Vote: Mike or Frank

Yesterday afternoon, I posted the opposing gTLD viewpoints of Frank Schilling and Mike Mann. Each of these successful domain investors has a strong opinion on how gTLDs will impact domain investors and the market in general.

From my perspective, the opinions of Mike and  Frank are reflective of the opinions shared by others in the space. It doesn’t seem like there are many people who haven’t already formulated their own opinions about gTLDs.

I think it will be interesting to get a general consensus about whether you share Frank’s opinion or Mike’s. Please vote in the poll below to participate, and feel free to comment here or on one of yesterday’s posts.

I want to thank Mike and Frank again for sharing their time and insight with all of us.

I will try to share my personal projections on gTLDs tomorrow, but I have a lot to do. It’s actually a pretty nice little Saturday, we’re going to go to Home Depot. Yeah, buy some wallpaper, maybe get some flooring, stuff like that. Maybe Bed, Bath, & Beyond, I don’t know, I don’t know if we’ll have enough time.

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. In real life I am a fan of Mr. Schilling because he is not only extremely smart and successful but also a down to earth gentleman. Add to that what he has done for us all, and he is unbeatable business man.

    This is the first time I feel more like Mike is right but then again I have been wrong so many times.

    I think Frank will be successful with his gTLD businesses but masses won’t be.

    • RK

      Only polling on the topic of Mike’s and Frank’s gTLD sentiments, which they kindly shared yesterday.

      On the personal side, I have great respect for both guys who have more accomplishments than most and have moved the domain investment business forward.

  2. “I have great respect for both guys who have more accomplishments than most and have moved the domain investment business forward.”

    I totally agree.

  3. You can’t listen to either opinion because they are both clouded. Mike is trying to sell his portfolio again to the highest bidder so of course he’s going to say dot com is king. Frank is in bed with the gtlds so of course he will praise them. Those that think gtlds won’t succeed are fools. Yes it may make the value of really really good dotcoms go up but your average domain value will drop like a rock because of so many new options. The computerized general public is a lot smarter than you think and those that don’t understand the internet are not your customers and these are the ones that won’t understand gtlds but everyone else will.

    • See I told…follow the money.

      I might talk “bullS” but I can smell a scam almost as good as a shark smells blood.


      You can’t listen to either opinion because they are both clouded. Mike is trying to sell his portfolio again to the highest bidder so of course he’s going to say dot com is king. Frank is in bed with the gtlds so of course he will praise them.

  4. If I had to be an “investor” in either business…. I would take Frank. Not only has he has had some very big successes in the past. But his play in the gTLDs is a perfect hedge to his current great businesses. Either way Frank does not lose and winds up on “a winning side”. For that, I completely understand and respect what Frank is doing. What he is doing IS SMART!

    However I voted on the poll for Mike Mann. Because I just don’t see gTLDs the way Frank does. I feel Mike will win. And Frank will too (because of his .com portfolio.) But I’m skeptical that gTLDs will succeed. As domainers, forget about investing in this fools gold. As the registry operator – I still wonder if that money will be made up. It is too early to tell.

    In short. Frank probably will not lose either way. (he has a hedge) But more likely Mike winds up on the right side. Which is a side Frank is invested in as well. For that, I voted on Mike.

  5. Both these guys are Winners already, they could exit the business today with their top 100 domains, and never have to look back, but they keep moving the industry forward, which is great.

  6. Very hard to say …

    They both are right.
    The .com no dough will be more expensive.
    Some of the new TLD’s will succeed.

    Some of us criticized Frank
    for getting .BlackFriday

    From his point of view it was worth it.Know why?Because could be worth $5 million + and he only spent $200k for it.
    Like Berkens said:There is money for every body to be made.

    If you need advice in flooring contact me,i have 20+ yrs experience.

  7. I vote for BOTH…they both are winners!!!

    Registry owners like Frank are going to win.

    Dot com owners like Mike are also going to win.

    Both are winners!!!

  8. .com is king but selling “shovels” for the new gold prospectors will probably be very lucrative as well. The only problem with the new .whatevers is they/he will have to throw buckets of money at promoting the new “shovels”. imho
    Both are superstars in our industry though.

  9. I can never take anyone who has a vested interest in anything completely serious. Bias rules unfortunately…its nature.

    In saying that..Mike.

  10. Mike is mostly right.

    However, I think it will be a few years (5 + ???) after the launch before the cutesiness of all these names starts to be taken for what it is, cutesiness that can’t be remembered in a sea of individual cutesy domains.

