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My URL sold for $200k and I bought it for $700 but did not get paid
gypsyking



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 3:26 am on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

Alright gurus. here is one for you.

I sent $700 to the guy (after receiving a paypal request confirming the agreed sale!).

Next day he refunded the money saying he would not require payment again until the domain was pushed. All the supporting emails point to a done deal which was never canceled.

The kid then sold it the next day to someone for $1500 and that guy sold it for 200,000!

So, what do you say ... game on?

According to the legal eagles once this sale was done all other parties are custodians and all proceeds belong to me.

Comments please.

Also, advice. Is this one straight for the jugular via hard-ass lawyers or ICANN route?

 

HuskyPup



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 1:27 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

Is this one straight for the jugular via hard-ass lawyers or ICANN route?


You mean you haven't been to your lawyers yet for their initial thoughts?

INAL however they never accepted payment therefore I would have thought that you never owned it unless you had a signed contract of some description.

It must've been one helluva name! Caught on the drop?

gypsyking



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 1:44 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

He sent a paypal request and I paid for it.

The DID accept payment and then the next day refunded it saying he will only request payment again when its transferred. Then he sold it to someone else. Actually, he has never indicated that our deal was canceled in any way. He just did not get back to me.

Its bazaar I know, but yes, legal is starting. Just fishing here for insights and knowledge

HuskyPup



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 1:52 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

I assume you're in the USA and the seller is too?

I do not know how US contracts work with regards to accepting then refunding payments, come to that I'm not too sure how that would stand in the UK either without taking legal advice which I could get very quickly through ny trade legal services.

Do you have one of those? The BBB or something?

Make sure you have every piece of correspondence backed-up securely!

kaled

WebmasterWorld Senior Member kaled us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 1:55 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

Without more details, only guesses can be made. My guess is that your best course of action is to forget about it and move on.

In the case of a physical auction, when the hammer goes down a contract is deemed to exist. So far as I am aware, online auctions do not carry the same legal mandate and unless you can show that a contract existed, you are not likely to have a winnable case.

Kaled.

gypsyking



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 2:13 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

hey guys,

filling you in as the thread grow ... I will supply details but not names for obvious reasons.

yes, all parties US based

contract exists in form of Paypal request for money issued and payment sent and accepted. What better "contract" can their be. You know, any verbal agreement is a binding contract but just hard to enforce. In this case the agreement is documented and sealed by payment though there is no signed contract but then who signs contracts over $700 deals?

Who knew the market would value it so high ...

StoutFiles

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 2:15 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

By refunding your money, and with no formal contract to speak of, I believe he's off the hook. Honestly don't think you have a case here. Since the domain was never signed over to you he's likely allowed to pull out by refunding you.

If I order a product online and they can't get it to me for some reason, as long as they refund my money I can't sue them. Same rules will apply here no doubt.

TheMadScientist

WebmasterWorld Senior Member themadscientist us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 2:32 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

What StoutFiles said...

BTW: Welcome to WebmasterWorld!
Sorry you're not visiting for a 'cooler' reason, but enjoy your stay. :)

Webwork

WebmasterWorld Administrator webwork us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 2:36 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

We're a bit outside the bounds of the Domain Forum Charter but, as the saying goes, somtimes you gotta let your hair down . . if you still have your hair, that is. :P

One legal issue that pops into my hairless head is the statute of frauds [en.wikipedia.org]. Read it. It touches on the importance of putting your agreement into a signed writing, i.e., a contract.

Please read Domain Forum Charter -> Trademark and Legal Issues [webmasterworld.com] before going any further. In part, the info you find in the Charter is there for your own protection.

Also, we don't usually allow gripe-fests . . but, if true . . this is a pretty good one. :P

As my legal secretary would say, when I was battling a particularly tough adversary, "Sucks to be you!" In other words, what she was saying to me was "IF making the big bucks were easy . . we'd all be rich and retired . . So, deal with it".

In your case, consider hiring a lawyer in the jurisdiction where your purported seller resides.

gypsyking



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 2:46 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

Thanks moderator - good to have the heavies involved.

