions and they will LIKELY have more registrations in the first few HOURS than all the gTLD's in the first few MONTHS. Just a FACT waiting to be BORN. Can't see it from here?? Really?? But you can see the value of gTLD's in 10-20 years?? Sorry, that dog won't hunt with me. Don't talk about 10-20 years when some folks doing the talking can't see 10-20 hours, days, weeks or months in front of them.

Is there money to be made in the new gTLD's by domain investors? YES.  But Registry's making money on YOU have nothing to do with your gamble/investment. Chances are more money will be lost 100 times over than made. We can only predict and see how things unfold. But ignoring and not examining all sides of an issue because of peer pressure...........really? Investors NEED to be skeptical regardless of the WANTS and DESIRES of others.

As I said yesterday and will repeat often: "NO DOMAIN INVESTOR has ANY OBLIGATION to support ANY new gTLD whatsoever, so don't buy into that nonsense. On the other hand the gTLD's have an obligation to treat domain investors a lot better than they have.  They need us not the other way around.

We had a superhighway come to be in the early 1990's. It was well thought out and had already been around for a very long time for military use. It had to work right. They built a super-duper worldwide interstate roadway system that changed the world. Now we have over a thousand interstates coming out and many have no real destination, direction or even a plan. If you go down one of those, you are GUARANTEED to run out of gas and you will have no money left to buy anymore. So as long as you are prepared and can afford to lose 100% or more of your investment, you are fine and good to go. But picking the winners is still the single biggest hurdle and only 10% of the extensions are now out. Multiply all the nonsense we have seen by 10 fold and you will see this will not be an easy road. A road that can only get harder to navigate and there are consequences most would just like to ignore and not talk about. Sorry, as investors we DO get to talk about it and your job is to address those concerns if you can.  And if you can't, just get out-of-the-way.

All that said, I will be looking and searching for successes and when I find one, I may place a bet or two. Time tells all and the shakeout we will see is absolutely, 1000% forseeable.  Maybe waiting until the dust settles is not the worst strategy as you will avoid being sucked in by the noise and hype. That way you get to sit back and enjoy the show. I DO NOT see gtld's as a threat. I have seen them as an opportunity from the get go. Brings a lot of eye balls our way. But on the way to opportunity, there is going to be a lots of events. Hype, noise, crashes, clusterf*cks and a lot of dead horses and it will eventually be known as SURVIVOR! Popcorn anyone?

And there is a flaw in this Rick Schwartz equation in this case. There seems to be no end to the pitfalls, obstacles and the dividing lines that are coming. Lots of folks entering the crossfire. Welcome to my world fellas.......better have a thick skin.

Rick Schwartz

The Walls of Jericho Fall on .xyz

Morning Folks!!

You can only ask questions and let folks answer them as they see fit. They get the rewards if it works and they suffer the consequences when it does not.

The minute I saw the answers by Daniel Negari to the questions posed, I knew his troubles had just begun and was about to get much worse. He just dug a deeper hole. My job was to let things unfold in a natural way and they did. There was little for me to say but to step aside and watch the implosion and the fallout as his non-answers would be picked apart by you the reader in the comment section and would cause the fury that would erupt as it did. My job was not to force the issue. But I could see everything that was about to unfold as it did the moment I read the answers. My very first thought was "The walls of Jericho are about to fall."

Mike Berkens has been writing about and discovered many of the goings on including:  "NSI is responsible for over 80,000 of the 96,246 registrations. If you netted out the NSI registrations .XYZ would have somewhere around 16,000 registrations which would have placed it around number 12 on the list.”

Others like Konstantinos Zournas have exposed this from the get go and he calculates they would be in 34th place not first.

I think folks like Ron Jackson, that has been covering Negari and .xyz for a while, feel duped.

Many others had their say as well and opinions are VERY strong.

I only posed one follow-up question and it went like this: "My only question is did you know about the network solutions deal in any way shape or form?" And I got the standard NDA answer.

I think the NDA violation would have been less damaging than the fallout already suffered by both these companies. 

