Friday, 27 June 2008

New domain name shortage

I was recently looking to register a new domain for a project I've been working on. I underestimated the amount of time it would take to find an available domain. What's incredibly annoying is that many domains have been registered purely in an attempt to make money by selling them on (especially .com domains). Let's face it, everyone wants a .com domain.

Here's an experiment to try. Think of an obscure word or combination of words that surely nobody would have thought to register, and do a whois check on it. You'd be suprised at the domains people have registered (I was).

Let's try some... How about eatbananas.com or flybot.com. Nope, both taken.

Ok, how about purpletree.com, happycow.com and satisfiedmonkey.com? Taken, taken and taken. Yes, satisfiedmonkey is taken.

Maybe the trick is to find something that's not really a word. Something cool like digg or boingboing. How about kerplunk.com, sproing.com, flugle.com or cartoo.com? Ah, no, all taken.

Maybe the trick is to leave out letters like flickr? How about shattr.com or shtterbug.com? No.

Should it really take a day of hitting whois with odd words until amazingly you manage to find one that is available and not completely ridiculous? Shouldn't domains have a use-it-or-lose-it rule? Should there be a limit to the number of domains one can register? Until then I guess we're doomed to having lots of startups with absurd names because that was the best .com domain name they could find.

8 comments:

Jim Arnold said...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/7475986.stm

mpatric said...

Good! Thanks for the link Jim.

JH said...

Are you saying that creating a revenue model around a limited (the dictionary is only so long) set of data and its combinations is wrong? Yeah... icann = borked. Oh wait... now you can register your own extension... how long till all those are squatted too?

*disgruntled at paying squatters*
JH

Julian said...

I notice that shitterbug.com is available. Probably not helpful.

Ben said...

Maybe some people just like funny domain names; I own:
http://www.thegreasypenguin.com/

;)

google said...

have a look at Available Domain names

mpatric said...

@google - thanks!

N said...

There are solutions for this shortage of domain names. One example is what Jim posted, generic TLDs. Another one is to start using alternate protocols like wnrp://