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Freedom. Liberty. Equality

Freedom.com on the web is a communications company. Liberty.com is a mishmash of tea party sentiment. And equality.com is permanently corrupted by a data error. Surprising how some of the most powerful words in our lexicon have such trivial outposts on the internet. The Freedom website, for example, looks as if it has not been updated since 1995. The Liberty.com website looks like a nursery school project – full of enthusiasm and a mess of typography, logos, and navigation. And don’t bother about Equality.com because it won’t load.

When they registered it, Freedom on the Net was probably one of those trivial accidents that go on to become multi-million dollar treasures – not due to foresight, but simply proximity and knowledge of something called a domain. The dictionary in its entirety, except for obscure words like pusillanimity, is all gone. Apparently, every combination of 3 letter words, sensible and nonsensical, is gone. You now have to register twisted phrases and words that sound more like the original in order to have a chance.

There’s this race to name companies now, where the domain becomes more important that the name of the company. Domain name companies have tried every single extension – from .net to .org to .tv to entice business owners, but ultimately, it is the .com that gets chased and registered. They provide all kinds of permutations and combinations, but to little avail. The belle of the ball is the one with a .com suffix and there’s nothing that anyone can do to undo it.

One of the most famous departures was the company called delicio.us. For some reason, .ly is proving to be quite popular as a suffix – primarily from the coverage of the Libyan uprising. For a short while, there was a concern that the popular URL shortening service called bit.ly would go dark if a rogue government took over and stopped the service since these domains are under that particular government’s control. However, since freedom and equality seem to have been restored in Libya, bit.ly continues to edit URLs that stretch to infinity in the browser address bar.

But back to easy words in English. Common.com is a wealth advisory – obviously not for the common man, only for the privileged! Power.com is an email service. Flower.com is a florist – and their website again looks as if it has not been updated since the 90s. They are either doing very well or very badly. I’ve noticed that the only time people take chances in business is at the start-up stage. Once the money begins to come in, they become extra cautious and risk averse. At easy.com, you can rent everything from a car to an office. Classic.com is a placeholder site – hoping to make a lot of money from the domain sale and so is Paint.com.

The only site that lives up to its domain is sex.com – the most searched for word on the internet has to be a pornography site. All the talk about cordoning off these sites to their very own .xxx domain has come to naught. They are among the most difficult to restrain and keep down. Bouncing back every time.

And to end, equal.com is a sugar substitute. The virtual can never be the real thing!