Row.com: Priced at $10 million dollars, three letter #domain applies for trademark

The three letter, dictionary domain Row.com was registered in 1993 and according to NameBio it was sold for $30,000 dollars in 2007.

Row.com is listed for sale on Afternic currently, with a BIN of $800,000 dollars but that’s not what we see when going to Row.com. A link to Escrow.com and its checkout system takes visitors to an Escrow.com lander with a $10,000,000 dollar price tag.

Yowza!

Quite smartly, the use of Escrow.com is a required element of the transaction; extra points for using Domain Concierge with 1 day inspection. The seller is selected as the payer of escrow.com fees.

What’s even more interesting is that there is a fresh trademark application for ROW.COM at the USPTO, with an “intent to use” clause, for the following services:

Providing an interactive website featuring technology that allows users to enter, access, and synthesize information and generate reports for use in consulting with executives and businesses.

The applicant is Michael Talei, whose background as an entrepreneur says:

Michael Talei is Founder and CEO of StudentFreelance.com, a platform connecting American students to freelance jobs. Prior to StudentFreelance.com, Michael was the youngest vice president ever at a News Corp company. As a founder at MD Capital, he pioneered start-up culture in Los Angeles.

Offering Row.com for $10 million dollars while applying for a trademark at the same time seems a bit conflicting; when filing with an “intent to use” clause, the applicant has 6 months to prove use of the mark in interstate commerce. In other words, a service or product has to materialize before the six month deadline expires, although there are ways to extend this five more times.

Why was the domain name Row.com applied for as a trademark with the USPTO?

It’s an ongoing trend among owners of generic domain names, following the decision by SCOTUS on the Booking.com trademark application.

Since then, dozens of generic domain names have been applied to be registered as trademarks, inclusive of the TLD.

As of January 5th, 2021, BOOKING.COM is a registered trademark with the USPTO.

Will these applications become the new norm? Watch this video from NamesCon Online 2020.

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Comments

2 Responses to “Row.com: Priced at $10 million dollars, three letter #domain applies for trademark”
  1. domain guy says:

    While waiting for a buyer at 10 million. Domain owners continue to use their valuable domain names. Applying for a tm positions ROW.com in a specific industry. Now we have a trademarked 3 letter domain with supporting intellectual property.

    The seller now has more negotiating power!

    In the event a buyer surfaces the tm can always be cancelled…

  2. DomainGang says:

    domain guy: To establish use, one has to delist the domain from sale and develop services/products related to the tm application. I would say, the reverse is plausible: develop services on a premium domain, roll out products, get a trademark, and then sell.

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