Brothel owner snaps up university's .xxx domain name

Colorado.xxx has been purchased. Not by the university, but by a Las Vegas brothel owner. Can cyber-squatting pay off?

The University of Colorado at Boulder has snapped up 27 trademark related .xxx domain names, but not before an enterprising brothel owner got there first.

In a bid to prevent those in the adult entertainment industry from acquiring domain names similar or related to academic institutions, universities have been purchasing a variety of .xxx domains. These include direct names (i.e colorado.xxx), trademarks (coloradouniversity.xxx), and taglines (coloradouni.xxx).

colorado.xxx has been purchased by Las Vegas brothel owner Edward Yeager, the .xxx equivalent of the universities' colorado.edu domain.

Type in the address, and you are forwarded to a 'Nature's Nudist', a website dedicated to nude resorts and holidays. The brothel owner said that he is currently not planning to put pornographic material on the domain.

Yeager is perhaps one of the first cyber-squatters ready to make a quick buck on purchasing .xxx domains. He is apparently willing to sell the domain name to the university for approximately $1000.

It is not known whether the university will buy the .xxx counterpart from him.

"I invest in those names. I'm not trying to make $40,000 or $30,000. I just want a reasonable price", said Yeager.

The university has bought names relating to its Boulder campus, Board of Regents, mascot 'Ralphie', bookstore, and its fundraising foundation. Some of the domain names on the University of Colorado's shopping list included:

  • CU.xxx
  • CUBuffs.xxx
  • UniversityofColoradoBuffalos.xxx
  • Ralphie.xxx
  • UniversityofColoradoBoulder.xxx
  • ForeverBuffs.xxx
  • UniversityofColorado.xxx

Interestingly, it seems coloradouni.xxx wasn't on the shopping list either.

Domain names containing .xxx were meant to become the Internet's version of the red light district. However, as this example shows as well as the recent rumour of vatican.xxx being purchased by someone other than the institute itself, this may not be the case in reality.

Yeager may be willing to sell colorado.xxx to the academic institute. But what if someone else in the adult entertainment industry offers a better price?

.xxx names can be considered an investment rather than a simple and regulated name recognised in conjunction with the adult industry. Yeager is merely one example of people investing in these names, in order to sit on them until a profitable reselling situation appears.

Perhaps cyber-squatting may end up being more lucrative than running a brothel.

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