Moderator Profile: Bill Sweetman

Bill Sweetman
President — Name Ninja
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FAST FACTS

Location: Ottawa, Canada
How long have you been in the domain industry? 10 years full-time, 22 years overall.
Now reading: Blockchain Revolution by Don Tapscott & Alex Tapscott
Now watching: Westworld
Best city for conferences: Las Vegas, NV, baby
Your mentor: My father
 

Q&A

Describe your company and how long you have been there?

Name Ninja is a boutique domain name acquisition firm that helps global entrepreneurs, startups, and marketers get their dream domain names for their next big thing. In domainer lingo, we’re buyer brokers. We’ll be celebrating our fourth anniversary in 2017.

 

What are your thoughts on the new TLDs?

I’ve always been excited about the potential of the new TLDs. The execution has left me disappointed, but I realize these are still the early days.

 

What kinds of changes do you foresee within the industry in the next five years?

We’re only just beginning to see the impact that China and other emerging markets, such as Africa and South America, will have on the domain industry. I see continued growth ahead.

 

What are you most looking forward to at the upcoming NamesCon?

I’m excited about reuniting with my industry friends and colleagues who I haven’t seen in a year or more.

 

What industry trends or topics do you think will be at the forefront of panel and keynote discussions this year?

I expect we’re going to be discussing the pros and cons of all the consolidation the industry’s been experiencing lately.

 

Who are you excited to hear speak at NamesCon? Why?

I’m looking forward to hearing my former boss Elliot Noss speak. His perspective on all things Internet is always fascinating and entertaining.

 

What's something most people don't know about you?

My first job was being the film critic for a newspaper and radio station.

 

What advice can you offer those who are just getting their start in the domain industry?

Spend time reading the blogs and studying what domains are actually selling before you register any domains you hope to sell.

 

How would you describe what you do in a single sentence to a stranger?

I help people get domain names they never thought they’d be able to get.

 

If you had fifteen extra minutes each day, what would you do with them?

Phone a friend.

 

Where is your favourite place to escape?

I love to unwind by watching a favourite movie in my home theatre.


A SNEAK PEEK AT THE SESSIONS

Best Practices Selling Domains Through Hosting

Can you provide a sneak peek into what the session will entail? We’re going to explore how hosting companies and Website building platforms can maximize profits by selling domains, both primary registrations and premium domains. We’ll also look at how domainers can leverage these platforms and their reach to sell more of their own domains.

Who will be speaking at this session? Michael Fountain, Enom; Ulrich Retzlaff, 1&1 Internet DE; James McNeice, SquareSpace; Bob Mountain, GoDaddy; Chris Sheridan, Weebly.

Is there anything attendees can or should do in order to prepare for this session? I encourage attendees to ask their friends outside the domain industry where and how they registered their last domain name. The answers might surprise you!

What would you like attendees to learn or take away from this session? I hope attendees come away with a clearer understanding of the delicate balancing act registrars and Website building platforms face when it comes to the different domain offerings they place in front of their customers.

 

The Most Shocking UDRP Decisions of 2016

Can you provide a sneak peek into what the session will entail? The ICA will identify and discuss several of the most shocking UDRP decisions from 2016. Each case will be presented by an expert ICA panelist, and we’ll also be presenting a special award in memory of domainer Lonnie Borck.

Who will be speaking at this session? Nat Cohen, Telepathy Inc; Jason Schaeffer, ESQwire.com; Zak Muscovitch, DNattorney.com, plus some surprise speakers

Is there anything attendees can or should do in order to prepare for this session? Think about which UDRP decisions you were most shocked by in 2016. You may discover you’re not the only one who feels the same way.

What would you like attendees to learn or take away from this session? If you think your domains are safe from being hijacked from you, think again. This session will not only reveal some fundamental flaws in the current UDRP system but will give attendees a chance to learn what the ICA is doing to protect the legitimate rights of all domain owners.

 

China Masterclass

Can you provide a sneak peek into what the session will entail? China has made a huge impact on our industry over the last two years. We’ve assembled a panel of industry experts who will discuss the latest changes to this enormous and complex market. They’ll also help us understand the important differences between the Chinese and 'Western' world of domains.

Who will be speaking at this session? Simon Cousins, Allegravita; George Hong, GUTA; Negar Hajikhani, Sedo; Ken Hansen, Zhonghou Ventures, JQ Tang, 190.com

Is there anything attendees can or should do in order to prepare for this session? If you’ve got questions about what’s going on in the domain market in China, or are simply curious what all the buzz is about, don’t miss this session and its roster of Chinese domain market experts.

What would you like attendees to learn or take away from this session? I’d like attendees to hear first-hand about what’s really going on in China versus some of the dubious information that is circulated on the domain blogs and forums.

 

Head to Head: Comparing Domain Registrars

Can you provide a sneak peek into what the session will entail? For domain investors, choosing which registrar to register and hold your precious domains at is an important and tricky decision to make. In this session, representatives from major registrars will make the case why they deserve your business. We’ll also discuss how the industry is evolving from a domainer-registrar perspective.

Who will be speaking at this session? Salar Salahshoor, Uniregistry; Richard Merdinger, GoDaddy; Jeffrey Eckhaus, Name.com; Marco Hoffmann, InternetX; Dan Schindler, Donuts Inc.

Is there anything attendees can or should do in order to prepare for this session? Think about what matters the most to you when you’re picking a domain registrar, then bring those items, and any questions you may have, to this session. This is a rare opportunity to hear directly from key people at a bunch of leading registrars.

What would you like attendees to learn or take away from this session? I suspect we’re all going to learn about some innovative new features being offered (or coming soon) from different registrars. This is a market that continues to evolve, and you’re going to hear about it first at this session.