The Rick Latona auction, for the pre-land rush .cm domains, opens for online bidding, right now, at 8PM EST, July 7 and closes on July 14th.
In this exclusive auction, there are 46 .CM domains that will not be available in the landrush and will only available through this auction
Here is a complete list of the domains including reserve price:
To bid on the auction you need to go to proxibid.com/ricklatona.
All registration and technical questions regarding Proxibid registration and bidding can be answered by calling toll free 877.505.7770 from inside the US or +1.402.505.7770 from outside the US.
My thoughts on this auction are as follows:
If you have operating sites, isome of these domains seem like no-brainers, like poker.cm & casino.cm, if your operating a gambling site, both are well worth the $20K. Domains like forex.cm, loan.cm and creditcards.cm as you know are valuable, high paying traffic and I think worth the money if you have operating sites in these areas.
I also like cars.cm, games.cm, maps.cm, date.cm and bodybuilding.cm (I wrote a post on bodybuilding.com last week, huge site with huge traffic)
However some of these domains seem like trademark nightmares, with plenty of legal bills to follow, including abc.cm, aaa.cm, coach.cm, playboy.cm and gap.cm, to name a few.
If the term is trademarked and the .com is going to the trademark holder, I would not be a buyer of the .cm version.
Of course for the trademark holder it would be well worth $1k to buy, say playboy.cm, and avoid the hassle and expense of getting the domain.
All other .cm will be available through the landrush that starts the day after this auction ends, July 15th, and for more info on that, read this post.
I simply don’t understand how this helps our industry?
A country has a right to operate a registry for its ccTLD, so its not really a question of how it helps the industry, its Cameroon’s right to do it and its happening.
By the end of August, tens or maybe hundreds of thousands .cm will be registered and operating.
Let’s hope professional domainers stay away from the trademarked ones.
I’m also just letting you know my opinion that if your going for a domain like poker.cm I have no problem with it, but playboy.cm is an entirely different matter.
MHB, I hear you but this is bound to get negative press. In fact it legitimizes URS considering how low our penetration is for domain education. The main stream media will take a story like this and wring every last pulp out of it.
The best defense is a good offensive.
The story is going to get reported.
The extension is going to be launched, the best we can do is recommend that people stay away from the trademarks.
However we all know some idot is going to register gooole.cm, verison.cm and all the rest.
Hopefully no “professional” domainer will engage in the trademark .cm, and will take a stand against them.
Regarding directadvertising I think it was a fair price
Coach.CM, Guess.CM, AE.CM, Guess.CM, Gap.CM
I personally rather not be affiliated with something like this, especially at a small scale. I also would rather not have Rick Latona affiliated with something like this because I consider him to be a pillar in our secondary domain market. I don’t think any of these domains are worth developing unless it’s a geo domain or unless you are actually targeting people who are looking for specific CM content, such as travel information or local information.
I’m sure the folks in the Commerce Dept. of Cameroon know how to add and subtract and since CPC has tanked they decided to sell the domains?
google.cm has been getting monetized for years now.
Anyway I can go and on but the law is what it is and you know it better than I do.
All of the above is just my personal opinion
Ed you are 100 % correct IMO and people can spin it anyway they like, what matters is the perception of reality and TM groups will use this as another feather. I think the owner of Poker.com can go after the owner of Poker.cm and unless it is a site owned by a Cameroon business they will win the UDRP the URS the GFY whatever you like. Again IMO
“some idot is going to register gooole.cm, verison.cm and all the rest.”
Mike, I can assure you typosquatters are usually pretty intelligent folks. I am sure you know and like few personally and you either do not know they are or just ignore that fact.
I all of the intelligent “typosquatters” as you call them have gotten even smarter and do not engage in this activity any longer and have been letting infringing domains go and do not believe you will see them holding domains like verison.cm or gooogle.cm
Lets take coach for example. first of all it is a generic term. I am sure they have a trademark in the USA, but do they have one in other countries, like Cameroon? They don’t own the domains coach.co.uk or coach.de for example. Just because someone has a TM in one country and owns the .com doesn’t entitle the person or company to the domains in all ccTLDs.
If it comes to domains like yahoo.cm (which is now owned by yahoo) it is a different issue. It is not really a generic term and they have trademarked it in almost all countries.
I have a question regarding acceptable use for this TLD. I don’t know enough to do anything more than to ask this question. Below is a hypothetical situation. I need to understand whether there are legal issues that should be addressed or whether the scenario presented is perfectly acceptable:
If I register a generic, non-trademarked .cm, but it just so happens that years ago a .com domain with the exact same generic name was launched and has been operating as a fully developed website (not a parked page), what is the result when a returning customer to the .com website slips on the keyboard and types my .cm version of the address into the URL address bar instead of the .com he or she had intended to type.
