In November 2009 I purchased the domain name www.in-the-back-of-the.net and began blogging on Google’s Blogspot platform. To the best of my knowledge, at that time, nobody else in the world was using .net in this way. After an initial flurry, like a lot of bloggers do, I ran out of oomph for a while and the blog went into hiatus. In June 2011 I resolved to pick it up again and do it properly. I moved the operation over to WordPress and for the past two and a bit years that have elapsed since then, I have been working hard to build this site into something I am very proud of.
A few days ago it was brought to my attention that a new blog/website has started up with strikingly similar branding to mine – backofthe.net.nz. While its content is very different, its similarity of branding remains an extraordinary coincidence. While it remains the case that to the best of my knowledge nobody else in the world is using any variation of ‘back of the .net’ as a URL, name and/or brand for a football website, all of a sudden there are two doing so in a small non-football country such as New Zealand. This will confuse people.
I have been in communication with those running the site. Initially with some raw anger that in hindsight was a mistake. Then with what I consider a reasonable request for them to change their brand. I have accepted their explanation that they were not aware of my blog until I brought it to their attention. However I would have thought that a simple Google search before choosing a name is a step that all competent prospective website and business owners take in order to check whether or not, or to what extent, their name is already in use by someone else before they invest in a brand. This crew obviously did not do this and that is unfortunate. I suggested to them that since they had only just launched in the past few weeks and appeared to have not yet established a large audience, it would cause minimum disruption to their readership to choose another brand at this stage. They refused my suggestion.
Given that, all I can really do now is place on the record my frustration, along with the chain of events above and the fact that my blog is in no way associated with theirs. I am determined that in the words of Winston Peters, “I was here a long time before you arrived, and I’ll be here a long time after you’re gone”, and as such a link to this post will be added to the menu on the top left hand side of this blog so that confused visitors of the future might see it and find clarification.
A grassroots sports photography enthusiast based in Auckland, New Zealand, and a fan of the most magnificent football club on earth - A.S. Roma.