If you think the president .sucks, the Internet has a whole new way for you to convey those feelings.
The Trump Organization has tried to prevent online criticism by buying thousands of anti-Trump website names and mothballing them. Among the anti-Trump websites purchased by Trump’s company are DonaldTrumpSucks.com, ImBeingSuedByTheDonald.com, VoteAgainstTrump.com, TrumpFraud.org and TrumpScam.com, according to CNNMoney.
But Trump either skipped or missed the opportunity to buy a new kind of trolling web domain — the kind that ends in .sucks.
Little-noticed by the public and apparently Trump, approximately 1,000 top level website name extensions were added to the internet marketplace starting in 2015. The new website names are a huge expansion from the 22 domain name extensions such as .com, .edu, .net, or.org.
Besides .sucks, the new gripe sites offer mocking extensions such as .fail, .exposed, .gripe, and .WTF.
Other new extensions include .porn, .adult, and .sex, as well as more politically minded ones like .vote, and .democrat.
And there are a couple Trump might actually like, such as .republican and .golf.
The introduction of all the new website name extensions has made it impossible for Trump, celebrities, and brands to scoop up and warehouse every single negative domain name.
“There are a million derogatory terms that you can use in a domain name,” DomainNameWire.com editor and domain consultant Andrew Allemann told TheWrap. “It’s kind of whack-a-mole — if you get rid of one name, another one will pop up.”
It’s not clear if Trump grew weary of playing whack-a-mole with new website names or his team missed the 2015 roll-out of the new domain extensions. The Trump Organization has not responded to a request for comment.
According to Whois.com, Trump did not buy trump.sucks, donaldtrump.sucks, or presidenttrump.sucks. As of this writing, these three domain names remain “reserved” for “premium” prices of $2,000 each annually, Vox Populi Registry CEO John Berard told TheWrap. Vox Populi sells .sucks domain names on the get.sucks website
These websites ending in .gripe, .fail, and .press all mock Trump and were purchased by undisclosed buyers, according to a search on Whois.com.
Unlike Trump, some celebrities and brands moved quickly to buy .sucks websites when they came available two years ago.
“House of Cards” star Kevin Spacey reportedly bought KevinSpacy.sucks and Singer Taylor Swift bought TaylorSwift.sucks, while Google, Apple, Instagram, WordPress, and Microsoft bought .sucks domains such as gmail.sucks, apple.sucks, siri.sucks and windowsphone.sucks.
The decision to sell the new domain name extensions was approved by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or ICANN, a non-profit based in Playa Vista, Calif.
It might seem legally risky to put up new gripe websites sites mocking Trump or huge companies like Microsoft and Apple. But the First Amendment would protect their owners from libel lawsuits, should Trump try to sue.
“Yes, the First Amendment should protect those sites,” Stanford law professor Mark Lemley told TheWrap. “And Trump would certainly have no case; we allow much more freedom to make political statements than statements about brands.”
Brands would have a tough time suing too, he said.
“Under trademark law the first question is whether the use of such a site would confuse consumers into thinking that Microsoft or Apple sponsored something called ‘microsoft.sucks,’” Lemley said. “That seems extremely unlikely.”
Buying all these new domain names may be a waste of money because their reach remains dwarfed by the familiar .com websites. But if alternatives catch on, someone could do well to buy sites like trump.exposed ($4,000) or trumpsaves.com ($5,000).
TrumpSucks.wtf, meanwhile, is selling for only $29.88.