NamesCon concludes its run in Las Vegas.
NamesCon 2019 finishes today in Las Vegas with expert roundtables. This was the sixth and final installment of the conference at The Tropicana in Las Vegas. Next year the conference moves to Austin.
If there’s one thing for sure, it’s that no one will miss the Tropicana. It’s not exactly the crown jewel of Las Vegas.
As for this year’s conference, I feel like the enthusiasm level was up a bit from last year. Lots of optimism. We’ll see how that plays out in the year ahead.
On Tuesday I participated in two panels. In the first, I interviewed Blake Janover of Home.loans and Mike Kugler of Vacation.rentals about their experiences with their domains after paying $500k for them. While some of the questions were about new top level domains, this was also a chance to talk to two end-user buyers. They aren’t domain investors; they bought domains because they want to capitalize on the value of good domains.
The second panel was about .com price increases. Derek Newman did a great job moderating the panel, including asking questions back to people in the audience to add value to the panel. Elliot Noss has such a great historical perspective on .com and added a lot. Zak Muscovitch represented the Internet Commerce Association and domain owners’ interests. I talked a bit about the adversarial relationship that has popped up in the past months between Verisign and domain investors, including some of its biggest registrar customers. While Verisign has a duty to its shareholders to make as much as it can from .com, its sudden about-face on domain investors after spending 10+ years courting them and creating tools to help them buy more domains is startling. By the way, Verisign didn’t sponsor NamesCon this year after doing so in the past.
I interviewed lots of people at the conference for Monday’s podcast, so stay tuned for that.