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Domain names are really, really hard to find.

I notice on WebApps, there are a couple of pre-registered domains being favored, but they're all very controversial (I could've sworn I saw the top rated answer +16 at one point). I've been watching the thread on Gaming as well, and I believe the current top voted answer has actually dipped in and out of the negative at some point.

I understand that a domain will be chosen if some single answer reaches a unanimous consensus among the community. However, is there a time limit to that? What if the site somehow reaches a critical mass over a period of a month or two and is ready to go live, but the domain discussion is still in a tug-of-war or the gems keep getting hijacked?

It's paranoia and speculation on my part, but could this happen? What happens if the community simply cannot decide on a domain and goes back and forth for months? What happens with the SO-official pre-registered domains?

Basically, my question is this: how will domain names be chosen and finalized for the proposals, and what is the process? Is it simply the highest voted answer in the domain suggestion thread on the meta at the end of the site's beta phase? Or is it something more?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

In at least one of the cases of "pre-registration" it was done after the suggestion gained quite a few up-votes on a "just in case" to prevent the likely ones being hijacked:

This seems to be picking up some early momentum, so I registered the domain, just in case. If it doesn't get selected, no big deal. – Robert Cartaino

This happens a lot when you're deciding on a name and as it costs so little it doesn't really matter.

So I wouldn't worry about domains be registered.

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