It’s very likely that you already know the story of Cowboys.com. The short version is that a representative for the Dallas Cowboys allegedly won it at auction for $275,000 but thought the price was just $275 and backed out. A group of domain investors later scooped it up in the silent auction for $370,000. You can read fuller versions here, here, and here.
Not much was done with the Cowboys.com domain name over the last several years, aside from very minimal monetization (from what I recall) and putting it up for sale via Sedo. According to a press release distributed this morning, that is changing:
“Baltimore, Maryland based Cowboys.com Group LLC is launching a western theme based website to take advantage of the fastest growing segment in online dating. The website www.Cowboys.com will be the new home for gay & straight dating people looking to find themselves a cowboy. “We are extremely excited to have decided on a direction for this property. Gay dating is a primary target for this website however, we will also serve the needs of straight daters as well,” said Darren Cleveland, President/CEO of City Advertising whom is part of the owners group.”
It’s an interesting turn of events for this domain name. I am sure that it will likely surprise some of the Dallas Cowboys fans who type in the domain name assuming it’s property of the NFL Cowboys.
The Dallas Cowboys could have owned it for $275,000, and the debacle is still one of the more head scratching things that I have seen since I’ve been involved in the domain space.
Eye-popping typo in that PR: “whom is part”.
Good luck roping in the cowboy-loving gals.
At the time, a lot of people thought they were really smart for getting this name. Today, not so much.
Instead, they are praying this becomes a big PR mess for the Dallas Cowboys and that they end up buying the name after all…
No such thoughts at all. Coluldn’t care less about the Cowboys football team.
Lifestyle dating emerged as one of the top choices in the search stats and we’re just following that.
Who knows the dating site idea might work! With million plus visitors per year, it’s certainly worth a try!
It could end up being hit Like fab.com
I can see the tag line now…
“Looking for Quarterbacks? How about some Brokebacks?”
It could end up being hit Like fab.com
Fab started as gay dating site … WHO knows what time Will bring 😉
Like Jerry Jones give a flip – he doesn’t.
Didn’t Sahar Sarid own this domain a few years back?
Here are two videos:
The party was at Sahar’s house, and he was/is reportedly a member of the group that bought the domain name: http://www.dnjournal.com/archive/domainsales/2007/domainsales11-13-07.htm
I just can’t help but feel this is a ploy to shock the Dallas Cowboys into action. If so very well played.
If I recall ( was some years ago ) it made $XX or so a day on gay dating, so roughly a 40-50 year roi. And that was when adult paid well. Who knows what it is now with dating affiliates etc. The conversion was obviously low considering what people were really looking for, this was likely the only card to play.
What a surprise the cowboys fans indeed! Maybe the Cowboys will finally think the domain is worth the money now after enough pissed off super straight homophobic Cowboys football fans land on the new Brokeback Mountainesque dating site. LMAO!
I can see Jerry Jones going into a blind rage over this. I wonder if the person who passed it up on behalf of the Dallas Cowboys even still have their job. I can see the Cowboys stadium from my apartment. Not to say i know him, but living in Dallas, I witness Jerry’s money-making efforts (and successes) up close. He likes to protect his brand and he understands that protecting the brand is positively correlated with capitalizing….Well, I thought he did.
Just like Elliot said, some fans (I’m going to guess several thousands..maybe millions) will be surprised by what they find when they type it in. Not only fans, but business partners or interested parties will go to the site and see something completely unlike what they expected. $275,000 is a grain of sand on the beach for the Cowboys enterprise. With that being said, I’m sure it won’t hurt (deep pockets), but it sure would have helped. Oh well. It’ll be interesting to see what happens from here. (Can’t help but wonder how many people will be stricken by curiosity and join the dating site. We might see a new trend among Cowboys fans Lol)
Great post Elliot! in your second paragraph, you say not much has been done with the domain in the last several__________? Years?
At first I thought it was weird as well. Of course having the domain of just your mascot is important and worth $250,000 or more. Then I tried to go to ravens.com on my phone and it took me to Facebook. I already knew their website is BaltimoreRavens.com and had not even tried just ravens before now.
My first thought was also them trying to press Jerry Jones into paying up over bad PR. But whether he does or not the coverage this piece has generatored will give them a temporary boost in income. I just heard about it on Deadspin. Whether the increased traffic lasts in the long term or Jerry even cares, who knows?
Hehe, noticed I had two first thoughts. Multi-Tasking!
Sigh, and I literally wore my Dallas Cowboys t-shirt today to start the football week of right – and now this. The Cowboys make $250,000 on concessions in the first quarter of a game, probably a lot more. Cant believe they didnt secure that domain. Interesting that Ravens.com fwds to FB….
It seems to go to something close to gotomyhero.com/mandycard with some additional stuff (went by real quick) and then quickly forwards to Facebook. Don’t know what kind of auto-redirect scheme is going on but definitely a lot better than a gay dating site PR wise.
Looks like just a one page landing page, right? Not a web site. Sends it to a third party.
Could certainly spring the Cowboys into action.
What kind of action, and why?
They might have second thoughts about not owning the domain.