The Hot Iron

A journal on business, technology and occasional diversions by Mike Maddaloni

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Theirs is not Your Domain Name

It may be your email address and your identity, but if you have your email through a third-party service, using their domain name, you don’t have complete control of it. These examples have caused grief for thousands, and hopefully it drove some of them to their own domain name.

Many people have their email addresses through their Internet provider. This is a very common practice, and all tends to work well with sending and receiving email. But what happens when you decide to change Internet providers, or you move and have to choose a new provider? Or if you change from dial-up to broadband and go with a new provider. In all cases your old email account will cease to exist when you stop paying for it. Some providers may offer limited forwarding, but that will soon end.

The extreme case of this was when AT&T (note the capital letters) bought cable and broadband provider MediaOne. They decided to terminate the use of the email domain name, mediaone.net, in favor of their own, attbi.com. Individuals and businesses were then forced to change their email address, and in some cases business cards and letterhead. And to add insult to injury, when Comcast bought AT&T Broadband and they eliminated attbi.com for comcast.net, more changes ensued.

Up until recently, individuals and businesses were paying AOL monthly fees just to keep their AOL email address, even when they have moved on to broadband. AOL’s announcement of offering their email services for free changed this; you must contact them to make this change.

If you own your own domain name, your email address would not have changed in any of these cases, and saved you printing costs and time wasted telling everyone of your new email address.


Posted by Mike Maddaloni on 02/17 at 03:21 PM
Domain Names • (4) Comments • (0) TrackbacksPermalink


Comments

Also see GMail for your domain, where Google allows you to point your domain’s MX records at gmail.com.

Picture of tom sherman Comment by tom sherman
on 02/17/07 at 07:39 PM
 


Hi Tom - Thanks for the info!

I’ll include it with the piece I will write about how to actually use your domain name for email.  I am writing this in pieces and all rolled-up it will (hopefully) make lots of sense!

mp/m

Picture of Mike Maddaloni Comment by Mike Maddaloni
on 02/18/07 at 09:55 AM
 


Has AT&T ever acquired anything without screwing it up? I very painfully remember having to hand-hold many clients through the MediaOne transition. We probably gave them more customer service for free than AT&T ever did.

These days, it’s also hard because we all have so many addresses. I generally use my Gmail account for convenience, and it integrates nicely with my corporate accounts, except that I often forget to use the right address on outbound business emails.

Picture of Dr. Pete Comment by Dr. Pete
on 02/20/07 at 11:10 AM
 


Yes Pete - managing email addresses is a challenge, primarily because most people have more than one, and when you’re sending a message, you sometimes don’t know who you are sending it from!  I will add this to my list as well…

mp/m

Picture of Mike Maddaloni Comment by Mike Maddaloni
on 02/20/07 at 11:47 AM
 


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The Hot Iron strives to present unique content and perspective on business, technology and other topics by Mike Maddaloni, a Web and business strategist based in Chicago.

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