PSA: Neowin.com secured with the help of Stardock

It has been a long road to get there, but we have finally secured the neowin.com domain name.

Neowin.com was registered just a few days before we chose to go with the "Neowin" name in October 2000, so we eventually decided to go with what you all know today - Neowin.net. At the time 'Neowin' was an actual company based out of South Korea, but they wrapped up their business in 2004. One of the IT guys decided to register it for his own and basically held it from that point onward, at what I would consider a ransom.

Over the years I tried unsuccessfully to get him to part with the domain, but his price was too high, and as you might know Neowin relies solely on advertising and subscriptions for its upkeep, we don't have thousands of dollars to throw around for a domain name that was being offered off the back of our own success. It has to be noted that in all those years, nothing was done with the Neowin.com domain.

That's where Stardock, yet again stepped up. Behind the scenes and unknown to me they negotiated with the owner an undisclosed sum to take ownership of the domain and finally 'bring home' Neowin.com.

This has cost the site nothing, it is a gift from Stardock, or an early Christmas present as Brad Wardell described it.

I would like to thank Brad for his continued support of the site. It's clear to me that Stardock and Brad only have the best interests of Neowin at heart, and such efforts should be commended and hopefully shows all of the doubters the real intention here, the betterment of the site.

Neowin.com will redirect to Neowin.net, we're not planning on changing the homepage to the .com address because that will affect our rank and history.

Going forward, this will mean we can drop the .net branding from our logo as shown above. We're already working on a new design that will launch before the end of the year and Subscribers will most likely get a working preview before the end of this month.

But for now, on behalf of myself and all of the staff that tirelessly put in the hours for Neowin, thanks Brad and thanks Stardock for your continued support and amazing early Christmas present!

Disclaimer: Neowin's relationship to Stardock.

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86 Comments

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Surely the redirect should be the other way around? .net to .com? Otherwise, what's the point of aquiring the .com registration?

If you're going to redo the logo and drop the .net like the pic at the top of the article might a suggest you also change the "w" to caps. I think it would look better as NeoWin. I realize it's just personal taste so no big deal if not, just a suggestion.

I got izlude.com this year. 15 years of dreaming, finally got it. The question is, what the hell will I do with it now? For now it redirects to my G+ page

At least neowin is well established to use it anyway.

Hey Steven, congrats for getting what you obviously wanted for a long time. It looks good on you. Ignore all the naysayers, they hang out on this site and just look for things to jump all over. Go celebrate...

Otto Gunter said,
Hey Steven, congrats for getting what you obviously wanted for a long time. It looks good on you. Ignore all the naysayers, they hang out on this site and just look for things to jump all over. Go celebrate...

I agree with Otto.

Good to see behind the scene guys get the grats needed and also what they do behind it all. But yes as many or a few said it be weird to have it under the .com name

No one else wondering why that logo is on top of this new article? That's not the current one. (Of course, I could have missed it, if it is an older logo, but it uses another font).

Studio384 said,
No one else wondering why that logo is on top of this new article? That's not the current one. (Of course, I could have missed it, if it is an older logo, but it uses another font).

Did you miss this:

We're already working on a new design that will launch before the end of the year and Subscribers will most likely get a working preview before the end of this month.

So, TL;DR, "we bought a domain that sounds worse than what we already have, but we aren't going to use it as the primary because Google, so this doesn't impact anything you do at all ever"?

Uhmm.... yeh.

I'm not a Stardock product user (never have been), but I applaud them in their efforts on this, it's one damned cool thing to do, definitely.

Kudos to Stardock and to Brad.

The original plan was to have it be a surprise birthday gift to Steve (neobond) as his birthday is coming up next month. But I should have known that anything IT related was going to be found out by Steve or Neowin users right away!

Getting Neowin.com matters for a lot of reasons. One is that even though Neowin breaks a lot of tech stories, there is still a bit of a...I don't know how to describe it but attitude towards sites that aren't .com when it comes to journalism.