    In effect, .com has received the “franchise effect” of billions and billions of dollars of branding. Every time one of us launches a domain on a .com it just adds to the cumulative franchising effect of branding the .com, just like a real-world franchise.

    You could have the best site on the Net about used cars at Used.Cars, but if the rest of the .cars category is filled with junk sites, non-existent sites, parked pages, hobby sites, etc… that will have the same cumulative, group franchising effect, except with a negative connotation association. Therefore, Used.Cars will suffer from a form of extension discrimination.

    Would you buy a car on a domain?
    How about Which one would you think you or surfers would be most comfortable shopping at? There’s your answer. The others have a negative connotation associated with them by default of the extension. What domain extension do you think will have the highest conversion ratio to sales? 🙂

    So, if you are spending REAL money on advertising, don’t you want the one with the highest conversion ratio and no or little traffic leakage to boot?

    To ignore any of this is foolish. Actually, it’s ignorant as well.

    • “Would you buy a car on a domain?”

      So basically you wouldn’t buy an item at (perhaps even at a cheaper price than the same thing at because you don’t like its extension? Hope you’re joking.

  11. By my estimate, I pull in between 10K-15K/month (net profit) dealing almost exclusively with dotcoms.

    While I know that’s chump change compared to all you big time domainers, but it’s afforded me a pretty easy and carefree lifestyle compared with the 9-5 rat race. Besides, I don’t need to be living on an island to make me happy.

    I feel absolutely no reason to be chasing these new gTLDs. Dealing with them will only add another layer of complexity to my normal routine that I will just as well not assume.

    • …It’s like i stated on the namepros Industry forum…

      Originally Posted by HeyNow

      “…Anyway, all that is several years away, at least, unless school systems start teaching this stuff to kids sooner.”

      ..funny you should mention “kids”, as they are the generation that doesn’t seem to concern themselves with what deity is at the right of the dot.

      This attitude, of course will carry them into adulthood and the remainder of the 21st century. For many domainers, time stands still and they expect their progeny to worship the same extension that they stubbornly adhere to. Time will tell, of course, but in the meantime the youth are getting quite comfortable with the variety of extensions that have actual content instead of the vast sea of parked pages that .com has waiting to be purchased at over-blown prices. The endusers of today have a choice of cost-effective extensions and an audience who doesn’t care as long as they access what they came for…

      Time indeed will tell if it is just the way it is, I guess…

  12. The only gTLD that is valid is .FAIL since that succinctly summarizes what is about to happen with them.

    Schilling is clearly a newbie to the industry and does not know about the past failures.

    If .MOBI, .TEL, .AERO, .TRAVEL, .MUSEUM, .CAT, .PRO, .COOP, .ASIA, .JOBS and .BIZ were not embraced, what makes the new .CRAP any different? Keep in mind that the others were ICANN sponsored and were promoted after their surveys determined that those were among the highest in demand. YEah, we know how that story ended (at least Mike Mann does). Also,

    These are no different. Oh wait, there is a difference, these will be privately held and could go bankrupt at any minute.

    gtlds are for suckers. Sorry Frankie.

  13. The truth Elliot, the bottom line no punches held truth… Frank wants to make money, lots of money, he will say and do anything within reason to do so. He is no different than anyone else. He invested in these extensions to make money, believes in them because he believes in making money. Will they last long term or will he make a lot of money the first few years before they hit the bottom. Doesn’t matter because he will make money any ways. Passion is a funny thing, sometimes people succeed because they have it, sometimes it blinds your judgement and you fail because of it. I find that removing the emotional aspect of things works best. Will X work or not, dont car, I want to make money, period. Will dotcom rule forever, don;t care, as long as it makes money while I am here, that is what matters. We are not saving the planet, planting trees, feeding the poor. We buy and trade domain names, hopefully to people who will use them to guess what, make money.

    End of they day the people who usually involve emotion and truly “care” about how a certain product works and the technicality of it etc..they arn’t the one’s making money.

  14. I’m still not sure about which view will even come close to what will happen with new gTLDs. Most new gTLDs will fail. Some will become marginal successes and others will become mainstream successes. However the registries will make money – often from fanboy domainers who think that their choice of new gTLD is different. These registrants will hold their domains for two or three years and then drop them.

    What makes this group of new gTLDs different from what happened in the past is that the introduction of new gTLDs and sTLDs was staggered so that they were not all coming on the market at once. Thus they were competing with the established com/net/org TLDs and ccTLDs. Today, the potential registrant has a range of TLDs from which to choose. But most choose .com and their local ccTLD. And that’s the challenge that these new registries have to overcome.

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