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new TLD'S "Failing" and drastic price discount

Discussion in 'Domain News' started by DomainNames, Mar 24, 2017.

  1. DomainNames

    DomainNames Membership: Community

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    http://domainnamewire.com/2017/03/20/new-tld-registries-ask-75-cost-reduction/

    With over 3000 global domain name extensions now there is no shortage of available domain name extensions people can choose. The fact is most new TLD extensions are rubbish and in many cases where extremely overpriced. Some are now available for 99 cents!

    Any propaganda from Country domain admin bodies, ICAAN, Registry, Registrars, Resellers etc that Australia needs another competing .au extension is "fake".

    The actual registration renewal and " drop" statistics show the .UK AND .NZ extra extensions have also failed miserably. Those who bothered to even register them initially have in many cases let them drop and not even renewed them. People have gone back to .co.uk and .co.nz. In most cases 94% of exsiting .co.uk owners have not even bothered with the .uk option. Most major companies have not registered it and they could easily have spent the money.

    My advice is pay more and go for the .com, .com.au, .co.nz, .co.uk ETC. The end users and customers know and trust these extensions. If it is already registered try and buy it from the current owner or come up with another option but stick with those extensions.

    _________________
    After having tried numerous global extensions for trademark protection I have seen personally what failed, what was just a "Supply" con to black mail and scare existing registrants into defensive registrations and it was a pure waste of money.... people learn't and people did not renew!
    .TV was really hyped up years ago as an example... it is now pretty much dead.

    I firmly believe the information put out by some organisations in Australia that there was high demand and overwhelming majority support for a direct competing additional .au extension was false and in some cases the way it was marketed and put out was also misleading. Offering a "Yes Only" vote option in surveys to stack the yes vote result numbers was also in my view highly questionable and auDA should have taken action on those parties that did it.

    99% of existing .com.au registrants have not even been made aware of the "supply pushed" proposal for an additional competing .au extnsion still. Why not?? auDA and Ausregistry have the full database of every existing registrant to inform them and invite them to comment and lodge objections or input? Now the .uk and .nz results are published no one can claim they have been successful and Australia should follow down their failed path also.

    Where are the public disclosures how much auDA, Ausregistry / Neustar Inc USA etc will make from another .au extension per name registered and renewed? I did not see this sort of "transparency" on any surveys or the information put out motivating "yes" votes by numerous organisations and registrars/ resellers etc.
     
  2. DomainNames

    DomainNames Membership: Community

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    http://domainnamewire.com/2017/03/15/tld-registry-just-slashed-wholesale-prices-97/
    A TLD registry just slashed its wholesale prices up to 97%
    This company is taking the opposite approach of Uniregistry. Will it work?

    In light of Uniregistry’s sharp price increases for registering and renewing many of its top level domain names, it was interesting to learn this week that another registry is taking the opposite move.
     
  3. snoopy

    snoopy Membership: VIP

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    The best thing from all this is that even if .au comes in it will be a hopeless failure, with AUDA and Ausregistry in charge that much is a near certainty. This is from the people who brought us .id.au and .melbourne.

    The worst thing is that that many business will be convinced to defensively register names, and some domainers will likely hold onto these names for years as well.
     
  4. DomainNames

    DomainNames Membership: Community

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    Exit Music (notes for a new TLD round from a former nTLD manager)
    Francesco Cetraro
    Former Head of Registry Operations at .CLOUD... Taking some time off before I figure out what I want to do next
    After 2 intense, fun and rewarding years spent building .cloud from the ground up and seeing it take its first steps in the world (luckily, quite well as it turned out), I have decided it is now time for me to take some time off before figuring out what I want to do next. Early signs show that finding another project in the domain and hosting industry should not prove too difficult, but for the moment I am enjoying the liberating sensation of not having something lined up already and instead leaving the door open to the unexpected.

    Many years in the domain industry, and the last 2 at the helm of a new TLD Registry, have however given me the opportunity to reflect on the challenges that our industry faces.

