Video: Why LeWeb Moved to .CO

I want to share a video I was sent with entrepreneur Loic Le Meur of LeWeb and Juan Diego Calle of the .CO Registry. In the video, Le Meur announces LeWeb’s switch to .CO and discusses why the change was made from the .net extension where it previously resided.

If you’ve never heard of LeWeb before, it’s a “European Internet event, where 2500 entrepreneurs, leaders, investors, bloggers, journalists will gather together for 2 days in Paris. LeWeb brings together the most influential audience in the Internet ecosystem. Top industry entrepreneurs, executives, investors, senior press & bloggers gather for 2 days in Paris to focus on the key issues and opportunities in the web marketplace.”

Because of its wide reach, this is a pretty big announcement. Testimonials about the conference come from heavy hitters like Eric Schmidt and Sean Parker (Schmidt was the keynote speaker in 2011). This year, LeWeb will also be expanding to London in addition to its Paris conference.

One thing of interest is Le Meur’s discussion of, as the company filed a UDRP for it in 2011 and lost. It’s a bit surprising that Le Meur called the owner a “squatter” since I believe that domain name was owned prior to LeWeb’s existence. As the panelist in the UDRP opined, ”  when a domain name is registered by the respondent before the complainant’s relied-upon trademark right is shown to have been first established (whether on a registered or unregistered basis), the registration of the domain name would not have been in bad faith“.

Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn


  1. “Last year LeWeb tried to get through a UDRP filing at World Intellectual Property Organization. The company cited confusion with people trying to reach its web site.”

    .NET is so confusing with .COM. It has only been around for 25 years, has 15M regs, broad awareness, and heavy usage.

    “Upgrading” to .CO to stop confusion with .COM is laughable.

    Good luck with the change.


  2. A couple other interesting things from this video –

    1.) admitted existed before they even had a website, yet they had no problem filing a dispute for the .COM.

    2.) They refer to the owner of as a squatter.

    For someone involved in tech, this guy appears to know squat about domain names.


  3. So .co pricing is designed to deter people from “squatting” ? Yet they sponsor parties and events at TRAFFIC and DFG to get domainers to “buy-in” to the extension as well. They also sell domains for premium prices, just like a “squatter” would do . Talking out both sides of your mouth here a bit no ?

  4. Juan and his team have done a great job selling the concept. But the concept does not dovetail with increasing sales. It dovetails with loss of sales. It dovetails with confusion. It dovetails with many things that all make sales harder.

    .Net to .Co is jumping from the Kettle to the Fire.
    But the 3rd is a charm.
    Congrats to the guy that owns
    Traffic will be going up and someday these .net/.co guys might even figure it out.

    Hint: The dotcom version is FREE when you factor in lost traffic and the lost business that happens day after day, month after month, year after year. Companies like this are afraid to do the math and afraid to ask SIMPLE “What if” questions.

    This won’t be another Overstock moment because they are coming from a .net.

    As for the video, every domainer should watch it.

  5. AS,
    That video was very revealing and glad you pointed that out.
    Referring to us as “SQUATTERS” is really a BAD move!

    If we are squatters that the .co registry is a bunch of snake oil sales people because they KNOW what happened at and with a 61% traffic loss because of confusion if I remember correctly.

    This video is a window how some that take domainers money really feel about domainers and the domain industry. I am THRILLED it is on youtube!

    Juan, I think you stepped in shit on that one. Funny huh??? Squatters??

  6. @Rick Juan is probably already working on a way to spin what he said into something else. He had a big time Freudian slip and now people know he considers domainers (in any form) to be a squatter. I won’t be renewing my .co domains, that’s for sure.

  7. Loïc Le Meur
 is a douchebag.

    At 1:37 in the video he says that “has been taken since before we started leweb” and it is being used by the most famous domain squatter of Japan.

    Boo Hoo.

    You started your brand and now you are pissed because someone else registered the .com before you? What an ass.

    He says he has been trying to buy it but he “can’t get it back”.

    Get it back? Screw you Loic. How are you entitled to

    Juan goes on to say that he is proud that .co is more expensive than .com because it is better and deters squatting?

    Greed doesn’t have anything to do with it, Juan?

    I was curious to know where this video was first posted. It was a you tube post by Loïc Le Meur
 here .

    He has a video series called Build Your Own Brand which he runs from NOT .com.

    Maybe he can UDRP that one too.

    What an idiot.

  8. Why is everyone upset at JC’s words? He and his team have said like a million times that their target is endusers and not domainers and that’s why they set the $30 reg fee.

  9. @Joe Targeting .co to end users and startups is one thing, but I believe the backlash is coming from the fact that he called domainers “squatters”. Squatter is such a derogatory word in the domain industry in my opinion. It’s a word drenched in ignorance for those holding non-trademarked names.

  10. @Joe – Because .co has no problem sponsoring the domain conferences and shows to ‘sell and promote’ their extension to audiences of 90%+ ‘domainers’, then they turn around and insinuate those domainers that buy ‘too many’ .co’s are – SQUATTERS!!! Uhh..DUHH! Didn’t have problems taking that ‘squatter money’ though did they?!?!? Calle just insulted all the domainers that bought/buy .co’s for any type of investment purposes, but your .co glasses and over admiration for JC (not the biblical one), keeps you from seeing that and the realities of that hack extension. Whatever.

    Will be interesting to see now:
    1) which upcoming domain conferences accept .co as a sponsor (to sell to ‘squatters’??)
    2) .co renewals and how many will concede ‘they’re a squatter’, and give more of their ‘over priced’ renewal money to the one who just insinuated such.

    Bet Calle’s favorite quote is from PT Barnum.

  11. We got the following response to our comment at

    Hey “Domainsville” yeah I don’t deny having tried to get and I agree it doesn’t seem that I did it the best possible way and I’m happy to dicuss and learn.

    Where we will, however, never agree, is that it’s “right” that an empty page with google ads on it can squat for life a domain used by a brand like ours for good reasons. I get the “I got it first” part and understand it, but I think it’s a real shame and frankly, a pain for the whole industry.
    No question some people make a business out of it, but it’s a pain.

  12. Nice sense of entitlement there.

    There are three options –

    1.) Pay for the best option – .COM (if for sale).
    2.) Try to use UDRP to steal a domain.
    3.) Settle for a much worse secondary option.

    They have tried #2, and when they didn’t work now they are onto #3.

    I guess there is a 4th option – invent a time machine.

    Getting there first does matter. Not just with domains, with virtually anything.

    You can’t stumble unto the domain 25 years after .COM was released and just expect a great domain to be handed to you.


  13. Fine. I think we all agree with Juan that cybersquatters are scum but Loïc Le Meur said that the person who owns is a cybersquatter simply for owning a domain that he wants.

    So, Juan, would you like to help Mr. Le Meur understand the difference?

    He insulted your business and your industry and you just smiled… then wrote a blog post deflected the issue.

  14. Juan Calle doesn’t know “domain squatters” definition and therefore cause big insult to domain investors. In this video, It’s wrong that Juan called big domain investors as domain squatters.

    Just want to make it clear, Domain investors who bought non-trademark names such as generic names ( eg. ) are NOT domain squatters.

    But domainers who bought “trademark names” ( eg. ) are the domain squatters.

    Hope this will clear the definition of domain squatters.

  15. Give it a year or 2, soon .co registrations will be about the same price as .com. Let supply and demand do their thing first.


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