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I Don’t Believe in Domaining Predictions

Posted on 16 December 2013 by Andrei

We had an interesting debate yesterday and one of my conclusions was this: time will tell what will happen when it comes to new gTLDs, I don’t believe in predictions.

I think this issue deserves its own post because a lot of people are 100% convinced that they know exactly what will happen. That, in my opinion, is a huge mistake.

I don’t have a crystal ball.

In fact, I honestly doubt there’s even one domainer who has a crystal ball, at least one that’s reasonably accurate :)

Sure, everyone is allowed to have an opinion but you have to understand one thing: predictions are just that, more or less educated opinions. Nothing more, nothing less.

Maybe you got it right in the past and automatically think you’re good at making predictions. Again, that’s a huge mistake which might just come back to haunt you. It happens a lot and not just when it comes to domaining: people get it right when it comes to let’s say a certain stock, end up thinking they’re invincible, become reckless and ultimately end up losing their shirt.

Ask two people if it will rain tomorrow.

One of them says it will, the other one says it won’t.

Obviously, one of them will ultimately be right. Does this mean the person in question is a genius and that you should blindly trust all of his future predictions? I don’t think so.

This is a mistake I notice frequently, especially among beginners: they’re on a constant lookout for predictions. It’s as if they think all one has to do is find some good predictions, blindly trust them and bam, problem solved.

The more experienced you become as an investor, the less attention you’ll end up paying to predictions and the more you’ll be interested in finding facts that can help you determine the risk/reward ratio associated with a certain financial decision.

That would be my recommendation: stop believing in predictions.

Start valuing facts, start following the money and you’ll be on the right track.

It might not be as exciting as thinking you’re the Oracle of Delphi but what can you do :)

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13 Comments For This Post

  1. Jeff Schneider Says:

    Hello

    The .COM Franchise Business Channel, has the largest active consumer buying population, (World Wide).

    Can someone please explain to us how adopting a gTLD Address will benefit small business owners ? When in effect this flawed marketing strategy, being pushed by gTLD promoters, will actually isolate and will cause small business owners to be lost in cyberspace ? This gTLD Strategy in effect will steer their business away the Strategic Market Penetration edge that all .COM Franchise owners use to their competitive advantage ?

    Please lets have an open dialogue on this and not just your Blog master opinion.

    Gratefully, Jeff Schneider (Contact Group) (Metal Tiger)

  2. Domenclature.com Says:

    @Andrei,

    I am one of those that participated in debate yesterday.

    We must be careful not to conduct the debate about new GTLDs purely on language, rather than science. “That’s just a prediction” is not only a glib way of dismissing “theories”, but it actually borders on insult.

    Theory could be an unproven Science, but it doesn’t mean a haphazard guess, pulled out of the hat. Evolution is a theory. It’s not a prediction. I understand that you use the term “prediction” in a disparaging manner, perhaps when it comes to investments, it is; but you must be careful not to lump all comments regarding new GTLDs as predictions. From what I’ve read on blogs, especially from those anti-nGTLD folks, has been characterized by explanation of how the domaining works that has stood up to repeated, rigorous testing. It’s hardly about emotions.

    When we, the anti-nGTLD’ers analyse the coming deluge of strings, we put them in terms of what’s “Possible,” “Plausible,” “Probable,” and “Proven”. We do this to indicate rough degrees of statistical probability of something happening or some proposition being true. From this, yes predictions become proper.

    You in turn have the opportunity to punch holes in our argument. Please try to elevate the debate beyond language. This is the ploy employed by anti-evolutionists to antagonize Scientists when it comes to evolution. Theory and Prediction are not terms of disparagement.

    We believe that new GTLDs, though unproven, are not investment grade proposition. We predict this. It’s not a guess. We’ve looked at public mood, sentiments, prior launches, Business attitude, economy, internet patterns, need, want, desire,….

  3. Andrei Says:

    @Jeff Schneider: I won’t be the one who decides whether or not a new gTLD will benefit small business owners.

    The same way, you won’t be the one who decides whether or not a new gTLD will benefit small business owners either.

    Do you know who will?

    Small business owners :)

    My opinion has always been articulated so as to leave no room for interpretation: I don’t know what will happen.

    Therefore, I will simply follow the money and calibrate my strategy accordingly.

  4. Andrei Says:

    @Domenclature.com: there’s absolutely nothing wrong with trying to figure out which outcome is more probable. In fact, it’s a very reasonable attitude.

    As mentioned at the end of my post:

    “The more experienced you become as an investor, the less attention you’ll end up paying to predictions and the more you’ll be interested in finding facts that can help you determine the risk/reward ratio associated with a certain financial decision.”

    The problem is that most of the people who dismiss new gTLDs don’t see things this way. Ironically, most of the people who are new gTLD enthusiasts don’t see things this way either.

