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New TLDs & Minds + Machines with Antony Van Couvering – DNW Podcast #10

A discussion about new top level domain names.

Domain Name Wire podcastAntony Van Couvering, founder and CEO of new TLD company Minds + Machines, shares his thoughts on new top level domain names on this week’s podcast.

We discuss registry pricing of premium domains, niche TLDs, domain name registration channels and more. It’s an enlightening discussion with the founder of one of the largest new TLD companies.

Also: Two warnings for domain name owners, the Dark Side of Domain Parking, and a quick review of the top 5 domain name news stories from last month. Plus, listen to learn how to win a free Coffee.Club subscription.

Subscribe via iTunes to listen to the Domain Name Wire podcast on your iPhone or iPad, or click play below or download to begin listening. (Listen to previous podcasts here.)

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Reader Interactions


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  1. Robbie

    I don’t care for this person, disgusting what they did to people who registered domains at reg fee, then went back, and wanted to hike renewals into the hundreds, and thousands. Company is a joke!

  2. Antony Van Couvering

    Hey Robbie,

    If that had happened to me, I’d be pissed too, but it’s really not because we’re bastards. In fact we sent out clear pricing to registrars, but some of them had difficulty implementing our pricing and provided names to customers below their actual cost (there were many registrars that implemented the pricing correctly). We’ve been working with them to work out something that worked for customers while retaining our contractual pricing. Usually this has worked out to mean that we are providing a first-year discount to registrars for the underpriced names so that customers could keep the name at the price at which it was advertised at the registrar initial term before they revert to their contractual price. You can hate us if you want to, but we spent a lot of time dealing with this mixup with the aim of minimizing disruption to the end-customer.

    Were you personally affected?


        • jane

          End of the day I have had issues with .club (1 problem), .country (2 problems), .london (2 problems) and .melbourne (1 problem) to date based on “issues” with price/availability which kind of sucks when it means I invest in a domain I don’t end up getting and can’t get my money back without finding another domain so in the end, after wasting time thinking I had what I needed, I am less interested in bothering with these four extensions when all is said and done.

          But it is what it is so meh

  3. Philip

    Minds + Machines are one of the leading lights in the new gTLD space. A truely professional, well run company set for stellar growth. Well done chaps.

  4. Robbie

    @Philip —> do you work for them, or how many shares do you have, I really think these guys have underachieved in regards to registration numbers, can you explain what leading light means, what milestones they have achieved?

  5. Tom Gilles

    Excellent interview Andrew,

    Antony is spot on here. Minds and Machines is positioned to be a leader in online identity creation and management. Their integration and market entry strategy is superb. It would be difficult to suggest a better New TLD registry business model exists. The cars analogy seems accurate and it appears that M&M directors are working to solve the barriers to entry for individuals and small business. He’s right that registration numbers should not be relied upon for valuation. The .com equivalent makes sense.

    They have a strong portfolio of strings secured including .law and .fashion combined with some excellent Geos. .London is a great success, destined to grow larger. They are in contention sets for 9 figure registries, some of which they will win. Their focus now is quality, not quantity.

    They are in great shape, and in good hands. They seem to be taking some heat for what is perceived to be a slow start when we’re still in the top half of the first inning in this process. They’ll finish strong.

    This comment was not solicited, endorsed or compensated in any way. I own no stock and I’m not looking for a job.

      • Tom G

        My comment was speaking to the relative position of M&M in the context of the new gtld ecosystem. I hold no personal or professional bias toward any one organization within that system outside our own. I simply agree with Antony’s assessment of the state and direction of the industry and his organization.

  6. Kassey

    Very true. Today’s it’s just too difficult for the small business owners and average consumers to get a domain name and build a website complete with email. The day will come when the average Joe can get a website and use it as his “home” and identify in the virtual world. The new gTLDs are just not the place for domain investors, though.

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