I thought Negari would have come here and fielded the questions and concerns. I think not doing so only hurt his cause further inside the domaining community and made the firestorm much worse and will last much longer. I have been in this business a very long time and I don't think I have ever seen this level of anger by so many different corners of the industry. They feel as if a hoax as been perpetrated on them and the anger has grown each day that it has continued.

And when it comes to Network Solutions, they have done damage akin to Moniker years ago. I think they both need to DESTROY the NDA and come set the record straight. I think the one with most exposure is Network Solutions and where is ICANN?? No NDA is worth pissing away your reputation for.

I just hope when the next gTLD tries to pull something cute, the outrage is just as great. Friend or foe. RIGHT???

Now you KNOW what HYPE looks like in the RAW form but don't think for a minute that others are lily-white. Please! The shenanigans are way over the top. My advice, stop the bullshit and run clean businesses before you are ALL linked by the belly button. So stop the clawbacks and make sure you speak out loud the next time that happens.  It did not affect me personally but I think the practice is absolutely disgusting and I will continue to bring it up.

I guess it will be a few more days before they really get to 1 million registrations.

Lastly, NO DOMAINER has ANY OBLIGATION to support ANY new gTLD whatsoever, so don't buy into that nonsense. On the other hand the gTLD's have an obligation to treat domainers a lot better than they have.  They need us not the other way around.

Coming Next: The Rick Schwartz Equation

Rick Schwartz

BREAKING!! Gtld’s Reach 1 Million Registrations in just 6 months!! Sound the Trumpets!!

Afternoon Folks!!

Gtld's Reach 1 Million in just 6 months!! Gtld's Reach 1 million in just 6 months!! Gtld's Reach 1 Million in just 6 months!! Gtld's Reach 1Million in just 6 months!! Let me repeat as you will see this SPIN on every domain blog and further. But what a load of CRAP!

The numbers are PATHETIC! The lack of marketing is REMARKABLE. Their attitude to domainers in some cases is off the hook.

Many promising millions of registrations and here we have over 125 extensions out and COMBINED they can barely get to a million after several months and NONE have even broken 100,000 mark. Well over 125 extensions and COMBINED they will have a party at a million. Whoopee! Really??

Watch daily and you will see that the MAJORITY of gTLD's have already STALLED. And this is still their debut period!! It gets worse from here not better. If they were planes, they would have already crashed and burned.

How many registered by end users that are not domainers and are not buying for defensive purposes? Trumpet that number if you can find it or figure it out. Get your binoculars out. It may be in the far distant future if at all.

How many MILLIONS of other TLD's were registered in the same time frame? Look at that data. With no trumpets or any fanfare. Where are the headlines? Most of them to REAL end users. And when one gTLD does something bad it tarnishes all of them. Something I have said for quite some time but many just dismiss. Misdeeds by one spill over to all and I have been stating that LONG before any came to market. How you could NOT see that coming is my only question??

Those that can make a coherent argument of why they belong in the eco system have a chance and that is why I have repeatedly said I believe there is a place for the .Geos in the eco system. Still not a sure bet. But at least there appears to be or could be a rhyme and a reason. An obvious rhyme and reason. But even so, it does not guarantee adaptation and other hurdles that many like to ignore and get pissed when I point out.

The obstacles they face IMHO are almost insurmountable and  the BIG obstacles they face are yet to come.  Can a few of the 1400 break thru? YES, maybe. That means that over 1300 won't. And I don't care if the registry makes money. That has NOTHING to do with investing in their extensions. Adaptation is what counts, not their profits or their losses. Inside baseball that has no bearing on anything. Buy into the company if you think the extension is that good and you like the registry model.  But last time I looked most of us are domain investors.  Just because 1400 companies decide to print stamps does not mean they become collectibles. Chances are quite the opposite.

Kool-aid and hype. The desert is coming soon and DOMAINERS are picking up almost the entire tab and being totally abused in the process. This practice of clawing back valuable domains is just one of many unethical practices I see going on right now and domainers are not ony powerless, but these companies now EXPECT to have the domain investor PAY FOR THIER MISTAKES! Keep eating shit folks.

The exaggerations are over the top. The promises are empty. The attitude to anyone that does not fall in line is stunning.

So I decided to Pre-empt the coming headlines in case it is a surprise if everyone runs the same headline at the same time. I guess then it becomes meaningless. Gtld's Reach 1 Million Registrations in just 6 months!!