I know I may be taking an optimistic view and I also know that lawsuits are a lawyer feeding system but I am surprised at so much negativity. The law is the law.

Sure, signed contracts are great and help with cases like this but in there absence remains the evidence that a sale was executed. Here there is a) an agreement b) a request for the funds c) payment of the funds and d) no statement to date that the deal has been canceled.

StoutFiles

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 3:22 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

ure, signed contracts are great and help with cases like this but in there absence remains the evidence that a sale was executed. Here there is a) an agreement b) a request for the funds c) payment of the funds and d) no statement to date that the deal has been canceled.


Yes, but the law also states that the most you'd be entitled to is punitive damages. You wouldn't get the domain, it doesn't work that way. You'd get paid according to the money you lost by not having the domain, which would NOT be $200,000. Just because another guy sold it for that much doesn't mean that you personally can claim you could/would have sold it for that much. I'm not sure what exactly you could claim for punitive damages, if anything.

I think the big reason you're doing is "AHH that guy made $200,000 off a domain that could have been mine I want that money". That ship has sailed. You could try and stick it to the seller but it'll likely just cost you more time and money. Courts don't normally punish people for informal email agreements and prompt refunds, or else everyone would be in court all the time.

londrum

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 3:30 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

there are plenty other products out there where you can pay the money, receive an invoice, and still not get the product. its pretty normal.

i used to work in travel and we'd take full payment, issue them with all the paperwork, and still have the right to cancel anytime before travel. that's not a lot different to what he's done. he's cancelled before handing it over.

amazon did it a while ago too. when they took back all those ebooks that people had already bought and downloaded, and gave the money back.

gypsyking



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 3:48 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

Websites and online sales general have robust terms and conditions which all users have agreed to and which covers them within that context. Here we have an agreement between two merchants where no objection or cancellation of same was ever sent. Besides that why would the seller purger himself that there was no deal - he profited practically nothing from it. As for the value, it was sold in an open auction which is a great indication of a fair market value and certainly better than any appraisal ...

kaz

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 4:24 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

The law is the law.


Can you tell us what law you are referring specifically to?

I think you are wasting your time.

g1smd

WebmasterWorld Senior Member g1smd us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 4:40 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

They could say that since it sold for 200K, that's what it is worth, so that's how much you have to pay if you want it.

Webwork

WebmasterWorld Administrator webwork us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 4:45 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

I find this "fact" very interesting: You (Buyer #1)=$750. Next person (Buyer #2)=$1500. Next, the "final deal" (Buyer #3)=$200K.

Such a fact pattern could indicate some very real CUNNING.

Why?

Buyer #2 could be a "straw man" purchaser, a pseudo-buyer, inserted into the "ultimate transaction" to insulate first seller (the one who agreed to sell to you) from a $$$,$$$ money damages claim. The $1500 price makes it look bona fide, even if there's other bad behavior that might justify a claim. The price paid, in theory, also - in theory - might limit your damages claim against "your seller" to the difference between what you offered and what, ultimately, was paid at sale #1.

Also, by virtue of the strawman purchaser, buyer #3 is "insulated". IF he/she bought directly seller #1 he might lose "bona fide purchaser" status and might be subject to equitable attack on the transfer (in violation of your agreement) under equitable theories such as "unclean hands doctrine", equitable estoppel, etc.

Interesting.

Hire yourself a lawyer. (Not me.) And, NO, ICANN is NOT the route. The path is to the correct court - whatever that jurisdiction might be.

[edited by: Webwork at 4:53 pm (utc) on May 5, 2010]

gypsyking



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 4:52 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

other thing. This happened 2 years ago do you think it is still worth pursuing?

Webwork

WebmasterWorld Administrator webwork us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 4:56 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

other thing. This happened 2 years ago do you think it is still worth pursuing?


Argh . . Another reason not to like "legal issue" threads posted in forums: The facts dribble out AFTER the analysis has begun. A lawyer worth her/his retainer would insist on getting a detailed history before offering a legal analysis. Here, knowing that we will NEVER (should never) get all the details we tend to plunge right in . . in the rare cases that we allow "I have a legal issue" threads.

