Domain Squatter Faces New Foe

Discussion in '[H]ard|OCP Front Page News' started by Kyle_Bennett, Jun 18, 2018.

  1. Kyle_Bennett

    Kyle_Bennett El Chingón Staff Member

    May 18, 1997
    Everyone hates a domain squatter. Well everyone that ever went to buy a domain to find that some squatter had purchased it with no plans to ever use it, but rather just hold onto it till someone was ready to pay up big-time for it. While we are in no way suggesting that you hold someone at gunpoint in an attempt to make them turn the control of the domain over to you, maybe some squatters will start thinking twice. Actually, we have no idea if the domain was being squatted or not, it was all just wishful thinking.

    A man has been jailed for 20 years over the first known instance of armed "domain hijacking" in which he sought to gain control of a website at gunpoint. Sherman Hopkins Jr, 43, broke into the apartment of an internet entrepreneur in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, wearing pantyhose on his head, dark sunglasses, and brandishing a stolen handgun. He demanded that Ethan Deyo, 26, get on his computer and transfer owenership[sic] of the internet domain name from one account to another.
  2. BobBobsonJr

    BobBobsonJr n00bie

    Dec 15, 2017

    Who would get worked up over DoltforState? I'm trying to think of a business that would want that. Maybe a political campaign?
  3. WorldExclusive

    WorldExclusive [H]ardForum Junkie

    Apr 26, 2009
    I did think about doing some version of this over the past five years.
    Person never replies to mail or phone calls.

    Domain goes to 404 page. But somehow the domain renews every year without fail.
    Valuable domain in the right hands.

    Business name changed, but this time, the squatting company had a hefty price on the new domain I wanted.
    Couldn't let that get in the way of doing business so I paid it.

    SLCPUNK n00bie

    Aug 2, 2016
    I don't see the problem with domain squatting. An individual or company identifies domains potentially worth a profit in the future and pays for them today, pays annually to keep them, and then potentially sells them for a profit (sometimes a huge profit). Doesn't look any different to me than real estate speculation. There's no guarantee that buying a domain today is going to make you any money in the future, just like there's no guarantee buying real estate will net you a profit.

    First sentence should read "People are envious and get upset they're required to pay for something of value that another person owns."
    Darunion and BlueFireIce like this.
  5. tom_ozahoski

    tom_ozahoski Limp Gawd

    Feb 24, 2014
    Yea whats the problem, Its the internet version of buying vacant land for investment, maybe in 10-20 years it will be worth something.
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2018
    BB Gun likes this.
  6. DrLobotomy

    DrLobotomy [H]ardness Supreme

    May 19, 2016
    The irony of a dolt trying to get that domain is not removed from me.
    westrock2000 likes this.
  7. Shmee

    Shmee [H]ard|Gawd

    Sep 12, 2014
    There is nothing wrong with domain squatting, it is just annoying when squatters have what you want.
  8. Teenk9

    Teenk9 Gawd

    Jul 22, 2011
    Squatting implies occupying/sitting on somebody else's property. If you came up with the domain first or bought it from someone else and sit on it then that's not squatting.
  9. ChoGGi

    ChoGGi [H]ard|Gawd

    May 7, 2005
    The victim shot Hopkins multiple times in his chest.
    Well at least he's lucky as well as stupid.
  10. modi123

    modi123 [H]ardness Supreme

    Sep 6, 2006
    This has crossed my mind... in a completely hypothetical fashion.. the domain I have been after for 13+ years is being used by a jackass who twats/i-grams/and facie spaces every 15 minutes. It would be trivial to track were abouts and introduce his knees to a pounding by Mr. Hammer. ... but I moved on. Still keep an alarm for when it expires though.. gotta hope.
    WorldExclusive likes this.
  11. Billy the Dimwit

    Billy the Dimwit [H]Lite

    Jun 14, 2018
    wow, over a domain? That is nuts.
  12. MRAB54

    MRAB54 Gawd

    Sep 9, 2001
    Was it www.clownpenis.fart ?
    AlphaQup and WorldExclusive like this.
  13. Nobu

    Nobu [H]ard|Gawd

    Jun 7, 2007
    Aren't domain squatters the guys who buy domains as soon as they expire, then sell it back for profit? Or are they called something else?
    Billy the Dimwit likes this.
  14. rudy

    rudy [H]ardForum Junkie

    Apr 4, 2004
    I am not sure if that practice has a specific term but domain squatters are generally thought of as people who just buy a domain name cause they think someone will want it. After it expires is probably subset of those.

