Every once in a long while, the planets align just right or something, and luck falls remarkably in my favor. One example happened in late December 1999.
Ever since I became aware of the Internet, I had coveted the domain name byGosh.com. I had been using the byGosh moniker for various things since way before the Internet and just liked the name. But it was registered very early on. I was somewhat comforted that it was used for a real web site, not just parked or used for spam advertising. I checked every year or two in case it was dropped.
I happened to check a couple of days before Christmas 1999 – byGosh.com was available! It had been dropped and no one had picked it up yet. The timing was amazing. Network Solutions held a monopoly on domain name registration. Registering a domain name was a significant expense – over $200. The monopoly would end in a few days, on January 1, 2000, and upfront expense would drop substantially – to about $35 if memory serves. I could pounce on my dream domain name in spite of the expense, or I could wait a few days and save quite a few dollars at the risk of someone beating me to it. I pounced.
Immediately upon the new millennium, byGosh.net was registered. I am convinced that I got exceptionally lucky. For some reason, the owner of byGosh.com let the domain name drop. By sheer coincidence the cost of domain registration was about to decrease substantially – otherwise someone surely would have picked up the name. Had I waited for the price drop, I am convinced I had little chance of grabbing the name – someone would have beaten me to it.
I entered the new millennium a couple hundred bucks light in the wallet but with a web presence using the domain name I had always wanted. Yea me!
The original byGosh, before it was dropped and I grabbed it, was a Christian site focused on the peaceful and inspiring Sermon on the Mount, with an odd sidebar advocating the slaughter of one’s religious enemies. At least that’s how I remember it – it has been awhile, and it was not well written – difficult for me to follow in places. Still, I found the advocacy of both peaceful tolerance and genocide to be ironic and intriguing. It’s record was once preserved in the Wayback Machine, but disappeared roughly 15 years ago.
Update: byGosh.com will reach it’s 20th anniversary on December 23, 1019! I don’t remember exactly when it made its first public appearance, but it would have been in January or February 2000. Here’s the earliest available Wayback Machine snapshot, from June 20, 2000. Microsoft FrontPage was popular at the time, and I had access to it through my employer, so I used that.
FrontPage was much maligned by html purists, but I became a big fan of its intuitive WSIWYG editor. I was – and remain – a completely untrained amateur in web design/development, but I was pleased with the look. Many of the images – some of which I still use – were from the free Microsoft graphics library which was long ago discontinued.
Microsoft dropped support for FrontPage in December 2006. By then my site had grown to a couple of thousand pages, and I dreaded the thought of re-doing it. So, I limped along for almost a decade using Microsoft Expression Editor to make needed updates. The final Wayback Machine snapshot of the FrontPage version of the site is from January 17, 2016.
By 2016 my site was woefully antiquated and in desperate need of a major refresh.
WPPOV supports freedom from Net Neutrality and the GDPR. The Internet of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the Earth.