How .IO Domains Lost me a TON of Money

.io domainsby Adam Yamada-Hanff

Recently on this fine website I wrote my sad story how I told a relative about a great .CO domain I purchased. He had no idea what I was talking about or what the .CO domain extension was in general.  I realized as I was writing that post there is an even worse extension I’ve had experience with, .IO which is the country code top level domain (ccTLD) for the Indian Ocean.  Why?  I’ve lost a TON of money because of .IO domains and these ridiculously tech savy, annoying, start-up mofos trying to be all original.

No, I haven’t actually bought any .IO domain names.  That doesn’t mean that I can’t be negatively affected though.  I was out of town at this conference once and someone who had a medium-sized company was interested in talking with me about possibly having me to do some web consulting work for them.  I can’t remember what this person’s position was but she was Vice President or something along those lines.  The company was about 100 people or so it was not large but not small either.

Usually at conferences if people have questions I try to give free and useful advice as much as possible.  Most consultants don’t but this is why people go to conferences honestly.  To get advice you can’t get anywhere else.  Even though most aren’t not going to hire me, I am always hopeful in the future someone will.  Anyway, this executive handled marketing had expressed interested in having lunch with me.  I did not realize this until she approached me but I had given advice to a few people and there was chatter about how awesome I was to do that without expecting anything in return.

When she initially approached she made it clear they were looking for help with web marketing, even though she had a lot of marketing experience.  The company in her mind had made some vital mistakes online and she wanted to talk over things I thought could be improved.  I said to myself, “Wow, this could really turn into something for me here.”  That assumption was wrong, very wrong all because of a mention of .IO domains.

When I had lunch with her the next day she started explaining some problems the company was having.  They had tried Facebook advertising and were having horrible results.  I sent her the link so she could watch the Facebook Fraud video by Derek Mueller.  I then explained that most likely those Likes and Shares were not authentic, even if paid through Facebook, as mostly it seems to be bot accounts or from click farm countries.  I also made small suggestions about website improvements (yes, I know this blog needs a refresh) the company could make, various paid and free tools that might be helpful, some books she might want to read, and recommended they switch hosting providers (they were using NoDaddy hosting).  Then she started asking questions about search engine optimization (SEO) and was relaying to me the company was having a hell of a hard time against competitors.  She also felt like an SEO firm they had used had not delivered.

It sounded like the SEO firm “Guaranteed” a 1st place ranking in Google which is not really possible.  (I encourage everyone to read my 6 Questions to Ask a Search Optimizer if you haven’t.)  I had to start explaining basic SEO principles, since she did not understand them, and that most professional marketers and search optimizers make wrong suggestions to new clients.  Most of the time they will recommend 3rd party SEO resources instead of Google and this really only confuses people.  I explained that Google tries, but does not do a great job, of providing resources for normal webmasters to understand how Google views search.  I suggested that she follow the Google Webmaster Central Blog and watch some of Matt Cutts videos.  (We all know those are marginally helpful.)  While it is useful to follow search news I said, “The major tech and SEO websites make assumptions from reading and watching both of these.  Sometimes what they write is not wrong but it is guessing honestly.  If you want to hear the information unfiltered it is best to get it from the source.  That way, hopefully, you will be less confused. ”  She seemed to get what I was saying here and nodded in approval.  I continued my spiel, “You probably won’t understand everything reading and watching those but it is good to be aware of these.  Keep in mind Google claims they want to help small and medium sized businesses but they don’t really.   The main reason to follow Google is that you will stay updated with their news and requirements.”  Since she had her iPad out on the table I was showing here exactly where to find everything.  She was amazed how little she knew in this new digital age and through our exchange she even said that the company would probably be expanding soon and could use someone like me.  I thought I had this in the bag.

I let her soak in the videos and some of other resources I suggested on her iPad.  After awhile she asked,”What have you learned watching these videos?”  I thought it was a good question and started to explain that Matt Cutts, Google’s head of Webspam and the guy that built Google’s family filter engine, said he didn’t recommend country code top level domain hacks or usage.  I said, “This includes .IO which is a popular domain extension among start-ups.  Originally he said that .IO specifically would be considered by Google only for those that live in the Indian Ocean.  There are not that many people that live in the Indian Ocean though and now .IO is considered generic by Google and not country specific.  It would be bad if I wasn’t aware of this especially if someone was looking into buying a .IO domains and they came to be for advice about it.”

