Awesome Conferences

The .feedback scam

Do you have feedback you'd like to give to Google, Facebook, StackOverflow, Inc., or Gandi? Now there's a website that will collect that feedback. Or... not.

There is a new TLD called ".feedback". It is a scam and ICANN should be ashamed of approving it.

The people that run .feedback have pre-registered "for free" 5,000 major companies. As a result you can go to sites like http://www.google.feedback/ and http://www.gandi.feedback/ and http://www.stackoverflow.feedback/ and more.

These websites enables people to send feedback about your company and products.

Will the company ever receive the feedback? Unlikely.

The company probably doesn't know the site exists.

If they do discover it, they are given a choice: Pay $20/month to receive the feedback, or pay $600/year to take the web site down. Of course, there is a free option: Just let the site remain and suffer as people send their feedback and feel ignored.

It is a perfect scam... what company wouldn't pay $600/year to avoid angry customers?

Most domains cost $10-$12 per year. Charging $600/year is highway robbery.

This reminds of the big internet scam where websites claim to be the lost-and-found for cities, taxi companies, etc. but really just collect money and do nothing useful with the information (listen to the podcast to find out what service they actually provide).

If you are one of the 5,000 companies being scammed, my advice is to be strong and not pay a cent.

Instead, ICANN should withdraw the TLD. If this scam complies with the TLD's original proposal, and nobody noticed, that is very sad. If it doesn't, then there is no reason ICANN should hesitate to stop this $3 million dollar fraud.

For more information, read this and this.

Posted by Tom Limoncelli in Rants

No TrackBacks

TrackBack URL: https://everythingsysadmin.com/cgi-bin/mt-tb.cgi/2108

10 Comments | Leave a comment

I would like to add that IMHO all new TLDs are scam. Brand owners are forced to register their name in many of them.

.feedback is just the tip of the iceberg.

OMG!!! You mean these creeps might cause stack overflow and other companies $600 a year? This is by far the worst thing that's ever happened through technology abuse, and most certainly worthy of our time!!

Couldn't agree more with Robert Sander here.

Just like the .xxx domain that forced many universities to register or buy the domain at extortion prices just to stop its potential abuse.

Even if ICANN did feel .feedback is okay to go ahead with, this very clearly needs to be regulated since (as the article rightly pointed out) there is a potential for misleading consumers here. At the very least it should be mandatory to show a visible warning/message at the top of these "unregistered" feedback sites that the site does not actually belong to the owners and that the reviews posted might never reach the company.

Why is it called scam? They registered the site, worked on it, collected data. Surely .feedback sites are their own property even if the actual site belongs to someone else. They can even do false propoganda!

It's free market. Nobody is forcing you to buy it or pay anything to the site. You can continue without the .feedback site. If you just want "angry customers' comments shouldn't be placed of the heading of a site", well that's not called "scam". That's called "your problem". Do you really think big companies cares about feedbacks? Solves issues when it's reported? No. They say "f**k you. You'll use my site anyway.". So, here are the .feedback sites. You'll be robbed or you'll have a better platform which cares user feedbacks and replies them all.

So your argument is that if a company can afford to be ripped off, then it's okay to rip them off? Classy.

[ This is what Libertarians actually believe. ]

The problem here is that they are fraudulently representing themselves as being associated with the various actual sites, when no relationship exists.

If the site has a huge banner saying "THIS IS NOT RELATED TO STACK OVERFLOW IN ANY WAY" then there would be less of an issue (but not zero). They are being intentionally misleading.

Hello I am Jay the CEO of .Feedback

I wanted to correct a few of your facts.

First, while it has been reported that Registry pre-registered 5,000 domains this is incorrect. We have not registered the sites you mentioned. You can check the whois and look up the owners.

It is helpful when reporting that people verify facts rather then believing any article they find on the Internet. Feel free to give me a call and ask questions and double check your facts. I believe in the age of fake news, everyone with a blog needs to double check facts.

The pricing you reference is out of date and not accurate. Prices can be found as low as $5 for a .feedback domain. Check out Crazydomains.com

Well, regarding impersonation they were smart enough from a juristical point of view - all they claim is to be a place for discussion, to leave feedback regarding a certain site, not _for_ a certain company. Ambiguous? Sure, legal, perhaps:

"Disclaimer: This site is provided to facilitate free speech regarding Stack Overflow. No direct endorsement or association should be conferred."

The same happened with the ".sucks" domain, and so on. The sets of TLDs that ICANN is approving is utterly ridiculous.

Leave a comment

 
  • LISA17
  • Don't Miss Out - Register Today