Some people really don’t like domain investors, and one of those people recently shared some choice words on my blog

Angry at Domain Investors

I wrote a post a couple days ago about what it’s like being a full time domain name investor. Just to be clear, I have never been a full time or even part time domain investor. I’ve actually only had two jobs over the last twenty years – I have worked for a startup (Sonos) and now run a startup (Bold Metrics). I probably see myself staying in the startup world for the foreseeable future, I just love building things and being around the creative energy of other founders.

That being said, I’ve put more money into domain names than I have into the stock market or real estate and I know a number of people who invest in domain names full time. I think one of the biggest challenges domain investors have is the negative stigma that surrounds domain investing.

If you invest in stocks, bonds, mutual funds, real estate or startups, people normally think that’s pretty darn cool. If you invest in domain names, a lot of people have some choice words to say about what you do. One of my blog readers chimed in on my post about full time domain investors and said the following:

It’s tough to hear things like this, but it also highlights one of the big challenges that I think full time domain name investors face. They have one of the few professions where people might hate them after they tell them what they do. Outside of being the person who repo’s someone’s cars there really aren’t that many professions out there where you know that some people will think of you as scum.

I know so many incredible people who are full time domain investors, they are amazing parents, partners, and people who give more to charity than just about anyone I know. They’ve had to deal with some pretty harsh criticism over the years for the career path they’ve taken, it’s tough.

That being said, I think anyone who does decide to go full time in the domain investing world should know that there are a lot of people like Rob out there and it’s pretty much impossible to get them to change their mind.

Do you think this stigma will go away over time or will domain investors always have to deal with angry people like Rob who think of them as “garbage middlemen” – I want to hear from you, comment and let your voice be heard!

{ 23 comments… add one }

  • JZ February 20, 2020, 10:31 am

    Just another short sighted crybaby. I guess they must also have the same views towards new gtld registries that charge premiums and Fortune 500 companies who own 1000’s of domains with no plans to use them. I yawn and move on.

  • gene February 20, 2020, 10:34 am

    Contrary to “Rob’s” views, there’s nothing inherently evil about trading/investing in any asset. But that reputation does seem to be how many others view domainers – and probably with good reason – having less to do with WHAT they’re peddling, and much more to do with HOW aggressively they pitch prospective buyers.

    And that opinion will only be reinforced by head-scratching ‘sales’ like the one headlined today in NameBio’s post:

    If that transaction didn’t happen on GoDaddy I wouldn’t even believe that it took place – at all. But there’s still something very bizarre about someone paying 9100 USD for one of the worst names I’ve ever seen.

    Hey, if that’s the new benchmark for value, then I guess everyone with a mediocre portfolio is a paper millionaire at this point.

  • February 20, 2020, 11:42 am

    Ppl have choices. You arent stopping anyone, they can buy another domain, another extension, use another name. That guy who owns that lot on the beach is stopping me from having my dream.

  • domain guy February 20, 2020, 11:49 am

    Domain investors are like any other asset class investor. Default business debt, transitional land, default bonds, porn, vanity phone numbers, scrap metal, etc..
    These meatballs better get it right. Late to the party, zero rights and more importantly stupid and no foresight. Many people bought bitcoin and are now retired. Domain investors are a legitimate asset class and not beholden to Google. As for any complainers who can buy a junk domain loose traffic, loose visitors and credibility. complain and blame yourself for your lack of business acumen.
    If the www is the platform of today and the future generate your own marketing. Go pay Google every month for your traffic. Domainers do not have to defend or explain there investments.

    • Chris February 21, 2020, 9:15 am

      FYI’s value came from existing link equity and search engine rankings. Domains like this can be recreated and monetized directly, repurposed into a related project, redirected, or used to link to other assets with commercial potential so they can have tremendous value to savey SEO’s.

  • Sam February 20, 2020, 12:12 pm

    Ohhh, stopped a child from completing his/her dream. Except that child can dream on a dot-whatever or on a country code domain or on a angelspaces free site. So immature to think this way that a domain owner blocked some kids dreams. Sounds like an excuse to me to not create something successul. I too wish i owned and, but alas i dont and i also dont complain about it… If i want it bad enough i will find a way to buy it. And if i cant negotiate a deal… That is just too bad for me.

    • Sam February 20, 2020, 12:17 pm

      Also, I’m sure some kids want to be an actor in the Hunger Games. But they were not invited to audition. And you know who killed those kids dreams? Jennifer Lawrence, Woody Harrison, Donald Sutherland and Lenny Kravitz. How dare these actors act and take jobs from kids who wanted to be lead actors in those movies! It is just sickening I tell ya….

  • Riley February 20, 2020, 12:27 pm

    Haters will be haters.

    Sadly, the world is full of people like that these days.

    They don’t just hate domainers; they hate people in general.

    And, more likely than not, they secretly hate themselves.

  • John Colascione February 20, 2020, 12:37 pm

    Agree completely with Riley. Today’s gimme gimme society. Entitlement. Mad at the world for what others have the initiative to do. Pretty sad really.

    • Matt February 21, 2020, 6:33 am

      Although many folks feel entitled nowadays, I think the problem with “domainer abuse” is less than 20 years ago when folks did more squatting and registering of typos.

      There are fewer (none) stories in the news of how someone was paid 50k because they registered a, or, etc.

      Also of course one other difference between domain and real estate investing is people don’t have the assumption that someone paid $8 for the plot of land that they’re selling for 1 million!

      Maybe they shouldn’t have that assumption, but whether it’s 1 million, 500k, 5k or 500 – some folks are going to think it’s unfair.

      But with the new Gs they’ll have less to complain about.

