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Catching domains & running a drop-catcher

Discussion in 'General Domain Discussion' started by DavidL, Feb 9, 2010.

  1. DavidL

    DavidL Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
    Hi Guys,

    As most of you know, Publishing Aus are pretty active in the domain marketplace and we intend to continue to be.

    Netfleet will be launching an expired domain auction service to the public and recognise that it would not be right for Pub Aus to bid on the Netfleet platform as we could potentially have access to confidential information on the bids etc. We don't want any suspicions of conflict.

    So, Publishing Australia intends to bid on Drop & DW as we have done for 18 months or so. Might be a bit ironic that we will be active customers of a competitor to Netfleet but I believe it eliminates any conflict.

    By the same token, I'd also invite Fabulous & DW to bid on Netfleet too if they wish.

    Apart from the Publishing Australia motive, I think it's important to have the major players active in the marketplace. It's good for the industry. If all the big buyers are precluded from activity like this due to perceived conflicts, it will put downward pressure on domain values & that's not good IMO

    Do you think this is a good solution?
     
  2. FirstPageResults

    FirstPageResults Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
  3. Drop.com.au

    Drop.com.au Membership: VIP

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    Since Dark Blue Sea acquired the drop.com.au business we have had a policy of not competing with our customers drop.com.au bids - on any drop catch service.

    We feel that it would not sit well with our customers if we were to win a domain in a drop auction on a competing platform, where we had also accepted an order (in terms of an auction bid) for that domain on Drop.com.au. There's a clear conflict of interest there and potentially it could be argued that we hadn't made our best efforts in catching a domain for a customer, because we wanted to win it elsewhere ourselves.

    Having sadi that, we do however reserve the right to attempt to catch/register domains for our own portfolio where there are no bids on Drop.com.au.

    Andrew Wright
    Drop.com.au
     
  4. DavidL

    DavidL Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
    Imagine this scenario:

    Domain dropping gets a high bid of $10K on both Netfleet & Drop. Would indicate that $10K is the approx market value. Let's say DBS has the high bid on Netfleet and naturally a DBS client has the high bid on Drop.

    There are two possible results:

    1) Drop catches it and you make $10K clear instant cash profit.

    2) Netfleet catches it for DBS. You have to pay $10K immediately for the domain. To put you in the same financial situation as 1) above, you would need to wait at least 6 months (with your money tied up and always a risk of losing the domain) and then find a buyer prepared to pay $20K (twice the market value) to realise your $10K profit.

    For me, I'd be pushing option 1) all the way :D

    So if you spot an expired domain due to drop that you fancy, would you withhold it from your public list?

    There would clearly be no conflict there...?
     
  5. coreyg

    coreyg Membership: Community

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    very good business sense :)

    Cheers
    Corey
     
  6. DavidL

    DavidL Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
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    NOTE: I'm not suggesting you do this BTW. Just talking hypothetically - it's one of the options we bandied around that's all :)

    Personally I think it's the worst of the three options discussed. Anyone else have any other feedback?
     
  7. Drop.com.au

    Drop.com.au Membership: VIP

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    We would not withhold a domain from our published list in order to register it ourselves.
     
  8. domainlover

    domainlover Membership: VIP

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    this is a tough one, especially if you 'missed' the name and one of the domain catching businesses was the victor for that domain on a competing site, however,on the other hand is it fair that you can never bid again for any domains ?
     
  9. paz

    paz Member

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    I'm happy with this policy.
     
  10. Newk

    Newk Membership: Community

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    I come down firmly on Drop's side with this one. There is just too much chance for accusations of conflict of interest if you're providing a drop service and yet competing for the same drops on other drop platforms. If you won a particular domain on one of the other drop services, the person who had paid you on your service for the same domain could feel rightly hard done by. Rightly or wrongly, there could be accusations of unfair play. Does anyone want that?
     
  11. Simon Johnson

    Simon Johnson Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
    This type of vendor bidding / acquisition is a reputational risk for an organisation to consider. One contributing factor is the ethics of such bidding and how "vendor bids" are seen in the eyes of your customers.

    Given that the industry is still in its infancy, in my view we have a duty to clean up such ethically questionable practices.