    As the voices calling for a new round of TLD applications get louder, I wanted to take the opportunity to share some of the questions and issues that I have been contemplating, and that in part have brought me to the decision to take some time off.

    When we set to expand the original namespace, we did it with the objective of enhancing competition, consumer choice and innovation… So I naturally ask myself: "how well have we fared so far?" and "What can we learn from our experience?"



    1. Consumer choice - Emancipate yourself from mental slavery (of volume at all costs)
    A couple of years ago I stopped going to panels on new TLDs, as I found them repetitive, self-centered and quite frankly a bit depressing.

    A recurring theme is the problem of declining growth and the need to promote new TLDs (and domains in general) more aggressively to keep "hitting the numbers".

    When I look at the volumes achieved so far though, and particularly at their composition, I can't help but think that the domain industry lives very much in denial. The obsession with volume for the sake of volume reminds me of a similar debate a few years ago in the mobile app industry: having millions of downloads might make your slide deck look fancy, but it is user engagement that ultimately decides if your business is sustainable or not.

    In my mind, the objective of our business is to help regular "consumers" get online. These are the "high quality customers" that we all strive to attract. These are the people that build websites and put their domains to use, they renew every year and provide great material for case studies and inspiration for others. Regular people however typically only run a site or two, so their demand for domains is obviously limited.

    From this perspective, the sensible approach to evaluating the interest of domain investors and the uplift in volumes that they have brought so far, particularly in China, should have been to consider it a nice "extra boost", which hopefully also brought some revenue to those Registries that didn't simply give away their names for free. It is, however, a very short-sighted move to build your entire business on fantasy numbers and on the possible interest of speculators. That is, of course, unless your objective is to impress a potential investor/buyer and make a quick exit.

    I think it is time we finally move past the obsession with "pure" volume and start making actual usage levels and the percentage of quality business a TLD attracts the key metric on which we build our business plans and revenue models, and ultimately judge our success. The numbers and the growth curve will clearly not look as impressive and it will require not only a long-term vision but also plenty of hard work and commitment in order to reach stable footing, but this is definitely a healthier and more realistic approach to the business of selling domains to help real people get online.



    2. Competition – you just haven’t earned it yet...
    If one had to do a brief summary of the requirements of the 2012 Applicant Guidebook, it would all pretty much boil down to the question:

    "Do you have the cash to pay for your application fee?"
    After years of discussions, we ultimately decided that "the market" would be the sole arbiter of the nTLD program, so we never questioned whether the numbers provided were realistic or the business plans viable. As long as applicants were able to provide enough money to cover all the costs, the answer (with a few exceptions) was pretty much "just go ahead and do as you please".

    Given the scenario was very much "pay to play", should we be surprised when certain actors try to make their business profitable by adopting questionable business tactics, or when a Registry suddenly decides that customers should pay more for domains in TLDs that are struggling for profitability and were probably not a great idea in the first place?

    Just to be clear, I am not blaming anyone for putting all their efforts in trying to recover their investment and making money with their extensions. I know that there are many Registries out there that are doing a terrific job and that genuinely and passionately strive every day to build real value for their users. Nonetheless, I think that we can all agree that in the process we also ended up with a handful of nTLDs (and their operators) that we would have happily done without. Moreover, and if we add to the bunch the few others that simply did not have the resources to live through the long winter nobody planned for, the overall picture certainly raises a lot of questions.

    And here is the other problem: we have already seen a few examples of struggling, smaller players being bought by bigger competitors that enjoy better economy of scale, highlighting how the system we crafted ultimately favours consolidation, reducing competition instead of promoting it.

    Whilst we might love to blame ICANN "the organization" for all the problems of our industry and in this instance the 'less than stellar' performance of the nTLD program so far, we should keep in mind that it was ICANN "the community" that wrote that handbook and decided the rules of the game in the first place. Maybe we were naive, maybe we fell for the sweet talk of those that had the most to gain, but we simply did set the bar too low. So while there is definitely a lot of room for improvement in the way "the organization" manages its tasks, it is really upon us "the community" to make sure that next time we demand more from the applicants and make sure that we all to reap the benefits of true competition and consumer choice.
     
