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August 27, 2012

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Here's the The Lowdown from DN Journal,
updated daily
to fill you in on the latest buzz going around the domain name industry. 

The Lowdown is compiled by DN Journal Editor & Publisher Ron Jackson.

Farewell to Max "Americar" Walker - A Domain Industry Treasure Who Left Us Too Soon

For the past ten years friendly Australian Max Walker has been one of the "regulars" at DNForum.com that old-timers always looked forward to hearing from. To many Max was better known by his forum handle, Americar, and his avatar featuring one classic car or another - products of Max's life long love of great automobiles. 

When I first arrived at DNForum as an eager domain industry newbie in July 2002, Max was already there and he was one of the kind veterans who made a newcomer like me feel welcome and among friends. I  

Image from Bigstock 

always appreciated that and years later was delighted to finally have a chance to meet Max in person on his home turf at the 2008 T.R.A.F.F.I.C. Down Under conference on Australia's Gold Coast

Max "Americar" Walker (in the upper left corner of the 
photo above, 2nd from left, wearing dark glasses) chatting 
with friends at the 2008 T.R.A.F.F.I.C. Down Under conference in Australia.

When Max walked up and introduced himself he looked much like I had imagined he would - a distinguished, well-dressed gentleman with a wide smile and a warm handshake. From our discussions that week and the more than 600 posts he made over the years at DNForum I came to know Max as a dignified, self effacing guy who had a knack for making others feel good about themselves

His special qualities made Max one of my forum favorites, as he was for many others, so I was very saddened to hear the news from one of Max's long time friends, DomainBoardroom founder Donna Mahony, that Max had passed away after suffering a heart attack. How I wish now that I had told Max directly how much I appreciated him and his generous support.

After ten years in this business I guess this kind of bad news was inevitable but it is still never expected. With domains being such specialized and little understood assets, I have had casual  conversations with friends about a mutual agreement to help one another's wife or family manage those assets if something happened to one of us, but never really gave our mortality much thought beyond that (fortunately, some highly respected industry veterans developed a professional service, DomainGuardians.com, that will take on that task as I wrote about last 

year). In Max's case, Donna and some other well qualified members at DomainBoardroom (DBR) have graciously reached out to his family to offer any help they may need in that area.

Donna noted that in a recent DBR thread about domain history, Max added his memories and the last line of his last post was this on July 10th when he posed the question, "Where have all the characters gone?" Just a few days later, Max, one of the truly special characters in our industry, was gone himself. It really makes you think about how fragile and fleeting life is. It also makes you think about telling people you love and appreciate that now, while you still can. I wish I had verbalized that to Max Walker when I had the chance.

Image from Bigstock 

(Posted August 16, 2012) 


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