I started my Quadrocopter story with
“Sunday 29th December 2013 started as a very slow day, with a rude Skype call at 6.30am from disgruntled Chinese domain name trader, who has promised to make me famous. Story for another day”.
After a friend drew my attention to the post on http://domaingang.com/domain-news/nigerians-favor-com-national-cctld/#comment-17988 I decided it was time to tell some of the story … in my own words. Unfortunately, you have to read a lot, to get the full gist.
First, some background materials.
In the past, I have written about registering under the Nigerian top level domain name, ,ng. When there were some restrictions about registering directly on the second level. The full article is here. http://sundayfolayan.name.ng/ict/ict-articles/30-nigerian-domain-name The post is very popular on my blog, but very little interest was generated in those Nigerian domains due to the restrictions.
More recently, I wrote about the lifting of the restrictions on the second level. The full article is here. http://sundayfolayan.name.ng/ict/ict-articles/75-registering-ng
There are two reasons why the Nigerian domain is attractive to speculators:
Most action verbs end with ng. Routing, weaving, running, eating, screaming, shouting, clubbing, calling etc. Making it possible to have domains such as routi.ng, weavi.ng etc.
A couple of Asians have names ending in ng. Names such as chang, chuang, cheng, tiang etc.
Domain speculation is big business. Just like land speculation. Register a domain name now. Wait for a few years, and some business offers you good money to have the domain. If you want to know how much domains are worth, take a look at http://sedo.com/auction/detail/bl.com/177108_e_0__homepage the domain bl.com is being offered for $100,000 via auction.
Well, some Chinese who i will call Chinaman got interested in games.ng and nigeria.ng. Two seemingly innocent domains, but with different rules. Games.ng is premium, while nigeria.ng is reserved. Chinaman is invoking the rule of first-come first served on a meal and is insisting he saw the food before the cooks and waiters!
Chinaman has been making claims to these two domains, spamming everyone and anyone in the domains business, and posting everywhere he sees the name NiRA, Sunday Folayan or Mary Uduma (The President of NiRA) on the Internet.
If you want to understand his grudge, he has set up a website http://www.domainrobbing.com/
NIRA made an official response a long time ago, which is here http://www.nira.org.ng/index.php/media-center/news/205-the-unpublished-facts-about-the-domains-nigeria-ng-games-ng-and-the-faceless-domain-speculator
The response is missing some more facts, especially correspondences Chinaman acknowledged, but later denied existed. More emails here http://sundayfolayan.name.ng/images/ict/nigeria.ng-more.pdf
I really got dragged into the vortex because I responded to his initial complaint on the registrar’s mailing list, before realizing he conveniently was ignoring the need to pay the premium prize for the domain games.ng. I did respond that NiRA was not interested in the domain, at least to keep in reserve unlike nigeria.ng. He did not want to pay, and failed to pay. The mail correspondences are in the NiRA response. Since another person was willing to pay, why give him a domain worth N1.5million for just N15,000? Are Nigerians that dumb? I say NO!
Periodically, friends who stumble on his internet posts call or email me expressing worry and rightly so.
I do have the following options:
engage a smart lawyer to pursue chinaman for libel
Counter every post made by Chinaman with the facts
ignore chinaman because he remains faceless and is just taking advantage of the anonymity that the Internet offers.
I will take a decision in the next few days. If you know Chinaman, tell him a Tsunami will hit him soon.