Lots of progress, but still an issue of orphaned domain name listings on marketplaces.
If you’ve been buying domains on major domain name marketplaces for any number of years you’ve certainly come across a domain listed for sale that isn’t actually for sale.
I still remember “buying” SugarCookies.com for something like $2500 many years ago only to find out the person who had listed it had sold it already.
Afternic and Sedo have taken steps over the years to resolve this problem. After a site started listing domains listed on Sedo that were freely available for registration, Sedo started implementing a number of systems to weed out old listings.
The problem is also creeping up on GoDaddy. It creates a particularly interesting situation on GoDaddy since the site started syndicating its auction listings to its registration path.
One Domain Name Wire reader has experienced this twice. A domain expired and was fully deleted, so he went to GoDaddy to register it. But the system wouldn’t let him register it, instead saying the domain name was available in auction:
The reader had to go to a competing domain registrar in order to register the domain name.
What happened here is that the previous owner had listed the domain on Go Daddy auctions. When the domain expired the auction listing wasn’t removed.
Marketplaces have worked to clean up such listings as they move to more fixed price, instant transfer listings. Most instant transfer systems constantly monitor whois records for changes and remove domains from the marketplace immediately if there’s an ownership change.
I’ve noticed Afternic go a step further recently. Afternic will completely remove your listing if you don’t respond to several notices of a price request for a domain name.