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Anti-Squatting Program

Imagine searching for solana.sol in your browser only to be redirected to a scam site or one misrepresenting the organization entirely. Even worse you’re fooled in an altruistic attempt to act charitably for a cause Solana is collecting funds for. You sent the funds to an internet troll fully understanding the art of conning. You may have fallen victim to a domain name squatter.
No, this is not someone acting in good faith by trading a domain but instead impersonating and taking advantage of shareholders’ interests.
Let’s dig into domain name squatting, what is this exactly?

What is squatting?

Domain squatting is the practice of registering, buying and/or using domain names with the intent of victimizing, profiting or impersonating other people’s trademarks, projects or well-known identities. Furthermore, the squatter holds on to the domain, exploiting the victim to purchase the domain at a ridiculously inflated price. Some pay this, in fear that damage may be imposed on their reputation or their community. Inadvertently affecting the adoption of your favorite TLD if the squatter does not want to sell it to the “deserving” users. Never mind the other counterparties that may have lost funds or been fooled in the meantime.
The practice of registering, using and misrepresenting a domain name, with a bad faith intent to exploit or profit from the popularity of a trademark, project or established identity belonging to someone else.
The core ingredient in the making of a squatter is their bad faith, whether it be with opportunistic or malicious intent.

Note the difference between a trader

Of course, not all initiatives to buy a popular domain are considered “squatting”. Squatting differs from trading. So, it’s important to note where the line should be drawn. As described above, it really all comes down to the intent. Buying a domain speculating on its potential value for a various number of buyers based on habits, interests and trends is completely condoned (if not encouraged). Then, reselling these to the highest bidder or for a profit is really why we do this. It’s creative, risky and fun!
Scope the difference between tom.sol and tomholland.sol, for example.
Flipping domains is a legitimate example of being a trader - based on its potential and demand to resell it at a higher price by marketing and optimizing its content.
Once again, bad faith goes right to the heart of domain name squatting.

How do I know I’m a squatter or a victim of squatting?

An easy way to answer this is with another question?
Squatter: is there only one true buyer for your domain?
Victim: can someone else owning the domain inflict harm on your business and/or clients through misrepresentation or theft?
Simple.

Preventative measures

Avoidance. That probably sounds like a silly one, “if you don’t want to become an alcoholic don’t drink” right?
However, there is some truth in this. It is easier to avoid becoming a victim of squatting than it is to recover the status. Annoyingly, we’d have to suggest the following;
  1. 1.
    Register or buy the domain before you need it
Buy a domain when your idea is merely a concept. Relatively, the cost is small compared to recovery. You can always resell your domain
  1. 2.
    Don’t forget to register similar names
Buy domains from different TLD providers and buy similar names to prevent misrepresentation/exploitation. Even consider registering common misspellings and make careful consideration

Help! I’m a victim

Firstly, please reach out to us on any of our socials; TG, Discord or Twitter. Our efforts will include;
  • Evaluating the severity of the risk to your and our users
  • Trying to locate the current squatter
  • To our best efforts try and obtain the domain in events of squatting
  • Alternatively, help reserve or register a domain