I started DotWeekly in 2008 because I love domain names! I also like helping people and doing the right thing. I don’t just help others “online”, it’s something I do daily in my life. Why? Because it’s the right thing to do.
Over the years, I have helped countless companies, individuals and every day people just like you and me. Why? It’s what I do! It’s me! It’s the right thing to do.
Earlier this year for an example, I had noticed the domain name Carrot.com had expired. Why would a very valuable domain name like this just expire? I knew something wasn’t right and I needed to DO something about it. I started to research and search for answers. Why? It was the right thing to do! Elliot Silver of DomainInvesting.com covered the story here, so please feel free to read it. In short, the owner of the domain name had passed away and the estate wasn’t aware of the expiration. This was a family, grieving the loss of a loved one, not thinking about a domain name. I was thinking about the domain name AND the family! They needed this asset back and I was happy to help and not looking for anything in exchange. Nothing! It was just the right thing to do. It’s what I do.
I do the above A LOT. I do not reach out and publicly pat myself on the back. It just makes me feel good that I can use my skills to help others and that is enough for me.
Is it easy? No! It takes a lot of time, research, skills and dedication. When there isn’t a pot of gold at the end of your goal, it certainly makes real life harder. I’m not a rich man, closer to poor than anything but I’m filled with joy when I can help somebody when they didn’t even know they needed it.
Again, this is hard and I wanted to share another example just for reference, because it’s starting to make me question myself and helping others.
Over the past several months, yes months, I have been researching a suspected domain theft. Putting pieces of the puzzle together is always challenging. Was this slight change legit? Confirm it. Well, confirming it is always the biggest challenge. Whois records easily get outdated. Email addresses, phone numbers change etc. I try to take all the pieces and put them together. I do all of this “behind the scenes” but in one small instance, I put something public on DotWeekly….
This has led to weeks of harassment. Harassment you say? Well, the thief caught wind of my investigating. What did they do? They took my email address from whois, used a mailbot and signed up for tens of thousands of websites, using my email address. This resulted in me getting xx,xxx emails and basically killing off my email address. Here’s your password, thanks for signing up, confirm your new account etc. A couple days later, my phone started to ring… every 30 SECONDS, for 7 hours straight. It continued the next day, for 7 hours again. It was hell!
Then, they used another of my email addresses and signed up for tens of thousands more sites! Newsletters, free downloads, forums etc.. xx,xxx more emails to 2nd email address, again, killing off that email due to the volume of junk mail coming in. Oh, then my phone started to ring, yet again!
This lasted over 2 weeks! I couldn’t take it any more, I was losing sleep, I couldn’t use my phone, I was real missing emails, phone calls. I was on the phone with the phone company for hours. I was using my resources to fix my email and stop the onslaught of incoming emails. Nothing was helping. I couldn’t take it, so I contacted the FBI.
Still, during all of this, I continued my effort to do the right thing! Get in touch with the real owner of the domain name and make them aware of what I was seeing. A high suspicion that the domain name they have owned for a very long time, was stolen from them. A picture of this man in his wheelchair, kept me driven to get in contact with him and at least make him aware of what I was seeing!
I’m sitting on the couch with my 7 year old son on a Friday evening, watching Bolt from Disney. It’s nearly 8:30 pm and the end of the movie and bed time are minutes away and my phone rings. I push silence. It rings again. I push silence. It rings again… I get a text message, “It’s First Name”, “What do you want?”. I jump up and call back right away….
I’m pumped! I have finally reached him!!! Finally!!
I try to explain the situation, I’m just trying to help and I want to make you aware of what I’m seeing… WHY he asks, I try to explain further with more details, why would you do this, what’s in it for you? I DON’T TRUST YOU!
He can sense my anger!
Really? I spend MONTHS trying to contact you in every way that I can. I’m very open and honest with who I am, providing email, phone etc. I get harassed for WEEKS in the process of trying to help YOU, I finally get in touch with you and you don’t trust ME?
The call didn’t go well. It was very clear that this person did not trust me, but I was going to be contacted by somebody he trusted.
Now I missed the end of the movie with my son and he’s getting ready for bed. My heart is racing and feels broken. My mind is spinning. More lost sleep. I’m doing the right thing and they don’t trust me? I asked for NOTHING. I made it clear many times, I don’t want anything! I’m only here to make you aware of something, you are not aware of.
I spend months of my life trying to help somebody, I finally make contact and they don’t trust me?
Heart breaking, challenging, why, what’s the point… are just a few things running through my mind. Why is this world so hard? Why is it that when somebody is truly DOING GOOD, other’s can’t see it. They are so clouded with distrust, that when good arrives, they do not trust it.
I’m hopeful this person will see the good in what I’m trying to do. I’ve asked for nothing. My life has been hell for weeks, trying to do what is right, because it’s the right thing to do.
This story isn’t complete yet and I’m very hopeful that he sees the good in me. As for me going forward, I’m not sure.
Thanks for listening!