Cropping of a Domain Name

I have a penchant about domain names, or maybe its just good timing? I got narrowboat.org.uk a while ago, pretty luckily I guess, because I was looking for a boating related domain name to link my videos together and it was available when I was looking. However, I haven’t stopped there and have others for other interests. I also wanted one for my emails – whilst the domain name of this blog could well be used I wanted something more professional. The obvious choice would be my name, unfortunately Chilton Engineering own the .COM and similar domains, or they are owned by search sites hoping to cash in on hits from people looking for the company.

So in 2004 I bought nicchilton.co.uk (UK domains are cheaper thanTop Level Domains (TLD) like .com and .net, and I only needed it for email). As a side note I did actually buy a .COM because Microsoft had a hosting promotion of $2/year though I didn’t do much with chiltonfamily.com, whilst it seemed a good idea to be able to offer email forwarder addresses to relatives it seemed more for informal, personal, than professional. I did think it could be used for family history, as I’ve relatives searching the family tree (very apt, if you keep reading) but this never materialised (the use for it for family tree, not family tree stuff which people were doing).

So I created my email address and used it, though only for me – as the domain contained my first name it may look strange for other relative’s email addresses. I happily gave it out and then someone asked about ambiguities – whilst its okay in written form, what about giving it verbally would people think “Nick Chilton” rather than “Nic Chilton”. Oh dilemmas, do I go and buy extra domains to cover that possibility? The luck of timing occurred once more to mean I didn’t need to. When I was unable to get a CHILTON domain I did try for a nchilton domain (because it was my username at university and several other places), unfortunately Ian Chilton (no relation to me that I know of) had purchased it (for the email address i@nchilton.co.uk) when I was looking at domains before. That is quite humorous, as its the type of thing I’d do (I did have the domain narrowbo.at for a while until the registrar I was with cocked up renewal meaning I’d need to pay £30/year to keep it going, which I had to for one year because the Austria Internic have a strange cancellation procedure, none renewal does not cancel!). Anyhow Ian must have decided that it was an unproductive use of the domain and let it lapse, so when I was looking for a less ambiguous domain it came up as available and became my defacto address.

Actually I use Gmail and that was my defacto address, but using nchilton.co.uk  when I remembered or was bothered helped. Google may be big and millions of people use Gmail, but it is tainted as a “free email” address, though with Android phones requiring a Gmail address maybe this will decrease?

From my purchasing of domains, maybe you think that I have domain-watches set up or check them in an obsessive way? No, not really, I don’t bother but occasionally I do some searches and end up pleasantly surprised and buy a domain, for instance it was only because someone commented about ambiguities of nicchilton that I searched and got the previously unavailable nchilton, and wanting to pull my video’s together that got me narrowboat.org.uk. I have, and am, very happy with nchilton (I only got the .co.uk domain and didn’t feel the need to get all extensions available), but it is only a domain for email that I (or any relative whose forename began with N) could use. However, I would prefer to grab the CHILTON domain, it seems to me better to just have your Surname, and those of you with uncommon surnames are lucky.

This brings me on to my recent purchase … Why I looked, I’m not sure, but I was checking expiry dates of my domains (actually, it was that I had received a notice that a credit card stored on one domain registrar was about to expire) and just did a search on CHILTON, when the .org.uk came up as available – so I decided to buy it. To be thorough it wasn’t the only domain available but I wasn’t that bothered that I wanted to pay the prices of .TV or .CC – yes a Chilton domain would be nice but it isn’t that crucial that I pay £20+ per year for it, lol 😀 .

Sites and forums discussing domain names say that you should be careful in what domain names you buy as it isn’t prudent to get one that was previously owned by a porn or warez site 😆 . Well, I doubt that my newly acquired domain would have porn/warez connections (since these tend to be phrases associated with the subject or misspellings of popular sites – was chilton.com popular enough?). So I decided to check. There are several sites that claim to be able to show domain ownership histories, but most require payment. However I did come across the Nominet.UK policy that would render joining any of them moot, which is that it is against there policy for any website to store old WHOIS data (the info that tells you who owns a website). The more important factor, in my opinion, was not who owned a domain but what website it previously contained. I’d bought the domain anyway, but it was more a case of do I need to be concerned or take actions to limit effects (a porn/warez site would mean it could be blacklisted, fine for email but not if I want to use the site). A useful feature for this is the WayBack machine provided by archive.org that archives websites. I found out that the chilton.org.uk domain had previously been used for a Chilton family history website, so not porn/warez 😀 . Well initially I’m just using it as my new email (good as I’m job-hunting) but maybe the family history connections could be exploited?

Finally, so why the title of this post? Apologies if you’ve already worked it out, but I started with the domain NICCHILTON then went to NCHILTON, before finally grabbing a CHILTON domain (even if its a .org.uk domain, lol 🙄 )

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