Godaddy, the domain name registrar, has apparently been caught registering domain names after someone has looked up the availability of a domain name. This guy claims that he looked up a domain name to see if that domain name was available. The domain name was available, but apparently he did not register the domain name that day. He came back a few days later to find that the domain name had been registered by, low and behold: Godaddy themselves.
As you might recall, Network Solutions was caught a while back registering domain names within seconds of a domain availability lookup–causing you to have to go register the domain name through them.
When I broke the news regarding Network Solutions’ policy back in 2008, there was a huge backlash, and Network Solutions eventually stopped the policy as a result.
Apparently this is what is being claimed in this case. However, I have not independently verified this claim, and not tested this myself. However, a quick check at Google help me find plenty of people who are claiming that Godaddy practices “front running’.
I personally reached out the Godaddy regarding these claims, and received a statement from Rich Merdinger, Vice President of Product Development – Domains, at Godaddy:
“Go Daddy does not and never has participated in domain name “front-running” – the act of registering domain names after a registration search is done.”
Vice President of Product Development – Domains
So, there we go. That’s the statement that I received from Godaddy. Can we now honestly say that Godaddy is not involved with domain name “front running”? I’m not sure at this point. I’ve reached out to Zen, the guy I mentioned earlier in this post who made the original accusation, and I have not heard back with any proof. I’d be happy to post any proof that anyone has regarding Godaddy’s “front running’. But I haven’t seen that yet.
Update: Links in this post have been removed, as they weren’t working at last check. November 16, 2014.