Domain Spotlight:

If You Can Go to DomainFest You Should: Anyone Who Says You Shouldn’t Has a Hidden Agenda

Business conferences exist for a reason. It’s a time where people gather to talk about the industry.  It’s a chance to meet, in person, the people that you’ve become friends with over the phone and through email. To discuss things that only people in your industry would understand.  To learn things that are only shared face to face.  I have been to hundreds of conferences in my life and I will say that 99% of them have completely paid for their cost through information or contacts made.  DomainFest will be no different.

There are too many conferences in our industry to make them all.  In my opinion there are two that stand out from the rest and that would be the Winter Domainfest and the Fall TRAFFIC.  There are a few others that are fantastic but let’s talk about DomainFest.  It’s one of the largest if not the largest conference.  It has fantastic speakers and a ton of other domain investors, most there to talk and share ideas and thoughts about how to make money in this industry.  Yes it’s run by Moniker but who cares who it’s run by as long as it’s beneficial to the attendees.  I took offense to Owen Frager’s absolutely ridiculous rant the other day about the event and combined lies and innuendo to try and shine a negative light on the event.  Why did I take offense?

I assume it’s a hidden agenda but what that is is of no concern to me.  Moniker and Oversee is a good company.  How do I know?  One, no way Chef Patrick Ruddell moves his beloved wife and children to work for a shady company.  Two, they wouldn’t be in business very long if they continued to do things that were illegal or unethical.  Yes they have had the shill bidder that nearly took them out,  but the whole privacy release thing didn’t phase me one bit.  It didn’t phase me because I have a company with a lot of employees and things of this nature have happened to me. When you have a lot of employees you always have the chance that one could go rogue and compromise both the name and the financial security of your company.  You try and install a system of checks and balances but some time they fail.  Usually they fail because the check and balances become routine and people forget why they do the checks.  Other times the employees know the checks and skirts them.  Either way, when you run a company you have to trust, there is no way around it, and sometimes your employees break the rules and your trust.  I accept the repercussions of my employees actions because they are MY employees. I try and make amends to those that were effected, correct the problem, and then install new guidelines to try and keep it from happening again.  That’s all I can do. Long story short, a problem occurred and it’s between the company and the customer to work it out.  It seems to be an isolated event and should be treated as such.

The second reason was the insinuation that Elliot Silver was not going to the conference because of the host when in truth he chose to go on vacation with his family.  Elliot commented on his blog that he had never talked to Owen and that absolutely was not the reason he would not be attending.  You could throw in additional innuendo that there would be legal consequences of attending the conference with this statement “Does this mean that Feds will be monitoring the conference and its attendees?”  It may come across that I have some investment in Moniker but truth be told I couldn’t tell you one person from the company other than Chef.  I’m writing this becaue there are just some times in life when one has to yell out “Bullshit”

The point of this post was not to attack or cause a fight but merely to let all domain investors who are thinking about going to DomainFest know that they will enjoy themselves if they go.  They WILL learn.  They WILL meet the people they read and read about each day.  The will have a great time at the parties.  It will probably cost you 3 grand to go.  There is a ton of stuff you can do with 3 grand.  It’s like any investment you make in domains.  You can’t think of all the other things you can do with the money, you have to think of the payback.  Attending a major conference WILL pay back.  It did for me at TRAFFIC and will again at DomainFest and I look forward to shaking your hand if you decide to go.

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22 Replies to “If You Can Go to DomainFest You Should: Anyone Who Says You Shouldn’t Has a Hidden Agenda”

  1. Nice objective post. I see the Oversee recent event the same way. A company with many employees can’t vouch for them all 24/7, they just need to handle arising issues as they come, and move on. Find one company out there with more than 50 employees, that hasn’t had some problem with one of them. It just happens.

    Yes unfortunately there are a ‘few’ in our industry with ‘agendas’ out there, and they like to feel they’re relevant to… well somebody!, so they write lies and mis-innuendos, snide remarks, and instigating posts to gain/keep some sort of relevant notoriety (in their own minds). You can usually tell their irrelevance to the majority though by the lack of any comments ‘ever’ on their blogs!!

    And yes, the DomainFest is definitely a show worth attending as a domain investor. Look forward to meeting you there Shane.

  2. With the issues the Domain God has had with Moniker, it should come as no surprise that he is having his minion do the dirty work. It’s pretty funny when you put the two posts together, it’s really a STUNNING post.

