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Is a Hyphen Worth $15,000 Dollars

Mixergy’s Andrew Warner recently interviewed Blank-Label.com‘s co-founder Danny Wong. This clip discusses Danny’s frustration with trying to acquire the domain BlankLabel.com
Full interview with video and transcription can be found at Mixergy. [Note: Danny was Skyping in from China so the audio clip is a little funky.]

Danny calls the owner of BlankLabel.com both a ‘squatter’ and an investor. Using the real estate analogy, a squatter would be someone living in a house someone else actually owns. The person who owned the house might be a ‘slum lord’ but nevertheless, anyone can see he’s holding the property as an investment.  So sure, in my opinion, the guy who registers Gooogle.com would be a squatter- looking to profit from someone else’s property, but the guy who owns BlankLabel.com (and 29,000 other dot coms) is an investor. The problem seems to be that when people’s passions around building a business are involved, they lose sight of the fact that domain names are simply another product a market grew up around. That some domains are available at registration price somehow allows people to imagine buying the domain they want at that price. Well, you can get a house in Detroit for next to nothing! It might have all the pipes and wiring ripped out, but the city is giving them away in hopes people will move in. That doesn’t make anyone think the house in Beverly Hills should be free does it?

(Click the arrow to hear the clip) Is a Hyphen Worth $15k?

PS $15k seems like a lot, but it’s all relative. IMO it would be worth maxing out a few credit cards or doing another round of friends and family to get the domain.

3 Comments

  1. Danny Wong wrote:

    hey john,

    that’s an incredibly fair comment. from my biased perspective (being the one faced with the $15k decision), it’s easy for me to call the ‘investor’ a squatter, and i’ll admit, i would be a hypocrite if i could. if i had thousands of dollars 10 years ago and knew the market opportunity for quality domains today, i would most certainly have invested in high quality, high demand domains.

    thanks for writing on this. glad you stumbled upon the interview!

    cheers,
    danny

    Tuesday, November 2, 2010 at 12:06 am | Permalink
  2. John wrote:

    Hey Danny!
    Thanks for stopping by. That was a great interview. Sounds like you’re crushing it over there at blank-label. At least by discussing the domain situation openly I hope the owner is encouraged to lock that price in. Also seeing a trend where companies are trading cash + some equity for a high-ticket domain.
    Best,
    Johnh

    Tuesday, November 2, 2010 at 12:20 am | Permalink
  3. John wrote:

    Congratulations on your recent acquisition Danny and Fan!

    Friday, January 28, 2011 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

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