A Troll Squats On WWWBING.com — Literally
Friday, October 16th, 2009
Last week, we wrote about the best website ever, wwwtwitter.com. Okay, really it’s just a commonly mistyped domain that is currently redirecting to TechCrunch (and the owner actually updated it to direct to my article specifically — thanks, whoever you are!). In that post, I mentioned that while many big name brands own the wwwBRANDNAME.com domain and forward it to their real one, Microsoft did not own it for their current darling site, Bing.
At the time, the domain simply pointed to a page with a bunch of links. But since our story, the author decided to do something a bit more fun with it. As you can see now, wwwbing.com is a lovely page featuring a squatting troll. As a bonus, the troll is picking its nose and snot appears to be dripping out.
The site is titled, “Welcome to Walter Will Wawrinka Bing Fansite,” and it’s supposedly about an upcoming children’s book, due in 2010, that the author hopes “can be as successful as Harry Potter.”
So that might sound at least somewhat legitimate, right? But the funniest part is that Patrick McAuliffe, the owner of the domain also writes, “Feel free to do a search for Walter Will Wawrinka Bing in the following search engines,” and then goes on to list every single search engine besides Bing. Yes, even Lycos, AltaVista, and Excite. Naturally, Google is first.
What else is funny is that a query for “Walter Will Wawrinka Bing” provides absolutely no results at all on any of the search engines (though it may after this post!). This despite McAuliffe writing, “I know I have many fans around the world.”
In case you haven’t gotten the joke yet, let me spell it out: Walter Will Wawrika Bing.
I asked McAuliffe if Microsoft had reached out to him about acquiring the domain. Instead, it was McAuliffe who reached out to Microsoft with a proposal to sell the domain, and here is the response he got back:
I was asked by Bill’s team to personally respond to your proposal.
I am a business development manager that works with teams across
Microsoft to manage a review process of unsolicited proposals. We
provide resources, feedback and next steps.
I have forwarded your information to our domain registrations group
for their consideration. This group works directly with the various
business groups on domain names and reviews proposals to determine
alignment with our business.
I do want to help set your expectations on follow-up. Given the
volume of inquiries they receive, they generally only respond where
there is interest on behalf of the business group. Once submitted to
the team, I will no longer have any visibility regarding the
submission or its status. As a general guideline, if you have not
received a response within a two week timeframe, it is unlikely there
is any interest in your domain property.
Thank you for your interest in Microsoft.
Gotta love that Microsoft bureaucracy. But maybe they don’t mind that a site a ton of people are probably mistyping, redirects to a picture of a squatting troll picking its nose that suggest you search on Google. Who knows.