Thursday, June 4, 2015

Be Careful Buying Expired Domains from Go Daddy and Then Trying to List Them on the Same Site

*IMPORTANT UPDATE (June 5, 2015):

Go Daddy is more than happy to sell you expired domains, sometimes at high prices.

However, if YOU try listing them on THEIR auction site, don't be surprised if you receive the following notice:

One or more of your domains are not eligible for the aftermarket program.
Dear [Customer's First Name], 

Thank you for being a GoDaddy customer. We greatly appreciate your interest in participating in our exciting aftermarket program. Unfortunately, we have had to remove the domain name(s) below from this program at this time because another person or entity owns a trademark that matches one of more terms or words contained in your domain name(s).

[Generic Domain Redacted]

Again, we very much appreciate your business and we are sorry that this particular service is unavailable for this domain name(s). If you have any questions, please contact us at

GoDaddy Aftermarket Team

When I emailed the above address to inquire as to why my generic domain had been removed, I received no response.

It was only after I complained on a public forum that someone finally responded to my inquiry. He tried to convince "the lawyers" to reinstate my domain, but they were unmoved.

This very same domain had been sold to me BY Go Daddy (in their expiring domain listings), so, evidently, Go Daddy incorporates a double standard when it comes to selling so-called TM domains when such a sale fills their own coffers.

The terms in my domain in question is trademarked for manufacturing nuts and bolts by a company in Taiwan; my 5-letter domain was being offered as a possible social media site. One term in my domain is Geographic (not Taiwan) and the other is a completely generic and common word.

So be VERY careful when you bid on or list a domain at Go Daddy's auction site.

*UPDATE: I emailed Joe Styler, Aftermarket Product Manager at Go Daddy, the link to this article. This is his response:

Thanks for the heads up.
I read the article [on this site].
Just to be clear the recent updates in the trademark checks apply to GoDaddy sold names as well so anything we sell going forward is under the same system of checks. 

So effective immediately, Go Daddy will NOT be selling any expiring domains that have any kind of a trademark. 

Moreover, old Go Daddy expiring auction acquisitions have not been grandfathered in.

From now on, if you acquire something like, you will NOT be able to list it at Go Daddy because it has a trademark. Apparently, it makes no difference if the domain is a generic.

As a seller, keep this in mind when listing any old acquired names from Go Daddy or any domains acquired elsewhere.

Before listing at Go Daddy, check for trademarks:

Check (U.S. Trademarks)

Check (Global Trademarks) 

I have no idea what this means for domains acquired before trademarks were acquired, but I suspect that Go Daddy will do whatever it must do to cover its corporate a$$.

Thanks to Joe Styler, the only Go Daddy representative who even bothered to answer my queries.      


  1. Well this is stupid. I just got the same response trying to use godaddy auctions on a domain I just got through their backorder service. Domain names shouldn't have anything to do with trademarks. I own the domain name, therefor I should be able to sell it. Oh well, I guess I can try eBay or some other site?

  2. Aftermarket Domain Ineligible, WTF IS THIS


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