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09|11|2007 11:45 pm EDT

UK Domain Focus and Sedo Live Auction Issues

by Adam Strong in Categories: Domain Aftermarket, Events

There’s been a buzz on many forums about the recent Domain Focus event in London and the live auction conducted by Sedo. I wasn’t at the event, but from reports I’ve received from attendees, the event was “a good time” and “good contacts made” even after a last minute venue change that had many attendees wanting to choke out promoter David Brayshaw. Most of the people I know simply want to network and prefer a smaller group, so as long as there was a place to do this and good people, the event could easily be a success.

Sedo now also appears to have a cloud hanging over them after certain practices during the auction. Again, since I was not at the event, I’m relying on reported facts of this incident coming from varying sources. According to some attendees, the auctioneer was encouraging bids “with no obligation” in order to stimulate real bids from online bidders. The sex.co.uk auction specifically was pushed hard by the auctioneer. This type of activity isn’t necessarily illegal in some jurisdictions, but it’s surely not a common practice that I would think any professional domain business would want to engage in. I personally would not feel comfortable bidding at any future Sedo live auctions if this was a common practice. I haven’t seen any comments come from the Sedo execs on what exactly happened or any explanations on the “encouraged” and “no obligation” bids.

If you are interested in following other discussions and seeing what comes of all this check Acorn Domains or DomainState. Here are 2 threads: here and here I’m sure there are more.

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2 Comments

Richard K.

September 12, 2007 @ 3:10 pm EDT

I was there and there was some nudging by the auctioneer but I think it was done half jokingly and not by sedo’s direction. I didn’t see anyone that won a domain and paid more because of it.

And just for the record, I was the guy who bid 300,000 GBP on sex.co.uk. I certainly would have paid it if the seller agreed. My offer still stands.

Nick M

September 13, 2007 @ 2:29 pm EDT

Rick, the seller was sitting right next to you i.e between you and me

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