So this morning a friend contacted me about a domain name they wanted to buy. They had tried to register the domain name but it said it was taken, but when they navigated over to the domain in their browser they saw a Go Daddy parking page which made them think it was potentially owned by Go Daddy themselves. I’ve seen this confusion happen before so I explained that the domain was instead simply registered by a Go Daddy customer who hadn’t done anything with it yet.
In case you didn’t know, Go Daddy actually puts up parking pages on newly registered domain names and collects the revenue while you’re waiting to put up a site…or potentially never putting up a site. Very few average end-users know this and these wacky looking parking pages are confusing for end users, but hey, Go Daddy can make more money off the clicks essentially putting their customers domain names to work, for them.
Like most parking pages, the idea is that algorithms should look at the domain name and come up with relevant links that match what someone who lands on the site is looking for. In this case, it looks like something has gone very wrong with the algorithm that comes up with the links for Go Daddy’s parking pages. The domain name here is BeTheCat.com and here’s the links that Go Daddy decided to show:
So I can understand why the algorithm would pick links like “cat” and “feline” and of course “kitten” makes sense too…but why the word cat repeated 8 times would make any sense is a bit puzzling. What I think we’re seeing here is a legitimate bug in the algorithm that auto-generates the links for Go Daddy’s parking page. You’ll also notice the word “cat” repeated three times right above it, both of these make no sense.
While this is the first time I’ve ever encountered this bug, given that Go Daddy has millions of these parking pages out there I wouldn’t be surprised if this error can be found all over the place. It’s surprising that something like this could happen but heck, Go Daddy is a huge company so things like this can happen and go unnoticed for a long time.
Have you ever seen anything like this before?