SEDO NewsLetter - Take a Stand in 2007

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Domain names have always been a controversial topic –just think of well-known terms such as "Cybersquatting," "Domain Hijacking" and "Click Fraud." But today, as we emerge as a real "Domain Name Industry," it has never been more important to make sure that all parties, involved in this industry, understand all the good things about domain names. Those parties include, first and foremost, the domain owners, but equally important are Internet users, advertisers, trademark owners, registrars and secondary market companies like us. In order to shape an industry which is profitable for domain owners in the long run, the needs of all parties in this "domain ecosystem" need to be addressed. In practice, there are many things every one of us can do, and our February newsletter focuses on those topics:

Improving the reputation of our industry

Making the Internet a safer place by better separating adult from non-adult traffic
Avoiding domain scams and helping other people to do the same
Educating the public with a new magazine about domains
Choosing more relevant parking keywords which benefits domain owners just as much as Internet users and advertisers

Happy Reading!

Tim Schumacher
CEO, Sedo.com
===============

FEATURE ARTICLE

Domainers, Take a Stand in 2007
By Monica Ibrahim, Customer Relations Associate

Throughout history media has played an integral role in providing man with basic news about the state of society at hand. In the first century the Acta Diurna or daily acts were hand written bulletins sanctioned by Caesar and posted in the Roman Forum. About eight centuries later the first printed newspaper was published in Beijing and in 1447 Gutenberg’s printing press ensured the dissemination of information in ways that were never before envisioned. Fast forward about five hundred years and the US founded the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) as a response to the USSR’s launch of Sputnik, all in hopes of regaining the global technological lead. ARPA and its later improvements served as the initial seeds of what we today see as the Internet. The days of print, radio and television journalism were by no means over, but the potential for the Internet to be used as a forum for global networking and the free-flow of information started a true unifying human revolution.

It did not take long for the hype of buying and selling domain names to gain some significant press, as finding the perfect domain name to brand one’s business had become essential to a company’s bottom line. The phenomenon of domain parking emerged soon thereafter allowing targeted, conceptually related advertisements for monetization. More recently, the plethora of Internet media outlets including news websites, blogs and online forums have been providing information and news developments on topics such as domain phishing, domain tasting and cybersquatting. However, many of these media outlets seem to have missed the mark in accurate domain reporting. They have continually botched some vital statistics while failing to accurately describe the difference between many important issues such as typosquatting and phishing to name one example. See Matt Bentley’s article in last month’s newsletter where he attributed the incompetence of the media as the top flop of 2006.

Just as in the days of old, it is continually difficult to avoid being influenced by skewed and inaccurate news reporting. Every news outlet takes its stand on a particular topic and rarely is anything or any person 100% neutral on a specific issue. Finding a trusted news source can be difficult. Often news spectators may feel like there’s no way to communicate their own responses to what they see and hear in the news as the notion of checks and balances hardly exists. For fear of being overlooked and having their words lost in the jumble of blogs and forum postings in different industry related forums, many domainers choose simply to keep quiet. Others just don’t know where to turn to make their viewpoints known. Worse, there is a lack of awareness among domainers as to what types of resources are available at one’s disposal to make their voice heard. Many are simply uninformed of the various ways in which to lobby for change.

There is hope. In October of this past year at TRAFFIC East in Miami, the Internet Commerce Association (ICA) was launched. This non-profit association was formed to look out for the best interests of domain name registrants. Sedo, being one of the ICA’s founders and initial corporate members, is a strong advocate of the lobbying opportunities the organization gives domainers. According to its website, the ICA’s members include “individuals and companies that own, buy, sell, resell, host and manage Internet traffic which comes from search engines, domain names and Internet links.” Whereas before, domainers may have felt that the opportunity to counter ICANN decisions and media claims did not exist, now they can face these controversial topics head on and fight for reform in the domain industry.