After I said all this… there was a long blank stare.  It was clear she was starting to question who she was sitting down with.  The stare was really to say, “Who is this guy?”  She then softly asked, “.IO?”  This lead to me to try to explain ccTLDs in regards to search engines and how Google views them.  This, I think, she sort of understood but the whole .IO domain extension clearly made no sense to her.   I don’t remember entirely what I said because I was trying to move the conversation out of domains at that point.  There was a definite mention of I/O in computer terms.  (For those that are not aware the IO refers to input/output, which is pretty geeky.)  At this point I knew I had lost any hope of consulting work or a future position at that company.

She did not seem to understand .IO and her eyes and facial expression were a definite indication of confusion.  It just didn’t make sense to her why someone would buy a .IO let alone what the hell it meant.  I believe me even bringing it up in the conversation even baffled her.

While the rest of the lunch went ok, I could tell that mentioning .IO domains really hurt me.  My chances of consulting work or scoring a full time job at this company went down in flames just because of one mention of IO domains.  She emailed me later thanking me for the suggestions and taking the time out of my day and said she’d be in touch.  Never happened.  I even tried to reconnect with her a  few weeks ago but I got no reply.

She did genuinely seem like she was going to offer me something but mentioning this super nerdy extension basically ruined any chances I had.   So that’s the story of how I lost money because of friggin .IO domains.

To all those f$@)@& annoying ass hip start-ups using a .IO domain you made me LOOSE a LOT of money.  After this post if you use a .IO domain and I think your product is good and use it, I still won’t mention your company or service to ANYONE.  You make me loose money, I make you loose money.  How does that feel?  Buy a real domain extension at NameSilo.

I once heard someone explain that the reason he choose a .IO domain was because he wanted to be in the “SoHo of the internet.”  Well honestly that’s great but I certainly don’t live in the SoHo of the internet.  Even if I did live in the SoHo of the internet it would be too expensive for me.  I believe .IO domains are $60 the first year through NameCheap and $100 a year to renew.  That’s damn expensive for a domain name and I’d rather buy a quality domain in domain auctions or the domain aftermarket.  The SoHo of the internet does not pay my bills.

To be fair to IO domains, it is hard to know whether that truly hurt me in the conversation and lost me consulting work.  However, things were going really well up until that point. I can only assume what was going through her heard after the lunch.  I’m pretty sure it was not all positive after mentioning a weird domain extension though.

If a client is using a .IO domain and loves it I probably won’t say anything.  In the future I’ll refrain from even mentioning .IO domains.  I’ll just look confused and awkward.  If a someone asks about using a .IO domain for a web service or app I’ll reply, “Say Hell No to .IO!” :)

What do you think about .IO domains?   Annoying, cool, fun, or it is a passing domain fad?  What do you think of my sad story of losing money because of silly .IO domains?

SweetCaptcha – The Best WordPress Captcha Solution?

Do you hate getting comment spam on your WordPress blog?  I just found a solution that might help anyone running a WordPress website, SweetCaptcha.  Honestly I think this is the BEST WordPress Captcha solution I have come across so far.  Even better than the widely used Akismet developed by Automattic (the company behind WordPress.)

What is Sweet Captcha?  Basically it is an imaged based captcha (Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart) solution that asks users to solve a puzzle.  While a lot of similar image based puzzle captchas I’ve seen are kind of annoying difficult and require too much thinking, SweetCaptcha keeps it simple.

sweetcaptchaDealing with spam comments on CarNewsCafe, a website I run covering car news, was taking up a fair amount of my time since we can receive over 1,000 spam comments every day. The reason for this is we get quite a lot of traffic now, and spammers obviously like targeting high traffic sites.  I decided to try out SweetCaptcha.  The result?  It has stopped the vast majority of spam comments.  There are still a couple that get through but those are caught by Akismet.

In addition setting up Sweet Captcha was hella easy.  I just installed the plugin from the WordPress.org plugin repository, provided my email, then a few clicks later it was up and running.  Once I realized how great it worked I installed it on several other WordPress sites I have.

I’ve seen plenty of similar types of captcha solutions out there but usually they are complex and a pain to solve.  Most of these captchas are great for keeping spam bots from commenting but it also makes so that humans won’t either.   Anything that takes a long time and is more hassle than they a potential comment thinks is worth it… someone probably is not leaving a comment.

