Amal Augustine is a regular final year electronics engineering student from Kerala who till yesterday was an unknown entity until Facebook approached him with a request. The request had a personal interest of none other than the creator of Facebook, the multi-billionaire entrepreneur Mark Zuckerberg. The undisputed king of social networking obviously did not see this coming but Amal it seems beat Mark in his own backyard.
This Kochi boy last week sealed the deal with Facebook to sell a domain name he had registered last December. The domain name happened to be maxchanzuckerberg.org which is short for the name of the daughter of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerber. Facebook approached the Kerala boy to trade the domain name through GoDaddy.com. At first, Amal did not realise it was actually Facebook that was interested in the Domain, hence he settled for a sum of $700.
But as the deal proceeded, he realised from email sender id that GoDaddy had been negotiating on behalf of Facebook. He said he noticed the FB letterhead and that’s when he realised that the domain was being bought by Mark Zuckerberg’s team. Sara Chapel, manager of Iconic Capital, the firm which handles the financial deals of Facebook founder, wrote to Amal to complete the formalities after the deal was negotiated by Godaddy.com.
This process is called Cybersquatting. It is termed as registering, trafficking in, or using an Internet domain name with bad faith intent to profit from the goodwill of a trademark belonging to someone else. The cybersquatter then offers to sell the domain to the person or company who owns a trademark contained within the name at an inflated price.
The term is derived from “squatting”, which is the act of occupying an abandoned or unoccupied space or building that the squatter does not own, rent, or otherwise have permission to use, according to Wikipedia.