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.CLUB sells $200,000 domain for $10.99

Kevin Murphy, January 28, 2015, 23:10:36 (UTC), Domain Registries

.CLUB Domains has honored the $10.99 registration of credit.club, a premium domain it had hoped to sell for a record-busting $200,000.

The registry this week said it would allow registrant Bruce Marler to keep hold of the domain he bought at the base registration fee, even though it was due to be sold as a premium with an asking price above the previously record price for a .club name.

Marler acquired the name January 14, the day wine.club sold for $140,000 at NamesCon, for a reported $10.99 via Name.com. He’s since launched a basic web site there, though he made his intention to sell the domain clear in an email exchange with DomainGang.

.CLUB CEO Colin Campbell told DI: “It was listed for 200,000 on StartUp.club.”

StartUp.club is the company’s recently launched site for selling premium .club domains, many for six-figure sums.

A registry screw-up seems to be to blame for the sale.

Judging by a a post on NamePros by Campbell, the company was in the process of transferring 130 premium .club names from a registry-reserved status to its own ownership.

During the 26-hour period the domain was unreserved and available, Marler grabbed it.

Campbell said that the contracts between Name.com, itself, and the registrant would allow it to reclaim the domain, but said:

The registry does not believe it is in our best interest nor the best interest of the registrant to pull the name back given the substantial investment in time and money he has invested to launch credit.club. I informed the registrant of such matters and wish him a continued success.

While domainers are obviously lauding the decision as an example of registries owning — and paying for — their technological mistakes, I can’t help but wonder whether this was an economically sound decision.

The registry has certainly won brownie points in the investor community, it’s also lost a potential $200,000 sale.

Marler, by his own admission, intends to sell on the domain. While the domain hosts content today, it may not wind up being the kind of flagship, big-ticket anchor tenant that new gTLD registries need.

UPDATE: Marler, in the comments below, says he feels morally obliged to develop the site.

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Comments (20)

  1. matt says:

    LOLLLLLLLLLLLLL

    credit.club is worth $200 K my asshole

  2. Bruce Marler says:

    I would like to add though, and this is something that has not been updated, I do not plan to sell this domain anytime soon, based on the goodwill of the registry I think it is only fair I continue to develop it and move it forward to help the gtld world as a whole. There is no contractual commitment to do that, but I think its only right to not flip this quickly and to continue to grow it. Ethically that seems like the right thing to do.

  3. Acro says:

    At least Marler can do whatever he wants with the domain, without fear of having it clawed back. 😉

  4. matt says:

    LOLLLLLLLLLLLLL

    credit.club is worth $200 K my bullocks !!!!!!

  5. Tom says:

    Who cares if you sell it or not, one domain cannot carry a GTLD alone. The type of content a true credit site demands you are talking some serious back end development. Not tips to get your credit score up. You just bought some content on the quick, and quick, and posted it up, and seems the registry did a reverse story to backfill the sanctioning of the domain. Looks as if the domain was registered a full two weeks ago, that long to audit $200K lost asset?

    • Bruce Marler says:

      As this was not a planned acquisition the site was started with a knowledge base of articles, as a product plan is being put in place now I would think that most would consider it reasonable to not have a completely custom developed application ready in a matter of a couple weeks. That is a completely unreasonable statement. No one is saying one domain will carry a gtld, but the more that are out in the wild the stronger they become.

      And yes it has been two weeks, it is only prudent for them to work internally to determine what had occurred and what would happen next. They have been a very professional group through all of this and kudos to them.

  6. Congrats to Bruce and good on the .Club registry for letting Bruce keep the domain however — reality check — that domain name was unlikely to have sold (in the next five years) for six figures. Regardless, this was great PR for .Club and well-deserved, too.

    • Bruce Marler says:

      I will be happy to hold it and grow it for 5 years:)

      Thanks Bill, very appreciated sir. It has been an interesting week and the positive comments have far outweighed the bad.

  7. Anunt says:

    Are u trying to make friends or money?