  5. DomainNames

    DomainNames Membership: Community

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    3. Innovation – Is there life beyond the A record?
    A good, short, clear domain name can be a great marketing tool, and nTLDs have definitely brought new opportunities to add context to a web-presence.

    That said, I have to admit that every time someone (usually with a not-so-covert agenda) talks about "the innovative power of new TLDs" I throw up a little in my mouth. Let's be honest: having more options to call your website is not innovative, it’s novelty at best.

    What is interesting (and occasionally maybe innovative) is what some people are doing with their domains, but that is something that as an industry we can hardly take credit for. This is also why, no matter how much money we decide to throw at "awareness campaigns", we are still very much failing to find effective ways to engage users and get them excited about domain names.

    The problem is, however, systemic. The ICANN model is traditionally based on the assumption that a Registry will sell its product exclusively through a channel of accredited Registrars, who in turn (one way or another) are all selling fundamentally the same set of hosting products and web-focused services.

    Whilst originally this system did contribute to the development of the Internet by providing consumer choice and driving down the prices, it has also become the "golden standard" to which everything has to conform if it wants a chance at "making it" commercially. When even those few that tried to do something different eventually end up quietly coming back to the herd with their head down, it isn’t really that hard to understand why everybody decided to "play it safe". The result was 1000+ new extensions that all do pretty much the same thing: point to a website.

    If anything, this perfectly defines the antithesis of innovation. It’s a mature, slow and self-centered status-quo that exists within a bubble and is blissfully unaware of what is really going on in the outside world. I am guessing this is what the Salon must have looked like at the end of the 19th century, enjoying its unopposed dominance only to be swept away by the disruptive force of the Impressionists shortly after. How long can we really keep our game up before reality catches up?

    With the prospect of a new round of nTLDs on the horizon, we as a community have however the great opportunity to be part of that disruption movement and be true to our mission of innovation.

    ICANN currently sits on a lot of money and it’s money that many would like to see used to "promote nTLDs". But ICANN’s job is not to "sell domains", but more so to serve the community of internet users that trust it to manage this common resource for the greater good. Needless to say, and instead of subsidizing "a solution in search of a problem", perhaps that money would be better spent supporting true innovation in this space.

    In a world that increasingly puts its faith in startups to show us the way forward, why not spend some of this money running hackathons and supporting projects to find and develop new ways to use the DNS? Why not offer grants to expand the pool of potential Registry operators and allow organizations that cannot afford the application fees to run a "commercial" extension to bring their contribution to the table?
     
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  6. DomainNames

    DomainNames Membership: Community

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    The new TLD'S HAVE FAILED. MORE DOMAIN NAME EXTENSIONS IS NOT "INNOVATION".

    AUDA, AUDA BOARD , SUPPLY. It's time to learn from other mistakes and not follow their mistakes.
    INNOVATION IS:

    • More competitive pricing.. when was the last wholesale .com.au price reduction?
    • When did auDA kast actively promote the benefits of .com.au and .net ,.au etc are useful for Australians etc?
    • When did supply, auDA, Ausregistry offer any features and benefits for existing .com.au and .net .au owners?
    • When is the FREE CHANGE OF REGISTRANT coming into policy?
    • When is the wholesale regiostry going to international open public tender?
    • When is auDA announcing the results and taking action from it's audit of Supply stacking the demand auDA membership?
    • When is the 1 - 10 year regisration option available in Australia?
    • When will auDA reduce it's own fee's and expenses?
    • When will auDA give back to the registrants owners the $10 million+ it has accumulated in profits? How about no renewal fees for 3 years for all existing registrants?
     
  7. snoopy

    snoopy Membership: VIP

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    Things have certainly changed in the last few months with registries basically just stating the program to be a failure with no uptake. I think blind Freddy can see this now and Ausregistry will have a lot of trouble getting far with its arguments of increased competition to .com.au from new tlds.