If both domain owners are using the website for it’s generic descriptive purpose, there is a possibility that the site visitor to my .cm website will not realize that he or she has landed on the wrong page. Do I have a responsibility to ensure that visitors intending to visit the .com site are not allowed to believe the site they have landed is their intended destination? Would I need to protect myself by providing a splash page that informs the site visitor they have landed on a .cm website and that if they wanted the .com site, they should click on a provided .com link?
While trademark law may not be the issue, I’m concerned that some other legal doctrine may apply. Am I overthinking this or are there issues of which I should be aware? Thank you.
I don’t see that you need to put up a splash screen. If a domain exists in .es and also in .se which owner would have to setup the splash screen ?
The owner of the .com has the same chances to get the .cm in landrush like you have, well maybe they have the deeper pockets and thus their chances are higher.
The question I have is do the .com / TM owners know of this auction?
Has anyone contacted Virgin, Playboy and Guess etc?
Does everyone remember what happened to the .me domains where some people bid $90k for TM domains and lost them later!
Any domainer that has been in the game for some time knows from experience don’t touch a TM its not worth the hassle, I believe in Risk but TM names are just stupid even if you are a newbie and use that excuse its not acceptable – C’mon people we can all tell the difference between right & wrong!
If you owned a brand like Virgin, playboy or similar would you stand for someone infringing on your TM?
Simple answer NO!
The issue I have here is that these TM owners might not know about the auction and then a domainer buys it and next thing we know we have a court case and domainers get more negative light online and in the newspapers.
I hope I’m wrong and that they do know and I don’t blame Rick Latona for this but its something we need to do if we are going to launch these cctlds let TM owners know of this.
Only my thoughts.
The big question: What kind of typo percentage can a .cm extension expect overall?
Domain Investor says
We have been saying for years that major corporations should own some generic domains to promote their own brands. In the long run, it is cheap, continuous traffic for them.
Doesn’t this apply to us?
If I had a developed site on (for example) LuxuryBedding.com, wouldn’t it make sense to own Bedding.cm, sheets.cm, pillows.cm ?
As we get older, our eyes start to go. Which means we will mistype and not notice it.
And, more and more people are using a smartphone (ie., iphone, blackberry) with a small screen to search. And, sometimes we mistype.
If you have a long term strategy for a developed website, it might be a good idea to buy some of the generic .cm.
If its a generic name like poker.com which is an operating site, but not trademarked and you buy poker.cm, In my opinion you don’t need to put up a splash page.
However its not a situation that has ever been tested and anyone can sue anyone for anything, so always consult with your attorney.
I have no idea of it they have to haven’t trademarked their domain in Cameroon.
I think .cm are going to be treated differently in courts and by hearing officers than other country codes, just my opinion.
If you register coach.cm, and it has one link to handbags or any accessories coach.com sells, your going to lose the domain. If you use it to set up a like sports site, from a coaches perspective you probably will be fine, but how you are going to convert women looking for handbags into buying sports apparel is a whole different question.
And aren’t there .com’s you can buy for a few thousand dollars you can do the same with and not have the hassle
I agree with you, on everything but the iphone, which has a .com button, so you don’t have to type it or have the change to miss-type it
That is the big question. I have heard numbers all over the place but the only ones who knows are the guys who bought the .cm at the Amsterdam Auctions
“However its not a situation that has ever been tested and anyone can sue anyone for anything, so always consult with your attorney.”
If this TLD is perceived as deriving a significant portion of its value on the basis that it will pick up typo .com traffic, would this make a difference? In other words, why is this TLD different from any other ccTLD that is currently being offered?
That is the argument, from the domain holders perspective but from the trademark holders perspective its different because it is by nature a typo of .com as apposed to almost every other country code.
I wonder why they’re selling these .cm names – Aren’t they making the best revenues possible off of these? It is pretty much saying someone won’t make a return on their investment on a parked site :P…
Surely .cm knows who to hire for monetization
Domain Investor says
If the local McDonald’s advertises its address as
111 Maine St.
And, Wendy builds a restaurant at 111 Main St.
Is Wendy wrong for doing that?
Is it wrong for State Farm Insurance to have a phone number as
110-110-1111. And, AllState Ins. realizing it might be a good idea to
own 110-110-1100. Is that wrong?
Are the following country codes purposely created to infringe on the top tlds?