    That’s the paradox.

    Two extremes applying the same flawed logic.

    There’s nothing wrong with being bearish, there’s nothing wrong with being bullish. What I’m trying to explain is that you shouldn’t base your position on the way you feel about the topic at hand.

    If you decide you are bearish on new gTLDs and are basing your position on rational arguments such as the ones you referred to then great, no problem.

    The same way, if you decide you are bullish on new gTLDs and are basing your position on rational arguments such as the ones you are referring to then again, no problem.

    If however you are basing your position on how you feel about new gTLDs, you are making a huge mistake. I am repeating these things obsessively because in fact, our goals are similar: elevating the debate and not allowing it to turn into a pointless cheerleading contest.

  5. Jeff Schneider Says:

    Hello Andrei,

    Fair enough, Now here is our prediction :

    “Without question, the gTLD experiment will expand the .COM Franchise Channels Traffic Patterns, INEXORABLY JAS 12/16/13 ”

    Gratefully, Jeff Schneider (Contact Group) (Metal Tiger)

  6. Tom Barrett Says:

    It is important to remember that not all commerce takes on the internet.

    And not all ecommerce involves the use of search engines.

    my two simple tests for a new brand name have evolved to:
    - When you hear it spoken, can you spell it?
    - When you see it written, can you pronounce it?

    If a small business can achieve this with a new gTLD, then it might be a perfect match.

  7. Tigger Says:

    Amazing to hear such hogwash. Th gtld emperor is simply wearing no clothes. The gtld idea is a stupid one and it will undoubtably fail miserably on its .ass.

    That is not a prediction, but a statement of obvious fact. No different than saying that grass is green or that water is wet. Just the facts, ma’am.

  8. Andrei Says:

    @Tigger: you are referring to something that you think will happen in the future, therefore you’re making a prediction.

    Wikipedia definition:

    “A prediction (Latin præ-, “before,” and dicere, “to say”) or forecast is a statement about the way things will happen in the future, often but not always based on experience or knowledge.”

    The other definitions are pretty similar, so I’m sorry but you aren’t stating facts, you are making a prediction.

    Nothing wrong with that.

    Maybe you’ll be right, maybe you’ll be wrong.

    I don’t know.

    The only thing I do know is that you are indeed making a prediction :)

  9. Tigger Says:

    OK, allow me to rephrase it then:

    “Gtlds are really stupid”.

    That is not a prediction. That is a factual statement.

    My prediction is that, as a result of being stupid, they will not be well received and will surely fail.

    No different than .mobi and .name and .travel.

  10. Andrei Says:

    @Tigger: I respect your opinion but would like to point out that the comparison to dot mobi, name and travel isn’t very relevant given the fact that we’re talking about an entirely different context.

    At this point, there aren’t all that many gTLDs and therefore, the average Joe probably doesn’t even know they exist. Ask 10 people from the “offline” world to name one TLD aside from dot com/net/org or your ccTLD if you’re not from the US and I’m confident most of them won’t even be able to name one.

    But after hundreds and ultimately thousands of new gTLDs appear, the overall awareness when it comes to new gTLDs will increase dramatically in my opinion. Again, we’ll be dealing with an entirely different context.

  11. Domenclature.com Says:

    “But after hundreds and ultimately thousands of new gTLDs appear, the overall awareness when it comes to new gTLDs will increase dramatically in my opinion”. – Andrei

    I want to recommend an experiment for you. Take 2LBs of fake gold, no 3, no 4, no 700, or even 900LBs, advertise it, let the whole world know about them. Come back tell us if it EVER turns into gold due to its magnitude, and/or frequency of your campaign.

    HINT: It’ll still be fake gold.

  12. Andrei Says:

    @Domenclature.com: something like that actually happened, all you have to do is analyze our monetary system :)

    About 100 years ago, pretty much all important currencies were 100% backed by gold. So for every unit of currency, you could claim the corresponding amount of physical gold.

    But that gradually changed and then, as of 1971, the entire world switched from gold… to paper. Yes, from something as valuable as gold to something as worthless as paper.

    All currencies are now simple pieces of paper with no inherent value.

    Yet the world still functions, we still had progress (the Internet, for example) and all in all, our monetary system invalidates your fake gold analogy.

    Despite the fact that a lot of people thought the world would end in 1971 and that nobody would accept these worthless pieces of paper, the exact opposite happened. Everyone accepted them.

    Will everyone accept new gTLDs?

    That brings us right back to our debate and to the fact that nobody knows what will happen.

  13. Domenclature.com Says:

    @Andrei

    Brilliant retort, except my analogy does not go into the merits, or truth of whether fake gold is better than real gold, or if it’s worthless or not; just stating that magnitude and/or frequency does not change fake gold into real gold. Nevertheless, I liked your come back. :-)

 
 
         
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