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BizReport : Social Marketing : February 09, 2007

Businesses overlook importance of securing social network domains

Have you grabbed your domain name on any of the social networking sites, such as MySpace? No? You may be too late.

by Helen Leggatt

You’re in good company if you are one of those businesses who have overlooked the importance of grabbing their branded domains on the major social sites. McDonalds, Nike, Pepsi and even MySpace itself were too late. And there doesn’t appear to be much chance of MySpace demanding they be handed over to the corporations, if the MySpace domain name debacle involving Fox’s “Bones” TV series and an indie band of the same name in November, 2006, is any indication. MySpace eventually returned the domain name to the band.

It’s a tough decision for MySpace. They risk enraging their users, if they sniff favouritism for businesses, yet they may lose financially by not being able to sell these valuable internet properties at a high price.

There is also the risk to businesses that domains featuring their brand name, such as, could fall in to the wrong hands including activists and hackers. At present there is nothing that can be done to stop this.

According to SocialNext, Myspace claims it won’t remove users from domains that include trademarked brands, even though it owns and controls those domains. But for how long?

Tags: domain names, MySpace

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