Thursday, January 10, 2008

Sit on this, why doncha

Seth points me to a term that was new to me, altho it's a variant on a term that I did know. He finds typosquatting, which is a specific instance of cybersquatting. Should these both be new to you, the terms refer to the practice of leasing a domain name ( that is either an actual brand name or similar to a brand name, in the hopes that the brand-name owner will then want to pay you to hand it over to them. For example, had you been clever and forward-looking in, say, 1995, you might have bought the rights to the domain name, and then have negotiated with the Oxford University Press for the rights to that domain name. (These days, you can be successfully sued for cybersquatting, so you might have a harder go of it today.) Typosquatting refers specifically to registering a misspelling of a trademarked name, as opposed to just a name or word that a company might find useful. If you managed to register, dunno, and, you'd be typosquatting.

Squatting and squatters refer to the practice and practitioners of occupying something that doesn't belong to you (when of course it does not refer to sitting on your haunches). I did some small amount of poking to see if I could come up with more words that whack a prefixtual word onto -squat/-squatting, but came up dry. (I sorely, sorely miss not having wildcard searches in word stems.) Are there in fact other examples of such words?


Anonymous said...

From the article (emphasis mine): Typosquatting is the practice of registering domain names that contain misspellings [i.e. typos] of trademark terms.

WordzGuy said...

Fixed, thanks. (Along with another typo.)

markowe said...

Oh yes - try ANY misspelling of - ALL of those domains were either registered by Google themselves, or they lead to a "parked" page, with some crummy ads.

And it's not just Google either - try, or (I'm making them up, but I am sure they are all taken).

Don't know of any other words formed from "-squatting" though..!