Emoji Domain Investors Lose Domains Due to System Glitch

It’s been an exciting week for emoji domains for the right reasons, and now it appears for the wrong reason based on late Friday afternoon tweets from impacted emoji domain investors.

Early this week I reported that Global Domains International (GDI), the company behind the .WS registry, would publicly release new emoji domains for the most recent Unicode Emoji Version 11 at 1PM CST on March 1st.

Well, March 1st and 1PM CST came and went, leaving nearly 161 .WS single emoji domains registered and scattered amongst many domain investors.  There was much excitement expressed throughout Twitter by emoji domain investors who were able to snag their desired .WS emoji domains.

But the excitement was short lived, coming to a screeching halt last Friday afternoon near the close of business as a few stories began to surface about emoji domains being clawed back due to a .WS system glitch that allowed multiple registrations for the same emoji domains. 😱

A couple of impacted emoji domain investors reached out and contacted me via email, via Twitter DM, or mentioned my Twitter handle in their public post to notify and check to see if I had been impacted.

The first tweet that mentioned and uncovered this perplexing situation was World Emoji Brand’s (WEB) message of having had successfully registered newly released emoji domains removed from their clients’ account(s).

In place of no longer owning the newly released emoji domains, WEB states GDI offered ten (10) .WS domains as a concession for GDI’s system glitch.

Too, it’s not publicly known at the time of this writing which newly released emoji domains WEB registered.  But regardless of which domains WEB registered, I found this to be alarming to say the least.

To my knowledge, GDI didn’t and has yet respond to the tweet nor was there mention or customer-wide notification of a .WS emoji domain system glitch.

And although I’ve not been impacted or notified at this very moment in time that my purchases were impacted, I decided it was best to directly contact GDI’s President, Imad Kawar, via email before calling it a day to further understand this situation and its impact in its entirety.

Kawar confirmed via email late Friday evening that GDI was aware of the technical glitch that allowed some emoji domains to be sold twice. He also states that impacted customers were notified about the unfortunate event, and that impacted customers were credited and offered free registrations for the error.

Whether impacted or not, to hear such a story is quite perplexing. It’s certainly understandable for impacted customers to be hot under the collar to say the least. 😱😤😡

In fact, it was only weeks ago that Web.com clawed back DomainNames.com, stating that the domain should have been listed for sale.

Although a situation of this magnitude is not easy to appreciate and embrace, this type of clawing back of domains is not the first time nor will it be the last time that a domain registry has done such a thing.

Right or wrong, I personally suggest impacted customers request to speak directly with the GDI’s President — whether or not he chooses speak and hear you out is on him.

Yes, you’re likely NOT to receive the desired emoji domains purchased, but this may be an opportunity to forge an amicable relationship for the future. 🤔

We all know Unicode is highly likely to release more emoji domains in the future. So, why not take the opportunity to turn a current negative into a future positive for rights to purchase 1-2 future emoji domains?  A long shot such a request might be, but it’s worth a shot, right?

What other options do you have? Sure, you could publicly blast and humiliate GDI for the rest of your days. Too, you could certainly compile necessary paperwork and get your ducks in a row to hedge a litigation quest demanding justice. It’ll be expensive, but it can be done whether you win or lsoe. Or, you could also simply walk away from and never do business again GDI. 🤔

I’m not here to say what’s right or wrong for you or anyone else, but I would *graciously* seek to forge a relationship for the future in the current. GDI could respond with a no, but GDI could also grant your request.

I’m not here to defend, or make the case or excuse for GDI. Again, that technical glitch is inexcusable, but don’t piss an opportunity to turn lemons (🍋🍋🍋) into lemonade ( maybe a future emoji!?) with shortsighted judgement.

GDI has made a concession gesture as their olive branch, but don’t let this opportunity pass without you presenting a comparable concession of your own. 😉

Again, they could say no, but they could also say yes, granting your comparable request… you’ll never know until you graciously ask!

Stay tuned for more updates, and that’s all for now!

Written by Alvin Brown
He's an experienced and passionate serial entrepreneur, founder and publisher of Kickstart Commerce. Alvin possesses a great love for startups dominating their market using profitable digital strategies for greater commerce.