    “In a frank but stunning post today, popular blogger and domain developer Elliot Silver announced that he is passing on attending DomainFest”

    – I decided not to attend DomainFest this year. I am going to go skiing out west instead, and taking two trips across the country in less than a month isn’t desirable to me. I am sure it’s going to be a good show, and I will probably regret not going, but there are going to be plenty of others this year.

    Could than post have any less stunning?
    This is how the American media operates.
    Hyperbole at it’s finest.

  3. oh and i’ll be there too as another “representative from Illinois” 😉
    looking forward to it

  4. What if the chef was the one who violated the privacy thing. Would that be important since you used him as example

    1. @Toby,

      If it was would he still have his job? I doubt it. But to answer your question. No. I would still go to the conference. It’s more about the attendees than the organizer.

  5. “Anyone Who Says You Shouldn’t Has a Hidden Agenda”

    That is an interesting statement to make.
    Couldn’t the statement be reversed?
    Why is a person actively promoting a particular domain meeting?

    People have the right to make a decenting opinion without
    having a hidden agenda.

    As someone implied above, just because Patrick Ruddell works
    for a company does not give them a clean bill of health.
    We could counter your point by asking, why has so many
    key people left a particular company?

    The recent financial history is filled with companies that looked
    great on the surface but had major problems.
    (Enron, AIG, Madoff, Countrywide, etc.)
    I’m not saying Moniker/Oversee has any problems.
    Just making a counter point.

    We also know there are some bloggers that make
    sensational/attention grabbing statements similar
    to the ‘mass media’ just to generate controversy.

    Owen has been doing this for years.

    1. @Meyer,
      All good points. I am promoting ALL conferences, it just so happened this one was the one that was criticized. I only use Patrick as an example. Good people work for bad companies, I do realize this. I am merely saying the event is more than the host. It’s the people, the activities. People have a right to say anything the want, even lies. That’s the beauty and the problem with freedom of speech.

  6. Yelling out shenanigans would have worked as well, but probably not as widely known reference as BS! Great post from a business perspective that is spot on.

  7. Give me a break. Creative copywrting like this that breaks through the clutter and gets attention wins awards not criticism from anyone who truly understands marketing and traffic generation. I didn’t accuse Elliot of anything. Did you see the word OTHERS before REBUKE?

    Shane it sounds like even if Oversee sleeps with your wife, you’d give them a pass. That’s the problem. They have been accused and sometimes found guilty of criminal activity, Racketeering is pretty serious. Now with ICE going after “forgery” sites some of the provisions of RICO that didn’t stick then could now, could and every customer’s domain has a black mark. You may automatically get blacklisted just for having your domain registered there. Do the homework. Read the briefs. Check out what the CADNA says.

    Do anything but party the night away, eat the Sopranos drinks and food then sign up to gut-wrenching parking losses for another years. No wonder why domainers didn’t support the ICA. Come of from the beer and titty parties- you’ve got real businesses now and you need to choose your partners prudently.

    No agenda, just to tell the truth. Don’t turn this around and make me the guilty one here. Look in the mirror.

    1. Mr. Frager,
      I’m not defending Moniker, they have their own business to run. I have enough trouble running my businesses without worrying about running theirs. Do us all a favor and try and write some actual facts and quit implying. Using Elliots name in to prove your points was not only wrong but showed a true lack of class. I can only judge you from your writings as we have never met in person but after reading your posts for the last year I think you are bordering somewhere in the range of ADHD, insane, and brilliance. The latter peeking through the other two in brief moments when the stars align.

  8. Shane,

    I go to domainfest every year. It’s my favorite conference and I been to many. However, you really don’t learn anything at these conferences and if that is your objective than don’t go and save your money and read about it. However, if you want to make contacts and have a good time partying with your peers it’s a great conference. I am still hung over from last years TrafficZ after-party that went until 7AM after the playboy mansion party:-)

    1. Jim,

      You did learn something, don’t drink until 7 am. I think you’d be surprised what you might have learned either from the seminars or speaking to someone at the parties. One of my most memorable moments is when I learned that not having public speaking abilities can hamper your project greatly. I learned this at the TRAFFIC “shark tank” seminar. There were some great ideas but hardly any of them had the ability to relay their ideas. It made me want to continue to improve my public speaking. Thanks for the comments. I’ve heard about the TrafficZ parties.

  9. It’s ok for Owen to enjoy Moniker’s hospitality
    so long as it meets his agenda. “And one of Boca’s great domainer assets, Owen Frager wa in attendance as well. A legendary creative and marketing force in the corporate world, Owen talks more these days about his own projects. He is working on several interesting things including a Corporate Eco-friendly site Always opportunities to learn when owen shows up”

    . . . wowzers this guys knees must be raw .

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