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Wednesday, 10 June 2009

What's stopping the URL landgrab on Facebook?

Remember the court cases that went on around brand protection and ownership for URLs? Is the same thing about to happen with Facebook? As of the wee small hours on June 13, you will no longer be a number. You can be a name. But you’ve got to get up early to make sure you get yours. Do we really need this? Of course we’ll all do it to preserve our own personal branding but I’m fucked if I’ll promote myself as NicholasGill423 just because all the other Nicholas Gill’s are better at getting up at 05.01 GMT than me. Frankly Twitter, blog and Linked In are better personal branding starters.

But the real question here is not about me or individuals. But brands. What’s stopping me grabbing all my clients and super star brand names and then charging them extortionate fees to buy it off me? It’s like the late 1990’s again and one that was always close to my heart as I worked on the brand then was Mr Nissan. Whose surname was actually Nissan and therefore had every right to the nissan.com URL. Lawsuits and millions of dollars later, Nissan realised they should have been nice to him rather than starting with a letter from their legal team but there we go. Shell have the same issue with one of their former employees. Deja vu with Facebook?

I’m sure in the c. 44,000 comments (!) there’s reference to this but I, for one, am not trawling it. c. 35,000 like it too so a good baromoter of getting the people’s vote.

All I can suggest is you get your online reputation management dudes geared up to wake from their slumber early on Saturday and get registering. Who knows what’ll be left for me.

Posted by: Nicholas Gill | bluurb.wordpress.com

Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn |nr_gill@hotmail.com

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