Netfleet – Moving Forward

As most readers of Domainer.com.au would know, I “beat the drum” very loudly over the past couple of months concerning past Netfleet practices (some of which they publicly acknowledged and apologised for).

I also indicated previously that Bruce Tonkin (Melbourne IT Management / NetAlliance / Netfleet Director) and Jonathan Gleeson (General Manager – Netfleet) were willing to engage with me by telephone hook-up to address the other concerns I had raised.

To their credit, they did so – and I thank them for that.

As I said back on October 23, 2015:

None of us want Netfleet to fold – we just want an ethical and transparent marketplace free of any hints of potential insider trading.

My Attitude

I’m a positive person – and conflict is debilitating and non-productive for everyone. The time that I spent on this was enormous – and there is only so much I can do as one person.

So speaking personally, given Bruce and Jonathan’s assurances, I have decided to put the past behind me.

Moving forward is the best option for me. Simple as that.

Netfleet is the premier dropcatcher, and there is no getting around that fact.

Therefore I have accepted Netfleet’s assurances that any “mistakes” of the past will not be repeated. Consequently I have decided to use their platform again. I also look forward to some of the new features they intend to introduce.

Having said that, both Bruce and Jonathan are under no illusions that I won’t hesitate to speak up if any future concerns arise.

 

16 thoughts on “Netfleet – Moving Forward

  • November 23, 2015 at 3:55 pm
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    Finally you admit defeat!

    • Ned O'Meara
      November 24, 2015 at 9:47 am
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      I wasn’t going to publish your comment “Smiddy” because you used an outrageously fake email address etc.

      But what the heck!

      If you consider that I am “defeated”, then good on you.

    • November 24, 2015 at 2:10 pm
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      I wouldn’t call that a defeat at all. Putting those “people” in and around Netfleet who are abusing the system and being greedy under the microscope has seen excellent results.

      Great work Greg and Ned. I’m sure a lot of other domainers are also grateful for the spotlight you have shone on certain dark areas of the Australian domain name dropping arena.

      I’m sure a lot of us will continue to keep watch on dodgey happenings and dodgey players. I know I will be.

  • November 23, 2015 at 7:16 pm
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    Reading between the lines, you were compensated to stop rattling their cage.

    Just another travesty swept under the carpet.

  • November 23, 2015 at 7:25 pm
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    On reflection, I apologise for my previous comment. Myself and I’m sure many, many other people are in debt to you and the time you spent on this matter. Thank you Ned! You are a role model and inspiration. Keep up the fantastic work.

    • Ned O'Meara
      November 24, 2015 at 10:00 am
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      Thanks “Anon”.

      The simple fact is that the time this took me to pursue eventually became counter-productive. And whilst there were lots of people out there that privately took umbrage, not many were keen to pursue it (especially after the first couple of weeks). And even less were prepared to put their names to it!

      But I believe some things were achieved; and many concerns were listened to.

      1. Bidding prices were brought back so there is some degree of transparency again.

      2. The past telemarketing activities stopped.

      3. Other changes and improvements are happening.

      If there are future issues, no doubt they will be exposed again. I hope there won’t be any.

  • November 24, 2015 at 8:59 am
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    So… they won’t be answering those questions? Or at least not publicly?

    • Ned O'Meara
      November 24, 2015 at 10:10 am
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      They addressed a lot of the issues with me via phone hook-up. This was on the basis that they didn’t want to play things out via public forums (which I can understand).

      I was reasonably happy with responses, and particularly with the assurances given by Bruce Tonkin (MelbIt).

      If anyone still has any individual concerns or questions, then I suggest they post these on DNTrade.

      https://www.dntrade.com.au/threads/seeking-client-input.10236/

  • November 24, 2015 at 2:01 pm
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    I will not be happy with Netfleet until they change their bidding system to a transparent bidding platform like Drop.com.au and DomainShield.com.au(.)

     

     

    • November 24, 2015 at 3:36 pm
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      Seriously @Robert Kaay -and everyone else winging about the opaque nature of Netfleet’s drop-catching platform, what right should or anyone else have to pay only $1 more than the next person (proxy bidding)? Under Netfleet’s system you offer to buy the expiring name at a set price, and Netfleet accepts your offer if and when they catch the name and award it to you because your bid was the highest (quasi-tender).

      Prior to Drop, Netfleet and DomainShield, DomainWatch was the one and only drop-catching platform and fewer than 70 people in the country had access to it (invitation-only). Drop, Netfleet and DomainShield are publicly-available platforms in competition with each other, which is healthy. Tens of thousands of dollars have been invested in the development of each platform and the owners of these sites have the right to a return on their capital investment. If you don’t like the product, vote with your feet, or better yet set up a drop-catching platform of your own instead of winging like a little girl.

