Before anyone gets too excited, I’m talking about the domain name blockbuster.com.au. This hit the expired auctions over the weekend, and a domain investor friend of mine and I decided to try and acquire it. We were successful.

For those of us with a few years under the belt, Blockbuster was synonomous with video stores all over the world. Then disruption occurred (Netflix, Stan, Prime Video etc), and Blockbuster went well and truly down the gurgler. The last store in Australia closed in March this year (image above for editorial purposes), and there is one store left in Bend, Oregon. Apparently they survive as a tourist attraction!

Is our purchase risky?

In simple terms, no.

Some may think that because Blockbuster was a high profile brand with a “squillion” trademarks, the domain name should be avoided. I disagree.

In over a decade of buying and selling domain names, I have never purposely infringed on any trademark or brand – and I never will.

As an Intellectual Property lawyer friend often tells me, there are 45 classes of trademarks, and with a generic word, there is plenty of scope not to infringe.

Before making our bid, my domainer friend and I both researched the history of Blockbuster Video including trademarks. We also looked at the ABN lookup tool. There are still over 90 active listings relating to Blockbuster video.

And as auDA (Australia’s domain regulator) policy says:

Wonderful opportunity

So on the contrary, we believe acquiring blockbuster.com.au is a wonderful investment or development opportunity. The word “blockbuster” is a powerful generic descriptor, and could be used for almost anything.

If anyone has any ideas or suggestions as to best use, we would welcome your comments. Or you can email me directly.

13 thoughts on “The Acquisition of Blockbuster

  • Avatar
    November 26, 2019 at 8:26 am
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    Strong name. No doubt it will have residual traffic too.

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    • Neddy
      November 27, 2019 at 6:56 am
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      Had it parked for a few days, and it certainly does have traffic!

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  • Avatar
    November 26, 2019 at 9:16 am
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    You could use it to sell home pregnancy kits.

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  • Avatar
    November 26, 2019 at 11:51 am
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    Interesting buy Neddy. I’m sure you did your research before purchasing it. In regard to auDA policy 2.3, does that mean trademarks and business names are equal and it’s first in. For example if someone (e.g. Coke Auto Repairs) had registered coke.com.au before Coke did, would they would be entitled to keep it over Coke? (who would obviously have the TM)

    In regards to the blockbuster.com.au, why not approach VideoEzy, Netflix.

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  • Avatar
    November 26, 2019 at 1:07 pm
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    Strong highly-generic domain name. Good purchase, Ned!

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  • Avatar
    November 26, 2019 at 1:47 pm
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    I see a future demolition company … someone should hire them to demolish an old video store as their first job.

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  • Avatar
    November 26, 2019 at 5:11 pm
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    Perhaps Scott Cam and channel 9 could have some use for it. The ultimate Block renovation series. ๐Ÿ™‚

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    November 27, 2019 at 2:04 pm
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    It is a great term Ned with very positive connotations. Would be many businesses using the term and probably more will in the future with the movie people out of the picture.

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    • Neddy
      November 27, 2019 at 2:54 pm
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      Thanks Paul. We’re in furious agreement for a change. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  • Avatar
    November 28, 2019 at 9:40 am
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    Gutsy move, Ned!
    You know and I know that you have followed the letter of the rules and have every right to that generic term.
    If only I still had confidence that the folk at auDA have as good a grasp of the policies as we do! I hope you donโ€™t find yourself with lawyers-at-20-paces as others have due to misinterpretation and misapplication of policy!
    Best of luck!

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    • Neddy
      November 28, 2019 at 9:52 am
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      Paul, I think there are some good people at auDA. And it is only going to get better with the fresh leadership at Board level (and of course the appointment of a new CEO).

      With regards Blockbuster, I also registered the business name as some added insurance. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  • Avatar
    December 1, 2019 at 11:13 pm
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    Super strong domain SEO wise. Saw this on the Drops & thought it would be cool to resurrect & sell Blurays. Nice catch Ned.

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    • Neddy
      December 2, 2019 at 9:45 am
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      Thanks Callum. Even though we only have a parked page at the moment, the traffic is pretty good. Augurs well.

      Reply

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