Anyway, a big congratulations to Steve and Marcel and the whole Neowin team and community!

Now you just need to get all the web filters to realize neowin.com isn't "spyware or adware" so it's not blocked by businesses... a few of the ones I've looked at right now all list it as that

Finally! After all these years i can finally type http://www.neowin.com (like i do everyday and yes i type the www. as well) without fear of getting a 404, only to get back on the .net tld!

on a more serious note: congrats guys!

That's cool and all.. but to me it will be neowin.net .com just doesn't sound right. It's cool you got it, but I feel it's one of those: "Well.. there ya go.. we own it.. cool beans." Not that anything will really come of it.

It is kind of like when MS buys a bunch of domains that are similar to their product, but are never really used.

Awesome! Now those days when I am half-awake and type .com instead of .net I won't be placed on some random site.

Nice Job guys! I would really suggest to file a trademark for Neowin (Name and Logo) too. This way next time if someone holds 'Neowin' ransom, you can easily go to ICANN. Its something similar to what big companies do. This will also make it easy to acquire @Neowin on twitter subject to T&C of Twitter.

Man this is awesome! Glad to be here In the transition. It'll still be dot net for me, but at least now should a typeo occur, I'll still get neowin, and not a parked domain error or malware. Good job Steven Parker...er, Neobond. Neobond works better for me, hope you don't mind boss man!

dont see the point in it.

.net is way better than .com

.net sounds more cooler /programmer type where .com sounds like another boring corperation. YAWN.

DrScouse said,
lol. cant wait to see unbiased, impartial reviews of new stardock products!

That's just ridiculous. Now go climb back in your hole. If you're honestly trying to turn something like this, an honest and sincere gift, into an attempt to "buy" reviews, you're just dripping in tin foil hat.

OT: Congratulations Steven and the Neowin team and thank you Stardock

DrScouse said,
lol. cant wait to see unbiased, impartial reviews of new stardock products!

StarDock has had a 40% stake in Neowin for a long time now, have you ever seen any biased reviews because of this? Stardock didn't only get them the .com domain, but they also turned this from a hobby site into a professional company!

There you go making assumptions. The guy did hold the site with no obvious plans for it for 9 years, so maybe you are right?

McKay said,
Negotiated "an undisclosed sum".

The return of the Man's Wife and Kids unharmed?


We went with .net confidently at the time because Microsoft had just announced the .net initiative Plus we also felt that .net was a better description of a community

If they registered neowin.com before you even chose the name neowin then you have absolutely no right saying they held the name to 'ransom' . It's not like they cyber squatted like when people started registering random xbox one and xbone domain names *after* their announcement.

It is nice you got the domain name but stop making it out like you were so hard done by because they came up with it first.

As already pointed out in the article they folded in 2004 but one of the workers registered it and wanted thousands of dollars for it due to our own success (as far back as 2004/5), in that time the domain was parked for over nine years. If that isn't a ransom, then I don't know what is?

Perhaps because it was one of their own workers and not someone who was just waiting to swoop in on the name having seen this site?

Conversely when you registered neowin.net they could have claimed you were trying to trade off of their name and success, what with having had it first.

Could have just made what is an otherwise good announcement for the site without coming off sounding completely butthurt....

Fair enough a lot goes on behind the scenes I guess. Congrats on the domain name though especially if it was just parked. Although neowin.com doesn't quite roll off the tongue as well as .net

Steven Parker said,
As already pointed out in the article they folded in 2004 but one of the workers registered it and wanted thousands of dollars for it due to our own success (as far back as 2004/5), in that time the domain was parked for over nine years. If that isn't a ransom, then I don't know what is?

Ransom: A sum of money or other payment demanded or paid for the release of a Item/Prisoner

Certainly sounds like a Ransom to me

Haggis said,

Ransom: A sum of money or other payment demanded or paid for the release of a Item/Prisoner

Certainly sounds like a Ransom to me

Can't hold something to ransom which was yours in the firstplace, however.

