Name Domain

"Remember, a person's name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language." –Dale Carnegie

On the Internet only one person owns their name. Mindy.com, Jack.com, Bob.com, and thousands of others were scooped up by pioneers who first ventured onto the information super highway in the early 90's and forever planted a stake in the ground during our society's Internet awaking. This is their story.

Chapter 1: Armed with a Ruby script and list of popular names, I wrote the webmasters of over 200 first name domains and waited. Of the responses, all were from female names. Their inspiring stories defy stereotypes and demonstrate that women have driven forward tech from the very beginning; someone just had to call their name.

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Priscilla

Pink mac

What was your original intent for Priscilla.com?

I decided to grab priscilla.com and put up a website in 1997 mostly just for fun. It was a vanity website.

How did you first hear about the Internet?

We helped build the Internet. :-)

I knew about the Internet because I worked in the networking field, first for Network General (now part of NetScout), and then for Cisco.

In 1995, my husband, Alan, and I moved to Ashland, OR. I telecommuted with Cisco while Alan started Open Door Networks, a regional Internet Service Provider. He has sold that part of the company by now, but he is still very active writing apps, in particular the popular Art Authority app for iPad. (http://www.artauthority.net)

Mindy

Rgb cable

What was your original intent for Mindy.com?

Simply for email, although after a while I did have a personal web site. I don't any longer thanks to Facebook.

How did you first hear about the Internet?

When I was in college (1985 - 1989) I studied computer science and math and learned about the text-based Internet (ftp, etc.) and how I could access information at other universities. I believe that a physics professor actually taught me how to use it. This was before html and http became generally known or implemented. I worked as a System Administrator in my early career years and began setting up very basic smtp email, low bandwidth Internet connections and early browsers (Mozilla, I believe) in about 1994.

Glenda

Orange disk

What was your original intent for Glenda.com?

My original intent was to build a web page and presence using glenda.com, and that's what I did for many years. I taught myself HTML and used a line editor (no such thing as GUI then). I started out with it hosted on a provider running out of his garage (swcp.com in Albuquerque). I believe at the time they were about 2 years old. I still have glenda.com pages, but unless you know where they are they aren't necessarily easy to find. The main thing I use it for now is e-mail.

How did you first hear about the Internet?

The internet? How did I hear about it? No idea. I was working for a national laboratory as a computer scientist, and it was just "there". I thought it would be fun to have my name and so ponied up the multiple dollars (it was expensive) to get it and have had it ever since. I've had numerous offers to buy it but am not interested. Seems like I would be selling part of myself.

Nicole

Pink cable

What was your original intent for Nicole.com?

Nicole was my first daughter, but I registered her name after registering prior to that my name, warren.com, wife: Beth.com, 1st son, Lew.com, Lewie.com and then of course Nicole.com.

How did you first hear about the Internet?

I went to the Internet out of necessity, as we needed a system for our rehab hospitals to track clinical notes, discharge summaries, etc, as they were in different States. We never felt there was adequate security at that time so we gave up on that idea.

Janice

Yellow lan2

What was your original intent for Janice.com?

My wife's name is Janice, and I got the domain name for her to use for her consulting business (software QA). She's no longer working, so there's no business to speak of, but it does enable her to have the email address janice@janice.com.

This is both good and bad. The good is that it is memorable and easy to communicate. The bad is that it's the most amazing spam magnet. Also, there seem to be an extraordinary number of people named Janice who think they can just put this down on forms requesting their email address, so my wife gets put on lots of weird mailing lists and gets subscribed to a wide variety of interesting services (like a lonely hearts club in Hong Kong and a home improvement forum in Moscow).

There's a Janice in Toronto who seems to be a serial offender in using this address. She used it when setting up her bridal registry at a fancy department store there - my wife got the registration confirmation email that included login credentials for the bridal registry site. My wife was sorely tempted to login and change the woman's choice of china pattern to something horrible, but wisely resisted.

How did you first hear about the Internet?

I've been online since the dawn of time. I think I first heard about it as the Arpanet sometime in the 1970s.

Kristie

White mac disk

What was your original intent for Kristie.com?

At the time I obtained the domain kristie.com, I was a freelance art director. I worked for myself for about 10 years. I used the site to showcase my work and sell my business services. I also had an FTP site on it to pass my art files to printers and clients. That was way ahead of the curve back then. My husband was an IT Engineer, so he knew everything that needed to be done to make it all work.

How did you first hear about the Internet?

I heard about the internet around 1991. It seemed like this nebulous idea of some kind of connection between computers. I couldn't grasp the concept because I could not figure out how all those computers could trade information over phone lines....haha. The idea of WIFI was just beyond comprehension then. It's amazing how far we have come since then.

Maureen

Orange cable

What was your original intent for Maureen.com?

I got Maureen.com before there was a yahoo.com, I am a pioneer.

Being Irish-American, my last name has an apostrophe which can't be in a domain name. so when all my friends were registering their last names, I was a stickler for either having my last name spelled right or not at all. So I got my first name registered instead.

How did you first hear about the Internet?

I first heard about the internet in college when I did a paper on it for my communications class.

Leah

Green card

What was your original intent for Leah.com?

I have to start by stating while I have owned my own first name and my wife’s, both were eventually sold. That is after all what I do, I buy and sell not just first name domain names but all sorts. My list of names sold I can mention include Jacob.com, Laura.com, Gregory.com, Derek.com, Doug.com, Jeremiah.com, Marilyn.com and many more I cannot speak of due to confidentiality.

I currently have two more for sale, Leah.com and Ariana.com.

Each name I have bought has a story, usually a personal one. Some have been the owners name, some have been their child’s name and rarely ever not associated in some way to family. The bigger story as I see it is these people had foresight, not me, clearly ahead of their time and usually involved with computers to some degree larger than the average person. You have to realize most good first names were registered in the early to mid 90’s.

Some come with sad stories, usually revolving around death divorce or failed business ideas.

One thing I know for sure is they are desired, expensive and make a great statement.

P.S., Since answering those questions I sold Leah.com just a couple weeks ago now. I still have Ariana.com and the high offer on that is $79,000 USD. I have to laugh because a few of those names you wrote about I tried to buy [Winking smile].

Fin

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