    Sell that worthless domain while the .club market is hot…

    .club has been pumped…time to dump!!!

    u won’t get $200k…but u still have a good chance to get around $20k now…

    wait couple months and it will be worthless…

    good luck!!!

  8. Acro says:

    Kevin, need new title: “Wankers Gawk At Cocky Registrant’s Luck With Domain.”

  9. jack murphy says:

    I just din’t get it. These new domains were supposed to rid the world of cybersquatting domain hoarder extortionists to make great new names available at reasonable prices. Then, after ICANN approves the plan, the registries all become cybersquatting domain hoarder extortionists themselves. Congress needs to step in and these crooks and their “new found names” will join the jail pinstripes.club!

  10. Mark says:

    It’s a win-win situation for .CLUB, they probably weren’t gonna sell that one for $200,000 for a long long time. Here they get free publicity by having a website developed on a great name, and on top of that domainers laud them for leaving it developed.

    One wonders how they weren’t aware before that they lost the name considering they removed it from startup.club right after it was registered two weeks ago. One then could argue that they already knew and that it was in their best interest not to say anything. And when you consider that Bruce Marler interacted with .CLUB at Namescon, it is a small leap of faith to imagine that this was planned all along.

    • Acro says:

      Where you there, Mark? Because then we would have met. What is your last name again?

      For the record, Bruce “interacted” a total of 5 minutes with .CLUB at NamesCon, per his own words.

  11. Detective Neil says:

    I think domainers usually are happy for people when they find hidden gems but this case has too many coincidences for them and myself to feel that this is totally kosher. If you were a detective looking at this case, although there is no hard evidence against collusion between the parties involved you have to admit there are a lot of inconsistancies and answers left on the table.

    What I find hard to believe is:
    1)Why is a seasoned domainer such as Bruce Marler wasting his precious time searching for .CLUB names to hand register when surely he would know that premium names like Credit.club would be long gone?
    2)Why was he so bored at the Airport stop over that he had nothing else better to do(like talk to his wife, catch up on his day job, eat, answer emails, catch up on work from his many businesses and clients) than to search for hand registered names something by his own admission on his website that he”…no longer” does?
    3)As most domainers will attest to, as soon as you want to hand register a domain, it usually gets snapped up by someone else, so why would this one premium domain be available to a known domainer unless prior knowledge was given about where an when it was released. Why did Bruce Marler register it other than say John Smith from China or Boston someone who registers domains daily
    4)Also what happened to the other 129 .CLUB domains that were also mistakingly made available, surely 1 or 2 of these must have been registered and how come Bruce didn’t register more of these premium names while searching available club domains.

    Maybe the guy was just lucky and t be fair he has put up a lot of content in such a short time so kudos to him but I have to agree with some of the comments that the site is not very asthestically pleasing to the eye especially coming from a WordPress Teacher and exert who could have used a plethora of eye catching and professional looking themes on the site instead of the bog standard one currently on it, if I had paid for that website, apart from the content, I would not be happy.

    I think a company dealing with credit reports or debt help would be perfect for this domain and is about a low $xx,xxx value tops because as it is I cant see any traction as with all the credit help and info websites out there now why would this website stand out and why in the word would anyone out of the lue just type in CREDIT.CLUB into their browser, why?

    We are typing it in to see whats on there but why in this world would anyone looking for credit info type in credit.club, that is why it will take a major company with many marketing dollars to bring this to where it could be relevant in todays crowded internet space

  12. Abc says:

    .club as the investment is a useless extension.
    They have over 100k registrations after that time but they were hoping to have that number in one week when they talked at the beginning.
    They know that registration number will not go at the same pace anymore.

  13. Detective Neil says:

    Hey! Where’s my previous comment?

    • Kevin Murphy says:

      First-time commenters have their comment held in a moderation queue. This, I’ve found, is the best way to prevent spam.

  14. JZ says:

    Like Mark said, they were aware that credit.club was “gone” the day it was registered yet Colin acts like he had no idea what happened and had to find out. Kind of strange.

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