    There isn't really any good way to stop squatting except doing what you might do with property investors, tax them. but because domains are so cheap it is essentially inconsequential. They can even make money off of advertisements.
  15. d8lock

    d8lock Gawd

    Feb 12, 2012
    I wonder how much it would cost to buy
  16. Malurt

    Malurt n00bie

    Jul 12, 2016
    Domainsquatting is not possible in the EU. If you can't use a domain for anything, or are not using it, or are using it just to be a hindrance or attempting to make money from having bought it knowing that some company would want it, you have to give it up to anyone with a proper claim.
  17. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

    Jun 12, 2012
    Technically it's not squatting, it's just taking something you don't need, in hopes of someone will need it someday so you can extort money from them.
    It's disgusting, whatever the law says about it.
  18. Exavior

    Exavior [H]ardForum Junkie

    Dec 13, 2005
    and that is what confuses me here. I thought it was the same in the USA. If there is a site that somebody isn't using I thought you were able to file some type of claim as you said and show that you have a better claim to it. Pretty sure that is how some of the larger companies got some domains. There is also a rule about over charging. You can only charge whatever it cost to register the domain not anything else. If I recall the story without looking it up correctly there was the case years ago where a young man from Canada named Mike Rowe started something like a web development company and registered Microsoft came after him asking to buy the domain and he gave them some type of craze amount that he wanted more of as a joke and they were able to then just take the site from him since it was then demanded it was just trying to use the site to extort Microsoft. So I thought the days of being able to use squatting for making large amount of money was stopped everywhere about 10+ years ago.
  19. serial__thrilla

    serial__thrilla [H]Lite

    Jan 5, 2018
    The original story is a tragedy and a travesty. but I honestly deeply LOLd at MRAB54's comment.
    MRAB54 likes this.
  20. katanaD

    katanaD [H]ard|Gawd

    Nov 15, 2016
    you sure this wasnt all a ploy by some of the registars to make people want to spend the extra money to make the domain owner info private??

  21. rudy

    rudy [H]ardForum Junkie

    Apr 4, 2004
    Making a law doesnt make it work. All you have to do is make it look like you are using it then they cant touch it. And once down that path there only 2 ways it can go. Either squatters keep squatting or legit owners and small players get abused by larger groups. For instance France recently stole a domain from a guy who was making a living off of it.
  22. NAXDON

    NAXDON Limp Gawd

    Jun 27, 2015
    MRAB54 likes this.
  23. velusip

    velusip [H]ard|Gawd

    Jan 24, 2005
    That's called domain sniping. It is similar, though. Also known as drop catching.

    There are ICANN-enforced policies to prevent this from being a thing now, but I do remember when it was really popular. Now you get a grace period where the domain can be transferred back to you. This is partly due to the (then) ridiculously tight constraints on re-registering and (then) extremely incompetent registrars dragging their ass when it comes time to re-file your claim.

    There's not much you can do to regulate squatting. Perhaps in the future when costs come down it will become a thing.

    The annoying thing about squatted domains is the overcharging. They try to rationalize the price based in hit metrics -- which makes no sense since it's so easy to shape this data. (e.g. Set up some dynamic SEO to attract repeat crawlers/bots.) Most of the squatters are domain registrars themselves, which makes the whole ordeal even less pleasant since they won't barter. And when it's a legit squatter, the registrars intentionally refuse to contact the actual owner on your behalf (since it's usually registered with the registrar contact info, you have to go through them), in hopes the owner will drop it due to lack of interest, and then squat in turn. Dirty game.
  24. alxlwson

    alxlwson You Know Where I Live

    Aug 25, 2013

    This is not how I remember that story.
    I remember it was a high school student that was big into programming or something, and it was his site. MS wanted it, sued him, and settled out of court, paying for his college and the entire XBOX library.

    Well, I was close.
  25. Smashing Young Man

    Smashing Young Man [H]ard|Gawd

    Sep 11, 2009
    I once got a pretty decent windfall from an entity buying a domain from me I wasn't using. I had planned on using it at some point, but the offer was such that I couldn't refuse (by a lot). The domain has since changed hands a couple of more times. It's funny to see the grossly amateur site making use of it now given what the original buyer gave me for it.

    I see nothing wrong with the practice. It's just another form of speculation.