Some domain registries have simultaneously refused to take a stand against the practice of domain tasting and have kept mum about how often it occurs. However, the media has for too long put the emphasis on the negative here. Domain tasting is not the focus. The process of domain tasting itself has led to millions of legitimate domain registrations over the years. A trusted organization like the ICA has started to take a positive proactive position on such controversial topics. What’s great is that one of the ICA’s most important contributors is you as the large or small domain name portfolio owner you are. Don’t be afraid to speak out against incomplete or biased media and rally for change.

In addition to the ICA there are a number of influential domain-related forums such as DNforum, DomainState and NamePros. These are active forums that serve as mediums for constructive feedback on industry trends serving similar purposes as the ICA.

In addition to these forums there are a number of different venues where one can turn for trusted domain news. DN Journal is one of the web’s most dependable domain reporting sites. This Internet trade magazine provides the latest news in the domain industry and a weekly update of recent high profile domain sales, while offering priceless networking opportunities. Another site, Domain Name Wire, offers useful information for domainers, intellectual property attorneys, trademark lawyers, registrars, and all domain service companies. Park Quick is a useful resource for domain monetization strategies as it offers up-to-date information on various paid domain parking services. Domainers Magazine is a new print publication that you might want to keep your eyes out for. As an active domain buyer, reseller or parker, you have a wealth of information literally at your fingertips and you can play a part in shaping this industry for the better by actively participating in and promoting these domain sites.


Opening up a public debate on reforms in the domain name industry is vital to building upon the success seen in 2006, when the monumental 100 millionth domain registration took place. Domainers should not be at a loss concerning the steps they can take to ensure change and improvement in 2007. When in the past only a select demographic controlled the news, now the common man can also have a stake in making and similarly distributing the news online. Domainers should take advantage of these new informational mediums and give us all a chance to watch history play itself out in the coming year.











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LEGAL BRIEF

A Monthly Update on Domain-Related Legal News
By Sheri Archidiacono, Esq, L.L.M Legal Counsel



Buying Search Keywords and Metatags based on a Competitor's Trademark Is a “Use in Commerce”


Within the first week of 2007, a Pennsylvania court held that the purchase of a keyword that contained the trademark of a competitor and subsequent use of that keyword as part of a “metatag” is an actionable "use in commerce" of that trademark. The plaintiff, J.G. Wentworth sued Settlement Funding LLC, the defendant, under the Lanham Act, alleging both trademark infringement and dilution. In its complaint, the plaintiff stated that the defendant impermissibly used its marks with the purpose of leading Internet users to the defendant's web site. The court relied on a prior case, stating that the "…defendant's participation in Google's AdWords program and the defendant's incorporation of the plaintiff's marks in its keyword metatags constitutes trademark use under the Lanham Act.” The court further held that using a competitor's trademark to trigger advertisements for monetary gain and using trademarks in connection with the sale or advertising of goods and services is an infringing use in commerce under the Lanham Act. Lastly, the court stated, "By establishing an opportunity to reach consumers via alleged purchase and/or use of a protected trademark, the defendant crossed the line from internal use to use in commerce under the Lanham Act.” Currently, United States courts are split on the topic of whether the use of trademarks in keyword advertising is in fact trademark infringement and/or trademark dilution. Regardless of the split, such cases are setting forth a foundation in the development of trademark law in an Internet context.



Domain Owners Beware: You Can Be Sued Outside Your Home State

On January 5, 2007, a Nevada court stated that a defendant who registers a domain name containing the trademark of a plaintiff is open to being sued in the particular state where the plaintiff either resides or maintains its principal place of business. The plaintiff in this case is a resident of both California and Nevada and published several newspapers. The defendant’s company registered three domains, which were exact matches to the plaintiff’s newspapers names. Each domain resolved to a parked page which advertised the plaintiff’s newspapers. Although the defendant was NOT a resident of Nevada, it could properly be brought to court there because the defendant was targeting and harming the plaintiff in its home state.

