Is Network Solutions Stealing Domain Names? Lessons from Corporate Blogging

networksolutions2.gifIn one of my networking groups, there was an email posted about Network Solutions stealing domain names. I now realize this is a very big issue and has been discussed quite a bit.
Well according to Shashi Bellamkonda who works with Network Solutions social media outreach, Network Solutions does this so customers have a chance to register the domain name before hackers can do it as posted on Shashi’s blog .
His post elicited a number of critical comments from customers, which Shashi took like a gentleman, and has agreed to take these concerns to Network Solutions management.
While there is the issue of Network Solutions and domain names, I really think the bigger issue is how Network Solutions is reaching out to its customers, not hiding behind a press release, and enabling customers to reach out and touch them in a direct way.
Want to speak to Network Solutions face to face. See them at the Third Annual Small Business Summit 2008 on February 11, 2008.
What does this mean to you?

A blog is a great tool to reach out directly to your customers and get their feedback. If you are a big company, unleashing trusted employees, within guidelines, to blog, can endear customers to you and build trust and openness.
In times of crisis, be it a product recall or snow closure, your blog is a powerful tool for you to reach out to customers and for customers to reach out to you.


About Ramon Ray

Ramon Ray, Marketing & Technology Evangelist, & Infusionsoft. Full bio at . Check him out on Google Plus, Twitter or Facebook

  • shashi bellamkonda

    You correctly quoted in your post – Network Solutions took this measure so customers have a chance to register the domain name before any front runners do. Thank you for pointing out that we have reached our proactively to answer questions through the social media.
    After getting feedback from customers and the industry we have made changes to our domain protection measure. Wanted to update you on the changes already implemented.
    – No domain searched in the WHOIS page will be reserved.
    – Only Domains searched on the homepage and domain product page will be reserved.
    – We added additional customer notification to the homepage.
    – Information on reserved domains is not publicly available through the .COM registry zone file
    We as a company have reinvented ourselves to enable small businesses to succeed online. Our focus is on providing tools to help them to succeed online- ImageCafé – the product that I managed was one of them (Publish a website easily with absolutely no tech knowledge.)
    We will continue to monitor and make enhancements to this. Thanks for the opportunity to give you these updates.We look forward to seeing you at the Third Annual Small Business Summit 2008 on February 11, 2008.

  • aflyupmykilt

    This message is for Network Solution and their press flack:
    Yesterday I did a search on several domain names that I was considering to see if they were available. This included several prime names that it took me a while to think of.
    Today, I went back to your website to purchace the names and discovered that they were taken – BY YOU! Thank you so much for “saving me” from those who would have registered those names and “offering” them to me today for $18.99 each – roughly twice what I could have had them for yesterday. When I used your site to find the names that came out of MY head, I never dreamed that you would engage in the unethical practice – not illegal, but clearly unethical – of stealing my creative ideas so you could squeeze $9 extra out of me for each one.
    Guess what? You can keep’em. I’ll think of something else. But it will be a cold day in Hell before I ever spend a dime with your company, and when I do get my blog up and running, guess who is going to be the subject of my first post. Apparently, reputation doesn’t mean anything to you. Go to hell.

  • Mantra

    I have fallen victim of this blatant “thievery”.
    I’ve been readying myself to register a domain and setup a new site.
    Guess what? I’ve gone to network solutions’ main page to check the domain’s availability.
    Cool, it was. I started moving on and set up an account at an ISP of my choosing. On 3 Feb 2007 Network Solutions registered the DOMAIN I SEARCHED FOR, charging $34.99 for it!
    Is this fair? Despite all your lame excuses something transpires nicely. You are thieves leeching off of other people.
    I’ll love the day you will have to close shop.
    You come there stating your measure protects the users. The hell it does. I don’t feel protected.
    I feel stolen of my right to create something I conceived.
    Damn you, Network Solutions. Burn in hell for all I care.
    You will NEVER see a dime coming from me.
    Guess who’s going to write about this when the site comes up.