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Thursday, October 30, 2008

Asian-pacific domains -- scam or genuine?

Today I received a rather interesting email from a Chinese domain name registration company. The company wrote to me and claimed that "(company x)" had applied to register the Asian-pacific versions of the domain names to which I own the .com domain.

Specifically, I own and the claim was that (company x) had applied to register the domains,, .asia., and Additionally, they said, (company x) had also applied to register the "internet brand name" shockwave-sound.

The email went on to say that, as the owner of, I had the right to "dispute" the attempted registrations by quickly registering these Asian-pacific domains myself. I could do this through this company, and that would effectively put a stop to (company x) being able to register these domains.

I answered back that I was obviously interested in protecting the Asian-pacific versions of my domain name and also this "internet brand name" which, I have to admit, I've never heard of before.

The Chinese domain registration company then sent me a registration form in which they are inviting me to register,, .asia,, for $30 for 1 year, and also to register my "internet brand name" shockwave-sound, for $100 per 1 year. They are saying that I can fill in the form and register the domain names with them within 5 days, to ensure that (company x) does not take these domains and take the "internet brand name" shockwave-sound.

The way I see it, there are two possibilities: (1) This is a genuinely helpul company who want to help international domain owners make sure that their brands/domains are not registered to some dubious/competitive company who wants to "take" their domain names and their "internet brand name", OR, (2) this is a very sneaky ploy by a Domain Registration company to sell me .cn, .hk etc. domains, perhaps at a overblown price, that they they would not normally be able to sell to me because, well I just wouldn't normally be interested.

Does anyone have any comments or suggestions?

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