About

Why did I register this domain?

Simple – if a private business can register and lay claim to a town domain (addo.co.za) then a private citizen can register a domain such as www.zuurberg-mountain-village.co.za? Or even www.zuurbergmountaininn.co.za?

Of course there is always a story behind the story and I invite you to read it in the correspondence you will find in chronological order below.

Click here to visit www.Zuurberg-inn.co.za

Some background:

In 2006 I registered the site www.Zuurberg-inn.co.za, travelled to the site of the original Zuurberg Inn, now renamed Zuurberg Mountain Village, and built a tribute web site that referred people to the Safarinow web site listing for the Zuurberg Mountain Village. I earned a few rand for every booking at the Zuurberg Mountain Village that was made on the Safarinow web site.

In the back of my mind I considered this a nice way of earning a few rand and hoped fervently that the owners of the Zuurberg Mountain Village would notice my good work on their behalf and maybe comp me for a weekend.

After all, my efforts were tangible proof of praise turning into bookings and money for a venerable old lady that had provided me with very fond, warm and fuzzy memories.

I am obviously grossly intellectually challenged as this is what happened:

5 February 2010

To: Alan
From: Clint

Good day Alan
Please can you update the site www.zuurberg-inn.co.za as the information on the site is out of date.

The site is a copyright enfringment, and we do not at this stage mind you making commission from the site as long as the information on the sight is current.

Please have a look at our website www.addo.co.za for information to update your site.

Thanking you

Clint Wild
General Manager
Zuurberg Mountain Village

6 February 2010

To: Clint
From: Alan

Hi Clint

Thanks for your mail dated 5 February. I do not recall seeing your mail dated 22 January at all and apologise if you think that I was ignoring you.

As explained on the phone to you I built the site in order to promote Zuurberg Inn and to make a few rand in commissions from Safari Now. I have fond memories of Sunday Lunches and romantic weekends at Zuurberg Inn.

I see the site as far more valuable to you than to me as it perpetuates your brand and you have not had to pay a red cent for the positive promotion. Not once since 4 September 2006 have I even considered asking you to contribute in any way to my efforts in promoting your business.

Just a question – “Do you not think that the domain www.addo.co.za could also be construed as a ‘copyright infringement’?”

With that in mind I am sorely tempted to bin your mail and ask you to please reconsider what you wrote as I could consider it to be a combative stance. Although this may just be because you believe me to have been ignoring your mail of the 22nd of January.

Let me make myself clear – I firmly believe that you catch more bees with honey and I am praying that I completely misunderstood the tone of your short mail to me.

Regards

ALAN

6 February 2010

To: Alan
From: Clint

Hi Alan
Thank you for your reply. I thought that I had maybe got the email address incorrect.

It was not my intension to offend or challenge and apologize if the email was interpreted as doing so.

As I stated in the email we have no problem with your site and do applaud your entrepreneurship. Our only concern is that your site is updated with our current information, as the rates on the site are from 2005/2006, we had a fire in 2008 which destroyed our thatched buildings.

So the property no longer looks as it does on this website.

We are grateful for all exposure and do see the benefit but if the site is not current then we look unprofessional.

Again I appologise for contributing to your misunderstanding of my email and hope that you will continue to make future memories of Zuurberg.

Yours Sincerly

Clint Wild
General Manager
Zuurberg Mountain Village
www.addo.co.za

20 April 2010

To: Alan
From: Clint

Good day Alan

Please could you have a look at updating your site for Zuurberg Mountain Inn as requested before, we have received a number of comments from Tour Opperators that the site is out of date.

Looking forward to hearing from you soon

Regards

Clint Wild
General Manager
Zuurberg Mountain Village
www.addo.co.za

A heated telephone conversation where I am accused of owning a domain that I have no right to ensues. I point out that the Zuurberg Mountain Inn’s owning of the domain addo.co.za could also be challenged in the same way.

On principle I decide to leave the www.zuurberg-inn.co.za web site as it is, until I get a more conciliatory approach in 2012 from Claudine.

23 April 2012

To: Alan
From: Claudine

Hope this finds you well.

Zuurberg Mountain Village are my clients, and I have noticed that the info on the site www.zuurberg-inn.co.za is out of date.

Would it be possible if I could send you the updated content to used as well as pictures of the actual chalets?

Regards,

Claudine Hunke | Account Executive

iStream
BRAND MANAGEMENT

23 April 2012

To: Claudine
From: Alan

That would be nice thank you.

Regards

ALAN

24 April 2012

To: Alan
From: Claudine

Thanks so much

Please find attached the word document with the update info about Zuurberg Mountain Village

They are now a 4 star venue – where the 3 star logo is can you either remove that or replace with a 4 star grading??

Also, if you could please remove the standard rates – these change often so will be tough to remember to keep your site updated.

I will send through some images to use on the website shortly

Thanks!

Regards,

Claudine Hunke | Account Executive

iStream
BRAND MANAGEMENT

Then some admin emails back and forth up to 11 May.

The new site is built end of May and begins earning better commissions from Safarinow up until 31 July 2012.