    The .au rollout itself will cause more outside competition as some decide to choose .com and avoid the whole .au/.com.au mess in my view.
     
  8. snoopy

    snoopy Membership: VIP

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    Take money off the .com.au table or at least don't invest!
     
  9. DomainNames

    DomainNames Membership: Community

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    This is factual and worthy of everyone reading.. sorry to Supply Registrars, Resellers, some auDA Board Supply members whose organisations have been trying to promote these "failing" domain name extensions.. the truth is now out as the registration, renewal and drop statistics show.

    http://nameexperts.com/2017/04/13/com-still-king-market/
    " .com is still king of the market
    By Joe Uddeme / April 13, 2017 / Brand Development, GTLD vs. .com / 0 Comments
    News flash, .COM is king!! The new GTLD market appears to be losing its luster. Yep, that’s right the craze seems to be fading as investors start to realize that it’s going to take many years to reap the longer-term investment.

    According to the Domains, 9 out of 10 registrants of the new GTLDS are Chinese investors. There are also more than three million domains listed as upcoming delete. Could we say that the novelty has worn off?

    There are many speculators in the domain business with many investors targeting low-cost alternative investments such as the GTLD. Here’s the problem…

    ICANN has authorized more than 1500 GTLD strings and the release has dumped so much new inventory into the current market. Basic supply and demand. This drives down the long-term value of the new strings and thus-creates limited opportunity to increase in value.

    Couple that with the fact that 90 percent or more of all GTLD strings are not marketed effectively and are primarily unknown to most investors.

    This is a recipe for disaster as we are starting to see now.

    As we have previously reported the demise of the GTLD is beginning. We will start to see a steady increase in the value of the .com again. Brands understand the value of long-term equity and credibility. They also understand that their domain name is the foundation for growth and success.

    We have always been bullish on the .com and have gone on record as saying that the GTLDS would have limited success. Look at the underwhelming performance of the legacy tld’s that entered the market after .com/.net/,.org.

    .Pro, .mobi, .us, .info are all underperforming. It certainly made a ton of sense to add more inventory to the marketplace.

    These strings should have been reviewed by ICANN before releasing more strings in an effort to add money to their coffers.

    Write it down-The demise of the GTLD has begun, and will continue for the foreseeable future. The only value in GTLD is for the smaller, regional businesses that need a low-cost alternative for their digital real estate.

    .COM is KING and will remain the premier beach-front real estate…" I would add to this .com.au for Australians, co.uk for the UK and .co.nz for NZ.. The direct .uk and .nz .sydney,
    .melbourne etc etc have failed miserably.
     
  10. snoopy

    snoopy Membership: VIP

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    Even .net is on the skids, the flight to quality seems to be building, note also the big difference over the last 13 years, .com up 6 fold whilst .net up 4 fold. The last few years though have been particular bad though since Icann vastly increased supply of 2nd rate tlds


    http://www.registrarstats.com/TLDHistoryChart.aspx?TLDName=NET

    http://www.registrarstats.com/TLDHistoryChart.aspx?TLDName=COM


    Agree also about .melbourne and .sydney, the government has been massively outplayed by Ausregistry. They wisely stroked those government's ego's to have their own tld and taxpayers now have a big bill on two failed extensions.

    .com.au is going to come under increased pressure aswell with a rollout of .au. It will be "flight to safety" in similar style to what is happening with 2nd rate tlds vs .com but I don't think people will necessarily see .com.au as safety any more. It is a bit like a country printing more notes when times get tough, some people just move their money elsewhere.

    In short I expect more of a movement among Australian companies to .com in coming years, it will move beyond just the banks and some very large companies in my view. Think we'll see move medium and smaller businesses adopting .com over the next 10 years because of the confusion and lack of stability in .au.
     
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  11. johno69

    johno69 Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
    I tend to agree here.
     