Steven Parker said,
As already pointed out in the article they folded in 2004 but one of the workers registered it and wanted thousands of dollars for it due to our own success (as far back as 2004/5), in that time the domain was parked for over nine years. If that isn't a ransom, then I don't know what is?

Nothing "ransom" like about it. You never owned the domain nor were you deprived of it against your will.

You have a "brand" (that came into existence AFTER the domain you're talking about) and therefore it'll cost you the money to secure applicable domain names if *you* want them. Just because you didn't like the price didn't make it a ransom.

I could go and register clownconsole720.com and if in a few years Microsoft decided they would release a console with that exact name would you call my registration a ransom given it's a completely random registration?

Edited by Sandor, Oct 8 2013, 2:16pm :

Dushmany That was the point, the main article openly said someone else had chosen the name and registered it before it was decided upon for this site, so calling it a ransom because you don't like the price they're selling it for is a bit iffy.

Well I would still like to thank Stardock for the gift as most others have, I am aware I do not know the entire history of the name, as I learn something new here on a daily basis, as far as who's right or who's wrong, I'll leave that to people better suited to make the judgements, I don't feel I'm qualified suitably, but I do see your point as well as Steven's

Nilus said,
If they registered neowin.com before you even chose the name neowin then you have absolutely no right saying they held the name to 'ransom' . It's not like they cyber squatted like when people started registering random xbox one and xbone domain names *after* their announcement.

It is nice you got the domain name but stop making it out like you were so hard done by because they came up with it first.

Wow you too are amazing. Talk about thick-headed. If the company went defunct (and from the sound of it never really made a name for itself) and the domain doesn't mean anything to them anymore (other than reference to this news site) then what reason that ex-employee, who just so happens to work in IT and quite possibly is well aware of Neowin.net, would have to register and keep that domain and not do anything with it? Yes, they could theoretically have a million good reasons to do so but let's get real...

Obry said,

Wow you too are amazing. Talk about thick-headed. If the company went defunct (and from the sound of it never really made a name for itself) and the domain doesn't mean anything to them anymore (other than reference to this news site) then what reason that ex-employee, who just so happens to work in IT and quite possibly is well aware of Neowin.net, would have to register and keep that domain and not do anything with it? Yes, they could theoretically have a million good reasons to do so but let's get real...

Assumptions.

OP: Wow, so desperate to appear smart, that we rip someone over the use of a word that they used correctly. Even if you want to argue semantics, one gets the idea that the original owner wanted a ridiculously large sum of money for a domain that wasn't being used, and one that wasn't originally bought for anywhere near the amount requested.

ROFLCOPTERS said,

Nothing "ransom" like about it. You never owned the domain nor were you deprived of it against your will.

No definition of the word stats that it's only considered a ransom if you've once owned the item/person, or have been deprived of it. Again, Steven is correct in his use.

omgben said,
OP: Wow, so desperate to appear smart, that we rip someone over the use of a word that they used correctly. Even if you want to argue semantics, one gets the idea that the original owner wanted a ridiculously large sum of money for a domain that wasn't being used, and one that wasn't originally bought for anywhere near the amount requested.

No definition of the word stats that it's only considered a ransom if you've once owned the item/person, or have been deprived of it. Again, Steven is correct in his use.

Being this wrong.

In this context it's being used as a verb.

"to redeem from captivity, bondage, detention, etc., by paying a demanded price." (dictionary.com)

Now captivity, bondage, detention in this context implies that originally it was "free, unencumbered or at liberty". Never the case with this domain. Also, the person who owns the domain can ask whatever the hell they like for it. As mentioned previously, just because you, as the potential purchaser, don't like the price matters not a damn.

So kindly, just go.

Dushmany said,
I kinda liked the .net.......

Don't worry, it's not going anywhere...
Neowin.com will redirect to Neowin.net, we're not planning on changing the homepage to the .com address because that will affect our rank and history.