1,000,000 TIMES!

Rick Schwartz

My Interview with Daniel Negari Addressing Reported Inflated .xyz Registrations

Morning Folks!!

First of all, I have no idea how I got in the middle of a firestorm that has nothing to do with me. But here we are. Folks will use my selected words to bend things one way or another and sometimes not bend at all.  It's almost comical. Almost all my blog posts are opinion based. Very few are news based.

But putting that aside.....

I had a near 2 hour phone call late yesterday with Daniel Negari. He gave a heartfelt apology to some words he regrets he wrote to/about me. I was surprised at the words given Daniel was on my chatboard years ago (he was a teenager at the time) and we never had any issues so I accepted his apology.

Daniel Negari has been under fire for days for a host of issues from his remarks to me on, his arrogant selling technique and and the firestorm over the domain giveaway by Network Solutions., DomainIncite, and blogs everywhere includng DNJournal have many of the details and commentary. Most of these folks have multiple stories on the issue from a variety of sources and the comments and speculation only add more fuel. Some justified, some not. I think you will find all those links in these stories so just follow the bouncing ball if you need to get up to speed.

True passion by Negari is just getting ahead of reality. imo

So what happened with the Network Solutions giveaway of some 30,000 .xyz as a freebie? Who did what? My conversation was designed to answer those questions and sort out the events. You, the readers will be the judge. As always, answers may spawn new questions and I hope Daniel will come here and address them if they do. Here is the interview:


Q1 .XYZ was in the news this week when an email offer was discovered going to customers of one Registrar offering their customers a free .XYZ domain? Were you behind it?

First, I think it is important for everyone to understand the difference between a Registry and a Registrar, and the roles that each play.

A Domain Registry, like .xyz, .com, or .org is responsible for the operation of a particular domain extension. Think of it as manufacturer of a product.

A Domain Registrar is an organization that enables Registrants to register domain names. It is like a store where you go to buy a product - in this case its domain names.

The Registry Operator like .xyz, .com, or .org sets a fixed wholesale price for all Registrars.

Each Registrar (or store) then makes its own decision on the retail price it wants to charge for the different domain names (products) it offers.

We have over 200 registrars from all around the word in all languages offering .xyz domain names. I do not know the details of every promotion or marketing campaign that they are doing every day.

Here is what I do know:

Regardless of whether a registrar charges $100, $5, or gives the domains away for free, I get paid the ENTIRE wholesale price, which is the same price that every registrar pays.

Q2. Did you as a registry give away free domains?

No. The Registry Operator is unable to “give away” free domain names. I never even saw the email that the registrar sent to its customers until I discovered it on the blogs. As a Registry, I can only suggest an MSRP for a Registrar to display. However, a Registrar does not have to use that price.

Just like the price of .com, it is up to each Registrar to set the retail price of any domain registration.

Q3. Do you set the price that the registrar charges for a domain extension?

No, I do not set the price that a Registrar charges for a domain extension. That pricing is determined by the Registrar only.

Q4. Do you know the retail price that each of your registrars is charging for a .xyz registration?

No, I do not know the exact price that every Registrar is charging.

On all of our Registrar outreach materials we have suggested $9.99 retail pricing for .xyz domains, however, it is the up to the Registrar to determine the retail price that they offer to registrants ($14.99, $50, $9.99, etc…).

Q5. So what you’re saying is that a registry is like a manufacturer of a product. Let’s use Coke for example. So if Coke sells a 2 liter bottle to stores for a wholesale price of $.50, it is up to the store to set the price that they want?

That’s correct.

So if a store purchased a bottle of Coke for $.50 they can charge $1 or $5, $50 or sell it on a buy it get one free basis or give a bottle away for free.

As the registry of .XYZ like the manufacturer of Coke, I am paid my full wholesale price regardless of what the store or retailer sells it for

Here is another example. A gas station may purchase a bottle of Coke for the $.50 wholesale cost. Then when a customer fills up a full tank of gas, the gas station will give the customer the bottle of Coke for free. The maker of the bottle of Coke cannot control how the gas station owner prices the bottle of Coke. Again, in this example, xyz is like the manufacturer of the bottle of Coke.

