Received wisdom on the web is that if you are running a business you should own the .com domain name or else you are doomed to being an also-ran.
So I was surprised to read The Sunday Telegraph Stella Magazine’s (8th March 2009 – yes it was a slow Sunday) article on “the great eccentrics of world fashion”. Some are listed alongside URLs:
Out of these four, only one runs the .com domain of their online presence. The others are content to let blogspot and typepad do the heavy lifting and are evidently happy to be associated with those domains.
And given that 99% of first time visitors to your location will get there by typing in the name (e.g. facehunter) into Mr Google’s Guidebook, the .com-ness or not of the domain name becomes less relevant.
Not surprisingly, as with pretty much any .com name made up of two arbitrary words, facehunter.com is apparently owned by a domain squatting organisation. I presume this to be the case because (a) facehunter.com is just a list of links to adverts and (b) I’m struggling to see what other reason Rough Media can have for registering 2,000+ domains.
Google is wise to this: if you even do a search for “facehunter.com” you still get links to the “real” facehunter at http://facehunter.blogspot.com rather than the squatted domain.
Where is the benefit, these days, of having http://www.myname.com over http://myname.wordpress.com or even http://www.twitter.com/myname? How long before having your own .com domain starts feeling rather stuffy, quaint and old-fashioned?