Podcast With Netfleet’s Jonathan Gleeson

NF BannerToday is an exciting day for Domainer.com.au – we are publishing our first ever podcast interview. Many more planned in coming weeks.

In the “hot seat” today is the new General Manager of Netfleet – Jonathan Gleeson.

Jono Gleeson image - LinkedIn

In a candid interview, he discusses the following:

  • His background, and how he ended up at Netfleet.
  • Some of the past “customer service” issues that many have complained about, and how he proposes to deal with them.
  • Talks about the $1 bids on their drop auction platform.
  • The future of Netfleet – there are some exciting developments ahead.

If you have any comments / questions or constructive suggestions, please post them below. Jonathan has said he will answer them all to the best of his ability!

Enjoy – it’s about 16 minutes long. (Big thanks to my son Luke for tidying up the audio file).


If you feel so inclined, we’d be really grateful if you could share this article by clicking on the social media icons below. Many thanks. 🙂

Best wishes for your online success.

32 thoughts on “Podcast With Netfleet’s Jonathan Gleeson

    • September 23, 2015 at 3:10 pm

      I was wondering if we will ever see the “name spinner” functionality come back?

      That’s an oldie but a goodie Richard! Have you been saving that in your memory bank? 😉

      • September 23, 2015 at 3:17 pm

        It used to drive a lot of leads 🙁

  • September 23, 2015 at 4:14 pm

    Ned, a few points:

    I often question the integrity of the drops when matching specific bidders to bid prices within a few $’s of other bids, but I do confess to being an avid conspiracy theorist

    The reintroduction of aftermarket auctions would be fantastic for the industry
    The integration with daily drops did enhance that auction list and should have greater appeal to prospective bidders (imo)

    The inability to set a minimum bid in the current aftermarket is painful, to say the least. It gets to the point at times where you question whether or not to send all offers from that platform straight to spam

    • September 23, 2015 at 4:33 pm

      Nice post Greg. All very relevant points.

      I think from chatting with Jonathan that he is very keen to improve both features and process. I definitely believe we will be seeing changes happening soon.

      The issue I raised with him about having the ability to have some “back and forth” communication between buyer and seller seemed to be well received. Other major platforms have this – and I think it would enhance sales results. Everybody wins in that scenario. Imho.

      • September 23, 2015 at 6:01 pm


        Yes; dialogue with bidders is very important part of any sales platform

        I am sure if dialogue was enabled then NetFleet could develop a scrip & monitor COR’s for names that are the subject of inquiries over a given period
        The delinquents who abuse the system would soon be weeded out quickly
        There will always be those in the minority that can’t help themselves and will abuse the system; however this should not be to the detriment of the majority

        The volume of potential sales should not be under-estimated
        (The Top AU sales list in DNTrade is not even a close guide to activity and is mainly comprised of “wholesale” sales. There would be individual domain name investors who would challenge that list from their own sales)

        A genuine, fully functional aftermarket platform would benefit end-users, domain name investors and Netfleet

        • September 23, 2015 at 6:36 pm

          @ Greg – agreed.

          @ Jonathan – your initial thoughts on Greg’s suggestions?

          • September 24, 2015 at 9:30 am

            As I said in the interview I’ve added it to our ideas list we will look at what it will take to implement vs the benefits for us and our customers and see if and where it ends up on the roadmap.

            I love the ideas guys and I want to hear them if anyone has any suggestion or feedback please send it over to me

        • September 24, 2015 at 9:34 am

          I wholeheartedly agree with Greg, DNTrade’s list is principally a ‘drop results’ list, mostly showing amounts paid by investors with less than 24 hours notice that a name is expiring and does not in the least reflect the state of the .com.au/.net.au market. Last week I sold a name acquired for less than $500 for five figures.

          Jonathan, if Netfleet changed it’s commission from 8% to 5%, investors would happily use the platform complete sales that do not even originate on Netfleet to begin with. -I certainly would.

          Quality measures also need to be introduced on Netfleet to make it credible as a marketplace. Sedo for example have a screening process whereby names with a listing price exceeding $10,000 must be approved for listing. I would also raise the minimum bid to $500 across the board.

  • September 23, 2015 at 4:17 pm

    Netfleet, I don’t understand how AUDA lets you keep your registrar accreditation. Had two sales which I had trouble with COR’s. Sent so many tickets with no answer. Piss poor.

    • September 23, 2015 at 4:43 pm

      Hey BJ,

      Sorry to hear about the bad experience. Like I said in the interview I’ve listened to the feedback from our customer and I’m intending to improve the experience drastically.


  • September 23, 2015 at 4:36 pm

    Jonathan, any prospect of returning to the transparent bidding system where all bids are visible?

