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Hold the Records: .Mobi Auctions Voided

.Mobi registry voids latest Sedo auction, will re-run in January.

First, there was the euphoria from .mobi fans. The December .mobi auction at Sedo closed with major records: Music.mobi sold for $616,000 and Games.mobi sold for $401,500.

But then the griping began. Constantine Giorgio Roussos said he was the rightful winner of Music.mobi at $66,000. Sedo’s servers had slowed to a halt in the last few minutes of the auction, which kept many bidders at bay. Sedo extended the auction for 2 1/2 hours and the domain was bid up to $616,000. Worse, the self-proclaimed new winning bidder for these premium .mobi domains publicly stated that he bought them as an investment, not to develop. Technically, that can be construed as against the auction terms.

After an investigation as to why Sedo’s servers slowed to a halt, the .mobi registry has decided to void the entire results of the auction and rerun it in January. They are contractually allowed to do this.

Sedo’s investigation sheds new light on what happened:

-The server meltdown not only prevented bidders from placing new bids, but it kept valid proxy bids from being triggered

-The auction was “compromised”, according to Sedo. This likely means that someone performed a denial of service attack during the final few minutes of the auction. (This is my speculation based on Sedo’s official statement.)

The new auction will run on January 23, 2008, according to Sedo.

Unfortunately, this won’t make anyone — the original “winners” and the new “winners” happy. Sedo is between a rock and hard place.

The biggest winner in this decision might be Alvaro Albarracin, who gets to rethink his decision to shell out over a million bucks on highly speculative domains.

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  1. Steve M. says

    While what happened is a short-term black eye for the industry, all in all, this is the wisest and most fair way for Sedo to handle what happened…put all players back on the same level playing field and run it again.

    My prediction: Alvaro (as you believe as well, Andrew) and the other bidders will be able to reconsider their very risky bids.

  2. baria sous says

    Snapnames auction next month will show them how to run a an auction. This would also be a great time to show them how to sell .mobi names on their plateform instead of sedos.

    Watch out for some sixfigure names to sell at the snapnames live auction on the 22 and 23. Now why would sedo go off and have it the same day.. UHHH daaa. snapnames will show them how its done.

  3. Andrew says

    I really think the date coinciding with the SnapNames auction is pure coincidence. There are so many auctions now that it’s hard to not stumble upon another company’s auction.

    Furthermore, it’s just the first day of a 7 day auction. Few people bid in the first day anyway. They are also auctioning .mobi domains; the SnapNames auction is much broader.

  4. mark says

    As a winner if 3rd auction..

    It is totally Greedy Scam.

    They can’t be sure the system won’t lock

    down again..

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