Another type of captcha I hate, math.  I HATE math so having to solve a math problem is a big no-no in my book if you want me to comment on your website.  This shouldn’t come as a surprise as most people hate math.  Clients I work with that have math based captchas I recommend they remove them immediately.  They always experience an increase in blog comments.  Why do you want less people to leave comments?  Sorry math nazis but people just don’t like having to do math problems when leaving comments.

Honestly just as bad as math problems would be reCaptcha.  This came from the useless minds at Google that only think of things how engineers would like them, not real people.  Can anyone seriously read a what those words say?  The problem is a lot of sites use reCaptcha, ugh.

Anyway, having to go in and delete WordPress spam comments in my websites is time consuming every day.  So I figure SweetCaptcha will save me at least 1 hour or more a month since I won’t have to do this on all my WordPress blogs.

My concern with SweetCaptcha, like most, is this might be too complex for some people to solve.  There should be some complexity though to keep the spammers out.

Some of you might be checking the comments below and be wondering, “Hey, why isn’t Adam using SweetCaptcha?”  This site is run on a WordPress Multisite installation and I could not get the plugin configured to work.  :(  Still I’m going to use SweetCaptcha on all my standalone WordPress sites.  That is until I find a better WordPress spam fighting tool.

Like most WordPress plugins SweetCaptcha is completely free.  The developers take donations to help support development and have some premium options so you can your own puzzles or strip out “Powered by SweetCaptcha.”  You can add several sites to one account email address as well.

If you have a forum, e-commerce, or some other type of site you can still use SweetCaptcha. It can be installed custom PHP pages and Javascript applications.  They had a Joomla plugin but it looks like development was abandoned.  The main market they are going after does seem to be WordPress users.

Visit the website here - http://sweetcaptcha.com/

If you’ve tried out SweetCaptcha I’d love to hear your thoughts about it.  Do you love it or hate it?  Do you think it is the best WordPress captcha solution?

Anything you wish would be improved?  If not do you think you will try it out?

Elon Musk believed Tesla & SpaceX would Fail

elon muskWhen Elon Musk was in London for the launch of the Tesla Model S in the United Kingdom he did an interview with the BBC’s  (British Broadcasting Corporation) Business Daily podcast.  He talked with Business Daily correspondent Justin Rowlett about Tesla, SpaceX, and his early career on the internet.  It was a pretty interesting and I was surprised by what he said later in the interview.

“I like working on technology that will have a positive effect on the world. You know, stuff that is going to matter and if we don’t solve it there could be some bad outcome for out future, the future of humanity.  When we started SpaceX, and Tesla in particular, I didn’t think either of them particularly would succeed.”

Justin Rowlett, the interviewer, than asked, “So you imagined both of them would fail when you started them?”

“I thought that was the most likely outcome… Initially I thought I’ll take half the money and I’ll keep the other half, and this other half will probably be lost and then I’ll still have the other half.  That was my initial thought, but then the company’s needed much more money than originally anticipated and of course we had the big recession in 2008.  Well, I could either keep the money, and the company was definitely going to die, or invest what I have left and maybe there is a chance.”

Elon Musk also discussed the early days of the internet and how nobody really thought it would go anywhere at the beginning of the interview.

“When I started Zip2 which was in the summer of 95, nobody had made any money on the internet.  It wasn’t some land of riches or something like that.  Most people didn’t know what the internet was including Silicon Valley.  We tried getting funding from venture capitalists and most of them had never used the internet.  If they had used the internet they were convinced nobody would ever make any money on it.  So our initial goals with Zip2 were quite modest, would we ever be able to make enough buy to eat and pay for rent?  That was our goal in the beginning.”

If you would like to listen to the whole interview with Elon Musk, visit the BBC Business Daily podcast page.  The Elon Musk interview was posted on June 9th, 2014 and is titled “Elon Musk: Space and Electric Cars.”  Be aware that the BBC only keeps podcast available 30 days after airing.

Let me know what you think about entrepreneurship and failure.  Is that just part of the game?  Especially with innovative companies like Tesla and SpaceX?

*Article originally published here

How to Watch the World Cup without Cable

by Adam Yamada-Hanff

If you want to catch all the action for this year’s World Cup in Brazil, but don’t have cable, how are you going to watch all the soccer matches?

Since about 2 million American Cut the Cord in 2013 and over 2/3 of Americans do not pay for cable or satellite TV service each month, I know there are a lot of people that are wondering the same thing, “How can I watch the World Cup?”  Have no fear for Adam is here and he’s going to show you How to Watch the World Cup without Cable and for free! :)

ABC

ABC (American Broadcasting Corporation) will be showing the World Cup games over-the-air (OTA) in an agreement with ESPN.  Basically this means you can watch the games with a basic antenna and pick-up the digital TV signal to watch the World Cup games on your TV.

