GoDaddy, the global web host, has announced its new initiative aimed at cutting down on private transactions for expired domains. To do this it’s masking the contact details of domain owners with expired domains.
The company announced it was intending to cut down on the number of email domain investors. This is a form of investment where people search for expired domains and contact the owners directly to prevent the domain going to auction. More often than not, it means a cheaper deal for them and a faster sale for the owner as there’s no competition for the domain. The new owner will sell the new domain again for a profit.
GoDaddy is specifically against this practice, which is why it’s masked the contact details of those with expired domains. The global webhost itself regularly profits from domain name auctions, so it stands to lose a significant amount of money if these new measures aren’t implemented.
The webhost’s reasoning is based exclusively on customer complaints, according to the webhost which said: “Based on customer complaints, many investors participate in this practice, and some even hire outsourced teams.”
GoDaddy expects the new change to boost its auction revenues and reduce the amount of customer complaints and harassment towards domain owners. The true owner of the domain stays hidden until the time of the auction. To an extent, it’s an attempt to regulate the ever lucrative domain name market.
Observers predict the new measures will do very little to deter determined investors who could use the historical records of Whois to discover who the owner of a specific domain is. It won’t help with the newer domains, but names which have been around for a while are still registered on the historical Whois records.