The judge held that once a defendant registers such a domain, they have specifically targeted the plaintiff in its home state. A defendant can therefore be expected to be sued in that state. The court further stated that because the defendant knew that the plaintiff’s operations were based in Nevada, the defendant, “[in] targeting its tortuous behavior at a Nevada resident, opened itself up to suit here.” Lastly, the court held that it was proper for the plaintiff to file suit in Nevada because the defendant’s actions had a “clear effect” on harming the plaintiff. The court based its decision on a case that came down in California in 1998, which resulted in the same outcome based on similar facts. This holding has become precedent for finding jurisdiction over a defendant in trademark domain name disputes. Domain owners should be aware that when they register a domain name that contains the trademark of another, he or she may be subjecting themselves to being sued in that trademark owner’s state.




HOT SHEETS

Spring Cleaning Comes Early: ICANN Revoking Outdated Extensions
By Ara Zusky, Transfer Consultant



At a recent meeting in Sao Paulo, Brazil members of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) opened up public discourse regarding the deletion of outdated domain extensions. First up on the chopping block will be the country code Top-Level Domains (ccTLD) currently assigned to countries that no longer exist or have taken on new identities. Some of the top candidates pending revocation are:




Zaire (.zr)
The former Soviet Union (.su)
East Timor (.tp)
Czechoslovakia (.cs)
The former Yugoslav republics of Serbia and Montenegro (.yu)


ICANN is seeking to institute formal policies that will facilitate retiring these ccTLD domain extensions in a timely manner. In the coming weeks, an ICANN panel will release a report on the public comments made on these revocations and make recommendations on how to proceed with the deletions.

The domain extensions being removed by ICANN will have little or no impact on the domain industry. However, some domainers are worried that this move by ICANN could foreshadow revocations of other domain extensions in the future. On the other hand, this purge of outdated extensions could open the door for the introduction of new and exciting extensions. For example, there is buzz surrounding the new .int extension for international organizations. For more information click here.





.XXX Deal Still in the Works
By Erich Mueller, Transfer Consultant

While 2006 may have been the year of click-fraud expose, .XXX seems to have fallen through the cracks of the industry and public’s attention. The media attention for this sponsored Top-Level Domain (sTLD) seems to have died when the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) shelved the proposal in August of 2005. Many people have the misperception that ICANN denied the creation of this type of domain name extension, when in reality they only wished the proposing party, ICM Registry (www.icmregistry.com) to revise its plan further.

Thought of as a means to trace the presence of pornography online, the .XXX extension was initially delayed because of objection from ICANN, which is overseen by the US Department of Commerce. Many supporters of the .XXX TLD chalk up the refusal to approve .XXX to the socially-conservative Bush administration that has been in office since 2000.

"The Department of Commerce has received nearly 6,000 letters and emails from individuals expressing concern about the impact of pornography on families and children," said Michael Gallagher, assistant secretary of the Department of Commerce. The opposition to .XXX has spread to an arena surprisingly beyond the realm of conservative lobbying groups--the adult entertainment industry. The online petition fightthedotxxx.com has garnered support from the multitudes of online adult industry movers and shakers. The primary opposition to the TLD by this faction is based on perceived First Amendment violations that could be caused by censorship of online pornography.


According to ICA, one of the goals with the creation of the .XXX TLD is to protect minors and those who wish to not view pornographic material. Essentially, the .XXX would create a “Virtual Red-Light District.” The financial benefits of this sTLD are quite evident, especially when taken in light of the .MOBI craze. ICM is proposing to charge 60 US dollars for a .XXX domain purchased wholesale. Individual registrars that will have to comply with ICM’s definition of the adult entertainment community will most likely charge around 75 US dollars for a .XXX domain name. It is notable that ten dollars of every registration fee charged will be put towards combating child pornography.

Ultimately the .XXX’s approval depends on ICM’s ability to show ICANN that it can effectively control the content that is displayed on a .XXX domain. As of now, ICM is planning on contracting this responsibility to independent organizations. However, this may prove difficult, as different countries have vastly disparate laws governing obscenity, free speech, and censorship. As always, we will keep you updated with any new developments.




