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January 30, 2019

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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.

Opening Day Photos & Highlights from NamesCon Global 2019 in Las Vegas Sunday 

The 2019 NamesCon Global conference got underway Sunday morning (January 27) in Las Vegas. Domain investors, developers and service providers from around the world have converged at the Tropicana Hotel for the 6th annual event. All six shows have been held at the Trop but on Sunday it was announced that the conference will move to Austin, Texas next year with the dates and venue still to be determined.


Above & below: At the NamesCon Global 2019 opening session Sunday morning at 10, NamesCon CEO Soeren von Varchmin (at left below) welcomed the crowd and introduced show moderators Bill Sweetman (Name Ninja) and Braden Pollock (Legal Brand Marketing) as well as Andrew Rosener (MediaOptions.com), who will be a featured speaker this week (all are seen, left to right,  after Soeren). The quartet gave attendees the news on NamesCon planned move to Austin and filled them in on what to expect over the 2019 show's three-day run that will end Wednesday (January 30).

Sunday was a very busy day with 17 business sessions scheduled at 30-minute intervals in a twin-track format that ran throughout the day. Those got started at 11am with ICANN's Christopher Mondini (above) kicking off the half hour in the Keynote Hall with commentary on ICANN's Anto-Abuse Requirements and Abuse Audit. Pinky Brand (RegistryOffice), below, then took the stage for the balance of the session to talk about Building a Safer Internet & Fighting Abuse.

Above: While Mondini and Brand held court in the Keynote Hall, Michael Cyger (DNAcademy) drew a big crowd of his own to the RegistryOffice Breakout Stage. Michael's covered Domain Investing 101 (domain types and characteristics, as well as valuations) in this session and returned at 1PM for an advanced Domain Investing 201 talk built around Turning Your Domain Hobby Into a Profitable Business.

Above: In the 11:30am session in the Keynote Hall Sunday, Dynadot Product Manager Luke Burgess presented a talk titled Domaining Evolved: An Insider's Guide to Dynadot's Best Tools - giving attendees a close up look at the features that have made the registrar is a very popular one among domain investors.

Below: At the same time on the RegistryOffice Breakout Stage Alex Melen (SmartSites.com) discussed The 3 B's of Developing Domains: Buy, Build, Benefit.

Above: During the noon lunch break we went to an InterNetX/Sedo press luncheon where they gave us a preview of a very promising new domain management platform they are rolling out at AutoDNS.com. Features are still being added and this is a development that deserves a story of its own that we will be putting together in the near future. Standing (left to right) are Sedo CMO Chistopher Voss, InterNetX Team Leader Marketing Michael Piotrowski and InterNetX Head of Domain Services Marco Hoffman (who was joined by fellow presenter Marco Revesz, whom you will hear more about shortly).

Above: After lunch, Internet Commerce Association General Counsel Zak Muscovitch conducted a Fireside Chat with WIPO and the ICA in the Keynote Hall that featured Brian Beckham (right), Head of the Internet Dispute Resolution Section at the World Intellectual Property Association (WIPO), the arbitrator in many UDRP cases.  At the same time, as I noted above, Michael Cyger was conduction his Domain Investing 201 session on the RegistryOffice stage.

Above: At 1:30pm, Drew Walsh (Moving Sites LLC), took the stage in the Keynote Hall with advice on how to Turn Your Premium Domain Into a Recurring Revenue Business. Meanwhile, on the nearby RegistryOffice Stage, Matt Holmes (below) from Handshakin.com took a different track with How to Use Your Domain to Meet Your Idol.

Above: At 2pm Matt Holmes turned the RegistryOffice Stage over to NameJet GM Jonathan Tenenbaum (left) and Monte Cahn (RightOfTheDot.com) who will be running Monday's LIve Domain Auction at NamesCon. Monte told me this auction has the best catatlog the two companies have ever put together for a NamesCon event. It could generate millions of dollars in sales.

Below: Meanwhile back in the Keynote Hall, MMX CEO Toby Hall covered The Intersection Between ICANN TLDs and Blockchain.

Above: While there is always something interesting being discussed on the NamesCon stages, a lot of attendees love spending time in the hallways where you never know who you will run into. Among the many long time friends I bumped into was ParkingCrew's Jim Grace (right), who introduced me to the company's CEO Markus Ostertag (left). We set an appointment on the spot to get together for coffee later this week so I can find out about the latest developments at the popular domain monetization service.

Above: When I returned to the Keynote Hall at 2:30pm Sunday, Matthew Gould (Unstoppable Domains Inc.) was covering Domain Names on the Blockchain.

Below: At the same time, industry veteran Jothan Frakes, representing the Domain Name Association, presented The DNA of theDNA: A Positive Voice for Our Evolving Industry.

Above: I mentioned that InterNetX/Sedo gave us a preview of the new AutoDNS.com domain platform at a noon press luncheon. At 3pm in the Keynote Hall Marco Revecz (InterNetX Teamleader Serves Sales & Automation), at left, and Marco Hoffman (Head of Domain Services), gave all NamesCon attendees the scoop of what they have in the works. 

Below: At the same time on the RegistryOffice stage, ICA General Counsel Zak Muscovitch, who was asking the questions in a 1pm session, had the tables turned and was answering them when moderator Bill Sweetman (left) joined Zak for a session on Common Legal Mistakes Domainers Make.

Above: At 3:30pm, Siteplug.com CEO Lavin Punjabi presented Secrets to Triple Your TM Typo Earnings in the Keynote Hall. Siteplug handles domains that trademark owners are willing to buy traffic from rather than pursue ownership of those domains through UDRP proceedings.

Below: Meanwhile back at the RegistryOffice Stage, Mark Kychma (DNPric.es and Registra.rs) provided advice on Domain Name Cash Flows: Leasing, Financing and Structuring

Above & below: at 4pm, in the final business session of the day, Haseeb Tariq (a long time marketing leader who has worked with Guess.com and Fox TV), had the entire NamesCon audience to himself for a full hour in which he offered valuable advice in a session titled Learn How to Price and Sell Your Portfolio.

Above & Below: With the opening day of business now done, everyone's attention turned to the evening's social activities - starting with the annual Women in Domaining event in the Havana Room at the Tropicana Hotel. Once again WID has a great turn out of professional women from throughout the domain industry.

Above & below: More scenes from the annual Woman in Domaining meet-up, 
a two-hour gathering that is always a premier event at NamesCon.

Above & below: At 8pm, .GLOBAL registry CEO & Founder Rolf Larsen and Jeanette Söderlund (VP Marketing and Channel Relations) welcomed guests to NamesCon Global 2019' Opening Night Party, also held in the Havana Room at the Tropicana Hotel.

Above: NamesCON CEO Rolf Larsen with one NamesCon Global 2019's most celebrated keynote speakers, billionaire Directi Co-Founder Bhavin Turakhia (right), at the opening night party Sunday night.

Below: If you are at NamesCon this year you have no doubt seen veteran domain attorney Ari Goldberger with a large film crew interviewing people throughout the day. They were also at the opening night party Sunday night where Ari is seen interviewing Pinky Brand. It is all part of  a new domain show Ari is launching called Domain Freaks (by and about people that REALLY love domains)! As it happens I will be part of the production and will be telling you more about the show in the near future. 

Above: The networking was still going strong when we finally made our way out of the opening night party so we could start working on this post. It was the end of a very interesting and productive day at NamesCon Global 2019 with more to come Monday through Wednesday. I'll have the Monday photos and highlights for you in my next post from Las Vegas!

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