A few people asked me why we stopped posting the Go Daddy auction closing results. About three weeks ago someone called me and mentioned they were bidding on a domain on Go Daddy Auctions, they got side tracked and did not win the auction. They needed the name for a client and contacted the registrant listed in whois. The expired owner did a Google search and found our article and saw the name closed over $4000. Now I will say the domainer who called did not say please stop posting, he was just letting me know of this one transaction.
I then a talked with a guy who told me he pays a couple kids to call every name that closes over $500 on Go Daddy Auctions the previous day. He said he had it down to a system where he just went through his watch list, took every domain that closed over $500 and gave the teenagers a list of names, he taught them all about whois and now the two kids are becoming domainers.
I asked him how long as he been doing this ? He asked me if I was stupid. He said since a few weeks after TDNAM first started and imagined there were plenty of guys doing this. He mentioned that from time to time the teenagers would tell him they were the sixth person who called about the name.
I remember at Christmas I saw a name expiring on Go Daddy and I knew the registrant and I called him and told him. He replied, "I know, I am getting a true appraisal" I said that I guess forget free appraisals like estibot and whatever Go Daddy charges for theirs. Real appraisals cost $80. The price to pull a domain out of redemption at Go Daddy is $80.
I actually had won a domain CrystalTv.com that Go Daddy estimated a decent amount of traffic, and since its a genre of domains I focus on it was attractive. The owner paid the $80 and renewed.
Now I see Shane wrote about this topic today and the "spread" and how Go Daddy could fix that. Go Daddy could change the whois on the day of expiration and make it private, so then the game just changes and Domain Tools becomes the winner as people will just look to find the previous owner through that method. The game will change but the players will keep playing.
Now Go Daddy could really do something big and give the former registrant a piece of the action. I believe some names sell for more just because they are expired. So there may be domain owners that let names drop that were getting no offers. Either which way if Go Daddy were to give 20 % I think they would see a boost in their overall business as it would make even more sense to have domains there for the chance to make some money in the expired game.
We stopped posting the closing auctions results now so we are not affecting anyone getting a deal. It will be interesting to see how the game changes.