COVID19.com Forwarding to World Health Organization Website

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Domain investors often get a bad rap during various emergencies and tragedies. Sometimes the criticism is warranted when speculation on tragedy-related domain names is distasteful to many. There are always going to be journalists who look at speculative domain registrations as a way to show examples of people attempting to profit from domain names. Even when domain speculation is not done by domain investors, these types of articles portray the business of domain investing in a poor light.

When it comes to the COVID 19 coronavirus outbreak, this is no different. There have been quite a few articles written about related domain names, with a particular focus on scams and schemes involving domain names that are associated with the ongoing, worldwide pandemic.

I think two of the most relevant domain names associated with this outbreak are Coronavirus.com and COVID19.com. Both are probably seeing a lot of type-in traffic from people looking for information about the pandemic.

As I previously wrote, GoDaddy owns Coronavirus.com following its acquisition of Uniregistry. In lieu of monetizing or selling this domain name, GoDaddy is forwarding Coronavirus.com to the World Health Organization website with official information about the pandemic.

Similarly, COVID19.com is also forwarding to the World Health Organization’s website. Specifically, the domain name forwards to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund page within the WHO website. COVID19.com was a recent registration, and because the domain name is registered under privacy proxy, the registrant is not known to me.

With all of the negative stories about domain names and domain speculation I have seen in various publications, I thought I would highlight the fact that two of the most important pandemic related domain names are being used in a helpful way. In my opinion, the vast majority of coronavirus and COVID related domain names do not have commercial value. These two domain names likely have substantial value because there are people or businesses that would pay to own them. I think it is positive to see them being used in this manner.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Hi Elliot…

    Thank you for covering this.

    I’ve had a few thoughts on this, but haven’t had an outlet to discuss it. I hope you don’t mind the long post.

    First, what’s most relevant, I just read on nP from one member who claims to have purchased domains from that registrant before, stated the registrant genuinely isn’t a bad guy, and suspected that the registrant may be in a tight spot due to living in an area that economically is in a bad situation, that may get worse in the coming months.

    https://www.namepros.com/threads/coronavirus-es-confiscated-temporarily-by-spanish-government.1181836/page-4#post-7688045

    Hearing on the news from President Trump, that Google was in the works of making a COVID19 webpage, I was anxious to see what domain they’d use. Turned out to be the authoritative and trusted, Google.com/COVID19

    I mention both the COVID19.com registrants potential financial hardship, that even in these times it appears he is doing the right thing by forwarding it to the WHO, I can’t help but wonder, in who’s hands should COVID19.com belong to, or more important than ownership, is where should the traffic be going? Could it be argued that Google is in the best position to develop a website for COVID19 in partnership with other country governments? Or going beyond corporations, how would the WHO like to see COVID19.com being used?

    Basically, I’m trying to figure out, money aside, where is the best fit for this ever so important domain to resolve to? Almost, as if that moral and best-first question would be answered, I imagine morally speaking the registrant would have an easier time transferring the domain to the best party, irrespective of profits. Should a donation go towards the registrant for safeguarding, forwarding, and relinquishing ownership, I wonder if that could be written off to some type of bounty program, as a good cyber security deed so to speak.

    The other question, is how long has COVID19.com been forwarded to the WHO?

    On March 18th, 2020, a commenter by the name of [Domainers] said “check Covid19.com, they are straight up jack asses”

    http://domainincite.com/25322-not-every-coronavirus-domain-registrant-is-a-douchebag#comment-567352

    I don’t know why they said that, seeing there is no archive.org screenshot.

    Though, it could be related to one nP assertion that they had noticed COVID19.com for sale on Sedo, with a minimum offer of $40,000

    https://www.namepros.com/threads/coronavirus-es-confiscated-temporarily-by-spanish-government.1181836/page-3#post-7687609

    On another note, I had noticed the first recorded sale starting with “Corona” in 2020 occurred on March 18th for $2,288 (according to NameBio) was for Coronax.com.

    CoronaX.com had been registered since 2005, looks to have been acquired by BuyDomains.com some time in 2015, and now WHOIS shows NeilMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc. as the registrant.

