Strange News

Raleigh company sells Bush library domain name for $35K

Posted December 11, 2008
Updated December 13, 2008

— George W. Bush's presidential library domain name has been retrieved after a Web developing company accidentally let it expire – and it apparently came at a high price.

Raleigh-based Illuminati Karate, a Web design firm, paid less than $10 for the domain name and sold it back earlier this year for $35,000 to the library's contracted Web developers, Yuma Solutions, said George Huger, lead Web developer for Illuminati Karate.

Mark Mills, owner of Yuma Solutions, did not immediately return calls seeking comment Thursday.

The Tallahassee, Fla.-based company has a history with the Bush family, hosting Web sites for Bush's 2000 campaign and for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush's 1998 and 2002 campaigns.

Records indicate that in March 2007, the George W. Bush Library Foundation, using Yuma Solutions as its contractor, bought the domain name from a private citizen for $3,000. But the registration was set to expire within a few months.

Hunger, 26,  told WRAL News he was suprised to see the library name available and grabbed it after it expired.

Months later, Huger had received some offers on it, but he declined to provide details.

After the Dallas Morning News reported that the library had lost the domain, Mills contacted Illuminati Karate and asked to buy it back, Huger said.

At the time, a library foundation spokesman said officials were unaware that the name had been lost.

Yuma finally reached a deal to buy the Web address back for $35,000, which the company, not the library foundation, apparently paid, Huger said. The site changed hands in April and won't expire until 2013.

With the money, Hunger said he purchased new computers for his business and lifetime North Carolina State University football tickets.

Mark Langdale, president of the George W. Bush Library Foundation, said he didn't know about the Web site being lost and recovered. But, he said, he would know if the library had been stuck with a surprise $35,000 expenditure.

The George W. Bush Presidential Center - which will include a library, museum and public policy institute - is being built at Southern Methodist University in Dallas.

Hunger said he owns more than 150 domain names.

"We have, but that is not going to be worth a lot," Hunger speculated.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • jse830fcnawa030klgmvnnaw+ Dec 12, 2008

    "History will write well about President Bush. We have not been attacked on US soil since 9-11-01 and President Bush has had to fight the terrorist and their allies in the Socialist (formally Democratic) Party." - now

    What drink are you having? It is bad form for not sharing.

  • DougWare.NET Dec 12, 2008


    I agree that it's good business. I also don't believe it should be illegal. I'm just questioning if it's against the T&C of ICANN or registrars.

    There are a lot of businesses out there that are legal, but a little shady such as short term loans and check cashing companies.

    On the other hand, there's also no reason they had to pick that domain. There have been plenty of domains that I've wanted that's someone has squatted on, so I keep researching till I find the one I want.

  • housemanagercary Dec 12, 2008

    It is in bad taste, but smart business. There are no legal terms stating that you have to use the domain. There are lots of individuals out there sitting on domains making money off of resale. The best hope someone else has, is copywrite infringement.

    For everyone still making comments about charging Bush more, Bush didn't pay the $35k. The web development company messed up and let the registration expire, so THEY had to eat the $35k to buy back the domain name.

  • DougWare.NET Dec 12, 2008

    Isn't their a caveat in the domain name registration terms & conditions that you can't horde domain names and that you have to actually use them?

    I've been in the IT business for over half my life now, and I could swear it's against the terms of registering domain names. If it's not, I believe it's in bad taste.

  • now Dec 12, 2008

    History will write well about President Bush. We have not been attacked on US soil since 9-11-01 and President Bush has had to fight the terrorist and their allies in the Socialist (formally Democratic) Party. Remember, the young, uninformed Liberals in the late eighties did the same thing to President Reagan. Socialist (formally Liberal) lies only have a short life because they are so easily proven to be exactly what they are....lies.

    Thank you President Bush for standing strong against the terrorist and the Socialist good luck in your retirement. These young Socialist will grow up and realize how wring they were about you and how big of a mistake they mad in November just like previous generations.

  • chargernut69 Dec 12, 2008

    I think they should have charged him about $7 trillion or so.... that's what he has cost the American taxpayers!

  • jse830fcnawa030klgmvnnaw+ Dec 12, 2008

    I'm surprised that the domain name purchase and resell by Illuminati Karate did not go through domain name arbitration since it contained someone's name. Usually, any domain name with an individual's name should be cleared by the individual for use, and this "enforcement" has been through United Nations arbitration ( if the individual wants to file a dispute.

  • now Dec 12, 2008

    Sivan Kurzberg and CVDurham, I think is still available. Look into it.

  • HappyGirl08 Dec 12, 2008

    First of all, where do you search for those types of things and secondly, too bad I didn't know about that a long time ago!

  • wral mods blow close my account Dec 12, 2008

    Shucks - I was hoping to sell them