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A Brief History of 'sex.com'

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the truth-is-always-stranger-than-fiction dept.

The Internet 78

linuxwrangler writes "Violet Blue's current 'Open Source Sex' column in SFGate covers the amusingly sordid history of sex.com. More graft and corruption than hanky-panky, the article details some of the exploits surrounding the much-desired URL, including an attempted assassination, drug smuggling, money laundering, and a bid to buy out Ceasar's Palace. From the article: 'It's estimated that Cohen made over $100 million off the URL in the years he had it, even making a 1999 bid to buy Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, and was only forced to give it back to Kremen when a San Jose court awarded the URL (and $65 million in damages) to Kremen in 2001. It had been a five-year struggle for Kremen, both in battling his speed addiction and in trying to raise funds for his own litigation. Even though his dot-com boom resume boasted typical startup-style impressive credentials, Kremen was only able to afford the court bills when bitter Sex.com porn industry rivals helped fund the case.'

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78 comments

slow day??? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331228)

Yawn....

Re:slow day??? (3, Funny)

Arcane_Rhino (769339) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331318)

Nonsense. I wish I had the movie rights.

A BETTER STORY IS WHEN ZONK OBTAINED NAMBLA.COM (1)

CmdrTaco (troll) (578383) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331538)

In the end, he too ended up in a Tijuana prison. However when he was set to be released he insisted on staying because he just loved filthy mexican cock too much. You see, in the streets of Tijuana it cost at least 5 pesos but in prison it was free.

Rubber Alligator (5, Funny)

omeomi (675045) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331262)

The only thing missing from the Sex.com story is a dead stripper found with a rubber alligator lodged in her throat

Well, that seems easy enough to fix...

Now, where to find a rubber alligator...

Re:Rubber Alligator (1)

Xyrus (755017) | more than 7 years ago | (#17335860)

If you put all the current tags together, you have the name of a good story:

Corruption Internet Sex Business Bubble

Well, either that or a strange new virtual sex device.

~X~

Social engineering (5, Interesting)

Life700MB (930032) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331272)


Ah, score another for the good old social engineering [wikipedia.org] that made it posible to obtain the domain without having the rigts to it.

--
Superb hosting [tinyurl.com] 200GB Storage, 2_TB_ bandwidth, php, mysql, ssh, $7.95

Re:Social engineering (5, Funny)

Joebert (946227) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331472)

Social Engineering ? To obtain Sex ? Say it isn't so !

Re:Social engineering (5, Funny)

Cheapy (809643) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331962)

Usually it's called "beer"....

Re:Social engineering (2, Insightful)

mmkkbb (816035) | more than 7 years ago | (#17336480)

For crying out loud mods! It's called a "pick-up line". Beer is not social engineering.

Re:Social engineering (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17336640)

For crying out loud stop being such a tool and roll with the joke. I bet your a ton of fun at a party. You probably haven't had your dick in anything wet and moist since that time you fucked that Betty Crocker cake.

P.S. You're a faggot.

Re:Social engineering (1)

mmkkbb (816035) | more than 7 years ago | (#17341576)

Sorry, I don't roll with crappy jokes to fit in (especially when a tiny bit more effort would make it not suck). I grew out of that in 3rd grade.

P.S. Grow a dick and log in.

Re:Social engineering (1)

Cheapy (809643) | more than 7 years ago | (#17344834)

"Can I buy you a beer?"

Anyways, you claim to grow out of immature jokes, yet you tell someone to "grow a dick and log in"? Those two are mutually exclusive.

Cool name tag (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331360)

- So what kind of business are you in?

Can't you read tags? I'm in the Internet Bubble Business.

Re:Cool name tag (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331910)

There is no business like the corruption internet sex bubble business.

Cohen (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331374)

Is he the same semi-retarded dude who wrote shittorrent?

PS Plenty of big name porn sites raked in 100 million in the 90s.

That article makes me brain hurtee (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331382)

That sounds like an interesting story. Too bad the article is so poorly written that it hardly explains what happened.

Re:That article makes me brain hurtee (1)

fbjon (692006) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331846)

Well, this part was interesting:
"Mr. Kremen's legal team also identified banks linked to Mr. Cohen in Latvia, Luxembourg, the Isle of Man, Mexico, Vanuatu, and the British Virgin Islands, but lawyers were unable to recover any funds."
"Recover"?? Why do I get this picture of lawyer tentacles slithering all over the planet, sliding into every nook, fold and crevasse looking for some leftover cash crumbs.

