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It .sucks to Get Sucked into This New Domain
By: Jeannine Wheeler
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The Internet has brought us many great PR opportunities, but also many challenges. A recent one is the advent of the new domain .sucks, "forcing" brands and celebrities to purchase the domains to protect their brands against the obvious.

Mark Zuckerberg, for one, has registered no less than 10 .sucks domain names, including markzuckerberg.sucks, markzuckerbergreally.sucks, mzuckerberg.sucks, mzuckerbergtotally.sucks, zuck.sucks, zuckerberg.sucks, zuckerbergreally.sucks, zuckerbergtotally.sucks, zuckreally.sucks and zucks.sucks, according to Michael Berkens of The Domains.

Vox Populi Registry Ltd., the company that is the registrar for .sucks, offered an initial sunrise period allowing trademark holders to reserve their .sucks domains for $2,500 per domain, leading some to call the move a form of "blackmail."

If all 3,400 sunrise registrations were sold at the $2K premium wholesale price, then Vox Populi just pulled in $6.8 million, says Berkens.

Many of the world’s biggest brands, celebrities, and politicians have felt compelled to purchase as well, including Amazon, Google, Yelp, eBay, Microsoft, NFL (and team names), Walmart, Ford, Verizon, Toyota, BMW, American Airlines, Delta, Adele, Oprah, Britney Spears, Rihanna, Hillary Clinton, and Taylor Swift.

For those who haven’t already gotten sucked in to this charade, they run the risk of actually sucking very badly in the PR stakes.

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About the Author
Jeannine Wheeler is a PR Director who has worked in three countries, including Russia, the US and the UK. She is currently Sr. Vice President of Pure Energy PR, a full-service boutique communications firm with a focus on the energy, healthcare, technology, construction, real estate & land development, tourism & hospitality and food & beverage industries. Jeannine is in the firm's Austin, Texas office.
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