New Print Magazine for Domainers
By Kathryn Donahue, Marketing Associate



There is a new informational source out there for domainers, Domainer’s Magazine. This print publication, which unveiled their first issue at the recent DomainFest event in Los Angeles, is a great source for all things domains. The magazine will initially be produced on a bi-monthly schedule, however, the owners are hoping to grow to a once-a-month publication which will be available on newsstands within a year. Regular columns will include a Domainer’s Toolbox, which reviews the “Must Use Tools” for domainers, a Spotlight article which features PPC providers and affiliate programs, a legal column and a Hardware and Gadget Corner which discusses the latest computers and high tech toys.



This magazine is a great platform for domainers to share their insight and resources, while creating more awareness of the domain industry. For more information about the magazine or to subscribe, please visit DomainersMagazine.com.




PARTNER SPOTLIGHT

Domain Scams and How to Avoid Them


On any given day hundreds of different scams are launched and scores of fraudulent sites spring up to dupe consumers. Websites such as AllForDomains.com, EveryDayIncome.com, and Domains.Profit.com were all created to scam inexperienced domainers.

The basic concept of these scam sites requires an “interested buyer” and a naïve domain seller. In the case of the AllForDomains.com scam, the seller receives a promotional email for a one-time free trial advertisement in order to sell their domains. Soon after posting the advertisement an interested buyer contacts the seller and requests an appraisal. The seller is then offered several appraisers including AllForDomains.com which also happens to be the cheapest option. The seller pays to get the domain appraised and attempts to reply to the prospective buyer but never gets a response.

Similarly, EveryDayIncome.com requires the seller to promote their domain names through their advertisements. The seller will receive three or more responses from interested buyers. A clever domain seller was able to catch that although the emails appeared to be coming from three separate domainers the incoming mail header signified that they had all come from the same mail server.


To the untrained eye these sites may appear to be legitimate. However, domainers should exercise caution when appraising their domains by only using trustworthy sites or services that have been recommended by others who have had positive experiences. Thanks to those who have spread the news about such bogus sites and it appears that EveryDayIncome.com and Domains.Profit.com are no longer in operation.

Create an informative web site to warn others of domain scams and shed light on the domain industry with domains such as InternetAdvisors.org, FraudExaminers.com, InternetFraudWatch.com and InteractiveConsultants.com. Achieve your entrepreneurial goals and establish your online business with memorable and marketable domains such as ChatHelp.net, EducatorSite.com, HelpfulWebsites.com, and CyberSpeak.com.




7 Quick Tips on Buying a New Domain
By Joshua Sloan, Director Online Marketing, 1&1 Internet, Inc.

1. Never pay more than $5.99 for .com, .net, .org and .info domains.
In the aftermarket, domains can be affordable or pricey depending on the seller or how badly you want the domain. If your registrar allows you to buy a domain though an affiliate link, even better, though there may be a limit as to what’s permitted. For new domains, you should never have to pay a lot. Beware of extra fees, like ICANN fees, setup costs, etc.

2. Choose a registrar that offers free domain privacy.
Domain privacy allows you to use a special email address for receiving emails when someone looks up your domain's public Whois information. Most emails received from this public information tend to be Spam. Protecting the email address associated with your domain, helps you clearly identify and rid yourself of Whois Spam. It used to cost $10 or more per year to get private domain registration. Today, you can obtain it for free.

3. Pick a registrar that offers free email with the domain.
Even if you just want to later sell the domain, you might want an email address for people to send inquiries to. Some registrars either don't offer an associated email account, or have small storage limit.

4. Set your domains to 'Auto-renew'.
Many registrars allow you to do this. This will help avoid loosing that perfect domain if you forget about your renewal date.

5. Watch for ALL emails from your registrar.
Conveniently, registrars send out emails when your domain renewal is pending. Make sure your registrar's emails are "white-listed" and that you pay attention to them. You don't want to miss a problem or issue with your billing information.

