I just read Mike’s post about powerful DC politicians coming to a domain industry conference, and I’ve read quite a few posts he and others have written about supporting the ICA. I’ve also written posts imploring domain investors to support the ICA, in addition to contributing to the ICA.
From my own perspective, I think the general consensus amongst most people in the domain space (which I disagree with) is something along the lines of “I have very little on the line financially compared to others, so I will let the big guys foot the bill for protecting all of our interests.”
It seems that many domain investors aren’t doing this full time, and/or they think their holdings pale in comparison to larger companies. These larger companies, with so much more on the line, should use their vast assets to protect their own holdings and the holdings’ of others by default. I can see this side of the argument, although I don’t agree with it.
In my opinion, one of the wisest “investments” a domain investor can make is in the formation of a business entity to protect personal assets. In a poll I ran on my blog not too long ago, 41% of the people who read the article don’t even have a simple LLC to protect their own assets.
If people aren’t protecting their own assets, does anyone think they are going to financially support organizations or associations that supposedly support their interests?
I can imagine someone thinking that their $100 or $500 donation will result in no recognition or support, even if they need an assist with a UDRP or some other issue that might impact their holdings. Instead, the money will be spent on lobbying or something else that can’t be seen and can be difficult to quantify.
I know that Phil Corwin works hard for the ICA representing the interests of domain owners. I also know that others are working hard to protect domain investors’ interests behind the scenes, but the truth is that we are a very fractured industry. People don’t agree on the smallest things, and in most cases, it’s every person and company for itself.
I really don’t know what can be done to “unite” this industry to support even the most obvious of objectives. What do you think?