Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Web Imperialist: Fan Sites and Domain Names

One of the ways to gain higher visibility on the Internet is to register domain names and establish fan sites where you can put up a forum for comments.
The major problem you will find however, is tracking down a subject whose domain name has not been taken yet. I tried recently with a host of lesser-known gods and goddesses, and miserably failed.
Would you believe there are already domain names taken for people like Odette Yustman and Jessica Lucas, two minor and young Hollywood actresses whose foray into fame is just beginning thanks to the gimmicky monster movie Cloverfield?
Or try Stana Katic, a beautiful Canadian actress of obviously Croatian origin, who had minor parts in the fifth season of '24' and the first season of 'Heroes.' You will find, not only is her domain name gone, but she herself has set up quite an attractive website. Same counts for Dania Ramirez, an actress whom I first learned about when watching the first episode of the second season of 'Heroes.'
Maybe one way out of this quandary is to go foreign, to try and find a name that's hardly common yet on Main Street USA or Chungshan Road Taiwan. Well, there again, you'd be amazed what you find. There are already fan sites for Marion Cotillard, the Oscar nominee for the Edith Piaf movie. There are already fan sites for Eriko Tamura, the woman you saw in that first episode of the second season of 'Heroes,' again. But then she's already a star in her native Japan, so what did you expect? I didn't even bother to search for Olga Kurylenko or any other of the newest batch of Bond girls, or for British singers Leona Lewis and Kate Nash.
And guess what? Even French fraudmeister Jerome Kerviel now has a website dedicated to him, even I'm sure he's not the guy running it.
So where's the solution? Maybe stick close to home, Taiwan in my case. There's a whole batch of supermodels here, new tennis players, and minor actors and actresses. The hope that any of them is ever going to hit the big time in Hollywood or at Wimbledon might be idle though, but maybe it's worth a try.
I tried my luck with actress Judy Hu Ting-ting and tennis star Hsieh Shu-wei. Let's see what happens. With Taiwanese subjects of course, you still have to get lucky with the way they spell their name, because your interpretation of pinyin or other romanization systems might not be theirs.


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