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(Almost) Nobody Is Unbiased

Posted on 17 April 2014 by Andrei

The debates are beginning to heat up when it comes to new gTLDs and during such debates, a lot of domainers are unfortunately using strong words without realizing that they’re far from objective when it comes to the matter at hand.

Let’s be honest, almost nobody is unbiased.

All of us have more or less hidden agendas, even if we don’t realize it.

Think about it.

If you have a portfolio that consists almost exclusively of dot coms, wouldn’t it be in your best interest for new gTLDs to flop?

If you’ve invested a lot in new gTLDs, wouldn’t it be in your best interest for them to do well?

In both cases (again, whether you realize it or not), you have an agenda and are therefore incapable of being objective/unbiased.

The message I’m trying to get across is simple: if the matter that’s being discussed affects you then I’m sorry but you are not unbiased.

You might say you are.

You might think you are.

But you aren’t.

Is that a bad thing?

Of course not, of course it’s not a bad thing that domainers are directly interested in what’s happening due to current portfolio exposure-related reasons or due to other aspects. It’s perfectly understandable.

I mean sure, maybe a person who doesn’t own any domains can be considered objective/unbiased but how many such people are reading domain blogs, for example?

I don’t know about you guys but I for one don’t exactly have the habit of reading articles related to things which in no way affect me.

Maybe such people exist and that’s why I used the word “almost” in the title but even if they do, I’m reasonably confident they represent an almost insignificant minority.

I didn’t write this article to say that having an agenda is a good thing or a bad thing. You have an agenda, I have an agenda and almost everyone else has one as well. That’s just the way it is. I’m just saying that before “accusing” others of something like this, it might be a good idea to look in the mirror :)

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9 Comments For This Post

  1. Domenclature.com Says:

    Hi Andrei,

    Can you tell us now, are you biased in favor of new gTLDs?

    Thanks

  2. Domenclature.com Says:

    “I mean sure, maybe a person who doesn’t own any domains can be considered objective/unbiased but how many such people are reading domain blogs, for example?” – Andrei

    You’re wrong here. Nobody is in love with a TLD.

    You must understand that domainers are investors, mostly. They just want the facts. Not spin. Armed with facts, most domainers will then invest wisely. If domainers think that dot com is going down, and dot ONL is going up, most domainers will dump the dot com and get dot ONL.

    That’s not an agenda. That’s not bias. It’s handling the truth.

  3. Andrei Says:

    @Domenclature.com: I have considerably more dot com portfolio exposure, so my “instinctual” reaction is always a “pro dot com” one due in no small part to the fact that I would definitely not be happy if dot com values were to fall.

    As you know however, I always encourage people to fight the instincts that tend to trigger emotional reactions and that’s precisely what I frequently do.

    Since I’m a professional domainer, I have to fight the previously mentioned instinctual reaction in order to also see the positives aspects associated with new gTLDs. One of the most important qualities you should have as an investor is humility. The humility necessary to admit that you cannot predict the future and that you are not perfect.

    At this point, I don’t *know* what the outcome will be with these new gTLDs.

    Nobody does.

    Internet history is being written as we speak and now more than ever, it’s important to try to fight your biases and emotional reactions in order to be in a good position to ultimately make educated decisions.

    On DomainingTips, I will always cover the positives as well as the negatives associated with new gTLDs.

    When covering the positives, some people will undoubtedly call me a perma-cheerleader.

    When covering the negatives, other people will undoubtedly call me a perma-naysayer.

    As a blogger, I’ve learned to understand and accept these situations as things that come with the territory.

  4. Domenclature.com Says:

    @Andrei,

    There’s no moral equivalence …

    There may be 100 positives to 1 negative in favor of dot com. So, you can endure one hit for the negative.

    BTW as a blogger, you’re allowed to take a firm position. You haven’t tried that yet, ever since I’ve been reading your blog. Take a position! ;-)

  5. Andrei Says:

    @Domenclature.com: I don’t believe in taking a position just for the sake of taking a position.

