Why I Bought a Blatant Trademark Domain Name

Over the weekend while reviewing a Dropping.pro list of domain names coming up for auction that day, I saw a domain name that stood out to me. It’s the unique name of a popular beer in the .com extension. The domain name had been registered for many years before expiring and dropping. I am pretty certain the beer name is a trademark of the brewery.

I backordered the domain name and prevailed. I am now the registrant of this trademark domain name.

You’re probably asking yourself why I bought the domain name and what I am going to do with the domain name. I will share a story and explain.

Several years ago before my brother got married, he had a bachelor party near the brewery that makes this well-known beer. I planned the bachelor party and wanted to incorporate the brewery into the weekend somehow. Unfortunately, I learned, the brewery doesn’t offer tours. I reached out to the owner to see if I could arrange something small for my brother and his friends. Nope. I later asked if I could invite him as a special guest to a dinner at the best restaurant in the area. Nope. Finally, I asked if I could host him for an hour at the house I rented for him to talk about his beer in exchange for a donation to a non-profit organization of his choice. Another swing and a miss.

After my final request, he mentioned that if we swing by the brewery shortly after closing for the day, he would give my brother and friends a short private tour. My brother and some of his friends are really into beer, and he treated us like longtime friends of the family. He answered a bunch of questions about his brewery and beers, and he talked shop with the guys who were super knowledgable about beer. It was neat to watch these guys talk about beer in a place that was one of the top destinations for beer lovers.

That brings us to the present day. I saw the domain name and knew I was going to do what I could to secure it. I didn’t know if the brewery and its owner would want the domain name but I figured I would do my best to grab it and offer it to him for free. He went out of his way that day to treat us like friends of the family, and I wanted to do the same for him.

After securing the domain name, I reached out via email to let him know that this domain name dropped and I got it for him – no strings attached. I told him I could send him the transfer code when I am able and will forward the domain name to his website in the meantime. I also told him if he wasn’t interested in having it, that would be no biggie either and I would let it drop upon expiration. I wouldn’t want to give him an unnecessary “gift” that costs him $20/year to renew.

He wrote back to me the next day and was very appreciative. He has not been tracking the domain name and would like to have it. He offered me some beer as a thank you, which I thought was super nice. I declined his offer because I bought the domain name as a sign of appreciation for how he treated us a few years ago, and I felt like accepting his offer would negate what I said about it being no strings attached.

Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of DomainInvesting.com. Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the DomainInvesting.com 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


    • Correct.

      The domain name isn’t the point of the story. I wanted to share how I went about securing a domain name for someone that did something nice to me and did not obligate the other person to take the name or do something in return.

      In addition, on the off chance someone sees this domain name registered to me and asks me about it, I can point to the article to explain.

  1. Hi Elliot, I have done that as well. On many occasions, especially in the early days of domaining a friend mentioned an interest in a business or I registered a domain on behalf of someone and almost always (in those early days) I would ask if they wanted me to transfer the domain, they would decline, I would get a renewal notice and ask once again. Almost 100% of the time they declined so as a good friend I simply bit the bullet on the small renewal fee and kept it for them knowing one day they’d realize they really DID want and need the domain. And… 70% of the time they did, so finally my good intentions were realized. Strange to me how many people in those early days did not understand the importance of their Brand or Domain as it relates to their internet footprint. It does create a bit of a problem since each year at renewal I am faced with a decision… once again (every year) call and ask if they want the domain… and… if they say “no” I just can’t bring myself to let it expire and be subject to “exploiters” since some of these folks are high profile. Luckily its only a small handful of domains and sooner or later they will appreciate the foresight.

    • i did something very similar for one of the registries Dominion Domains.. They owned the Dominion.Domains and I bought the domain DominionDomains.com to give to them because they were located in my hometown. Initially they didn’t want it, but later their consultant contacted me and asked did I really buy the domain to give/gift to them? I said sure, and I guessed it surprised them that I stood by my word.

      However there’s more to this story that’s not very flattering to the domain industry.

  2. Elliot….ironically i’ve done something similar in order to get my foot in the door so to speak. For example I own the domain DomainInvesting.online to give/gift to you if you want it. I’ve recently accumulated a dozen or so domains “like” AmazonFashion.com, AmazonBrewery.com, AmazonMotors.com etc. to gift/give to a well know brand (not Amazon) that’s about to payoff in a pretty big way.

    Anyway, if you’d like DomainInvesting.online I’d be more than happy to transfer it for only the time it will take me to contact the registry/registrar and make it happen.

    Good Luck!


    • Appreciate the offer, but I wouldn’t do anything with alternative extensions. I bought the .net when it was in an expiry auction a few years ago and use it for forwarding. It was probably a waste of $$$ though.

        • i’m sorry you feel that way. You obviously THINK you know me.

          My example is no different than what Elliot did so I guess you feel the same way about Elliot?

    • Ive helped others with domains and been burned as I’m sure you have too JP, but that shouldn’t stop you from being kind/helpful/generous.

      • I knew it was perhaps too harsh or short of a statement.

        As you may know I am more than happy to help others, especially in the industry and for many reasons.

        What I should have stated more clearly because yes I agree with you…is that in this particular case it is a risky helping hand. For no other reason than people sometimes perceiving your intent with suspicion. I know Elliot enough to know he didn’t do this for free beer or even monetary reasons. I am just saying to strangers, they can sometime find this type of kindness, suspicious.

        Thus my road to hell statement.

        Still happy to help others, just thinking things through a bit more as I get older lol

  3. I did that to a non profit and they did not want it at first…but but
    I told them someone will steal their data or will make it a porn site.
    Transfer the domain within 5 mins-easy peasy

    Karma Karma Karma


  4. In our practice, we see a lot of trademark settlement and co-existence agreements, especially where one party needs the assent of the other to register a trademark (Domain name). While keeping the immediate purpose in mind, it is critical to analyze the larger, long-term impact of the agreement’s provisions on each party’s company.


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