Re:That article makes me brain hurtee (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331922)

tentacles slithering all over the planet, sliding into every nook, fold and crevasse


Nah, sex.com doesn't have that kind of porn

Re:That article makes me brain hurtee (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17332232)

You my friend have been watching too much Japanese porn.

Violet Blue? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331432)

Oh... there's another one.

FriOst p5ot (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331494)

AT&T and Berkeley to place a paper FreeBSD at about 80 best. Individuals declined in market steadily fucking Centralized models To have to decide There's no Supe8ior to slow, 7000 users of they're gone Came than its Windows Things I still and Michael Smith of various BSD America. You, anything can would you like to private sex party my resignation best. Individuals there are about 700 Hubbard and Mike started work on not anymore. It's if I remain

Article almost as interesting as the author bio... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331500)

Wow. She's a machine artist. I kid you not!

What about whitehouse.gov?? (3, Funny)

filesiteguy (695431) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331530)

I find this all very interesting. However, I'm wondering if there's a similar tale behind the owners of whitehouse.gov - the other hot pr0n site on the internet.

Re:What about whitehouse.gov?? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331602)

I'm wondering if there's a similar tale behind the owners of whitehouse.gov - the other hot pr0n site on the internet

If you feel that whitehouse.gov is the hottest porn site on the Internet, you sir are the biggest GW Bush fan I've ever met. You win, hands down.

Re:What about whitehouse.gov?? (2, Informative)

BacOs (33082) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331650)

They're referring to whitehouse.com, which used to be a porn site.

Re:What about whitehouse.gov?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331946)

Wooosh

Re:What about whitehouse.gov?? (1)

filesiteguy (695431) | more than 7 years ago | (#17338418)

lol!

I actually remember the instance where I was showing off our "new" T1 connection to my CEO back in the late '90s. Not thinking, I inadvertently showed him whitehouse.com instead of whitehouse.gov.

Oops!!

Re:What about whitehouse.gov?? (4, Funny)

CaffeineAddict2001 (518485) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331674)

Oh come on: CONDIE RICE. Raaawr! What? None of you find power sexy?

Re:What about whitehouse.gov?? (1)

Joebert (946227) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331902)

None of you find power sexy?

To be honest, I have this fantasy, to ask the question, How's my dictate ?, of a woman with that kind of power.

Re:What about whitehouse.gov?? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17333058)

I'd bang her.

Re:What about whitehouse.gov?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17333154)

Cunilingus Rice? I'll tell YOU about Cunilingus Rice!

Re:What about whitehouse.gov?? (1)

homebrewmike (709361) | more than 7 years ago | (#17333388)

If you feel that whitehouse.gov is the hottest porn site on the Internet, you sir are the biggest GW Bush fan I've ever met. You win, hands down.

And one sick puppy...

Good premise, terrible writing, bleh credentials (3, Insightful)

ObiWonKanblomi (320618) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331572)

Did Cohen really share a cell with Michael Milken or did he stay at the same prison but at different times? I'd be more interested in reading about that if he did actually share the same cell.

Also, this author's credentials sound like something that could only qualify someone for work in San Francisco:

Violet Blue is author and editor of over a dozen sexual health books and erotica collections. She is a professional sex educator, lecturer, podcaster, video blogger, porn/erotica reviewer and machine artist. Violet is also a fetish model, a member of Survival Research Labs, an author at Metroblogging San Francisco; girl friday contributor at Fleshbot, a San Francisco native, and a pro blogger. For more information and links to Web sites discussed in Open Source Sex, go to Violet Blue's Web site, tinynibbles.com.

Please tell me I live in a sane world when I say even Dvorak or Cringley has better credentials.

Re:Good premise, terrible writing, bleh credential (3, Funny)

Biff Stu (654099) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331924)

While I'm not a huge fan of her style, I must say that she writes a sex column; her crededentials are appropriate and well-suited for the job. On the other hand, the thought of associating Dvorak or Cringley with sex makes me run in terror.

Re:Good premise, terrible writing, bleh credential (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17333206)

her credentials are a pile of *hite. Thats the point.

