MySpace wasn’t dumb when it launched in the UK without securing Myspace.co.uk. It was registered in 1997 by a company in Stockport, near Manchester. But the fact that it has now won the right to use the domain after a decision by Nominet’s dispute resolution service is a lesson to anyone sitting on a URL which might become successful. The fact that Myspace.co.uk was originally used to offer email services and mini-websites to subscribers meant it had insulated itself from an action. But when owner TWS flipped its business to try and exploit MySpace’s popularity, sending visitors to parked web page with advertisements for social networking websites including MySpace, known as “kiting”, that’s when it lost the moral high-ground. The lesson to sites? Make your business model different to the giant who’s name you own and benefit from all those mis-typed URLs. It’s still kinda sleazy, but it works.
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