Monday, 11 October 2010

Internet branding.

I've been contacted recently by 'Bob' from an internet company in Hong Kong about the 'internet brand' of my company, and how a client of theirs wants to register a bunch of web domains (.asia, .cn, .eu, with the same name as my .com. Knowing that my company brand name is a much longer name than my .com - and already having the .com anyway I politely declined and said that his client was welcome to them. This produced another email and another declination, then a 3rd email.

OK, this guy's persistent to the point where he's trying to make money from me.

A little searching and it turns out that companies from Hong Kong have been trying to do this for the last 3 years or so, with enough plausibility and success to encourage them to continue. Basically there is no such thing as an internet brand - just as there's no such thing as 'cyberspace'. Trademarks and company names are just what they are in the real world, covered by all the same laws and regulations. It's easy to forget that sometimes, and think of the internet as being somewhere 'else', when it's really just a bunch of computers all connected to each other.

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