€500k: price to discover Ireland
THE news that Tourism Ireland is to buy the "Ireland.com" domain name from 'The Irish Times' in a €495,000 deal is, to use an artful phrase, a no-brainer.
When potential tourists are thinking about coming here, there is a good chance they will go to Ireland.com rather than DiscoverIreland.com so it is a good fit for the tourist business.
For 'The Irish Times' part, they get rid of a domain name they were no longer using and get paid almost half a million euro for doing so. Agreeing to Tourism Ireland using some editorial and images from the 'Times' is a small price to pay.
If there is one concern about the deal, it is that the 15,000 customers of the Ireland.com email service will be dropped unceremoniously.
From November 7, users will not be able to send or receive mail. Not only that, but from December 7 they will lose their inbox altogether.
It may be straightforward for most people to switch to Gmail and the likes but many of the Ireland.com users will not have changed email addresses in 15 years.
Changing addresses is one thing; saving 15 years' worth of mail is quite another.
A longer lead-in time than those six weeks would have been a preferable, and probably simple, solution for all concerned.