    • September 23, 2015 at 5:33 pm

      Proxy bidding is great for new investors, but blind bidding results in higher sales, beneficial to existing portfolio holders and Netfleet. The best thing Netfleet could do is buy Drop.com.au so that Netfleet bidders will no longer be able to use Drop.com.au proxy bidding as a reference point.

      • September 23, 2015 at 6:44 pm

        @Simon – I hear what you say.

        But one could take the opposite point of view. People bidding on Drop actually highlight domains that may be popular; thus getting people to bid on them on Netfleet and Domain Shield. As a domainer, I know this for an absolute fact!

        I love the transparency of Drop (as do many others), and I also love a genuine bidding contest. But in strictly business terms, if I were Drop, I’d be going to blind bidding as well. They are leaving money on the table imho (particularly when they win the occasional one).

    • September 24, 2015 at 2:55 pm

      I would like to see the NameJet type system implemented. Transparent bidding, but then allow the last 5 minutes to reset every time a new bid is made. In this way, the person or business who really wants the domain name, ends up with it, at the absolute most realistic price. It’s not a rip off, because you can see how much two people were willing to pay for it, and it’s not cheap, because people will keep bidding until it reaches its realistic market price.

      • September 24, 2015 at 3:08 pm

        I like transparent bidding also – and I love a competitive auction.

        However there is one difficulty with your “5 minute recess” – drop auctions close at 12.59pm and domains drop a few minutes later (and go directly into successful bidder’s name).

        Or are you proposing that the auction house wins it and it goes into their name temporarily; and the auction keeps going until there is a winner? (Registrant details are then adjusted). That makes my mind boggle with possibilities (positive and negative).

      • September 25, 2015 at 12:23 pm

        Yes, Neddy. The Auction House would win the name, knowing that it was going to sell. No risk to them.

        I believe the first Australian domain dropping platform to develop this new system would become the best platform (assuming they could capture the names over their competitors – which Netfleet seem to be very good at doing). It would double their audience, easily, because punters would tune in everyday to see the live results of who was winning the premium domains in “overtime”. And the person or business that couldn’t live without the name, would ultimately secure it, because in theory – they wouldn’t stop bidding until the got the name. This would ensure the domain name went to its rightful home at its rightful price. And I’m sure for this reason, this is why many of the large American domain auction services use this model. And if not this model, at least put names from the drops that more than one person is interested in, into an auction type system.

        • September 25, 2015 at 2:33 pm

          I know from mates in the US that this scenario is in play on some platforms.

          That would be a ball tearer for a drop platform here in Australia. Think of the money they could make.

          But unfortunately, I don’t think it would be possible due to the strict policy requirements of auDA. That’s my gut feel anyway (and I might be wrong).

          Have a look at this policy: http://www.auda.org.au/policies/2008-11/

          And this clause:

          1.2 Clause 14.2.3 of the Registrar Agreement reads as follows: “[The Registrar must not] be involved in any activity which involves the acquisition or accumulation of Domain Names which are not connected to the provision of Registrar Services under [the Registrar Agreement], for the purposes of removing them from the availability of others, transferring them for a direct or indirect, immediate or deferred gain or profit or for any other reason which can be considered to be done in bad faith”.

          Bolding is mine.

  • September 23, 2015 at 10:11 pm

    Great interview.

    It’s very encouraging to hear about the plans for improved customer service, increased communication and a roadmap of new features.

  • September 24, 2015 at 6:35 am

    You let Publishing Australia place special bids? That’s run by David Lye. Does he see other bids? His brother is major shareholder and director. Big time conflict of interest.

    • September 24, 2015 at 9:15 am

      Hi Jono,

      How is it a conflict exactly? PA can only catch domains that have no other bids – that nobody else wants. They do not compete with NF customers to remove any possibility of a perception of conflict.

      I can’t see how having any insider connections can turn this from a massive disadvantage into an unfair advantage. What am I missing?



      PS – this is hardly new phenomenon in drop catching – it’s been going on for years –

      2013 – https://www.dntrade.com.au/threads/zero-bids.8251/
      1010 – https://www.dntrade.com.au/threads/dark-blue-not-my-favourite-colour.1607/ (the third post explains it best)

      • September 24, 2015 at 1:44 pm

        My question was to Jonathan. Yet you answer it. This is what you’re missing. Perception of insider trading. Unfair market advantage. Conflict of interest. You can bid for $1, and I can’t. That pisses me off. The minimum cost for me to bid on NF is $60. Can’t afford that all the time so I bid on Domain Shield for $25 or try and hand reg afterwards at Crazy Domains.

      • September 24, 2015 at 1:52 pm

        I don’t mind the $1 bids as it basically proves what they are saying.

        If you check who wins the auctions, like a lot of domainers do using whois, then you can check it’s all kosher.