Gypsyking, my threadlock finger is twitching . . but I'll let this thread die a natural death.

No flames from anyone, please, but really - mentioning at this point that a 2 year passage of time is involved is just poor form. A lot can change in 2 years. A domain that might have been worth $750-$1500 could eventually (2 years later?) become a $200K domain by virtue of circumstances that no one reasonably anticipated at the time of the initial transaction.

Folks, if anything this thread has become the latest in a long line of "object lessons" why - as a matter of policy - we don't host "I have a legal issue" threads.

[edited by: Webwork at 5:03 pm (utc) on May 5, 2010]

StoutFiles

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 5:02 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

Websites and online sales general have robust terms and conditions which all users have agreed to and which covers them within that context.

What unwritten terms and conditions are those?

Here we have an agreement between two merchants where no objection or cancellation of same was ever sent.

Considering he doesn't have the item to trade you anymore the agreement is already broken, cancellation or not.

Besides that why would the seller purger himself that there was no deal - he profited practically nothing from it.

His reason for backing out really doesn't matter, but according to your story he sold it for $800 more, which is a good amount.

As for the value, it was sold in an open auction which is a great indication of a fair market value and certainly better than any appraisal ...

What happens to the domain when it's not in the hands of the buyer or seller has no precedence to this case legally.

Demaestro

WebmasterWorld Senior Member demaestro us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 5:25 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

A domain that might have been worth $750-$1500 could eventually (2 years later?) become a $200K domain by virtue of circumstances that no one reasonably anticipated at the time of the initial transaction.


Even more to the point, the domain could have been developed, gained a large user base, and it was the traffic, the site, and the domain that was purchased for $200,000 in which case you would have ZERO claim to the big sale money because the domain was developed and it's value raised and had value added by work not done by you.

They could even say they bought the domain for $700 and they bought the site and traffic for $199,300

TheMadScientist

WebmasterWorld Senior Member themadscientist us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 5:50 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

I think you probably didn't have much of a chance getting it before, and would say it's about 0 now, because this looks distinctly like a 'cash grab'. IMO If you really had an issue with the sale being canceled, and a legitimate gripe about it, the issue should have been raised and whatever claim you felt you had pursued at the time of the cancellation of the sale, otherwise, again IMO, they have your implicit consent to do as they like with it...

IOW: IMO If it was truly an issue and something you felt was rightly yours and thought you had a claim to, then you should have pursued what you thought was a legal claim to property at the time. The fact you left it alone for two years says to me they have your implicit agreement to the cancellation of the sale and IMO you have no recourse.

kaz

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 6:38 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

my threadlock finger is twitching


do it :)

Webwork

WebmasterWorld Administrator webwork us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 7:49 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

I do so hate euthanizing (locking) threads.

I prefer they die of natural causes, preferably without a lot of pain . . or flames . . or spam. :P

trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 8:03 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

+1 on the "do it" Jeff....

Webwork

WebmasterWorld Administrator webwork us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 8:20 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

I sense the end is near.

Question: Name one thing you wouldn't want to hear while waiting in the ER.

Answer: "Paging Dr. Kevorkian. Dr. Kevorkian, please come to the ER".

mack

WebmasterWorld Administrator mack us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 9:54 pm on May 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

+2 :)

Jeff, especialy if the hospital is next to a lake...

Mack.

HuskyPup



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 7:52 pm on May 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

I just want to make sure I understand this simply:-)

Two years ago you offered $700 for a name however the original seller had a better offer come along and sold it for $1,500.00?

Now it has been sold for $200,000.00 and you want to know if you can have a piece of the action?

No chance... +3 :-)

StoutFiles

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 8:06 pm on May 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

Cash grabs over extended passages of time currently only work with patents.

+4.

trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 10:09 pm on May 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

only work with patents.


And divorces :)

pageoneresults

WebmasterWorld Senior Member pageoneresults us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4127097 posted 10:14 pm on May 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

Alright gurus. here is one for you.


Heh! All you gurus got suckered into this one. :)

I prefer they die of natural causes, preferably without a lot of pain . . or flames . . or spam.


You're too nice. This one surely deserves just a little bit of pain.

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