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Did Roussos pull off the impossible? Google, Donuts, Radix all drop out of .music race

Kevin Murphy, April 8, 2019, 13:57:02 (UTC), Domain Registries

Google won’t be the registry for the .music gTLD.

The company, along with pure-play registries Donuts and Radix, late last week withdrew their respective applications from the .music contention set, leaving just three possible winners in the running.

Those are Amazon, MMX, and DotMusic, the company run by long-time .music fanboy Constantinos Roussos.

As I blogged last week, applications from Domain Venture Partners and Far Further have also been withdrawn.

I suspect, but do not know for a fact, that the contention was settled with a private deal, likely an auction, recently.

The logical guess for a winner would be Amazon, if only because of the nexus of its business to the music industry and the amount of money it could throw at an auction.

But I’m beginning to suspect that DotMusic might have prevailed.

The company appears to have recently revamped its web site, almost as if it’s gearing up for a launch.

Comparing the current version of music.us to versions in Google’s cache, it appears that the site has been recently given a new look, new copy and even a new logo.

It’s even added a prominent header link inviting prospective resellers to sign up, using a form that also appears to have been added in the last few weeks.

These changes all seem to have been made after the crucial ICANN vote that threw out the last of DotMusic’s appeals, March 14.

Are those the actions of an applicant resigned to defeat, or has Roussos pulled off the apparently impossible, defeating two of the internet’s biggest companies to one of the industry’s most coveted and controversial strings?

Participants in gTLD auctions typically sign NDAs, so we’re going to have to wait a bit longer (probably no more than a few days) to find out which of the remaining three applicants actually won.

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Comments (4)

  1. Rubens Kuhl says:

    Google and Amazon might have tons of money, but are not that eager to invest it in TLDs. MMX would possibly be willing to pay a large sum, but a hint during the results conference would probably have happened.

    So it looks like Costa made it.

  2. Snoopy says:

    Suspect the price may be lower than expected. MMX is the most logical buyer but they are now down to $10million cash in the bank with shaky finances, the core business is in decline.

    Will Amazon care that much? They haven’t done very much so far with new tlds. Maybe they’ll get it and just sit on it. Roussos, why knows, would he have the resources? Would probably need some backers.

  3. Michael says:

    Seems like MMX got it since everyone else withdrew their applications. DotMusic is on hold but we have seen these kinds of results take a surprise turn at the last minute before. Something more in the works?

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