Q6. In your first blog, you mention that .xyz is your “Gift to the World”. To many domainers this came off as arrogant. What were your intentions with this phrase?

I admit I am not the best writer, and sometimes I am not able to express my feelings on paper. By no means was I trying to sound arrogant, and I understand how some readers may have read into this. My goal with .xyz was to allow anyone, around the world, to purchase an affordable and generic domain name for any purpose. By opening up the .xyz namespace with no restrictions, no variable pricing, and a small amount of reserved domains (about 1,000-2,000), I feel that .xyz is the first new gTLD to allow for mass appeal and a worldwide audience.

That is what I mean by our “Gift to the World”.


You can draw your own conclusions as it is not for me to say one way or the other. These were the questions posed and his answers. Nothing more, nothing less.


Rick Schwartz

Selling Premium Sub-Domains vs. Selling gTLD’s

Morning Folks!!

When I get to Vegas I am going to transform what I do and many others as well.

I said in the past that the gTLD's will help leasing domains and sub-domains.

We're here!

So yesterday the process started for me to start many new businesses.

Want It will be for sale next week., You name it.

Prices will be anywhere from $9.99  a YEAR to $999 a YEAR.

Neil Sackmary is building that system as we speak and my hardest job is going thru my domains to find the best candidates.,,

They could buy But WHY?? I sure could make a case that is more confusing and harder to remember than Especially since the gTLD folks have to TEACH the world about "Dots".

Shoe.Department will come out. It' called a choice and I think I can take my share.

Shoe.Department,,,,, ShoeDepartment.countrycode

It's competitive!!!!

Real content and real seo make these viable.

And by employing Neil's UGLY ASS bidding technology, I can accept a lower offer that I already load in and it will go right to the cart and checkout without negotiation.

So I take a domain that makes very little annually on PPC and I REINVENT it into a BUSINESS.

Then I repeat with as many domains that are sub domainable as possible.

The gTLD's have laid that groundwork and I can go toe to toe with them selling wise and make my case and then the consumer or end user gets to decide.

The system being built can activate your subdomains within seconds.

It beats being STUCK or chasing shiny objects. Building UP is what they do in GREAT locations.

And yeah, it won't work for all your domains, but if you picked well over the years, then it should work for enough of them.

We all get to choose how we spend and invest our time. This is my choice for the future and hopefully I will demonstrate why.

And eventually the base domain like itself or itself becomes a directory for those that have subdomains as a bonus. Free traffic for life.

Rick Schwartz

SPOILER ALERT…..Surprise Bonus for TRAFFIC Attendees!!

Evening Folks!!

So.. the big surprise bonus for guests is that we have been collaborating with the .VEGAS team to have Oscar Goodman there and he will appear and sign copies of his fantastic book for our attendees.


We had hoped this would be a surprise for next week, but the secret has gotten out, so I'll just go ahead and let the cat out of the bag...  The legendary Oscar Goodman will speak and do a special book signing of his hardcover book "Being Oscar: From Mob Lawyer to Mayor of Las Vegas" for attendees on day 1 of the conference.


The .VEGAS folks were gracious enough to provide copies of the book for a special signing, and Oscar will share his charm with the audience for a brief speech.

Before any announcements get lost in the noise from this extended weekend and the focus of honoring our troops for Memorial Day, I wanted to make some announcements for next week's TRAFFIC conference.

As we lead into the unparalleled networking and business opportunity that TRAFFIC brings, you may have noticed some amazing additions in content.

Of course there is the TRAFFIC party, and we have excellent cuisine and location with the Bellagio, PLUS Howard Lefkowitz of fame keynoting which will be outstanding, and we have Neil from GETITFIDO who will bring you some new powerful MONEY MAKING TOOLS!. But wait, there is more...  I wanted to get another last-minute surprise out ...  because there is a lot more about to happen for next week. The schedule is never done until showtime.

I have been working hard with the team at TRAFFIC - we have been toiling and assembling a fantastic content lineup, from the Sherpas to new TLDs, and the excitement over industry trends.

I hope to see you there, and have a great weekend.

Rick Schwartz