I noticed a couple of interesting domain name registrations: ABCNewsDefamationTrial.com and ABCNewsDefamationTrial.org were registered over the past couple of days. The domain names are registered under proxy registration with the domain names registered to DNStination Inc., a brand protection business. In May of this year, ABCNewsDefamation.com and ABCNewsDefamation.net were also registered. There may be other domain registrations that I did not see.
When I saw the most recent two domain name registrations, I did a Google search to see if I could see why these domain names may have been registered. According to an article appearing on Fortune.com, ABC News is involved in a lawsuit over a report the news organization ran about “pink slime.” The defamation trial in this $5.9 billion lawsuit begins today. It seems like an interesting case and possibly one that will be widely followed given the hot topic of “fake news.”
It does not appear that any of these four domain names are being used at this time, although that may change. When I visited ABCNewsDefamationTrial.com this morning, an “Authentication Required” pop-up appeared asking for a username and password. Perhaps this means that a website is under development but not publicly accessible yet. It could also be used privately. ABCNewsDefamationTrial.org, ABCNewsDefamation.com, and ABCNewsDefamation.net do not resolve at all for me as of this morning.
Because the domain names are registered via proxy, it is unclear what entity is behind the domain name registrations. The domain names may have been registered as a means of brand protection, but they could also have been registered by the plaintiff in this lawsuit. Perhaps we will see the domain names used as the trial commences.