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The site naming question² for the webapps area51 site will be open to the public in four days (and, through APIs, is already available for read-only access). I do not think this is a wise idea.

Making this discussion open and public is nice and fluffy and community and all, but there is a problem. Say "appsblah.com" was leading by a largeish margin¹ -- enough to predict where things are going but not enough for those putting the money on the table to actually make the call.

What is stopping people from registering this domain before Stack Overflow Internet Services, inc does in the attempt to maybe raise a cheap buck?

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¹ Since I'm not linking to the question for obvious reasons, I'll mention there is currently no answer with such a lead. –  badp Jul 4 '10 at 10:34
    
² I forgot to mention: that question is not "officially blessed" -- but also not as private as the commenters would hope. –  badp Jul 4 '10 at 10:38
    
I was also wondering how they were going to deal with the domain squatter/sniper problem... Also you mention waiting until a name/url is "leading by a largeish margin" before a squatter would take the gamble, but my understanding is that you can squat temporarily on domains for no cost thanks to the way registrars work, so if they were motivated enough, they could just squat all options if they time it right. –  Alconja Jul 4 '10 at 23:24
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+1 for using comments as footnotes. –  Pëkka Jul 5 '10 at 7:14
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@Pekka, why is it good to use comments for footnotes? –  Pops Jul 6 '10 at 14:27
    
And I would have gotten away with it if it weren't for those meddling kids!!!! –  Tim Post Jul 6 '10 at 14:38
    
@Popular Demand The +1 is mainly for creativity. Whether it were a useful thing if everybody started doing it is a different question. –  Pëkka Jul 6 '10 at 17:56

4 Answers 4

up vote 11 down vote accepted

I think fears in this area are kind of overblown, personally. If your answer is "we can't discuss it at all!", then that's not really an answer.

For what it's worth, all the so-called secret "amazingly good" domain names I've been sent via "secret" email have been ... terrible.

Also, I don't think the per-site metas will be such large traffic magnets that the audiences will contain someone who wants to do this, as foolish as it is.. IMO.

edit: I had a change of heart -- Robert will be in charge of monitoring these posts and registering any likely domain name candidates as they appear. Be advised, though, that a) naming is really freaking hard and b) most domain name suggestions hover somewhere between "awful" and "unbelievably awful".

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Even if someone in the community decides to try this, so what? If there are enough people interested in a site, finding a second or even third good name shouldn't be a problem. Squatting works well for businesses which need a particular domain name but doesn't work when the name can be changed.

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Register them all in Sweden. No one will think to squat there. We all know what 'se' really stands for.

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That's actually a pretty neat idea. –  mmyers Jul 6 '10 at 2:56
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Ahahahahahahaha! Great idea. But then I'm opening an Area51 account just to spearhead the proposal for a site on goats. –  Pëkka Jul 6 '10 at 11:41

A fix for this could be to block API access to private beta's meta site. That wouldn't help however: all a domain squatter needs to do right now is commit to all websites -- just use enough emails and openid accounts.

I'm afraid that the only fix is to just not have a public discussion about it.

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If it doesn't help, it's not really a "fix", is it... –  Aarobot Jul 9 '10 at 13:17

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