If my name is George Bush, do I have to say everytime I call and leave my name that I’m not the former president?
Point being, do we have to over regulate everything?
Common Sense has to enter sometime.
Rules in the online world are different than the offline world and trademark holders see the online world very differently:
See our lastest post:
What about these references?
These references are from the UK and Canada, but I suspect there are similar laws in most jurisdictions.
With all the available resources within the domain industry, is there a trademark attorney who could address these issues for us and provide a little guidance?
Why wouldn’t this be a part of business as usual for the launch of a new TLD? Or is each domainer expected to retain the services of a trademark attorney and have this these issues addressed on an individual basis over and over gain?
How much are the registration fees for .cm per year?
Are they $300/year with 2 year minimum?
Think it $350 for 2 years minimum
A quick reading of the case sited in the first article from the UK seems to deal with actual products and the sales of Goods:
“It is essential for the plaintiffs in a passing off action to show at least the following facts:
(1) that his business consists of, or includes, selling in England a class of goods to which the particular trade name applies;
(2) that the class of goods is clearly defined, and that in the minds of the public, or a section of the public, in England, the trade name distinguishes that class from other similar goods;
(3) that because of the reputation of the goods, there is a goodwill attached to the name;
(4) that he, the plaintiff, as a member of the class of those who sell the goods, is the owner of goodwill in England which is of substantial value;
(5) that he has suffered, or is really likely to suffer, substantial damage to his property in the goodwill by reason of the defendants selling goods which are falsely described by the trade name to which the goodwill is attached.”
I think the issue turns on whether a parked page amounts to the sale of goods and my first impression that this law would not apply.
Now as to the second case in Canada it would seem to apply
How much traffic can you expect from these .cm domains?
Here is my guess:
1,000,000 visitors/day .com = 100 visitors/day .cm
100,000 visitors/day .com = 10 visitors/day .cm
10,000 visitors/day .com = 1 visitor/day .cm
The top heavy traffic domains probably get 1 to 10 unique visitors per day…so an average of 5 unique visitors per day.
With 40% click thru rate…this equals to only 2 clicks per day.
With a high paying $1.00/click…this equals to $2/day.
$2/day x 3 years typo income equals to about $2000.
So the best high traffic .cm domains are probably worth about $2000.
And thats not even considering the high renewal fees of $300/year on these .cm domain names.
So, are these .cm domain names worth investing in…what do you guys think???
If your “guesses ” are accurate then I would say if you can register a non-infringing .cm for registration costs of $350 for the first 2 years, then some would be.
If your numbers are off then it can be less or more profitable, however, my guess is your numbers are probably lower than higher than actual results
domains like myspace.cm, yahoo.cm and the alike are getting around 20K-30K uniques a day. From there is numbers go down. so some of the generics will have over 1000 visitors a day, other will be below. If you want to get a better feeling for the .CM or .OM or .CO traffic you need to understand where does a traffic from a .COM (for .CM also look at .CN) come from, is it backlinks, advertisement or pure type in traffic.
prices for landrush start somewhere at Euros 220 for 2 years and for go live prices start from around Euros 140
It’s obvious that you don’t own a company. When you work hard, spending hundreds of thousands if not millions branding and publicizing your name only to have someone hold your name hostage it needs regulating. I think all trademark holders should be given the right of first refusal at a reasonable price for all the tlds. That of course will never happen because some people still think Apple is a generic term but we all know what people are really looking for when we type in apple.com. In reply to your they should have bought it. The answer is simple, these tlds were added and they aren’t being given the right to buy them at a reasonable price. They are being offered at 20K, it is ransom not an offering. As for the address thing and the Bush thing, I don’t get the relevance. My final advice would be to get a lawyer because I just have this feeling down the road that you’re going to need one.
So if there are several compaines with the same trademark, let’s say a german company with a TM for xyz and and US company with TM for xyz who should get the .de domain?
Domain Investor says
It’s obvious that you don’t own a company.”
If you only knew how funny that is.
Great question and with that question it blows my idea apart. I stand corrected but no matter how much we discuss we still know that many of these domains are being valued and sold purely based on their ability to get type in traffic from companies that have built the given dot com. I don’t have an answer but I do know the difference between right a wrong, at least the obvious and this is obvious.
I don’t know how funny that is. Squatting is wrong and I don’t condone it, no matter what excuses and examples are given. There’s better ways to make money in domaining.
Tech Crunch released a post tonight on the .cm landrush.
“The big question: What kind of typo percentage can a .cm extension expect overall?”
Any business plan that integrates typo traffic from established websites as a key element to its successful launch is a business plan that I would run past my lawyer before pursuing.
