ModernWarfare4.com domain no longer hostage to ZiiP community [Updated]

Modern Warfare 4

The domain name ModernWarfare4.com which grabbed headlines in 2009 seems to have a new home. 

The story of ModernWarfare4.com started years ago with a threat to hurt a clown if the game development studio behind Modern Warfare, Infinity Ward, didn’t play ball with the ransom demands of the owner of ModernWarfare4.com — a domain name owned by James Galland (aka Jester) of the ZiiP gaming community. 

It ended, with the website (pictured here) featuring the clown and a poll on what to do with the domain finally being taken down earlier this month.

As of August 6, 2011, the web address ModernWarfare4.com is no longer registered to James Galland, and now is hidden behind Whois Privacy Protection Services at ENOM. 

Here’s a look at the Whois record:

Domain name: modernwarfare4.com

Registrant Contact:
   Whois Privacy Protection Service, Inc.
   Whois Agent ()
  
   Fax:
   PMB 368, 14150 NE 20th St – F1
   C/O modernwarfare4.com
   Bellevue, WA 98007
   US

Administrative Contact:
   Whois Privacy Protection Service, Inc.
   Whois Agent ()
   PMB 368, 14150 NE 20th St – F1
   C/O modernwarfare4.com
   Bellevue, WA 98007
   US

Just because the registrant information changed, doesn’t mean the owner changed since the domain is behind Whois privacy.

However, it’s entirely possible that James Galland got spooked by the saga of ModernWarfare3.com.  Activision has a dispute filed with the National Arbitration Forum seeking ownership of the domain ModernWarfare3.com.

It’s also possible Activision acquired the domain by offering money.

I’ve reached out to James to learn more, and will update the story if I hear back.

Updated August 27, 2011:  I received a response from James who still owns the domain name.  The website has been updated since this story was published.  James wrote:

Hi there JB.

Oh my god.. shhh… don’t tell anyone. I went to feed the clown the other night – and I might (I stress might) have left the door unlocked. I came back in the morning and he had gone. All that was left was a note saying “Screw you guys, I’ve had it being a clown – I’ve gone to re-train as a plumber”. I guess the promotion prospects of being a tortured-clown prisoner aren’t enough for some people. Sheesh. His name was Mario though.. go figure.

On a slightly more serious note…

I can happily report that we still own the domain. We have no real interest in profiting from it – was all the clown’s idea.  We’re not freaked out at all by the MW3 site saga as there are worst things happening in the world. Actually: Thanks for highlighting the site being down.. I was playing around with my webserver and must have hit the “turn off joke sites” button by accident.

As for the WHOIS thingy changing, that was ment to be done when I purchased the domain – but someone forgot to turn it on. Not really fussed, but I don’t like paying for something and then not getting it : )

Happy Days,

James

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