Re:Good premise, terrible writing, bleh credential (1)

Skadet (528657) | more than 7 years ago | (#17335390)

I must say that she writes a sex column; her crededentials are appropriate and well-suited for the job.
Really? Being a sex columnist makes her well-suited to write a story that admits in the first paragraph that it has nothing at all to do with sex? How do you figure?

Oh dear God! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17334008)

Please tell me I live in a sane world when I say even Dvorak or Cringley has better credentials.

I think Cringely is the one who should feel sullied by that association. At the very least he has 'Triumph of the Nerds' and 'NerdTV' to his credit...what does John Dvorak or "Violet Blue" have to their credit?

Cringely is not always right, and maybe even wrong a lot, but he's usually worth listening to.

Re:Good premise, terrible writing, bleh credential (1)

owlnation (858981) | more than 7 years ago | (#17335526)

She is a professional sex educator, lecturer, podcaster, video blogger, porn/erotica reviewer and machine artist.
As someone who is an experienced worker in the sex industry, can I be the first to ask... What on earth is a "machine artist"?

Re:Good premise, terrible writing, bleh credential (1)

poot_rootbeer (188613) | more than 7 years ago | (#17336534)

Please tell me I live in a sane world when I say even Dvorak or Cringley has better credentials.

Better credentials for WHAT?

Yes, I suppose if I were looking for someone to write a column about technology, one of those gentlemen would be the better choice. But if I were looking for someone to write a column about sex, you better believe John C. Dvorak would be at the very bottom of my list!

It was a long, hard case... (5, Funny)

Cr0w T. Trollbot (848674) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331592)

..but Gary Kreman kept pounding, pounding away, thrusting again and again into the slippery corridors of justice. It was sweaty working penetrating the tight holes of legal precedence necessary for him to release his load of depositions, a sticky, exhausting process. But he prevailed! A model for us all...

Crow T. Trollbot

Re:It was a long, hard case... (3, Funny)

Lord Kano (13027) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331800)

Then the judge pulled out his law books and sprayed justice in everyone's face.

LK

Re:It was a long, hard case... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331934)

Then the judge pulled out his law books and sprayed justice in everyone's face.

Keep going. This is making me hot.

Brief history... (-1, Troll)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331716)

There was a boy and a girl. A video camera and a website. The boy made money while screwing over the girl, and the girl filed a Cal-OSHA complaint. The End.

Re:Brief history... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17333504)

Troll? Obviously, someone isn't familiar with California labor laws.

just make sure... (4, Funny)

advocate_one (662832) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331730)

you type it right [sew.com] ... oh see what you get for only being one letter out...

Re:just make sure... (1)

From A Far Away Land (930780) | more than 7 years ago | (#17332070)

Sew, like Sex though, is all about the "in and out", and "creation".

Re:just make sure... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17332340)

In Dutch, 'naaien' (to sew) is a common euphemism for sex

Oy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17331772)

Ahoy, Captain Spooge! Arrrrr...

Appropriate google ads? (4, Funny)

Pedahzur (125926) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331786)

Am I the only one that finds these google ads at the bottom of that article to be apropos:

Sex Offender Registry
Search updated sex offender list Free service with maps, easy to use
----------------.org

Registered Sex Offenders
Protect your child. Find out now if a sex offender lives in your area.
www.---------------------.com

Instant Criminal Records
Nationwide Criminal, Felony & Sex Offender Checks. Updated Regularly.
www.--------.com

Sex.com belongs to all of us (3, Funny)

Paladin144 (676391) | more than 7 years ago | (#17331870)

Come on people, quit the fussin' and the fightin'. Put aside your differences. It's clear, that sex.com belongs to all of us, like the environment or the national debt. You see, sex.com is part of our heritage. It's the domain that is connected to every single one of us -- after all, who among us would be here if our parents didn't have sex? (okay, Cowboy Neal is a test tube baby, but the rest of us were created during sex)

Don't you see? Sex.com is our birthright! It's a national treasure. It is a god among TLDs. That's why I think we should make it public domain and put a wiki up there so we can all teach and share what we've learned about sex. Like the future, sex.com belongs to the children. The next time somebody mentions sex.com, think of the children!

Uhh... wait a sec...

Re:Sex.com belongs to all of us (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17332128)

...after all, who among us would be here if our parents didn't have sex?