  • Mike February 20, 2020, 1:10 pm

    Some people don’t like people who wear designer brands, some people don’t like people who drive Bentley’s, some people don’t like people who look different… nothing new, ok boomer

  • BullS February 20, 2020, 1:30 pm

    I don’t expect everyone to like or love me…so don’t worry, we not going to get married or have sex so F off to those who hates me .
    I am happy by myself.

  • Mika February 20, 2020, 3:21 pm

    I like to watch Shark Tank & Dragons Den and some businesses come in with horrible domain names, yet the investors don’t flinch & still invest, because at the end of the day it’s the idea and not the name that makes the business. To the original poster Rob, the lack of the perfect .com won’t stop your business from becoming great, and once it does, you will buy that name because you can or you might also then realise you don’t need it after all.

  • OV February 20, 2020, 4:19 pm

    In my opinion, Rob and others who think like him reflect both ignorance and misguided ethics. So, what does he think about the large number of real estate investors who own buildings, apartments, houses and idle land, while millions of people are homeless? So, according to his logic, that fact, which indeed has direct impact on people’s lives is fine, but domain investing, which at no point is a matter of life or death is a horrible activity.

    To be clear, I have nothing against real estate investors, since that is an unavoidable result of free market. The above reasoning is only an example to illustrate the absurd thinking of those who criticize domaining.

  • Paul February 21, 2020, 6:00 am

    He probably hates his own mom 🙂

  • February 21, 2020, 6:43 am

    Where is the limit between investing and squatting? That’s the question.

  • David February 21, 2020, 7:02 am

    Yes, the “Robs” of the world call me all the time looking to buy foreclosure properties. The “Robs” of the world have no problem buying a home that a family was kicked out of.

    I think the “Robs” of the world are idiots.

    The “Robs” of the world are misguided parrots. They just don’t know it.

    There are much more important social issues. Maybe “Rob” should think more about the Moms And Kids that don’t have clothing or food, let alone a computer for an art project.

    Those people are losers.

  • Adrienne Boswell February 21, 2020, 7:45 am

    A very long time ago, I registered a domain with GoDaddy, 6 characters. Due to a screw up at GoDaddy registration, the domain was unlocked for 24 hours and in that 24 hours, it was scooped up by a domain holding company. They offered to sell me the domain for $5,000.00. That was 13 years ago. It’s now reduced to $695.00.

    No one is ever going to want that domain name except me and I’m never going to pay an exorbitant amount of money to get it. I can wait.

    • Stop it February 21, 2020, 1:54 pm

      It is laughable you expect people to believe your story is in anyway truthful. If GoDaddy actually made such an egregious error which they didn’t by the way because I worked there for a half a decade but let’s just say they did and what you said did occur it would be clear-cut dispute resolution if you truly purchased the domain before the third-party

  • David Rucker February 21, 2020, 9:19 pm

    Part of this negativity is the fault of the registrar’s. There have been several times I have quickly looked up a domain at dinner on my phone or a day before payday only to have it show up as a premium name with a $3000+ price tag just a couple days later. This leads me to believe that the search history is being passed to domain investors to try to grab extra money from people that didn’t click the buy now button. I have only experienced with one major registrar, which I no longer use. One of the domains I’m referring to I actually used to own and ran a business under that same name. I made the decision to try to start that endeavor again, looked up the name Tuesday $12, went to buy Friday ($2975 + $12)! That was almost 4 years ago. Still listed as premium with only being put on sale for $2500 on occasion. These are the situations that make domain investors seem like scum. Which I personally don’t blame the investor I blame the company that I ran the original search through! Still hoping to one day aquire the name but I’m not and can’t currently pay that much for a .com!

  • RJ February 22, 2020, 2:31 pm

    He is a typical Anti-Capitalist. If domains were regulated in a similar way as a trademark name, where a regulator would oversee and approve your use to approve your ownership, you would see very high domain costs. It costs money to be in business. How could anyone think that a valuable business asset should be low cost. Let him show an example where that exists in the business world, where a valuable business asset is low cost. Domains are a new type of asset that confuses people like Rob.

  • Nick February 22, 2020, 3:28 pm

    Oh come on “Rob”. Does anyone care that someone stopped me from owning that corner lot in the city, the one with the mega foot and vehicle traffic? No. No one asked me permission to purchase that lot and a slew of other things that people got to before me. That “child”, even that “mom” may not have even been born when I purchased the domain name you believe I should give to them.

    I will not apologize for investing in , in this case domains. I am not sharing with anyone my stocks. I am not sharing with anyone my baseball card collection. I am sharing my home, my hard earned money. Further more, I am not helping the rest of this country pay for its student loans, for stupid decisions that THEY MADE, fully aware that their worthless degrees would prevent them from earning more than the drive-thru at McDonalds, while at the fast-food joints at least their is a career path. I worked 3 to 4 jobs to pay my student loans off in 5 years after graduating. Why do I bring that up – it sounds like “Rob” would support Bernie Sanders and his give-away-and-share everything BS plans. All but his own 3 homes and millions of dollars, of course. People like Bernie and his supporters need to go find a nation that offers them all that they want to change THIS nation into, the majority of us do not want change no matter what CNN tries to brainwash the nation into thinking.

    Wake up “Rob” or the world will crush you into pieces. Sounds like its already begun.

  • aj April 2, 2020, 4:15 am

    Does Rob own multiple cars, homes, have two jobs?
    Doesn’t he realize he is driving up the price of cars and home buy owning more than one?
    His contribution to the demand curve for housing and cars creates prices too high for a mom or a child to have shelter or own a car.

    And by working more than one job he is literally stealing money from those who need a job.

    Domain investors take on a ton of risk with absolutely no guarantees of any reward.



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