I’m impressed by how much gratis publicity and advertising Namecheap has gotten via its anti-SOPA marketing (including the Wikipedia article I linked to; it didn’t exist 3 days ago), and completely unimpressed by the failure of approximately every other company to take advantage of the opportunity, which strikes me as easy social media gold. Communications department heads ought roll.
Go Daddy’s* pro-SOPA marketing failures made Namecheap’s action straightforward relative to companies not directly competing with Go Daddy. However, there are lots of other domain name registrars, none of which has done anything with Namecheap’s marketing savvy. Another registrar, Gandi (which I’ve used and recommended for some time, and has supported Creative Commons and other good causes), like Namecheap is donating a portion of domain transfers to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, but doesn’t seem to be making a big deal of it, and their anti-SOPA blog post is rather tepid. Compare to Namecheap’s anti-SOPA blog post, which isn’t all that much stronger in terms of substance (contains genuflection to “intellectual property”), it is much more strongly worded and simply more effectively written.
One other company has a support-EFF-against-SOPA tie-in. That company, Zopim, provides website chat services, and doesn’t seem to compete with Go Daddy at all. I’m not interested, but never would have heard of them otherwise. Any company could do that.
What inspired to me write this post is that Namecheap isn’t only taking gratis publicity. They’re also running presumably paid ads as part of their anti-SOPA marketing campaign:
While trying to get the above ad to load again (noticed out of the corner of my eye but didn’t register until sometime after — I’m oddly trying to recover from ad blindness), I noticed another Namecheap ad, which if you’re already really tuned in, illustrates nicely the imperfect options available from a software freedom perspective for domain registration and other nearly commodity services.
Check out more anti-SOPA and pro-freedom actions.
*Isn’t the name “Go Daddy” ridiculous? That, coupled with a super cheesy website and company logo led me to disregard them long before they started shooting sexy elephants at gladiator events, or whatever got people upset before they supported SOPA.