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Sequel may be closer as Activision secretly acquires domain

Black Ops 2

A sequel to Call of Duty: Black Ops, one of the best-selling games of all-time, may seem more likely as it appears Activision has secretly acquired the domain name

First registered in May 2010 shortly after Black Ops was announced, the domain remained under Whois privacy up until this week using Go Daddy’s Domains by Proxy service.

Now, the domain (Whois) has switched from Domains by Proxy to the privacy service provided by internet brand protection company MarkMonitor, who caters to over half the Fortune 100, of which Activision is a client.

In August, I reported that Activision went through MarkMonitor to buy up a slew of Black Ops domains, all the way up to 

Missing from the list was 

A deal has now apparently been struck.

Treyarch, the development studio behind Call of Duty: Black Ops, hasn’t officially gone on record to say it is creating a sequel.  But with all these domain acquisitions, signs point to a Black Ops 2 being a very strong possibility in 2012.

If a cash amount was paid, the sale price of the domain will likely remain unknown, as the previous owner’s identity and contact information were hidden through Go Daddy’s privacy service.

As of today, does not resolve a web page.

[Update 1 on February 17, 2012: Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 has been outed by Amazon reports GameSpy.]

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News Video Games

Activision may go up to Modern Warfare 6, Black Ops 6 with its newest domains

Call of Duty Black Ops 6

Activision has apparently gone on a domain name shopping spree through the registrar MarkMonitor, acquiring over a dozen Call of Duty-related domain names that hint we might see the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Call of Duty: Black Ops series go up to at least six titles.

Domain names like and were registered.

Here’s a look at the full list of domain registrations that took place on August 15, 2011. 

The actual registrant of the name is DNS tination Inc, a Whois privacy service offered by MarkMonitor.  But these domain names are almost certainly owned by Activision, as MarkMonitor is a well-known brand protection company used by top companies like Apple.

It’s entirely possible that these recent registrations are nothing more than part of the company’s intellectual property strategy, but if it’s learned anything from the fiasco over, it may be planning ahead.

Discussion: Kotaku and VGChartz

News Video Games

As Call of Duty: Black Ops sets records, BuyDomains increases prices of Warfare domain names

space warfare

With Call of Duty Black Ops setting a record for Activision as the company’s best selling game, Warfare-related domain names owned by BuyDomains continue to increase in price. 

It’s a safe bet that Activision’s next installment for Call of Duty will take place in outerspace in a Halo-like environment. 

As I wrote about on my military gaming blog, Chris Morris, a writer with Gamasutra, first broke the news on Nov. 9 that Activision could be headed towards a future landscape (with space marines) for its next game title.   But that wasn’t a big surprise for many Call of Duty fans.  The Gamasutra story confirmed what many already thought about the possibility of a futuristic Call of Duty last May, after domains registered by Activision were uncovered by superannuation.  The registrations included names such as,,, and a number of variations including,, and  The company also registered and, as well as and

Prices of Warfare domains

As reported in early December, BuyDomains upped the price of from $50,000 to to $63,200.  As of today, the price tag now sits at six-figures: $102,000.

And isn’t the only War domain that saw a price increase. 

In late November, was listed for $3,788.  Now the buy-it-now price has risen to $6,000., another BuyDomains name and candidate for the next Call of Duty game installment, also leaped in price to $8,000.

Warfare Domains

Warfare domain names are generic in nature, so BuyDomains is doing what many of us might do by increasing the list price.

But amid all the hype of Call of Duty Black Ops, no one has acquired the names, not even Activision.

As demand for Call of Duty Black Ops remains strong, prices for warfare domains look to inch higher and higher, as speculation for the next Call of Duty title picks up in the news and blogs.  And BuyDomains owns one of the best lots.

Even I got caught up in warfare domains, hand registering in November. 

Odd Warfare names, you may have heard of

Some of the oddest warfare names are “Flower Warfare” and “Cardboard Warfare”.  

And if you’ve heard of Freddie Wong, chances are you’ve heard of these phrases.  Freddie recently released his “Future First Person Shooter” video, which has already hit 7 million  views on YouTube in a week’s time.  Here’s a look at “Flower Warfare” in case you have never seen a freddiew film.

Disputes News Trademarks Video Games

Activision knows a thing or two about ‘Call of Duty’ domain names (or do they?)

call of duty black ops

You might remember when news broke that Activision had registered a number of domains such as and  The website superannuation had announced a fresh new batch of names registered by Activision shortly after the company purchased the names in May. 

Mary Tuck, one of the company’s attorneys, is not only responsible for registering the names, but she also files trademarks on behalf of the company according to the United States Patent and Trademark Office web site at  The same day the company registered the names on May 11, it also filed for the trademarks.

The superannuation article linked to the Whois records on the popular domain company site – DomainTools and it sparked a flurry of stories across gaming and technology sites. 

Out of those dozen or so names though, nothing yet has been developed.  In fact, none of the names resolve to any kind of website at the time of this story. 

While rumors swirl about Activision’s next Call of Duty game, the company seems to be improving its understanding of domain names. 

Call of Duty Domains

Call of Duty Black Ops, its latest title released earlier this month, is being considered a game-changer with sales shattering records all over the world.  Activision does own, but it failed to register other variations.

If you notice the domains registered in May, the company picked up a number of variations of possible titles.  For example, instead of just registering – the company also registered and for a possible Call of Duty Future Warfare game

No surprise, had been registered for years before, so Activision didn’t get its hands on the simplest version of the name.  The name is owned by BuyDomains.  And if shorter and memorable names are any indicator of value, Activision should probably buy the name now while its listed for a reasonable price of $3,788 (before someone else does)., another name it doesn’t own, has seen a huge spike in traffic to its web site over the last several months, which is likely to grow with the game’s popularity.

Trademark infringing domains

glaswegianWhen it came to registering domain names for its most successful title to date, Activision missed registering names like – a habit it’s now getting into by registering domain names with ‘cod’ (as in, Call of Duty) in the front. 

With, the owner Stephen Girvan currently has a web site online that has seen a surge in traffic. 

Visit the site, and click on the home page, and you’ll be taken to an article entitled: ‘Video Game Giants are Bullying Me’

The article discusses Stephen’s dispute with Activision over domain names, which started after: ‘he created a “clan” website in January to allow him and his friends to post scores online of their favourite game, Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.  At the beginning of March, Stephen, of Maryhill, says he renamed the website to after asking members to come up with a name.’

At this point what comes of the dispute isn’t known, but one thing is for sure: Activision is starting to get better at registering domain names. 

My only advice is that the company should purchase while it can.

The phrase ‘Future Warfare’ is generic, and used among military and military scholars.  But that hasn’t stopped Activision from filing for a trademark – which it did on May 11, 2010 (along with Call of Duty Futurewarfare).