I prefer this Terk HDTVa Amplified Antenna which can pull over-the-air (OTA) signals from up to 50 miles away.  I’ve even gotten the Terk HDTVa to pull channels from surrounding areas like Washington DC, Northern Virginia, and Delaware.  That is about a 50+ mile reception range of course your mileage may vary in terms of your location for signal quality and strength.  Also the downside with this Terk HDTVa antenna is the base is not that stable and tends to fall over often.  Honestly it is the best antenna I own for getting a ton of digital channels for free though.

Whats’ the issue with watching the World Cup games on ABC?  Seems ABC executives have only decided to show them on the weekends.  By weekends it’s really mostly on Saturday.  On Monday the Ghana vs USA game wasn’t shown on ABC.  I guess they figured, “What Americans want to watch Soccer on a Monday?  Even when the US is playing!”  That game was only available on ESPN meaning you needed a cable subscription to watch it.   There is a solution, but it may not be ideal for everyone.

Hablas Espanol?

Why am I asking, “Do you speak Spanish?”  Well in the United States broadcasts rights for the World Cup were secured by two different media companies, ESPN and Univision.

ESPN has coverage of the World Cup but like I said you need a cable subscription.  Some basic cable subscriptions don’t even include ESPN.  

For non-cable subscribers luckily Univision has the rights to broadcast all the games but… in Spanish.  ESPN has rights to show the games in English.  The Terk HDTVa antenna I have can pick-up the Univision signal (14.1) all the way from just outside Washington DC from where I live in Baltimore, MD.

You can check if you can pick-up Univision with an antenna by visiting TVFool.  It generates a pretty handy signal reception map showing which direction stations are in relation to your house.  You can use TVFool to lock in a certain a Univision signal.  If you are having trouble I’d recommend finding a forum to get reception help and posting your TVFool reception map.  There is also this FCC Digital TV map tool, but it blows in comparison to TVFool.

Univision is broadcasting ALL the World Cup games and in high definition.  A lot of cable subscriptions don’t’ include HD service.

If all the dealing with an antenna sounds too complicated for you or you can’t pick-up a strong digital TV signal, you can livestream the World Cup with Univision for free. as well.  The quality will not be as good but it’s obviously more convenient for some.  Here’s how;

How to Watch the World Cup Online (with Univision)

Step 1- Visit Univision

Obviously you need to visit Univision’s soccer portal.  (They call it football in case you were not aware like most other countries.)  Here is the link.

http://futbol.univision.com/

Step 2 – En Vivo Hoy (Live Now)

how to watch the world cupThere is a box to the right that says “En Vivo Hoy“, which means Live Now, on the futbol landing page for Univision.   This is where you can click to watch the watch and livestream all the World Cup games online.

Click the orange lettering where it says “Ver Partido en Vivo“, which means “watch live match” in English, for the Soccer (Futbol) game you want to watch and you will be taken to the live-streaming page.

Step 3 – Enjoy Livestreaming the World Cup

univision futbolThank god for Univision is all I can say.  If you don’t know Spanish, it’s a great time to brush up those language skills.   Honestly you’ll get used to watching Soccer in Spanish. :)

Note: If the game isn’t currently Live it will just show social media stuff.  If the game is in halftime you will see this screen.

univision

There’s always the Radio

Radio, what’s a radio? :)

If you’d rather hear the announcers in English call plays and tells you what is going on, what you could do is listen to ESPN radio online.  In your area the ESPN sports affiliate station may not be broadcasting the World Cup matches live.  They did not here, even for the Ghana vs USA game.  So again you might need to turn to your computer to listen to the World Cup games.  I’ve done this while doing working on the computer.

Watching the World Cup without Cable (and for Free)

Yes, this is a bit of a round about way to watch, or listen, to the World Cup.  If you don’t have cable these are the best ways I know to get coverage of all the Soccer action.  Remember the Brazilian supermodel Adriana Lima is encouraging everyone to watch “Futbol” so you better do it.

I hope my guide on “How to Watch the World cup without Cable” was helpful.  If you received value and benefit from this article please share it and leave a comment below.  I’m always glad when I’ve helped people.

