Categorized | Domaining Tips

Does a Trigger-Happy Industry Deserve Good Leaders?

Posted on 27 March 2017 by Andrei

Over the years, I’ve seen beginners get scammed time and time again. By people who sell them dreams, by registries which release fake sales (even before the new gTLD craze!), by those who sell picks&shovels despite knowing there’s no gold out there and so on. My first instinct has always been feeling sorry for them and it still is… but with a twist.

Why?

Simply because I’ve noticed something else over the years. That our industry tends to be quite trigger-happy or in other words, most domainers (yes, I’ll go so far as to say most) love jumping on hate bandwagons and crucifying various industry leaders.

It’s precisely these industry leaders who could educate beginners.

Tell them about their experience, help them avoid pitfalls, warn them when something seems fishy and so on.

Put yourself in the position of a true domaining industry leader: you’re probably someone who has quite a bit of money and all of the tools you need to lead a comfortable life are at your disposal. An industry leader could easily retire but most of them do have a burning desire to have their voice heard. So they start a blog, perhaps join a forum or participate in the industry in another manner. Great.

As time passes however, they notice that not everyone appreciates their contribution. Some people start talking about how they suck or got lucky and when there’s even a hint of a scandal, it’s a bloodbath out there, with countless vultures waiting for the opportunity to grab a piece of the action.

… needless to say, these people will grow tired of such a situation and actually retire.

Sure, burning desire to help and all that but at the end of the day, why deal with all of the bs without there being adequate rewards?

Which brings me to the second aspect I’ve noticed about domaining, the fact that our industry isn’t exactly the most supportive in the world. When an industry leader launches a project, most people (the overwhelming, OVERWHELMING majority) don’t care. Some are downright negative about it and maybe, maybe a few help spread the word through a tweet or at least have a kind word to share.

So again, put yourself in the position of an industry leader.

Why put yourself through all sorts of drama when:

a) the industry is extremely trigger happy and will jump at the first opportunity to tear you a new one

b) the industry isn’t supportive

… it just doesn’t make sense.

As such, as has happened over the years, existing industry leaders retire and people who have the potential of becoming true leaders decide not to start anything in the first place.

It’s kind of like with politicians.

We want better politicians but have developed the habit of hating politicians in general. As such, lots of brilliant people decide to stay away from the cesspool that is politics altogether.

Who ultimately suffers?

Everyone.

Now am I saying we should bow down in front of a picture of each domaining industry leader once a day and sing a glorious song?

No.

Am I saying people should never get called out?

No.

I am however saying that if we don’t develop more let’s say tact, our industry will never have good leaders and you know what? If nothing changes, we deserve it.

5 Comments For This Post

  1. Eric Lyon Says:

    I think there are still plenty of domain industry leaders out there that provide ample information to the masses for free. The obstacle is helping newer investors/developers/start-ups etc. find the information saturated in a sea of misinformation. Sometimes, there can be so much misinformation out there, it’s like trying to find a needle in a haystack, which can be frustrating for some.

    One way to sort and locate industry leaders would be to participate in domain industry-specific communities. You can use such platforms to identify veterans by their registration date, feedback scores, contents of their portfolios, active projects, contributions, member status, etc., the list goes on.

  2. Snoopy Says:

    “When an industry leader launches a project, most people (the overwhelming, OVERWHELMING majority) don’t care. Some are downright negative about it and maybe, maybe a few help spread the word through a tweet or at least have a kind word to share.”

    ///////////////////

    If “industry leader” is trying to make some money out of those who aren’t industry leaders then I think the reaction is fine, some won’t care, some will be negative and some will support it, what is wrong with that?

    If anything Id’ say there isn’t enough criticism in many cases, look at the Adam Dicker situation where very little was said over a period of more than a decade.

  3. Andrei Says:

    @snoopy: I understand where you’re coming from but then where’s the incentive to become an industry leader? Why do it, especially if you’re more than comfortable financially?

  4. Snoopy Says:

    Andrei, hard to really know without knowing who you are actually talking about. Some people want to become industry leaders, other don’t, what is the big deal?

    Why would someone want to be a celebrity? Why would someone want to be in the news each day?

  5. Andrei Says:

    @snoopy: there’s a fundamental difference between being a “mainstream” celebrity and being an industry leader in the domaining world, primarily because domaining is a cottage industry.

    If you’re a celebrity, widespread fame generates ample direct benefits: more concert tickets sold if you’re a singer, a higher likelihood of landing well-paying roles if you’re an actor, a better chance at a political career and ultimately access to power if you’re a politician and so on.

    In a cottage industry like domaining, there just aren’t enough eyeballs to get you widespread recognition.

    As such, I’d argue that the main incentive to become an industry leader would be receiving support for your projects.

    Let’s assume you’re Yun Ye, most people no longer know about him (especially beginners) but he’s a guy who built a large portfolio and ultimately sold it to Marchex for 9 figures (!!!).

    Would domainers have a lot to learn from him? No doubt.

    But why would he go through the trouble of becoming a leader if there’s nothing “in it” for him except drama?

    Or ok, maybe you’re not at Yun Ye’s level but still, you’re doing very, very well financially.

    Why would you spend time and energy to help domainers in the absence of a proper incentive?

    Human action is ultimately dictated to a large degree by incentives.

    The main point I’m trying to get across is that in the absence of proper incentives, a lot of people who would have become excellent leaders end up deciding to stay away. And rightfully so.

    What domainers are left with are pick and shovel salesmen like registries that sell them overpriced dot donkey domains. C’est la vie.

 
 
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