Whatever the legal implications of such a plan, there are also moral and ethical implications as well. My rule of thumb is not to piggyback on the success of others to turn a profit when the result would be to usurp or siphon business that is clearly trying to go somewhere else.
When I heard an author speaking to an audience of several million listeners to announce a new book, I checked to see if the the book title, “The Soul Genome” was registered as a domain name.When I saw that it was not, I registered it and immediately sent this email to the author:
“…… knowing the size of the Coast to Coast AM audience, it’s possible another person could register the domain names “TheSoulGenome.com” & “SoulGenome.com”, so I registered the domains – but only to hold them until I can transfer them over to you. I’m not looking to add these domains to my company’s portfolio or to be compensated for these registrations. It was just an opportunity for me to ensure that the names would go to you….”
I sent a similar email when I picked up GarryTrudeau.com (creator of Doonesbury) from a dropped list. That domain will soon be transferred to Mr. Trudeau without cost or charge of any kind. Over the years, there have been several other defensive registrations like this.
I only mention this now because I believe our conduct, as domainers, speaks volumes about the nature of our business and who we are. At best, making a business out of targeting typo traffic intended for an established website is a short sighted plan that is sure to raise eyebrows among the trademark holders we share domain space with. At worst, it can serve as justification for the kind of restrictive rules and regulations that can potentially end the business of domaining as we know it.
For now, we have the ability to turn the tide, but it’s not going to happen by itself.
SDM, I have to say that’s very noble of you and there’s obviously a helping of good will in your outlook which in all honesty a lot of domainers may want to realize and adopt if the industry “going forward” is to promote and uphold any kind of integrity. After all, we as a community hold a great deal of power when it comes down to the distribution of domain names, we’ve been snapping up and squatting on anything that moves for almost two decades – but now the tide is changing as the public are beginning to become more educated and aware of what a domain name is and their escalating values.
Invariably general internet businesses are beginning to see us as a threat to the ownership and acquisition of domain names, which they feel should be regulated in respect of fair practice and more importantly TM conflicts – companies need to protect the assets and identity which they have taken time and investment to create, surely it can’t be compromised by a preditorial domainer 🙂
It’s hotting up out there guys and gals, this subject has been brewing for quite some time and with the release of .CM it’s most definitely a pilot for the argument. I don’t really have any advice on what .CM domains you should be acquiring but at this point in the game, the use of tact and common sense may prevail and avoid you some meaty expenses further down the line – this is the stage we’ve reached.
Be careful out there!
BTW: Anunt, your way off the mark with your figures, SnickSnack is more in line with the percentage, in my experience I would say it’s around 3-4% TR “typo rate” on the .CM extension.
Domain Investor says
SDM quote –
What about these references? ”
Shane quote –
I don’t know how funny that is. Squatting is wrong and I don’t condone it, no matter what excuses and examples are given. There’s better ways to make money in domaining.”
I’m not promoting cybersquatting.
But, I feel a generic term like “drugs”, “shopping”, “casino”, etc, etc
are fair game.
If Shell oil has a gas station on one corner, Exxon can build a station on the opposite corner unless Shell owns that property.
I don’t have any plans on buying any .cm (or any of the other tlds mentioned) but I feel that country (thru a service) has the right to sell generic domains.
I’m not promoting the registration of exxon, yahoo, google, verizon, etc because they are very specific words. But, generic words can be used by others including “shell” “ibm” “cars”
Domain Investor says
And, one other example came to mind.
I don’t know if it is registered or not.
But if I reg’d Bing.cm last summer (Aug., 08) and MS introduces Bing.com in June, 09, I’m positive they would scream “FOUL” if I used it as parked page.
“….I feel that country (thru a service) has the right to sell generic domains.”
To the extent that hundreds or even thousands of unique visitors per month have the specific intention to visit the website (URL) published at any given TLD, no problem. However, if the primary objective of the domain owner is to profit by knowingly receiving typo traffic intended for another website, this is not about a country’s “right to sell generic domain names.” This is about the propriety of choices being made by domainers.
If a bank clerk makes an accounting typo that mistakenly deposits $1,000/month into the wrong customer’s account, is the owner of the account with the unexpected $1,000 monthly windfall entitled to benefit from this mistake?
If a parked page is the recipient of knowing typo traffic that generates $1,000/month for the domain owner, is this domain owner any more entitled to benefit from this mistake than the account owner in the previous example?
If a phishing scam is defined as a sophisticated, proactive marketing scheme for generating misdirected traffic, what do we call “natural” misdirected traffic that leads site visitors to believe they have arrived at their intended destination?