I bought a Generic .CO Domain Name, Was this a Mistake?

by Adam Yamada-Hanff

Recently I bought a single word generic .CO domain name.  I thought it was an excellent purchase for the following reasons;

  • The word gets a decent amount of monthly searches in Google.  (Although it’s not a competitive word advertisers bid on.)
  • Like I said above, it is a single word English dictionary generic term that is used often.
  • People know how to spell the word and understand what it means.
  • This generic .CO domain name was available to register.  I bought it for $12.88 through NameCheap (read my NameCheap Review by the way) and not from someone who already owned it or in the domain aftermarket.
  • I tried to buy the word in other domain extensions but I was not able to secure anything.
  • It’s a great term for the type of website I want to build.

I don’t want to reveal what the domain is because right now I lack the time and resources to launch this web project.  I thought it was a pretty good buy and purchase since tech start-ups absolutely LOVE dot COs.  The most notably example of a .CO domain in use would be the short social video service Vine.CO, which is owned by Twitter.

The rain on my parade began when I started telling friends and relatives about what I thought was a great domain purchase.  I said “Hey, I recently bought this genericword.CO domain. What do you think?”  Most people did not care or probably just thought, “Adam is crazy!”  One relative’s response was telling that going with alternate domain extensions may not always be the best plan.  This is how the conversation went down;

Relative: What is a .CO?  What does that stand for?

Me: I believe it was the Colombian domain extension but .CO is open for global use nowadays.  So I was able to buy it.

Relative: So you registered a domain name for Colombia?  Why?

Me: Anyone can register or use a .CO domain.  It’s a popular domain extension among start-ups and tech companies nowadays.

Relative: Why would you register that?

Me: Well… that’s what was available and what I could get for a reasonable price.  You’ve never heard of .CO?  I thought it was pretty popular and they have done a lot of advertising for it.

Relative: I don’t pay attention to domain names!

While this was probably the harshest reaction at least he was being honest with me, which I appreciated.  I know I shouldn’t let others make fun of my awesome domain purchases…. but the conversation did make me feel like a bit of a tool.  Did all that .CO advertising just make it seem like it’s a better domain extension than it actually is?

.co domainWhat was surprising to me was this person uses their smartphone for working out, listening to music, making online orders, and the list goes on.  If you were to ask them I would imagine they feel they are very “tech savy.”  They still had no idea what a .CO domain was or had heard about it.  I thought this was interesting and they didn’t even think my generic .CO domain was all that impressive.

Of course this person does not build websites or has any experience doing this.   So it’s hard for these people to understand the problems you have when you are trying to find a suitable domain name for a website at decent price.   I’m sure others reading this article have tirelessly searched for domains and have run into the same situation.  Most domains are probably waaay out of your budget and you start looking into alternative domain extensions but often those are out of your budget too.

Granted .CO has only been available for global registration for a a few years but it seems from the talks I’ve had with others it’s probably best to stick with better known domain extensions like .COM, .NET, and .ORG.  I guess these are the “Big 3″ in the domain and internet world.

After I bought my domain name I started searching for other generic terms and phrases out of curiosity in the .CO domain extension.  What I found out was that the .CO registry apparently holds back a lot of premium .CO domains and terms so they can sell them to serious web developers or companies with cash.  They want to sell the premium .CO domain names and make the big bucks, which is understandable, so I feel I was fortunate to register this single word dictionary .CO at least.

What do you think I should do with my good generic .CO domain?  Keep it?  Wait for people to realize .CO is a better domain extension than .COM since it’s one letter shorter? :)  I’d be interested to hear people’s opinions, comments, and experiences.

I could always try to sell it down the road.  Since venture capitol backed start-ups love .COs and generic terms go for decent money from what I’ve read.

Even though I paid $12.88 the .CO domain that was introductory first year pricing.  The renewal fees are $22+ at most registrars, like NameSilo and NameCheap, for .CO domains.  That’s not a lot of money but it is if you have a domain name you are not doing anything with and you own a lot of other domains you are paying to renew each year.  The .CO registry charges a higher renewal fee on purpose because they want you to “Use it or Loose It!”  This strategy probably works and if I’m not going to use it I’d likely let it drop.

What do you think about .CO domain names?  Have you registered any or bought a .CO domain from a private seller or domain marketplace?  Have you built any sites on a .CO domain?  Was the website successful?  By that I mean people liked it and it made money.  What about generic .CO domains?  Do you like them or not?