6. Protect your existing domains.
Protect your domains by securing those related to it, like typo variations and other top level domain extensions like .net, .org, and .biz

7. Monetize your domains!
You have basically only a few options to make money with your domains. You should carefully consider and test each one.



a.) Parking domains -earn by sharing the click revenue of ads shown on your parked page. Sedo.com is an excellent resource for this.

b.) Sell your domains -earn by setting a price, accepting offers on it, or auctioning it off. Again, Sedo.com is an excellent site for this.

c.) Build a website; create Virtual Real Estate -by doing this you can sell products, information, run ads, or generate your own sales leads. Of course, this can be a bit more expensive and time consuming, but it can also be the most profitable option.

d.) Redirect domains to an affiliate program -if people type or mistype your domain, they will land on another site from which you can earn revenue.


Domains are cheap, and can be profitable depending on what you do with them. The above steps should give you some ideas how to get the most when buying a new domain, and what to do with it.





ASK SEDO

Sedo Answers Some Commonly Asked Questions





Hello Sedo! I have a domain, myfluffypillow.com that I recently parked with Sedo. However, I am having a tough time choosing a keyword for it! Fluffy, comfortable, pillow, sleep, and bedding: all these words seem to fit my domain so well! Am I allowed to use this many keywords for my domain? I would love some help with this. Many thanks in advance! –Amy

Hello Amy,




Thank you for your email. You’re right, choosing a keyword for your parked domain can be tricky! However, I think I can be of some assistance here.

You are allowed to use as many keywords as you like for your parked domain. However, I would strongly recommend staying with one or two keywords to bring up the best related links on your parked page. If you use too many keywords, you are being almost too specific, and the advertisements on your parked page won’t relate that well to your domain name. The way the keyword system works is that the system pulls two pools of advertisements for each keyword you use. Then it takes the intersection of each of these pools. In most cases, the more pools you have, the fewer the ads in the intersection.

For your domain, myfluffypillow.com, I would recommend using the keywords “fluffy” and “pillow”. In my opinion, these are the two words that best describe what your domain name is all about. Sleep, bedding, and comfortable are great keywords as well, but I believe you will get the best click through rate on your parked page by using these two strongly related keywords.

To set the keywords in your account, here’s all you need to do: log into your Sedo account, and click on Domain Parking located under the My Sedo tab. Once you arrive there, scroll down, and click on the blue Optimizer link located on the left. You can then go ahead and enter in the keywords ‘fluffy’ and ‘pillow’ for your domain.

Keep in mind that you do not need to use any punctuation when you enter in more than one keyword, and you also do not need to include the word ”and.” After you have finished entering your keywords, just hit the “Save Changes” button on the bottom of the page, and you are all set!

As always, be careful to check your domains and keywords to make sure your parking page does not infringe the rights of any third parties. You can perform free trademark searches at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office website which is located at www.uspto.gov.

I hope this information helps you, Amy, and may I wish you the best of luck with your domain!

Sara Beninato
Customer Relations Associate




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TurNIC.com

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I am so tired tor ead all those writing but I can not stand saying something that Mr. Schumaer which was a very well know surname since it was also a surname of one of the best goal keeper in Germany.

"Making the Internet a safer place by better separating adult from non-adult traffic"

I told this gazillions times to SEDO associates and even the smallest PPC company have this option but SEDO does NOT!

SEDO create a "adult and casino free" portfolio option so that we put children names there!

TurNIC
 

Theo

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Toni Schumacher was a great goalie. Not so sure about the goals that Tim by the same last name is projecting for 2007. The PPC is dropping and Sedo needs to improve across the board to keep up with other capable contenders.
 

Gerry

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Toni Schumacher was a great goalie. Not so sure about the goals that Tim by the same last name is projecting for 2007. The PPC is dropping and Sedo needs to improve across the board to keep up with other capable contenders.
Ditto, Ditto, Ditto, and DITTO!
 

mulligan

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....... Hello Sedo! I have a domain, myfluffypillow.com that I recently parked with Sedo. However, I am having a tough time choosing a keyword for it! Fluffy, comfortable, pillow, sleep, and bedding: all these words seem to fit my domain so well! Am I allowed to use this many keywords for my domain? I would love some help with this. Many thanks in advance! –Amy

Hello Amy,

For your domain, myfluffypillow.com, I would recommend using the keywords “fluffy” and “pillow”. In my opinion, these are the two words that best describe what your domain name is all about.....