        • September 24, 2015 at 2:28 pm

          @ David Lye – Now I’m not going to get into a slanging match with you – but I am keen on a good respectful debate. 😉 Thanks for engaging on here.

          Though you shouldn’t have posted that last link because Soj’s post brought make memories of a previous Civil War (and basically spelt out why you should totally distance yourself from bidding on “your own” platform)! Though I stress that you and I have long ago “kissed and made up”. 🙂

          I’m not a fan of the $1 bids either. And I’ve mentioned that before on here – and to you privately. They are so piddly in the scheme of things, but it’s the “fact that you just do them” that gets a lot of tongues wagging. Why bother? Why not just adopt a totally clean hands approach and either bid on Drop and DS – or if no one else wants them as you have said, just hand register them after the drops? That would solve everything.

          I have a couple of other constructive suggestions which I shall post separately (rather than hijack this thread).

          Regards, Ned

          • September 24, 2015 at 3:18 pm

            This is a storm in a teacup has been discussed many times before on DnTrade.

            By placing and limiting himself to $1 bids on Netfleet David is not competing with Netfleet customers – he’s just getting the “scraps off the table” – the domains that Netfleet customers don’t want.

            I don’t think David can bid on Drop or DS without having exactly the same kind of accusations thrown about as raised in this thread. I’m sure it would be argued that he’s a) in effect competing with Netfleet customers and b) using the same supposed “insider connections”gleaned from Netfleet to get a competitive advantage in placing those bids.

            Here’s a solution – If the $1 bids annoy people so much, how about Netfleet doesn’t show them? The amount is meaningless anyway.

      • September 24, 2015 at 2:51 pm

        I would like to officially put my hand up to also be allowed to catch domains on Netfleet from now on, for $1, when those names have no other bids – that nobody else wants.

        And if Publishing Australia also has a $1 bid on them, I am happy to pay $2 instead.

        Great! Please email me details when this kicks-in on my Netfleet account.

    • September 24, 2015 at 3:59 pm


      Seams to be allot of comment about Publishing Australia. The $1 bid was simply to ensure that PA couldn’t be competitive, I’m hearing now that some feel this is cheating so I’ve increased it to $9 min/max bid, the min bid for a NF customer is $10 (plus premiums which PA still has to pay) This is simply enforced to keep PA off any domain that has other people interested, PA can bid but will be outbid by any other interested part. Let me assure you no one from PA has any more visibility or access to NF then our regular customers do.

      I’m hoping we can let this one go as it seams to me as a result of a past problem and a control that was put in place to ensure the problem could not arise. Marks involvement with NF is now simply that of governance from the board and as indicated in the interview David has no input at all (he is a founder of the company so he does want it to succeed and continues to post passionately in support of NF, and the board has asked for his input on strategic decisions, but that’s it).

      Again to reiterate my conversation with Ned, new leadership, new life, new direction Netfleet wants to create positive customer experiences and leave the past in the past.


      • September 24, 2015 at 4:26 pm

        Again to reiterate my conversation with Ned, new leadership, new life, new direction Netfleet wants to create positive customer experiences and leave the past in the past.

        @ Jonathan – I take your point; and the spirit behind it.

        From my perspective, I wish you all the best in introducing new standards and features. And in all fairness to you (and Mark and David), I’m totally happy to reserve my judgement.

        I think David and Mark have been brilliant pioneers for the Aussie domain space. Their creation of Netfleet and how they’ve grown it has been simply amazing. I sincerely take my hat off to them.

        And I also think it is a wise decision for them to step back now, and to introduce someone like you into the equation to take it to the next level. You’ve shown a genuine interest in listening to customer concerns and suggestions, so that really bodes well for the future.

        Good luck!

        Regards, Ned

  • September 24, 2015 at 8:42 pm

    thanks johnathan for doing an interview, NF has been quite for far to long.

    your explanation on the $1 bids was good, i don’t have a problem with that, if nobody bids then i can’t see any problem with getting the domain.

    your fees are your fees and you run a business FOR US, so you do have to make money.

    but knowing if i bid, you will not UP bid me i think is more then fair.


  • September 25, 2015 at 6:45 pm

    Again to reiterate my conversation with Ned, new leadership, new life, new direction Netfleet wants to create positive customer experiences and leave the past in the past.

    Look forward to seeing what this means… As long as you know the mistakes so you don’t make them all over again.

  • September 25, 2015 at 7:33 pm

    I wonder how far in the future we are talking?

    The forums are littered with promises that were never acted upon

    Changing a culture requires commitment & genuine intent

  • October 2, 2015 at 7:07 am

    healthresorts.com.au caught on Drop yesterday for Publishing Aust.

Comments are closed.