Russell Shaw over on BBHub is reporting that one of the owners of the domain name BlackBerry8800.com has been contacted by Research in Motion and that a deal has been worked out to transfer ownership of the domain to RIM.
Registering domain names in anticipation of a company wanting to use that domain name later, or cybersquatting as it is often called, can be quite lucrative when compared to the 8 to 10 dollar initial investment. Cas Thompson, the cybersquatter that owned BlackBerry8800.com hasn’t disclosed the terms of the agreement with RIM, however, says that the BlackBerry maker has ‘huge’ plans for the site and that the BlackBerry 8800 will be available very soon.
This is a sleazy way to make a living. I bet that RIM agreed not to sue this dude and that is why you see no mention of how much it went for.
I don’t know if I would call it sleazy. Opportunistic is how I would categorize it. RIM new that they were going to call the BlackBerry 8800 the BlackBerry 8800 long before this guy registered the domain name. They could have easily spent the 8 bucks to register the domain long before the name BlackBerry 8800 was ever leaked.
The problem with doing this is that RIM may not have wanted the world to know that they were going to have a device coming out called the BlackBerry 8800.
Ok, they could have spent an additional $5 to set up WHOIS name privacy or something.
If someone goes out and registers a trademarked name and the company that owns it comes after them for using it in violation of their trademark, that is one thing. It is something completely different, however, if someone registers a non-trademarked name and the company that would like to use that domain name or even a company that later trademarks that name buys it from the original holder at a premium.
This is done in real estate everyday. I see no difference on the web, especially when the company could have registered the trademark and domain name before anyone on the street every heard of it.