According to GigaOm:
Go Daddy, the largest domain registrar and a web hosting provider, is reportedly close to being sold to a group of private equity firms including KKR and Silver Lake Partners. The purchase price is about $2 – 2.5 billion, according to several news outlets.
That’s the same Silver Lake that helped so much to screw up Skype. If you haven’t yet found an alternative to GoDaddy, you should be looking. That reminds me that Automattic has become a domain registrar quite some time ago and I haven’t heard any updates on that.
I’ve been buying domains for a few years now. Every time I have an idea for a project, I go and buy a domain for it. Sometimes the project idea actually gets implemented and lives for a while. Most of the time I just put it on the shelf. I keep domains for two-three years just in case I go back to the project and then I expire them. A few domains I keep longer, in hopes of selling them later. I sold a few domains before to clients of mine, but I’ve never sold anything to an unknown party.
Today I did. Well, technically it took longer than just today. But today the deal is officially closed. I put one of my domains – slonn.com – on the auctions at GoDaddy and someone bought it for $500 USD. While I could have bargained for a better price, I really didn’t want to. It’s a 5-letter .com domain with no promotion, no prior website. I had it for about 5 years. I thought the price was about right and GoDaddy made the rest of the procedure ridiculously easy.
I have a few domains up for sale, but at the rate it goes, I don’t expect it to be my primary source of income any time soon. Heck, it won’t even qualify for business by any measure. Just a little extra PayPal cash.
Matt Mullenweg reports in his blog that Automattic became a domain registrar.
As some folks have noticed already, Automattic is now a “real” domain registrar (ID #1531). This has been a goal of mine for several years now, chiefly because I am a bit of a domain collector myself and I’ve never been completely satisfied with the domain buying or management experience on any of the usual players. Second, custom domains are a popular feature on WordPress.com and should become even more popular with some changes we’re introducing this month and it’ll be good to be able to provide a fully integrated experience for our users there. It’ll be a few months while we build all the tools necessary to begin taking advantage of our registrar status so in the meantime we’ll continue to use Godaddy, who has been an excellent partner.
These are excellent news! I do agree with Mutt that current domain registration and maintenance experience is a pain in the back. No matter which registrar you choose, there is always something awkward about it – prices, support, control panel, etc. I am using GoGaddy for a few years now, and while they provide excellent discounts and DNS hosting uptime, their control panel is horrible. Yet, it’s still better than most.
Automattic on the other hand, is a company known for it’s humanity in policies and user interfaces. WordPress being just one of such examples. Them becoming a domain registrar gives me great hope of having a better domain registration and maintenance experience one day.