I just saw a commercial for a new Paramount movie called “State of Play,” staring Russell Crowe, Ben Affleck, and Rachel McAdams. The URL chosen by Paramount was StateofPlayMovie.net. First off, Paramount is forgiven for not buying or leasing StateofPlay.com because it’s owned by a company of that name.
However, I don’t know why they chose the .net of a second class domain name. They did buy the .com (StateofPlayMovie.com), but that domain name doesn’t resolve. Jeeze… if you are going to brand the .net and you own the .com, at least forward it to your active website.
It’s 2009, and some companies don’t get the basics… DUMB x 2!
It seems that all movies have really bad domains. Some are even just subdomains. Hollywood really needs to get with it and buy the right domains before they start filming the movies.
I don’t really mind them adding movie to the end of the name, but I think the .net is bad – especially when they own the .com, and I think not forwarding the .com is dopey. It’s really baffling because it’s not rocket science.
It seems movie website names get worse every day, and now this, wow. They really do not get it.
Movies always pick the worst domain names. It is as if they don’t really care, but they are putting up a website just because they have to. With all their money in these movie budgets they must feel as though it would be beneath them to buy the propper domain name from whoever currently owns it. They usually just take the movie name and add a suffix like TheMovie, TheMovieWebsite.com, etc… but I agree with you Elliot, .net is a new low.
Also interesting, I just checked it and it looks like Paramount pictures owns StateOfPlayMovie.com. I wonder what that’s about.
Sometimes companies choose to promote the .NET knowing that many people will “accidentally” go to the .COM. This allows them to publicly promote a tame .NET while sending users to a racy .COM. Poker sites do that crap all the time, promoting the .NET (which is a play money only site).
However, in this case, I’m baffled that they don’t have anything at the .COM. You gotta think they hire people to look out for this kind of stuff!
I have nothing against a good .NET domain particularly given that the search engines don’t care if a domain is .COM, .NET, .INFO, etc. The last few months have really opened my eyes as to how ignorant the business community is when it comes to registering domains for their businesses. If you try to market a generic domain to small businesses, it is not difficult to find dozens of potential end users with inferior domains. But what is even more shocking, search for website developers and designers and SEO firms in Google/Yahoo and see the sort of domains those companies have.
The issues are 3 fold…
1) Not exact movie name
3) .com owned by company doesn’t forward or resolve
In some verticals, the .net is okay – especially when it’s competitive and you just can’t buy the .com. However, when you can use the .com, it doesn’t make sense not to use it. Not forwarding it is just idiotic.
It may be idiotic but the seo is done and the domain (whether its .net .info or .stupid) nobody is or ever was going to type this domain in.
They will simply Google the name of the movie.
Since they own the name anyway it doesn’t really matter. If a person (any person) is looking for this movie online they will find it.
In my opinion, movies are not good examples for proving that people don’t get it.
Movies are a different search altogether online – If I’m searching for a movie title I will find it, if not just search by the actor + movie and many times you may even find something else you like but its not like you’re buying a product from a competitor or buying a product from an affiliate link instead of the source. The movie information – your initial search – you will still get the information you need no matter where you are and that information is pretty much everything the studio wanted you to know regardless of where you ended up.
The entire point when it comes to trapping the .com domain and “waking up” Madison avenue as some refer to it as is the simple concept of the (a) financial benefit to owning type in traffic (b) security from your own marketing efforts – ie, you brand a .net some of those ad dollars will help build the .com version so you want those and a few others but movies are ENTIRELY not the same in my opinion.
In fact, the domain name of a movie has probably the shortest shelf life of any domain.
As soon as the movie’s theatrical release ends and it goes to DVD – All the big companies: Amazon, Target, all the DVD sellers will have previews, promotion and battle for SEO positions – trailers will be hosted everywhere from you tube to itunes – the site of the movie’s original promotion (when none of the big guys could sell anything) will slowly become second tier and many times pulled offline.
Ask yourself …. when was the last time you visited the domain name of a movie … when it was on DVD. Very rarely I would say – you watched the preview on iTunes or Amazon .. saw some reviews on another site or comparison shopped through another.
Movie domains have a short life span. SEO’d correctly (which they almost always are) they do what they are supposed to do regardless of the extension.
The studios should lease the name of the movie for a year if someone else owns it. Buffy the Vampire Slayer had an major geek character named Jonathan and there was one episode where he magically becomes a hero/rockstar.
They wanted to use Jonathan.com within the show and I agreed for some small payment. They had lots of concert posters in one scene with Jonathan.com in big letters plastered on the walls and I thought that was great because it was promoting the name.
I use to get email from places around the world where someone had seen a rerun and emailed. You would think they would have become more domain name savvy after all these years.
Man, I can’t believe I did a search and found the Jonathan.com episode: http://www.bbc.co.uk/cult/buffy/indetail/superstar/trivia.shtml
Jay Westerdal is working on a .movie TLD
I am still waiting on him to get back to me with a bunch of interview questions I sent a few weeks ago 🙂
Of course Josh Whedon would be the one guy in TV/Movies that would “get it”.
I agree – though I long for the day that it becomes a Hollywood trend to name movies with geo-generic titles like “Tucson Rentals” and “Pueblo Mortgages” (for example).
Great post, Elliot. Hollywood still needs help mastering its domain. That’s why I created Hollywoozy last year:
It’s the first and only Website devoted to reviewing movie domain names.
Check it out. I think you will enjoy it.
I came across your site a couple months back and was actually going to blog about what a great idea it was to create a blog about domain names for specific industries. Forgive me, just totally lapsed my mind.
Just wanted to say it is a great site and one of the best ideas in this space. Many of us blog about domain NEWS all day, but when you can blog about domain names and target that information to a popular field like movies its a great combo.
you get it….great site.
Just saw the latest x-men movie, didn’t really like it. Anyway to my point. There was a preview for a movie called “District 9” that actually bought the domain name D-9.com. So its not the awesomest domain of all time but it is a big step up for the movie industry. I would have expected something more like DistrictNumberNineTheCoolestMovieEver.info.
Way to step it up hollywood.