Jesus Christ!

(It's funny, laugh. Then try to gouge out your eyes before you realize it is mental imagery.)

Re:Sex.com belongs to all of us (1)

pipingguy (566974) | more than 7 years ago | (#17333654)

Uhh... wait a sec...

No, no more secs, please figure out the ramifications of your words *before* you post.

Why no, I'm not British, why do you ask?

Money (4, Interesting)

Lord_Dweomer (648696) | more than 7 years ago | (#17332612)

Just out of curiosity, how is it that he made that much freaking money off of a domain name? I'm sure he had ads and affiliate stuff all over the place but how in the hell did he make THAT much, it seems WAAAY more than he should have been able to make.

Can any adult webmasters weigh in on the amounts of money to be made in your business? How much would you say your "average" pr0n site pulls in? What amount of traffic is required for that?

Re:Money (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17333966)

I am not in the pr0n business, but as an amature domain speculator I am not at all suprised by the amount of money he made from the domain.

The internet was built on pr0n, much like the home video market before it. Even today there are vast sums of money flowing through pr0n web sites. Much like their customers however, the captains of the pr0n industry (mostly) like to keep a low profile. So because the businesses are largely privately owned and the proprietors don't show up on the cover for Forbes most people don't mentally associate pr0n with big money.

Re:Money (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17335578)

Can any adult webmasters weigh in on the amounts of money to be made in your business? How much would you say your "average" pr0n site pulls in?


I can't tell you as an adult webmaster, but as somebody who used to work for a company that was involved in the payment processing for some adult websites I can tell you that even relatively obscure sites, without a domain such as sex.com pull in a metric shitload of cash. It is the niche ones that do well, once had a conversation with a guy who was working minimum wage until his wife agreed to pose for some very specific kind of photos... they are looking to retire wealthy in a few years time (when he turns 40).

Re:Money (2, Interesting)

owlnation (858981) | more than 7 years ago | (#17335646)

It was easier to make lots of money in porn at the beginning of the web. For those of us who entered the marker later it's actually pretty tough, you need to do all the work that every other site is doing, adult or otherwise, to make money. And no, not even in that order of magnitude amount - if you are doing things legitimately an least - as I endeavor to do. Maybe if you are doing things illegally you can make much more, but that's not for me, I'd rather settle for a reasonable income and be able to sleep at night.

I have few friends who did start up at the beginning of the web, and sure they are pretty rich, but they didn't make anything like that kind of money. Either this guy is really good, or (likely) there's still more to the story to be told.

Re:Money (1)

Lord_Dweomer (648696) | more than 7 years ago | (#17336566)

I assume your website in your profile is beautifulassettes.com. Would you mind sharing some rough figures on traffic/revenue? Or if you'd like, you can email me at haltingpoint at gmail dot com. I started a babeblog briefly but ran into a lot of barriers and perhaps I can discuss those with you.

Re:Money (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17338624)

Top affiliate schemes these days pay $40-$60 per signup for a $3 trial. These convert at around 1:1000 for properly niched/setup sites.
For some actual figures from legit guys - http://www.hoes.com/sponsors/ [hoes.com]
This shows that traffic to the standard top programs will run at about 5c/hit today, which is about right. In 2004 it was more like 10c a hit. The market is flooded these days. Back in the sex.com battle days it was even more.

sex.com falls in the top 1000 traffic sites overall, which you can imagine the number of hits we are talking there. Subtract a decent chunk of conversion ratio for the weaker traffic (sex.com visitors are not going to be as determined porn surfers as hoes.com, a lot more casual hits), and you are still probably talking 1c a hit. For, lets say, 6m hits a day, $60,000 a day == 21 million a year. Sounds in the right ballpark?

Re:Money (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17346138)

As I recall, the owner of sex.com was also suing other websites with the word "sex" in the domain name, thus bringing in lots of other sex related sites under his umbrella of control.

It would only be a good porn domain... (4, Funny)

Krater76 (810350) | more than 7 years ago | (#17332758)

... if you could type it with one hand.

Re:It would only be a good porn domain... (1)

Beached (52204) | more than 7 years ago | (#17333252)

you could, most browsers will add in the .com for you and sex is all on the left

Re:It would only be a good porn domain... (1)

Nimey (114278) | more than 7 years ago | (#17333560)

and sex is all on the left


So why is the birthrate increasing among all the religious nutters then?

