Tag Archives: America Online

AOL Shuts Down Wow.com

Okay, now it might seem that I am completely using that headline as a troll for this post.

And it might even be true.

But this is also a little bit of MMO blogesphere history, so I claim legitimacy!

A couple of years back, WoW Insider, which is basically the “All World of Warcraft All The Time” sister publication of Massively, managed to get a hold of the domain wow.com.  Up to that point, if memory serves, they used the domain wowinsider.com.

Overjoyed at scoring such a good domain name, they changed the name of the whole site to WoW.com.

That lasted for a while… what, a year maybe?

This is a blog campfire tale, in the great oral tradition, so there are no exact dates in my head.  They aren’t important.

What is important is the story.

Anyway, after some time passed, their parent company, whatever passes for America Online these days, decided that such a cool domain name was wasted on them.

So they took the domain away from them, changed their name back WoW Insider, and stuck them under the Joystiq banner just for good measure.  Those WoW pukes know who is boss now that they have to live with the domain wow.joystiq.com, which honestly could work for either a game site or a porn site. (Massively got shifted over from massively.com to massively.joystiq.com as well, which holds about the same porn site connotations.)

And what did AOL do with this hot property, this asset too valuable for a mere gaming site?

Why, this great URL was seen as the cornerstone of their plan to create yet another Groupon clone for the web, which they planned to call Wow.

Because that is what, more sites attempting to clone the success of others.

And how did that work out?

Due to an outdated bookmark deep in Firefox, I stumbled upon the site this morning.  AOL is shutting it down.

All Wow.com vouchers must be printed off by 12/31/2011

So much for that idea!  But yet another AOL acquisition will be providing local coupons.  I wonder how the people at Patch.com feel about picking up that task?

And what will become of the wow.com domain?  It is way too valuable to let it lapse.

Maybe AOL could sell it to Blizzard?  They certainly seem to have money.

What would you do with the domain wow.com?