    I noticed CoronaJ.com expiring the following day, on March 19th, 2020. And having read a few articles related to the ethics of Coronavirus related domains, I registered it, and after initially forwarding it to Coronavirus.gov, I decided to follow in the footsteps of Coronavirus.com and forwarded it to the WHO, recognizing it as a global issue.

    I do NOT want to profit from this domain. Nor do I want to see this domain being used for malicious purposes. I question, if forwarding the domain, to a site that has most other sites forwarded to, is the best use? I agree, WHO might be the most authoritative, but are there other good sites or developing sites out there, not getting any traffic, or global recognition perhaps, in part to not having a catchy, short, and/or related domain. How would I reach those people to gift the domain to a better, or more impactful use? I want to help. I just don’t know how. Maybe reach out to the WHO and attempt to donate the domain? If they’d even want it?

    I mention this, as I imagine the registrant of COVID19.com is facing/faced similar questions/decisions though on a much broader scale, as he was the first registrant, and also considering the traffic and inquiries that domain is likely receiving, compared to deciding the future of a Corona+Letter.com domain.

    Additional Info: Prior to registering CoronaJ.com, I had looked up all Corona + [Single Letter].com to get a better idea of how these domains were being used. Summary as of March 23rd, 2020 below:

    CoronaA.com — Hello World!
    CoronaB.com — Forwards to CoronaNames.com
    CoronaC.com — This site can’t be reached error
    CoronaD.com — HugeDomains $1,895
    CoronaE.com — Uniregistry Landing Page, available for sale, get price quote.
    CoronaF.com — Forwards to CoronaNames.com
    CoronaG.com — Forwards to CoronaNames.com
    CoronaH.com — PorkBun Landing Page
    CoronaI.com — HugeDomains $3,295
    CoronaJ.com — Forwards to who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019
    CoronaK.com — Forwards to CoronaNames.com
    CoronaL.com — Parked. No links mentioning COVID19 or Corona/Virus
    CoronaM.com — Software developer with last name Corona
    CoronaN.com — For sale on BrandBucket for $2,410
    CoronaO.com — This site can’t be reached error
    CoronaP.com — appears to be a site being built in non-English language to help distribute Corona stats?
    CoronaQ.com — error in chrome browser “www.nytimes.com refused to connect.”
    CoronaR.com — For Sale page
    CoronaS.com — Parked, with banner at top of page that links to Uniregistry get price quote page.
    CoronaT.com — HugeDomains, make offer
    CoronaU.com — Education related site with 2007 noted at bottom of homepage.
    CoronaV.com — This site can’t be reached.
    CoronaW.com — Forwards to CoronaNames.com
    CoronaX.com –Parked
    CoronaY.com — Forwards to CoronaNames.com
    CoronaZ.com — Appears to be some zero click parking, with random redirects.

  2. Hi Elliot…

    Thank you for covering this.

    I’ve had a few thoughts on this, but haven’t had an outlet to discuss it. I hope you don’t mind the long post.

    First, what’s most relevant, I just read on nP from one member who claims to have purchased domains from that registrant before, stated the registrant genuinely isn’t a bad guy, and suspected that the registrant may be in a tight spot due to living in an area that economically is in a bad situation, that may get worse in the coming months.

    https://www.namepros.com/threads/coronavirus-es-confiscated-temporarily-by-spanish-government.1181836/page-4#post-7688045

    Hearing on the news from President Trump, that Google was in the works of making a COVID19 webpage, I was anxious to see what domain they’d use. Turned out to be the authoritative and trusted, Google.com/COVID19

    I mention both the COVID19.com registrants potential financial hardship, that even in these times it appears he is doing the right thing by forwarding it to the WHO, I can’t help but wonder, in who’s hands should COVID19.com belong to, or more important than ownership, is where should the traffic be going? Could it be argued that Google is in the best position to develop a website for COVID19 in partnership with other country governments? Or going beyond corporations, how would the WHO like to see COVID19.com being used?