    As far as new gTLDs are concerned, I don’t yet have enough information to form an educated opinion. Once/if that will happen, I will gladly share it with you guys.

    I’ve articulated positions frequently on DomainingTips, just not about new gTLDS. For example, I was the first and most vocal (by far) domainer when it comes to mass developing small websites. On more than one occasion, I explained why it’s a bad idea and I did this back when the business model in question was extremely popular.

    Time passed and it turned out I was right, so I took things one step further by launching MegaSites.com earlier this week in order to offer the exact opposite of mass development: huge and genuinely useful sites, sites you can proudly mention whenever someone asks what you do for a living. So as you can see, I don’t shy away from sharing my opinions and even more so, I put my money where my mouth is by launching projects like MegaSites.com.

    But I only do this when I’m confident in whatever it is I’m saying/writing.

    When it comes to new gTLDs, I’m not confident enough in my ability to form an educated opinion at this point. As mentioned in my previous comment, being a good domainer requires a great deal of humility as well because a lot of times, you just have to admit that you don’t know something or that you don’t have enough information to articulate an opinion.

  6. Domenclature.com Says:

    @Andrei,

    First, let me thank you for your humility, and honesty.

    You have taken a position, to maintain status quo ante. That is a position. Your position is continue with dot com.

    You have some information about dot whatevers, but you are not convinced to invest, at least not yet; that’s your position. Incidentally, that’s my position too, except you use a cunning semantic; you say that you don’t have enough information, and I say I’m not gonna, same difference, same result, we’re NOT investing yet.

    You are entitled to your humility, viz investing, until you start blogging about investing, there you lose your virginity, and humility, and then open yourself up for criticism; you can longer be protected by the humility umbrella. If you simply stated “Regarding new gTLDs, I don’t have enough information to advance yet”, if that’s all you blog, you will be spared any criticism. However, if you like you did, blog that dot whatever is equal or better than dot com, or that it will affect everybody and their grandma, I’m sorry, you have to defend it, humbly or not. At the minimum, you have to take a stand. For, Against, or Neutral.

    Some investors without “humility” in their lexicon, shine everyday. Their’s a risky part to investing. There’s a bullish, and of course the prudent one as well.

  7. Andrei Says:

    @Domenclature.com: you misunderstood the message I tried to get across through my “New gTLDs Will Affect *All* Portfolio Owners” post. I made it clear right from the beginning that domains like Insurance.com don’t have any new gTLD “competitors” but on the other hand, a domain like Insurance.web is definitely better than a mediocre dot com such as YourInsuranceOptions.com. And since all portfolio owners have average or even mediocre domains in their portfolios as well, they will be affected in my opinion. To err on the side of caution though, I should have said “almost all” instead of “all” just in case there’s a domainer out there who owns nothing but gems but I for one don’t know such a person. Based on my experience, even domainers who own an impressive number of gems have duds in their portfolios as well

  8. Domenclature.com Says:

    @Andrei,

    I let some time elapse, and made this second reply to avoid being accused of mixing metaphors.

    You are like a doctor who smokes cigarettes, no strike that, you are like a doctor who doesn’t smoke, doesn’t have enough information about cigarettes, but is daily recommending (not exactly prescribing) cigarettes to your patients. It behooves me how you can describe the distinctive characterization in precise terms of new gTLDs, specific analogies to dot com, or phenomenon of its general impact on all portfolios, yet deny having enough information to take a stand.

    I say wait! After you acquire enough information, then blog and recommend. That’s the only prudent approach a reflective conscience can take. I say this with all humility, and understanding.

  9. Andrei Says:

    @Domenclature.com: I’m not recommending anything when it comes to the “dot com vs. new gTLDs” issue at this point. I’m simply analyzing one argument at a time, one situation at a time. I’m gathering and processing information, then sharing my thoughts via DomainingTips.com. That way, my readers can be involved in the process by commenting whenever they want to contribute. For example, you frequently bring good arguments to the discussion and that’s something which tends to make me think I’ve chosen the right approach :)

 
 
         
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