The Boston Globe published an article about its sale of the .Boston domain extension. Minds + Machines acquired the majority of the Boston Globe’s rights to operate the extension for an undisclosed sum. According to the article, the Boston Globe “will retain a small ownership stake in ‘.boston,’ and the company will receive undisclosed future revenues.
Based on my interpretation of the article, it doesn’t seem like The Boston Globe management was too keen on operating .Boston. Here are a couple of outtakes from Hiawatha Bray’s article:
The Globe is unloading “.boston” just one month after the company received permission from ICANN to begin selling addresses using the new domain. The Globe first filed for the rights to “.boston” in 2012, when it was owned by the New York Times Co.
“The .boston domain business was inherited by the current management team and is not perceived as core to the mission of supporting the highest quality journalism in the region,” Bowman said in a statement.
It probably makes sense for the Boston Globe to sell its rights to the extension given the fact that the company isn’t in the domain business at all. Minds + Machines is an experienced operator, and they should be able to do well with the extension in its portfolio. On the flip side, I would imagine that the Globe likely has the greatest reach of any media outlet in the region, especially with its Boston.com publication. This could have been utilized to ensure people learn about .Boston domain names.
I am curious about whether there is any type of marketing agreement that was created as part of the deal. I think the Globe could help generate awareness for the .Boston extension, and that could drive more registrations and added value to the deal for the Globe. As a daily reader of Boston.com, I suppose I will see whether or not there is extensive marketing of .Boston.
I might be a buyer of .Boston domain names, but it all comes down to the price. Good keyword .Boston domain names like Restaurants.Boston, Hotels.Boston, or RealEstate.Boston would be of interest to me. However, I would not have any interest in paying much of a premium for these domain names as I assume the holding period would be longer than most of my investments and they are likely less liquid.