    Basically, I’m trying to figure out, money aside, where is the best fit for this ever so important domain to resolve to? Almost, as if that moral and best-first question would be answered, I imagine morally speaking the registrant would have an easier time transferring the domain to the best party, irrespective of profits. Should a donation go towards the registrant for safeguarding, forwarding, and relinquishing ownership, I wonder if that could be written off to some type of bounty program, as a good cyber security deed so to speak.

    The other question, is how long has COVID19.com been forwarded to the WHO?

    On March 18th, 2020, a commenter by the name of [Domainers] said “check Covid19.com, they are straight up jack asses”

    http://domainincite.com/25322-not-every-coronavirus-domain-registrant-is-a-douchebag#comment-567352

    I don’t know why they said that, seeing there is no archive.org screenshot.

    Though, it could be related to one nP assertion that they had noticed COVID19.com for sale on Sedo, with a minimum offer of $40,000

    https://www.namepros.com/threads/coronavirus-es-confiscated-temporarily-by-spanish-government.1181836/page-3#post-7687609

    On another note, I had noticed the first recorded sale starting with “Corona” in 2020 occurred on March 18th for $2,288 (according to NameBio) was for Coronax.com.

    CoronaX.com had been registered since 2005, looks to have been acquired by BuyDomains.com some time in 2015, and now WHOIS shows NeilMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc. as the registrant.

    I noticed CoronaJ.com expiring the following day, on March 19th, 2020. And having read a few articles related to the ethics of Coronavirus related domains, I registered it, and after initially forwarding it to Coronavirus.gov, I decided to follow in the footsteps of Coronavirus.com and forwarded it to the WHO, recognizing it as a global issue.

    I do NOT want to profit from this domain. Nor do I want to see this domain being used for malicious purposes. I question, if forwarding the domain, to a site that has most other sites forwarded to, is the best use? I agree, WHO might be the most authoritative, but are there other good sites or developing sites out there, not getting any traffic, or global recognition perhaps, in part to not having a catchy, short, and/or related domain. How would I reach those people to gift the domain to a better, or more impactful use? I want to help. I just don’t know how. Maybe reach out to the WHO and attempt to donate the domain? If they’d even want it?

    I mention this, as I imagine the registrant of COVID19.com is facing/faced similar questions/decisions though on a much broader scale, as he was the first registrant, and also considering the traffic and inquiries that domain is likely receiving, compared to deciding the future of a Corona+Letter.com domain.

    Additional Info: Prior to registering CoronaJ.com, I had looked up all Corona + [Single Letter].com to get a better idea of how these domains were being used. Summary as of March 23rd, 2020 below:

    CoronaA.com — Hello World!
    CoronaB.com — Forwards to CoronaNames.com
    CoronaC.com — This site can’t be reached error
    CoronaD.com — HugeDomains $1,895
    CoronaE.com — Uniregistry Landing Page, available for sale, get price quote.
    CoronaF.com — Forwards to CoronaNames.com
    CoronaG.com — Forwards to CoronaNames.com
    CoronaH.com — PorkBun Landing Page
    CoronaI.com — HugeDomains $3,295
    CoronaJ.com — Forwards to who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019
    CoronaK.com — Forwards to CoronaNames.com
    CoronaL.com — Parked. No links mentioning COVID19 or Corona/Virus
    CoronaM.com — Software developer with last name Corona
    CoronaN.com — For sale on BrandBucket for $2,410
    CoronaO.com — This site can’t be reached error
    CoronaP.com — appears to be a site being built in non-English language to help distribute Corona stats?
    CoronaQ.com — error in chrome browser “www.nytimes.com refused to connect.”
    CoronaR.com — For Sale page
    CoronaS.com — Parked, with banner at top of page that links to Uniregistry get price quote page.
    CoronaT.com — HugeDomains, make offer
    CoronaU.com — Education related site with 2007 noted at bottom of homepage.
    CoronaV.com — This site can’t be reached.
    CoronaW.com — Forwards to CoronaNames.com
    CoronaX.com –Parked
    CoronaY.com — Forwards to CoronaNames.com
    CoronaZ.com — Appears to be some zero click parking, with random redirects.

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