So yesterday afternoon my Research Department sent me this graphic below and more. You will notice .tk is the #2 extension. Forgive my ignorance, never heard of it. But that nonsense aside, where is .mobi on the list below? .Biz? .Pro? .travel? .Aero..whatever has a LONG way to go for 700 of them to divide up the tiniest of little slivers. This is not even about domain names. This is about numbers and market share and more numbers and all I can say, is study the chart below and others Verisign has posted on their blog.
Each of the 700 new extensions have to sell you on their vision and then have enough content by end users that is significant enough to warrant mentioning. They can talk about the small guy all they want, but like Lonnie says, they have to sell them on something. Their job now is to sell and show the blue skies on the horizon simply by using their new unproven extension.
Well, take a step into reality and look at what that horizon really looks like. Look at the chart below and look at the SLIVER that says "OTHER TLD's". That is where your losers already reside and they are about to be joined by 700 others. Of which only ONE has a real chance at being meaningful imho. And then we can measure and weigh "Meaningful".
Look, you can fish in an ocean. You can fish in a river. You can fish in a pond. You can fish in a stream. You can fish in a creek. But fishing in puddles is for fools. Again, strictly by the numbers. Strictly as an investment. Strictly by historical facts. Strictly by gut instinct.
I wish them all success. Many are dear and close friends. But for the life of me, I just don't get it and it must be my own shortcomings.
Just yesterday 3 guys I have known for many years came out with the .co.com registry. Huh?? Sorry, I love you guys, but for the life of me, I just don't get it. These guys are all a lot smarter than me. But I just don't get it. I just see more and more confusion and when that happens it is human nature to go back to what it knows and is familiar with. That said I can see just a glimmer of what they may see. A universal country code ending in .com? Instead of co.uk you have co.com? I am not sure. This makes .co confusion seem simple.
So without talking to each registry and trying to see their vision, it is difficult for me to figure out the end game in 5, 10 or 20 years. There are only a handful so far that you look at it and it makes sense and you get. But should I really need to talk to each one? Should it not be evident on the face of things?
So my first question might be when will the first .whatever make the following chart? Study that chart. See how hard or easy it is to have a SHARE of that.
Like Lonnie Borck says, these guys all must sell something to stay in business. Which will explain the flurry of new shows coming to the space. A shrinking space to begin with when we talk about domain investors but one that is exploding when we talk registries and registrars. They each need to sell to survive. They each must convince 3rd parties that theirs is better and the way of the future. Third parties tht have no interest to begin with. Where does that intersect with investing? When? Why is Need, Want and Desire being ignored? The basic building blocks of any good or service.
Over the past months I have articulated as many of the pitfalls as I have time to write about and I could write for another year. This is a TINY industry. The SMALL guy that they always seem to be talking for could give a rats ass and is not in this industry. They are not waking up in the morning looking for a domain name. They have one or don't want one. That is the case in 98% or more. They have one, they don't need another or just don't want one. They use Facebook or eBay or whatever their preferred marketing outlet is. Get over it! That's the reality we are in and what is stunning to me is it applies to the guy in his 60's and in his 20's and 30's.
Ok, so they will focus on startups. Great. Startups using other people's money of which 80% would fail with a .com and now more will fail without it. Again, I focus on numbers and history and human nature. I don't worry if I will offend a friend. This is business and this is our hard-earned money and nobody should do this blindly. They have been trying to reinvent the hula-hoop for 55 years without much success.
We all know what the motivation was for all this. It was not to make a better universe. It was not to make the internet easier to navigate. It was and is a pure hula hoop money play. PERIOD!! A square Hula Hoop full of holes and dead ends that lead to an awful amount of confusion! What is with 2013? Shopped for Medical Insurance Lately?
But the characteristics of the .com are not the same as they are with .whatever. Study the NUMBERS. The numbers. Look below and study them. Then look to history and ask where are all the other great extensions on that list? You can see from that chart below it is nothing more than a sandwich. On one side you have .com. On the other side you have cctld's. Both are key and are important and neither are going away. They co-exist without damaging each other. Now in the middle of that sandwich below is all the other extensions. Six of which are CCtld's as well. Take out the .net and .org that have been around for 20 years. You will see all the extension now combined don't even equal .info. 700 extensions and 695 of them will be relegated to living and sharing that sliver!
Whether a registry makes his annual nut or goes broke has nothing to do with what we do. Building anything on a foundation of sand and you better have a plan "B" ready to go.
For a clearer graphic: Source: http://blogs.verisigninc.com/blog/entry/verisign_to_issue_new_domain