I’m not going to NamesCon this year. Scheduling conflicts, personal life, blah blah blah. You don’t need to know.
It’s a shame, as I’ve enjoyed the show in previous years and there’s usually plenty to be learned even if, like me, you’re not a domain investor.
So while I won’t be there, I thought I’d put together a list of sessions that I’d be likely to attend in my capacity as a non-domainer, if I were attending. Which I’m not.
Don’t get me wrong, I usually find the domainer-focused stuff interesting. It’s just less interesting to me because DI is not an investment tip sheet and I personally have no pony in the race.
In agenda order…
The Evolution of Domaining
This is Frank Schilling’s seemingly annual keynote, this year subtitled “A vision for the future of domaining and how we’re going to get there. The next wave of passive income generation for the savvy domainer.”
While it’s certainly got a domainer-leaning theme, the Uniregistry CEO’s speeches are often must-listen events. Schilling is usually a candid and amiable speaker.
Plus, he’s made a shedload of cash out of domains so many people hang on his every word. That’s why he’s been on the Domain Name Wire podcast 86 times.
It’s on at 10am on Monday.
Dominate the Drop: Best Practices for Successfully Acquiring Deleting Domains
Michael White from SnapNames and Jonathan Tenenbaum from Namejet promise to spill the beans about the crazy competitive drop-catching market.
I find this aspect of the industry fascinating, especially given the arms race going on between SnapNames/Namejet and its rivals at the moment.
Over half of all ICANN-accredited registrars are currently shell companies created to bulk up the dropnets of the two aforementioned companies, as well as TurnCommerce and Pheenix.
There’s clearly money in it, so I regret I’ll be missing this session.
It’s on at 11am on Monday.
Domain Monetization for Registries and Registrars
As somebody who writes a blog largely looking at the sell-side of the industry, this session title speaks to me.
It’s being held by Michael Gilmour, CEO of ParkLogic, a company I’m not particularly familiar with.
Even if it just turns out to be a sales pitch for ParkLogic, it might be interesting anyway, due to the promise to “unlock hidden value from data that is readily accessible to you”, which intrigues me as a data nerd.
It’s on at 11am on Monday too, so it clashes with the dropcatching session.
The Most Shocking UDRP Decisions of 2016
This one sounds like fun. There are few things more amusing in the domain industry than listening to domainers moan about crappy UDRP decisions.
In this session, three industry names who are no strangers to UDRP will compete to have a decision of their choice crowned the “most shocking” of the last year.
This is on at noon on Monday.
Investing in New TLDs – Making Money in the Short and Long Term
A panel of experts discuss how to make money out of new gTLDs. I think that is going to be a hard sell to a typically skeptical domainer crowd, so I’d be curious to hear what they have to say at 2pm on Monday.
NamesCon Domain Auction 2017
Live domain auctions are sometimes entertaining, but depending on the auctioneer you may need to bring ear-protectors. It’s on at 3pm.
Uniregistry After Hours Party
If you haven’t fested enough sausage yet, now’s your chance to top up, from 9pm until “late” (which in Vegas could mean midnight, 2am, 6am, or mid-February).
Christian Domainers Breakfast Buffet
I’m slightly flabbergasted that this is a thing. What is a Christian domainer, and how do they differ from non-Christian domainers?
A special prize goes to the first person to send me a photo of themselves at this event reading a hardback copy of “The God Delusion” whilst eating a free Christian pastry.
Building a Business to Last Decades
Despite the dry title, this is Matt Muellenweg, founder of WordPress/Automattic, and I’m interested to hear what he has to say. Plus, it’s the only thing going on at 10am on Tuesday.
Few things have influenced the domain name industry over the last couple of years than China. In this session, four guys who understand the market over there discuss the trends they’re seeing and expecting.
Will Branded TLDs Impact the Marketplace in 2017 and Beyond?
Events promising to spill the beans about how big companies plan to use the dot-brands are rarely very informative in my experience — speakers play their cards far too close to their chests — but I keep going to them anyway.
Let’s hope the Microsoft and MarkMonitor speakers have something new to add to the conversation at 2pm.
Dollars and Sense of .net
Verisign’s Pat Kane pitches .net, which has been stagnating since the launch of new gTLDs. 3pm.
DNS Industry SWOT Analysis, 2017 Edition
The “strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats” for the industry according to… ICANN?
Global Domains Division head and occasional CEO Akram Atallah is the only big ICANN name speaking at this year’s NamesCon, so it’s worth checking this session out for that reason alone.
It’s on at 9.30am on Wednesday.
A Look Ahead at New TLDs
Three registries and one registrar discuss the future of new gTLDs at 11am on Wednesday.
Bloggers Broadcast: Dispatches from NamesCon 2017
An opportunity to throw things at my competitors at 12pm on Wednesday.
The Pragmatic Rebel: a Fireside Chat with Elliot Noss
Noss is one of the most engaging speakers in the industry in my view, even if the subject matter of this session is not quite up my alley. 1pm Weds.
Privacy and Your Domains
This review of domain privacy developments is right up my alley, but it also clashes with the Noss interview.
Executive Roundtable: Industry Trends Forecast for 2017
A conference roundup from four registry/registrar bigwigs closes down the conference.