Monday, August 03, 2009

Network Solutions renames their services for added obscurity

I logged into my Network Solutions account this morning for a bit of Monday domain name management to be treated to a page which contained the following:

You see Network Solutions has decided that the service called "Domain" was much too obscure and difficult to understand and so it's much clearer if we now call it "nsWebAddress". Huh?

Also, "Web Site" was so obscure that it was better changed to "nsSpace" or "nsBusinessSpace". And you know those "SSL Certificates"? Well, that was way too confusing, so let's call them "nsProtect".

I'm sure that someone in Network Solutions' marketing department got really excited about all these changes. I'm also betting that they don't actually use their own product.

The best part comes when you actually run the gauntlet of offers and get to your account. Obviously "nsWebAddress" was so crystal clear that they felt the need to put "(Domains)" after it. Pure, pure genius.


Ulisses Montenegro said...

The added trademark symbol next to the new names might give a clue as to their reasoning.

Completely agree that non-copyrightable but comprehensible names make a lot more sense, though.

John Cromartie said...

"You've spoken. We've listened."

Ah, yes. The trademark sign of corporate marketing: convincing you that the company is doing you a favor.

Dustin Mitchell said...

For *many* years now, Network Solutions has been the epitome of a terrible, terrible network company. I recall spending days trying to register a domain back when they were the only game in town, only to get screwed repeatedly by their customer service. Recall their intercepting of failed DNS queries? Notice their widespread squatting (now rivalled only by GoDaddy)?

They have *never* provided any value to anyone, beyond allowing access to monopolized goods like domain names.

There is one and only one reason this company is not six feet under: friendly congressmen.

Shashi Bellamkonda said...

Hi John,

Thanks for your post and thank you for being a Network Solutions Customer. Based on research we decided to go with these more descriptive product names. The industry terms are included for consistency.


Shashi Bellamkonda

John Graham-Cumming said...


Would you be willing to share the research that indicated that "nsWebAddress" was a better name than "Domain"? I'm very curious to see that.

sweeney9 said...

I'd like to see this research too. Owning a personal account and a reseller account myself, never once was I asked if I had problems understanding the generic names.

The good news is that I have lots of time before at least one particular nsWebAddress is up. They just informed me that I am at risk of losing my nsWebAddress that expires in 2011 if I dont renew.

I will ask other people at my company's wcCommunalRehydrationFacilitator if they were ever asked to participate in NetSol research.

Darren Stuart Embry said...

This is not a marketing move. Hungarians have taken over Network Solutions, and have begun enforcing their notation.

Pretty soon domains will start looking like domainExample.tldCom.

Russ Nelson said...

I'm surprised that you're still a NetSol customer. Why haven't you bailed already??

Jarret said...

hm. did godaddy buy them out or something?

smb2009 said...

In an effort to highlight our complete incompetence and ignore all customer requests, we're raising our prices AND making it more difficult for you to understand what it is we do for those higher prices.

Welcome to the Web 3.0!

I love when sales/marketing and legal makes product decisions.

Roger said...

We've just been obliged to make the most expensive 1-year renewal ever: €34.99. I called Network Solutions to find out what "nsWebAddress" means and was told that's the domain name. So what was it that cost €9.99? Surely that's the going price for a domain name renewal? No sir, that's an additional service. I pointed out that €34.99 is expensive compared to the competition: call centre answer was a simple "Yes".
Strange thing is, we're not normally Network Solutions clients and have no memory of ever having transferred the domain to them. I wonder if we might have been victims of some kind of sharp practice... But then again, this is the respectable Network Solutions, not the Domain Registry of America. (You know about them, I suppose.)