  12. DomainNames

    DomainNames Membership: Community

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    https://onlinedomain.com/2017/05/22/opinions/just-dropped-198-new-gtld-domains-saved-45000/
    "Just dropped 198 New gTLD domains and saved $45,000
    Konstantinos Zournas May 22, 2017 Domain Name News, New gTLDs, Opinions 40 Comments

    [​IMG]
    Just saved about $45,000 of future renewals by dropping 200+ domains, including 198 New gTLDs.

    This is the review of my domain name renewals and drops in the months of March and April 2017.

    I had about 1,568 domains in many different extensions expiring in the months March and April. These are busier months than usual.

    DROPS

    I had 276 New gTLD domains expiring for a total renewal cost of $7,255. Most of my New gTLDs are in Donuts extensions.

    I decided to drop 198 of them that had a $4,508 total yearly renewal cost. The average renewal price of these dropped domains was about $23. I dropped about 72% of my New gTLDs.

    So these domains were not too expensive in average but were a lot of them and in extensions that don’t sell. 125 of them were .photos (photographers don’t pay anything for domains) and .domains. I guess you all know about domainers and their love/hate relationship with New gTLDs and also how they are not paying much money to fellow domainers.

    I am not only dropping New gTLDs. I also dropped 19 other domains: 5 .com, 2 .net, 1 .org, 6 .info, 1 .biz and 4 .us. But that is a very low percentage compared to the New gTLDs.

    Here are a few of the domains I dropped:

    friend.photos
    star.photos
    england.domains
    revenue.domains
    gay.holiday
    england.marketing
    select.photo
    redcarpet.photo
    freelance.photo
    grey.photo
    greek.photo
    infrared.photo
    extreme.agency
    glamour.agency
    carribean.us
    internetbusiness.biz
    bistrot.us
    adultshow.org
    distill.info
    greektv.net
    tissues.info
    fiestas.info
    excaliber.info
    humiliation.info
    manipulation.info

    and here are some more domains I dropped:

    remote.training
    unlimited.training
    blog.systems
    open.training
    custom.training
    broadway.agency
    architecture.agency
    europe.agency
    adult.agency
    hollywood.agency
    logistics.link
    revenue.domains
    list.domains
    branding.domains
    country.domains
    blackandwhite.photos
    restore.photos
    agency.photos
    company.photos
    website.photos
    original.photos
    platinum.photos
    quality.photos

    RENEWALS

    I renewed 78 of my New gTLDs for a total of $2,747. The average renewal price was about $35 so you see that is not always about price but it is a combination of price and quality.

    I follow my 10 rules and decide firstly based on quality and potential and then on renewal price.

    I renewed New gTLDs domains such as:
    sold.domains
    e.repair
    sport.marketing
    sports.marketing
    weed.farm
    print.green
    o.domains
    t.domains
    q.domains
    r.domains
    usa.repair
    like.photos

    There are 14 domains out of 78 with a renewal price of over $40. These bring up the average renewal.

    My average on the 550+ New gTLDs I had at the end of 2016 was at about $40. I see this average coming down to about $35-$36 when 2017 is over. I have already dropped 223 New gTLDs in the 1st 4 months of 2017. I don’t expect that many drops in the coming months.

    I renewed about 1,273 domains in .com, .net, .org, .info, .biz and .us in these 2 months. So the percentage of dropped domains in these extensions is very low compared to the New gTLD percentage.

    DISCUSSION

    I don’t liquidate my domains by selling them for $5 or $10. That takes too much time for me that simply it is not worth my time. I just drop them. But that is just me. I very rarely flip domains.

    So by dropping 198 New gTLD domains I actually saved $45,000 in renewals from these drops as I consider all domains as at least a 10 year investment.

    These renewals and drops were decided before the Uniregistry wholesale price increase and the Uniregistry retail price increase. And I had started dropping New gTLDs in January and February.

