The Wall Street Journal discussed gripe sites, sites set up by consumers to complain about big companies, using the name of the company in their domain name.
WSJ cited starbucked.com, ihatestarbucks.com, boycottwalmart.org and againstthewal.com.
The article went on to say that companies are handling these types of sites differently.
Xerox, for example, bought or registered about 20 unflattering domain names, including xeroxstinks.com, xeroxcorporationsucks.com and ihatexerox.net.
Other companies, such as Dell, have taken a more hands-off approach. DellisEvil.com, MyDellSux.com and IHateDell.info are for sale, but the computer maker says it has no interest in buying them.
The WSL states
“While companies can’t pull down a negative YouTube video or erase a critical Twitter post, they have more power when it comes to domain names.”
However the article did not cite or discuss any companies that attempted to take domains through legal proceedings.
Instead the Journal cited a study, by FairWinds Partners, a Internet strategy consulting firm, which looked at sites that end in the word “sucks.com.” According to Fairwinds there are approximately 20,000 domains on the Internet in that category.
Of the companies surveyed, 35% own the domain name for their brand followed by the word “sucks.” They include Wal-Mart Stores, Coca-Cola, Toys”R”Us, Target and Whole Foods Market.
Some 45% of these domains have yet to be registered by anyone.
The study found that the majority of companies that do own these domain names publish no content on them.
However some companies have put up content on their owned gripe sites.
Loewssucks.com (a reference to the AMC Theatres chain) sees a guest-satisfaction survey.
Visitors to Southwestsucks.com are directed to the customer-service page on Southwest Airlines‘ site, where they can submit official complaints.
An interesting article indeed.