I kid, I kid.

Re:It would only be a good porn domain... (1)

owlnation (858981) | more than 7 years ago | (#17335674)

so those of us who are left handed would be better off with ilm.com? Perfect for Princess Leia in the gold bikini porn?

Re:It would only be a good porn domain... (1)

D-Cypell (446534) | more than 7 years ago | (#17335592)

...Not really. Most normal folks would wait for the site to load before hand availability was an issue.

DUPE!!!!!! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17333042)

i dont know when but i know i saw the history of sex.com as a story a long time ago! fucking dupe you tards!

Merry Christmas Sex.com (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17333636)

HO DARE ! ...bees welcomin yo damn self to
da home o' St. Niggolas ... NIGGER CLAUS ! ... dont be eatin no yellow snow wiles ya here !
Hello chilluns, set yoself down and lets me be tellin yaz da tale of
how Old
Saint Niggolas become Nigger Claus.
Used ta be, way back when ... Crimmus only be fo whitey. Lil black
chilluns be
wakin up ta find nuttin but piles o' shit unda dey Crimmus tree while
whitey
cross town be gettin all da good stuff.
Well in dis little town way up nort, dey be dis black chop shop owner
by da
name o' Niggolas. Now like any black man, Niggolas he liked his
whiskey.
One night, while he wuz staggerin home from da local saloon wif a
steamin hot
bucket o' fried chicken wif all da fixins undah his arm old Niggolas be
detained by da pigs and befoe nights end died from internal injuries he
sustained when they shoved a billy club up his hairy black ass fo what
da
Reverend Al Sharpton said wuz "no apparent reason."
Instantly da towns black clergy called a special meetin' and wif da
help of da
Reverend Jesse Jackass dey canonized old Niggolas and henceforth
"Saint"
Niggolas came ta be.
Now chilluns, yaz wud think dat da story wud end wit dat but no fuckin
way. Be
sittin yo ass down cuz deys mo. Ya seez, what I didn't mention was dat
ol'
Niggolas was stereotypically hung like a moose and consequently was
also da
pappy of most of da towns lil black chilluns.
Crimmus aftah Crimmus it pissed him off dat he wud hafta wait til
Crimmus NITE,
afta whitey had gone ta bed ta go steal presents fo his own chillun.
Dats why,
in some black neighborhoods till dis very day Crimmus am STILL
celebrated on da
twenty SIXT o' Decembah.
Well, aftah goin ta his reward Saint Niggolas saw a way to right this
terrible
wrong. So ever since then, Saint Nig as "Nigger Claus" can be found
looting
department stores and stealin presents outta whiteys trunk in shopping
mall
parking lots all over the world so dat on Crimmus eve he can load up
his flashy
red Eldorado convertible and be deliverin' em to all da po' black
chilluns.
On da way he stops at all the white folks houses(except fo da Jews ...
even
Nigger Claus has SOME standards)and steals all their presents, eats
their
cookies, raids their liquor cabinets and rapes their women. Den it's
off to da
ghetto to bring smiles ta da faces of all da lil black chilluns.
So next Crimmus eve chilluns, be lookin up inta da sky round midnite.
And if ya
sees a nappy headed, jolly old fat man, stinkin of booze and dressed in
red
standin up behind da wheel of a red ghetto sled Cadillac pulled by a
team of
angry pit bulls dat ain't no Santa ... Dat am "NIGGER CLAUS" !!!

Fuck Niggers! fuck Kwanzaa ! Long Live the KKK!!! Fuck.

Cletis.

Mother warned me (1)

syousef (465911) | more than 7 years ago | (#17333786)

Assassinations? Oh my. Mother told me having sex was nothing but trouble, but did I listen?

OLD!! (1)

Jesus IS the Devil (317662) | more than 7 years ago | (#17335864)

This isn't even news anymore. The whole sordid saga of sex.com was reported on wired.com at least 5 years ago! Why is this making the rounds now?

Re:OLD!! (1)

AceCaseOR (594637) | more than 7 years ago | (#17337446)

This isn't even news anymore. The whole sordid saga of sex.com was reported on wired.com at least 5 years ago! Why is this making the rounds now?
Because, it wasn't over 5 years ago. It's almost over now. Maybe.
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