10|18|2007 12:01 am EDT
Rumors are circulating that the sale for the domain name Cowboys.com will not be moving forward. The domain name brought in a $275,000 bid from a phone-in bidder at the recent TRAFFIC domain live auction in Hollywood, Florida. The bidder had been earlier identified to be a representative from the Dallas Cowboys NFL team. An inside source confirmed with DomainNameNews that the deal began to fall apart over a misunderstanding with the bidder on what the bid of “275″ actually meant. It appears the bidder thought they were buying the domain for $275.00 rather than $275,000.
The domain was formerly used a site which sold western apparel and other items, as can be seen in the archive.org cache of the site. Although the Dallas Cowboys football team owns a trademark for the use of the word Cowboys, there are also several other companies and businesses operating under the “Cowboys” name. The domain is a generic word and it’s past usage shows that it can be used without infringement on any trademarks.
The Dallas Cowboys NFL football team currently uses the domain name DallasCowboys.com, but is likely losing a great deal of traffic to the shorter and more iconic Cowboys.com domain. The football team owners have also been working on building a new multi-million dollar stadium and the purchase was referred to by domainers as a very logical decision for the team. The shorter domain would be much easier to emblazon on uniforms, tickets, apparel, stadium graphics, tv ads, etc. The loss of this sale seems to be a major fumble by a potential “end-user” buyer to secure a “no brainer” asset for their business.
In this writers opinion, this buy seems to be a simple “hand-off” play that got botched big time. How much “yardage” will it cost the Dallas Cowboys in misdirected traffic when someone else buys it ?
UPDATE : Another buyer has made the winning bid on this name at the silent auction.