    This has not changed much about my New gTLD strategy except maybe it will make me drop more of the (very few) domains in the Uniregitry extensions that I have. I am just telling you this to not think that Frank’s decisions affected my decisions. I had done this review in February.

    (If you want to read more about my New gTLD investment you can read here and here.)

    This is not something new. I am always reevaluating and dropping domain names. I had decided to cut down on my New gTLD renewals and I should have done it last year. But last year I was very busy making money selling to the Chinese! I didn’t have time to do proper reevaluation. This takes time but also it also saves a lot of money in the long run as you can see.

    But New gTLDs were fresh out of the market in 2014 and I did some mistakes. The most important mistake was buying domains in extensions that people don’t want to pay any money for (like .photos or .gallery) or buying domains that weren’t taken in many other extensions. The other mistake I did was buying a lot of domains where the .com equivalent was for sale at a very low price. No one will pay $1,500 (and have a $40 renewal) if the .com costs just $2,000.

    I mostly made the mistake of rushing in and not following my own rules. I have a few rules on deciding what domains to drop and what to renew and I follow them when deciding what to buy too. "
     
  13. snoopy

    snoopy Membership: VIP

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    Out of interest I see .melbourne is now being offered for $9.95 on GoDaddy, discounted 90%. Still it is shrinking,

    https://ntldstats.com/tld/melbourne

    Apparently they have staff and are spending a fortune still promoting it. Must be $5-$10 million wasted by now by the govt?
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2017
    Scott.L and DomainNames like this.
  14. snoopy

    snoopy Membership: VIP

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    The fallout continues as Tucows (2nd largest registrar in the world- 29 million domains) discontinues 9 Uniregistry extensions, I'm pretty surprised they aren't even allowing renewals after Sept.

     
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  15. DomainNames

    DomainNames Membership: Community

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    Wow that is major news and a good example. Let's see if Uniregistry posts here in DNtrade or tweets about this....

    It seems to be a self inflicted wound by Uniregistry? Did they know the GLTDS's are failing so why not price gauge the few owners who bought them before they drop them all together?

    Their promotion for 10 cent GLTD'S had many registrations but then most people dropped them at renewal time.

    https://twitter.com/domainking?lang=en

    https://onlinedomain.com/2017/03/08...-killed-new-gtld-domain-name-program-warning/
    Frank Schilling just killed the New gTLD domain name program (Warning!)
     
  16. Scott.L

    Scott.L Membership: Trader

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
  17. DomainNames

    DomainNames Membership: Community

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  18. snoopy

    snoopy Membership: VIP

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    Frank Schilling summed up the problem with the ntld program well,

    “1000 applications and no uptake”

    In my view he is doing the right thing for his business, obviously bad for consumer confidence but the whole ntld area is a disaster anyway.
     
  19. Scott.L

    Scott.L Membership: Trader

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    auDA Member:
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    LOL...turn the chart for actual growth rate.

    yeah, the dot generic restricts a brand to that extension unlike a .com which can expand beyond the box that the dot anything encloses. the gTLD fails because there is only a limited number of workable keyword inclusions to the extension. take; paint.eco it immediately boxes in the company to environmentally friendly paint alternatives whereas, paint.com contains expandable alternatives and allows the .com to include the enviro elements into its site.

    The high cost to buy a dot generic is stupid from a business investment view - if a business were to buy paint.eco for $500+ pa and renew it over 10 years @ $500 pa rather than buying a .com alternative such as, paintright.com which may cost $5k and renew over 10 years @ $10pa = $100 which one would derive the best ROI. Yes, the .com

    the .com became very valuable because it is non-generic and the only extension people could buy, 20 years later - introducing dot generic at stupid inflated prices sucked in many people very quickly into the speculation phase craze only to find out its basically flawed


    .
     
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  20. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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    this conversation could be flipped to bitcoin couldn't it? i mean we are all saying OMG i wish i bought in at $0.03 i'd have made a motza.
    so this is all hindsight, we could be trashing people who invested in bitcoin right now !

    thats just the business, any business
    tim