Eating Out & Hidden Gems – with no marriage proposals involved!

I’m not sure if you’ve heard but there are some new names coming to the Internet. It’s called the new generic Top Level Domain program (new gTLD) and it means that internet users won’t be stuck with a .COM, a .NET or a .BIZ domain name for their websites but can choose from over 600 different terms such as .DATE, .MEN and .SCIENCE. With such a wide variety of new names becoming available I’m convinced that the new gTLD process is going to be cluttered with ’hidden gems’, both at what is known in the Industry as the second level (www.hiddengem.something) but also at the top level (www.something.hiddengem). Domain name investors out there are already working hard to identify names in the second level which haven’t been identified by registry operators as valuable ‘premium names’, this of course is what investing in any discipline is fundamentally about; but are there any Top Level domains which are, themselves hidden gems?

Hidden gem domain name?

Hidden gem domain name?

I have a wife and two infant boys, and have my hands pretty full professionally with my part in taking around 60 new top level domains to market and domestically, trying to wrangle 2 mini whirlwinds at home. By definition then: my wife and I don’t get out much! The other night however, with my father-in-law visiting us in Southern Spain from back home in bonnie Scotland, a rare opportunity for a child-free evening presented itself.

Off we trotted, my wife and I, a spring in our respective steps to a local Spanish bistro. Welcomed warmly and settled in to a table in a discrete corner, my other/better half and I, glass of red in hand, were promptly presented with a menu from which we would select the first of our three courses that evening. Upon opening the menu, it became apparent that it may take some time to make a decision on what we would be having! The menu, in terms of its volume, bore a striking resemblance to a volume of the Encyclopedia Britannica: page after page, after page… …after page of culinary delectations to whet one’s appetite, each as eloquently and expansively described as the next. I considered the first 5 of many many dishes on offer for each course before eventually tiring of the whole thing and concluding: I just want to eat!

This was interesting to me, given our part as a portfolio applicant, in a time where domain name registrants will have unprecedented choice when it comes to selecting their next (or first ever) domain name. 

Broadly speaking, registrars have done their best to categorize domain names to make life as easy as possible for their customers. Typically, you will see a list of roughly 600 domain names split into categories such as: Geographical, Finance, Retail, Industrial, Hobbies and Interests and other variations of these terms.

The Hidden Gems
As I say, I believe that our first string, which at time of printing we hope to see delegated within the week, should be considered a: New gTLD hidden gem. Let me explain why! When your Top Level Domain doesn’t fit nicely into one of the commonly used categories there is a tendancy for it to fall between the cracks. The billion dollar question is whether these TLDs are more likely to have valuable and popular names available for standard registration prices? After several glasses of Spanish Red, I had some pretty clear ideas about the answer as you might imagine.

We will be going to market at the end of March with, what I think, is the new gTLD process’ best kept secret. Our first domain is short; it’s instructive, instinctive and intuitive. It’s exciting, commercially compelling and above all – it’s ours!

It is .BID and you can bet your bottom dollar that there will be some bargains to be had.


Rob McCrea, Head of Account Management at Famous Four Media

Interview with Andy Churley, Famous Four Media

The revolution of new generic top level domains has started. At present, 15 TLDs are already available to the public (.bike, .guru, .estate etc.). One of the most active new Registry Operators is Famous Four Media (FFM). FFM was set up in 2011 by a small group of recognized domain name experts and successful financiers. They operate 60 gTLD applications, which include some of the most interesting domain suffixes, such as .accountant, .bid, .date, .download, .faith, .loan, .men, .review, .science, .trade, .webcam and .win.

To read the rest of this interview click here

Andy Churley CMO at FFM

Andy Churley CMO, Famous Four Media


Is Rihanna ready for the New Internet?

As I look out of the window of the Famous Four Media office, I can tell you that it’s a warm and sunny day here today. In all honesty, it’s usually sunny in Gibraltar even during the bleakest of February mornings. But despite the beautiful weather, it’s the day I least look forward to every week – Technical meeting day!

Once a week, whether we need it or not, I resolutely make my way down to ‘Technical corner’ aware that, with every step I take, it’s getting just a shade gloomier. What is it about Techies that make them fear the light? With all of the blinds down, the technical office is in permanent darkness only punctuated by the glow of over-sized monitors, displaying text that’s way too small, in mismatched fluorescent colors that would make an online marketer weep with despair. Its occupants scurry around like naked mole rats, clearly using senses other than sight to navigate the vast array of desks loaded with boxes, wires, keyboards and other computer paraphernalia too complicated to identify.

“What’s going on?” I ask Famous Four Media’s Great Wizard of Internet Stuff (G-WIS). I can see from his frown, illuminated by the pale glow from one of his many monitors that something is clearly up.

“We’re all worried about Rihanna!” He replies, clearly flustered. “We’ve been discussing it all morning and we’re not sure she’ll get her name in Sunrise.”

Evidently NOT

Now I don’t profess to know a lot about Internet nerdism but I do know one thing: all of them, without exception, consider Rihanna to be the hottest thing since WiFi.

“Oh is that all!” I cry, thankful that it is nothing serious, such as our websites going down or that our wireless toaster is burning the toast. Clearly I’ve said the wrong thing.

“But that means someone else might get!” Exclaims another techie, distraught.

In order to calm him down, I explain about the Trademark Clearing House (TMCH). It’s actually quite straightforward, when a registry launches, it is obliged to start off in what is called the Sunrise Phase. In this phase only trademark holders, with names lodged in the TMCH, are allowed to register a domain name matching their mark exactly.

“So,” I continue, “if Rihanna wants to make sure that only she gets, all she has to do is pop her Trademark in the TMCH and wait for the .WEBCAM registry to launch. Then bingo she grabs!”

“Does she have a trademark?” I ask the G-WIS slyly, trying to catch him out

“I don’t know ,” he says simply, turning back to his screen. “I’ll ask her.”