      • Ned O'Meara
        November 24, 2015 at 4:01 pm
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        @Paul – I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Robert in person; and he’s a decent, sensible bloke.

        At least he has the cojones to use his real name on here. I appreciate that.

        He has simply given his opinion that he’s not going to be happy until Netfleet have a transparent bidding platform (just like all major platforms do overseas). He’s entitled to that opinion – and that doesn’t mean he “whinges like a little girl”.

        I would also prefer a transparent bidding platform (like Drop.com.au) with bidder 1 and bidder 2 etc.

        But Netfleet choose to do it their way, and ultimately that is their right. I’ve got used to it – but it doesn’t mean I have to like it. 😉

        Cheers, Ned

      • November 24, 2015 at 5:00 pm
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        I hardly use Netfleet now anymore anyway. So I am already voting with my feet. DomainShield is a far superior drop catching service and platform. It’s easy to see why Anthony left Netfleet to start his own platform.

        And.

        It would be easy for someone like me to setup my own drop-catching platform and jump through all the political hoops and then make it ten times better than Netfleet. And catch more names. Simply a matter of time. Be careful what you wish for.

        Your comment: “Tens of thousands of dollars have been invested in the development of each platform and the owners of these sites have the right to a return on their capital investment.” is true, but should not be used to justify insider-trading and greedy “let’s make as much money as we can out of these chumps” mentality that the blind bidding system portrays. The initial $20,000 investment and 4 weeks setup and programming would easily be paid back within the first couple of months. Then it’s just FREE MONEY coming in, as a couple of people at Netfleet have figured out. Well, apart from all that Google Adwords money they spend every day, earned from their customers over-paying.

        Netfleet’s blind bidding system will ALWAYS be seen as a “milk them as hard as we can” greedy blind bidding platform. More and more people will learn this heading into the future.

        It would be a conflict of interest for me to start my own bidding platform, because I’m a domainer at heart. Which means, I like buying domain names and developing new businesses or helping others to do the same in a fair and organic way.

        If I started my own drop-catching platform, and wanted to remain a domainer, I would be following a dodgey model that certain people have already created in this industry, where I would be batting for both sides. Offering a drop-service where I pluck and wrangle the best names for myself and/or people I know. Insider-trading style.

        No thanks. I’m going to stick to being a straight-up domainer.

        And as long as “winging (sic) like a little girl” (which is such a politically-incorrect, old-school comment!) helps to see systems change for the better, and causes dodgy players to sweat, I’ll even buy a dress to wear while I do it.

         

        • November 24, 2015 at 5:31 pm
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          Haha awesome response @Robert Kaay 🙂

          Excellent, I also agree with you that DomainShield is on the whole superior. Of course, Anthony was/is the architect of all four platforms (DomainWatch, Drop, Netfleet and now DomainShield), so it would be hard-going creating a new platform without him that’s for sure. But it could be done. I’d love nothing more than VentraIP or another registrar to merge with DomainShield and give Netfleet a run for their money.

          I disagree with your $20k figure, as every registrar in the country has just spent about $50k (per registrar) to comply with the new Registrar Information Security Standard (ISS). What is more, each drop-catcher requires as many connections to the registry as possible to be competitive (there are 4 per registrar). So there are initial and ongoing accreditation and compliance costs for each registrar that is used by a drop-catching platform (be it Drop, Netfleet or whatever) to ‘catch’ names. Then there are normal operating costs inc. rent, rates, utilities, salaries/wages, insurance, legal expenses etc). For each drop-catcher expenses would exceed $100k pa.

          I have not commented on Netfleet-gate or the alleged unscrupulous behaviour of the past, my comment was specifically confined to the proxy-bidding vs. quasi-tender debate.

          Yes of course it would be a conflict of interest, a little bit of hyperbole in there 😉 and the comment was not simply for you, but for all the other whingers as well -some of whom may be interested in setting up a rival platform.

        • Ned O'Meara
          November 24, 2015 at 7:14 pm
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          Yep, indeed – it was an awesome, intelligent response from Robert.

        • Ned O'Meara
          November 25, 2015 at 12:20 pm
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          @Robert – the really telling point you made is that whilst you’d love to run a dropcatcher, at heart you’re a domainer.

          Me too!

          And that’s the very point – you can’t bat for both sides. You have to choose one or the other. I could never stop being  domainer / a trader. It’s in my blood.

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