Dear Amy,
In my opinion I think you will find that using our newest Extreme Adult Template with a few choice adult keywords will get you the most bang for your buck with this domain .... ;)
 

namestrands

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My Advice to TIM & SEDO

"Sort out your own crap before trying to solve the problems of the Industry"
 

BELLC1

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Okay, I gotta ask. Who offers:

" 1. Never pay more than $5.99 for .com, .net, .org and .info domains.
2. Choose a registrar that offers free domain privacy.
3. Pick a registrar that offers free email with the domain. "
 

Theo

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More BS:

"It used to cost $10 or more per year to get private domain registration. Today, you can obtain it for free."
 

namestrands

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You have to Wait for the Punchline Theo... shortly they will come back and tell us that 1&1 offer all these services.
 

typist

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Sedo who?

sedo adj. (sē'dē)

1) Worn and shabby; unkempt: “He was soiled and sedo and fragrant with gin” (Mark Twain).
2) Tired or sick; unwell.
3) Somewhat disreputable; squalid: a sedo hotel in a run-down neighborhood.
 

Theo

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sedo adj. (sē'dē)

1) Worn and shabby; unkempt: “He was soiled and sedo and fragrant with gin” (Mark Twain).
2) Tired or sick; unwell.
3) Somewhat disreputable; squalid: a sedo hotel in a run-down neighborhood.

Forgot "sedomazochism": the love/hate relationship with a PPC provider with yo-yo revenue results.
 

Sarcle

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But today, as we emerge as a real "Domain Name Industry," it has never been more important to make sure that all parties, involved in this industry, understand all the good things about domain names.

Like how? Allowing phishing IDN domains to be parked and auctioned off on your server?

It's funny Sedo gave the green light at Domainfest for IDN yet the only idns that you can sell with their current program are latin based IDN. All non-latin based IDNs come to an error page when you try to make an offer, but taking a quick look at their auction shows that there are several phishing IDN domains being sold at the moment.

Your "Euro-centric" views are quite old and boring.

Domain Scams and How to Avoid Them

Oh do please give us a lesson in that. Your system is set-up to allow these scammers to roam free.

Domain Owners Beware: You Can Be Sued Outside Your Home State

Can you be sued for leading someone to believe they are buying pics.com when actually they are buying "pÃ*cs.com" and it isn't a word at all?


Face it Sedo, you are way behind in the industry. All of these problems most companies have already figured out and are beating you.

Parking issue for IDNs - Namedrive. Auction and Sales format for "every" IDN - Afternic.

Just 'cause you tout 6 million domains for sale doesn't mean any of them are good. Hell, I'll go one farther 99.9% are total crap.
 

katherine

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Like how? Allowing phishing IDN domains to be parked and auctioned off on your server?
I see that they put a 'sticker' next to the IDN names, which is a good thing

Okay, I gotta ask. Who offers:

" 1. Never pay more than $5.99 for .com, .net, .org and .info domains.

Lol it's the #1 mistake.
Never use a registrar that is selling at a loss. You get what you pay for :lol:
 

DNWizardX9

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More BS:

"It used to cost $10 or more per year to get private domain registration. Today, you can obtain it for free."

yea what planet? :p $10 for whois protection lol

Who wrote this newsletter? Daffy Duck?
 

Theo

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Actually WHOIS protection costs $10 at most registrars.
 

Sarcle

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I'd like to personally thank Sedo. In todays news.

In other Sedo news, the company has added “IDN” graphics next to domains with non-roman characters:

sedoidnft4.jpg



This is likely because of user confusion. Depending on your browser and language plugins, IDNs can look very similar to english language domains. If domainers are confused by this, you can bet the web community as a large will be fooled by IDNs (read: phishing attacks to come).


https://domainnamewire.com/2007/02/16/sedo-hit-by-ddos-attack-adds-new-listing-feature/



How did I know that this would give IDN a bad name. Thanks again Sedo for allowing these to be sold on your site.
 

Theo

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Domains should be entered letter by letter using a java or flash applet, that distinguishes all letters.
 
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