Name.com Affiliate Program Shutting Down

By Adam Yamada-Hanff

Yesterday I got an email that informed me that the Name.com Affiliate Program was shutting down at the end of the month.  Here is what the email said;

Dear Name.com Affiliate, 

After careful consideration, Name.com has decided to suspend the Affiliate Program. We have a busy roadmap for the year ahead as we keep up with customer requests and unveil new products. We will revisit the Affiliate Program at a later date. We genuinely appreciate your participation, and thank you for helping to promote Name.com.

Suspension dates

  • We will continue to record referrals and issue commissions through April 30, 2014. We will cease to record commissions on May 1, 2014.
  • Payments will be made as scheduled to eligible affiliates. Please note that to receive payment we need a W-9 form on file.
  • aff.name.com will be shut down on April 30, 2014.

If you have any questions, please contact us at affiliates@name.com. Sincerely, The Name.com Team

I thought this was a bit weird since I’ve never seen any company shutdown a large affiliate program on fairly short notice.  (Especially a company who’s products are digitally based.)  The email went out on April 23rd which is only a 9-day window.  This means a Name.com affiliate could easily miss the news. Since I wasn’t sure about this and I wanted to confirm this was actually happening I emailed Caroline Temple, Name.com’s affiliate program manager, but… the email bounced shortly after sending it.  I realized that was not a good sign and probably the Name.com affiliate program was in fact closing for good.  I then wrote to Steve Donatelli who is part of the Name.com customer support team.  This is the email I wrote by the way;

Hi Steve,

I got this email yesterday afternoon that Name.com was shutting down the affiliate program. Looks legit but just wanted to double check with you to confirm.

If you could provide me with any reasons why Name.com has decided to do this, that would be helpful.

Best,

Adam

I then called Name.com and waited a few minutes to get connected to a support representative.  I explained that I got this email that the Name.com affiliate program was shutting down and I just wanted to confirm this was accurate information.  I was told that the affiliate program was in fact being suspended but the Name.com support team wasn’t really given any other information outside of that by managers.  I was told they could possibly be revisiting an affiliate scheme in the future.  I was also told they had been receiving a lot of inquiries from affiliates about the Name.com affiliate program shutdown today, which was not surprising.

A few hours later I got a reply from Steve Donatelli;

Hello,

Thank you for your email. Sorry for the delay in responding. I don’t often check my personal inbox queue. Unfortunately, we are currently in the process of sunsetting our Affiliate program at the end of the month. At this time, they haven’t provided us with any information as to how the powers that be came to this decision. I am terribly sorry for the inconvenience. If you have anymore questions, please do not hesitate to shoot me an email and I will be happy assist wherever I can!

Sincerely,

Steve

This news kind of sucks for me since I have utilized the Name.com affiliate program on my Name.com Review.  While I won’t be retiring in the Caribbean on my Name.com affiliate earnings it was a nice steady stream of money here and there.  For a small time blogger like myself these affiliate payouts can really add up across the board.

I imagine the affiliates who will be most annoyed and affected by the sudden shutdown of the Name.com affiliate program will people who build and run domain name generators.  You know someone like Mohit Aggrawal who created NameMesh and other domain generator operators and domain finding tools.  Affiliate links to domain registrars is how these sites make money.

What’s odd to me is that the Name.com affiliate dashboard was updated last month to a much cleaner look.  It was also a lot less confusing than the older dashboard user interface they had.  I was happy with the changed and updated design.

name.com affiliate program

I assume Rightside, Name.com’s parent company, wants to put as much money as they can into marketing New gTLDs (generic top level domains) and releasing them over the next few months.  At least I am pretty sure “unveil new products.” probably means New gTLDs.  They’ll want to offer new gTLDs at below registry pricing to encourage people to buy and Name.com has been heavily promoting these new domain extensions.  Paying out affiliate commissions is probably something upper level management deemed a waste of money.  Why pay people who link to us and send us business?  :)

It will be interesting to see if the Name.com affiliate program shutdown will be permanent or if they will bring it back eventually.  Since I like and recommend them as a domain registrar I hope they do.  I’d imagine in the long run Name.com will lose business as affiliates and websites will stop linking which in turn makes Name.com lose traffic and business.

If you are someone who will be negatively impacted by the Name.com affiliate program shutdown please share your thoughts below.  Did you earn a lot through the Name.com affiliate program?  What will you do make-up the lost affiliate revenue?  What if you didn’t earn a lot of money?  Will you just recommend another domain name registrar now?