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October 01, 2015

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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.

Photos & Highlights From the Final Business Day at THE Domain Conference Tuesday Including the Domain Industry Award Winners

The second and final business day of the inaugural edition of THE Domain Conference (TDC) was held Tuesday (Sept. 29) at the Hyatt Regency Pier 66 Hotel in Fort Lauderdale.

Above: The day began with talks from Two Leaders of the Domain Industry on the Future & Developing a Business - those being two guys very well qualified to address those topics - DNForum.com owner Adam Dicker (left) and City Brand Media Founder Fred Mercaldo (right) who also owns Scottsdale.com.

Below: The second session brought  three attorneys and Internet Commerce Association advocate Andee Hill (Donuts Inc.) to the dais to talk about ICA, UDP & URS - What's New. Left to right are Stevan Lieberman (APLegal.com), Ms. Hill, ICA Legal Counsel Phil Corwin and noted attorney (and Domain Hall of Fame member) John Berryhill.

Above: The morning sessions concluded with a talk on investment strategy delivered by published author and noted speaker Michael Poggi, founder of TheMillionairesGroup.com and Poggi Wealth Institute.

Below: One of the great things about the domain business is that we are one big family. Here's an example - before the Tuesday luncheon the thoughtful Co-Founders of THE Domain Conference (Howard, Barbara & Ray Neu) brought out a birthday cake to honor every attendee who had a birthday this month! Left to right are Eddie Sixto, Larry Fischer, Ilze Kaulins-Plaskacz, Diana Jackson, Adam Dicker and Markus Jackson.

Above: Before lunch was served at the Domain Industry Awards Luncheon, sponsored by Donuts Inc., I gave my annual State of the Industry talk covering the latest domain aftermarket sales trends. It was nice to again be able to report strong sales with median prices that are way up so far this year in most categories (up 14% for .coms and 8% for non .com gTLDs).

Below: After my talk my wife Diana took the stage to tell the story behind her new painting for The Water School. It was inspired by a great photograph that Braden Pollock took while on a trip to Africa. Braden and Dr. Gregg McNair (a Water School director) joined Diana to auction off the painting that wound up going for $6,500, with all proceeds going to The Water School. Left to right below are TDC Co-Founder Howard Neu, Braden Pollock, Diana Jackson and Dr. Gregg McNair.

Above: A closer view of Diana Jackson's painting sold to raise funds for The Water School.

Below: Next up it was time to hand out some awards! The Domain Industry Awards Luncheon began with Adam Dicker receiving the Developer of the Year Award, handed to him here by DomainSherpas's Michael Cyger.  Michael would return to the stage two more times to pick up a pair of awards of his own - Blogger of the Year and Goodwill Ambassador of the Year

Above: .CLUB also walked off with two major honors - Best Registry of the Year and Best Company of the Year. The entire .CLUB team came to the stage with CEO Colin Campbell holding the first of their two awards at center. 

Below: The Best Registrar of the Year Award went to Go Daddy. Three company representatives were called to the stage to accept the honor - Joe Styler (holding the trophy) as well as Markus Jackson and Cory Lodder.

Awards also went to others who could not attend the conference - Ali Zandi for Domain Investor of the Year and Andrew Rosener for Broker of the Year. Plus, two new members were inducted into the Domain Industry Hall of Fame - Andrew Rosener and NamesCon Co-Founder Richard Lau. Congratulations to all of the winners! 

Above: After lunch the business sessions resumed with a panel discussion titled Should You Sell or Build? Are There Alternatives to a Successful Domain Portfolio? that featured (left to right): Chad Folkening (Bidtellect.com),  Solomon Amoako (Sedo), Adam Dicker (DNForum.com) and Michael Gilmour (ParkLogic.com).

Below: Next up the topic was How Do You Buy and Negotiate for High End Domains? Do You Need a Broker? The four leading brokers who offered their expert advice were (left to right): Tessa Holcomb (Igloo.com), Dave Evanson (Sedo), George Hong (Guta.com) and Larry Fischer (GetYourDomain.com). 

Above: While many sat in on the business sessions others spent their time networking outside the meeting room or visiting company booths in the Exhibit Hall. At the 101Domain.com booth, Kimberly Zadroga and John Neu were on hand to welcome TDC attendees.

Above: With the day winding down back in the main ballroom a new session featured Two Leaders of the Domain Industry on the Future of Developing - Part II - with Zappy Zapolin (left) and Monte Cahn (RightOfTheDot.com) the featured guests interviewed by moderator Braden Pollock (far right).

Below: The final business session of this first edition of THE Domain Conference was about Digital Branding - Using Domains and Social Media. The panelists (left to right) were Zappy Zapolin, Yancy Naughton (HasTraffic.com), Brett Napoli (AmbitionInsight.com) and Jeff Sass (.CLUB). Moderator Jothan Frakes is at far right.

Though the business sessions were done at a conference that drew rave reviews from attendees and exhibitors alike, the show was not over.  There were some private dinners around town Tuesday night and dozens of attendees wound up hanging out late to hop tables and talk in the spacious and comfortable lounge at the Pier 66 Hotel. 

Also ahead was the always popular Farewell Breakfast in the revolving meeting room at the top of the hotel Wednesday morning. That was such a unique event I decided to do a separate post about it along with some final thoughts on THE Domain conference that I will publish Thursday (October 1). Now, having just gotten back from Fort Lauderdale, it is time to catch a few hours of sleep - something that was in short supply at TDC - but it was a small price to pay for such a wealth of information and the invaluable time spent with great friends old and new!

(Posted September 30, 2015)  

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