If a splash landing page prominently displays links to both TLD websites (with thumbnails images of each), would this be a satisfactory way to resolve this issue and ensure that visitor traffic is delivered to its intended destination?
“If a splash landing page prominently displays links to both TLD websites (with thumbnails images of each), would this be a satisfactory way to resolve this issue and ensure that visitor traffic is delivered to its intended destination?”
I don’t see a need for a splash screen. Should the holder of the .com or .CN also setup a splash screen ?
What about in a case where someone actually wants to go to loan.com but types in loan.com and ends up at BOA? Should BOA setup a splash screen and asking ?
I remember when Kevin Ham wildcarded .CM lots of peole were calling it a scam, asking for classs action suit and all the BS. Most of the people were jealous, because they could pull it off themselves (I also was jealous, but the better man won). Back then people were screaming it should be open for registration, now as they open people complain again.
Cameroon has the right to let people & companie register the domains. Not only domainers can register also companies can get their domains.
was supposed to be loan.com and loans.com , not twice loan.com. Sorry
Thanks for your comments.
Unfortunately, the relationship between domainer and trademark holder has long been adversarial. It doesn’t have to be that way. No other group is more uniquely qualified to assist trademark holders than the domain industry. It doesn’t have to be “us vs. them.” We can successfully partner. No joke.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT*
Monetary rewards, domain name credits and assorted other prizes could await domainers that stumble across domains that clearly belong to celebrities or trademark holders. Daily/Weekly/Monthly competitions. Lots of possibilities. Registrars would provide special codes that are redeemed for free regs and even keep track of the top domainer participants. Domains registered according to this program would be held in a special account for the benefit of the celebrity or tm holder. Don’t worry about particulars – everybody knows how to make rules. That’s what the registrars have lawyers for. They can pretend it’s just another TOS “update”.
Trademark holders can place orders for high traffic domains according to specific criteria that contain their actual trademark. They’re worthless to us, so why shouldn’t we be paid to help round ‘em up. Maybe a flat fee or a bid system. Now we get to make a money doing stuff that previously got us carted off to the woodshed.
“Hold for just a sec…CADNA on line one!”
A clearinghouse exclusively for domainers and domain names. We put the best and the brightest minds together to determine a successful process for getting a generic domain names “cleared for launch”. If it passes the DnPreflight inspection, you’re good to go with the support of the domain industry behind you. If up to $1,000,000 protection is available for victims of ID theft, there has got to be an insurance company that will underwrite the reduced risks presented by a domain that has been Cleared4Launch.
A catch-all for anything else that would make both the tm holders and our mothers proud. If it meets this two-prong test, it must be the right thing. Actively partnering with the forces on the other side will change everything about the way we do business and ultimately command the respect of the tm holders when they finally understand the value we bring to domaining.
Just my two cents…
*Let’s get going on this stuff. For those that already checked the whois database: no worries – I’ll contribute the above suggested domains n/c.
I have no problem with your suggestion but here is the problem with it.
Trademark holders have not invited our asked for our participation in any of this process.
The best example was the IRT.
The ICA asked to be part of the process and was told no.
The best Phil could do is get a hour presentation in front of the committee.
I have a large portfolio of very non-infringing domains, and publish a blog which speaks out against infringing domains, yet no one contacted me for my imput.
Trademark holders do not want a fair bill, they want a quick, cheap takeaway bill that punishes domain holders.
Read CADNA comments. There is not one ounce of fairness.
Read all the trademark comments.
They don’t like domainers and do not want them to be part of the process.
By way of political analogy, your comments reminded me of the United States vs. the rest of the world. However, to carry the analogy forward, I’m pretty sure .cm wouldn’t have been openly embraced by a new administration that was intent on changing world opinion.
Which necessarily begs the question:
Where’s our Obama?
That would be Your Obama
Okay well I’m not going to be bidding on any of the TM related domains period, for obvious reasons. And I’m not bidding on any of the others until I have a definitive idea of what the stats are for each domain, now it looks like no one is letting this out of the bag including the Cameroons although they have the majority of them parked .
It’s a sensitive area and I can understand where they are coming from but, they should at least give us a basic idea of what we can expect – otherwise it’s a total crap shoot!
If I don’t get any info on this then I won’t be bidding on anything at all! And I think I’m right in saying that that’s the general consensus.
In fact, what they could do is release the stats only to the bidders on each domain, if that were to happen personally I would place a bid right now for a few of them..
Not my Obama.* But I think you get the picture.
* Analogy for purposes of illustration only.