31 July 2012

To: Alan
From: Claudine

Hi Alan

Just following up on the Zuurberg Mountain Inn website – I see that it still has not been updated.

Is there any way that you can just make that domain point to their website.

Guests have been directed to your site and have been making bookings – but their bookings are not for the Zuurberg Mountain Village

We really need to sort this out.

Could we purchase the domain from you? Or can we point this page to their website?

Regards,

Claudine Hunke | Account Executive

iStream
BRAND MANAGEMENT

31 July 2012

To: Claudine
From: Alan

I don’t understand – it was updated loooong ago.

Please give me the URL of the site that hasn’t been updated or try ctrl f5 on the page.

Regards

ALAN

31 July 2012

To: Alan
From: Claudine

http://zuurberg-inn.co.za/

My client says that when guests try make a booking it takes them to a different place

How can we get the request send to Zuurberg Village directly?

The opening content is in correct – has the following content

Zuurberg Inn

Long a preferred Sunday lunch destination of Port Elizabethans looking for a day in the country, the Zuurberg Inn is still a staple and much loved accommodation destination.

As a child we used to leave directly from Church for Sunday Buffet Lunch at the Zuurberg Inn, in my late Father’s pride and joy – his white Mercedes S Class. The mere fact that he was prepared to drive on a gravel road up the mountain for Sunday Lunch imprinted on my mind just how precious a place this was. My father never rode on any other gravel road but that one to the Zuurberg Inn.

My childlike mind would survey the vast quantities of food available and say; “One day I will be big and return to try and eat my way through as much food as possible”. Afterwards we would lie on the grass overlooking Addo and soak up the sun before returning to the ‘big city’ of Port Elizabeth.

Winter weekends at the Zuurberg Inn were always special – roaring fires, sherry, rib sticking real food and good times ….

Can we not point the page to the correct website?

Regards,

Claudine Hunke | Account Executive

iStream
BRAND MANAGEMENT

31 July 2012

To: Claudine
From: Alan

The bookings are all made via SafariNow.com which your client is listed on.

See: http://zuurberg-inn.co.za/rates.html AND http://www.safarinow.com/RequestAQuote.aspx?spid=8693&opt=?source=1865

If the Zuurberg Inn has an affiliate tracking system in place (like safarinow) then I am more than happy to send visitors there.

The bottom line is that I make money out of sending people to book at the Zuurberg Inn VIA Safari Now. The domain belongs to me. I take the risk of developing, hosting and maintaining the site, along with paying for ads to drive people to the site. These people ultimately book at the Zuurberg Inn and spend their money there.

As far as I see it – your client is in a winning situation as I do all the work and take all the risk whilst promoting their business.

I registered the domain in 2006: http://co.za/cgi-bin/whois.sh?Domain=zuurberg-inn
The site has gone through a number of re-designs.
6 years of hosting.

Based on the above I am prepared to entertain a fair offer from your client.

Regards

ALAN

31 July 2012

To: Alan
From: Elmarie Erasmus

Well Alan we might be in a winning situation from your point of view, but from ours, it looks a little different! I have been marketing Zuurberg Mountain Village, previously Zuurberg Mountain Inn for three months only, but have had numerous potential clients looking for us, ending up on you empty website with a picture that was not even taken at Zuurberg. These clients then opt to stay at Katberg, Hogs Back or other similar country side properties. Maybe if you would like to make money out of us, you should at least take the time and bring this website up to date, so we don’t look like fools not having a website at all.

I honestly think we should get together and discuss this as this is not working for us at all; you may own the domain, nut Henry Alant owns the property, so who is carrying costs here….?

If you have any respect for our eastablishment, you would contact us and let us sort this out in a professional way.

Kind Regards

Elmarie Erasmus
Marketing Manager
Zuurberg Mountain Village

31 July 2012

To: Elmarie Erasmus
From: Alan

Straight swop – www.addo.co.za for www.zuurberg-inn.co.za

I don’t understand your statement; “ending up on you empty website with a picture that was not even taken at Zuurberg”

When last did you visit www.zuurberg-inn.co.za? See attached screenshot. The site is certainly up to date.

The site before this one had images that were personally taken by myself and not as you aver.

I acceded to Claudine’s reasonable request and generous assistance to update the site and am now feeling as though I am being attacked after the goalposts were once again moved.

I say again: Straight swop – www.addo.co.za for www.zuurberg-inn.co.za

Regards

ALAN

31 July 2012

To: Alan
From: Elmarie Erasmus

Haha!

Kind Regards

Elmarie Erasmus
Marketing Manager
Zuurberg Mountain Village

31 July 2012

To: Elmarie Erasmus
From: Alan

I accept that that is your LAST word on the subject.

Such a pity.

I regret to inform you that I shall be adding your address to my spam list.

Regards

ALAN

I then pushed GO and applied for the www.zuurberg-mountain-inn.co.za domain.

Personally and with 20-20 hindsight I feel that the initial approach from the Zuurberg mountain Inn was incorrect. If I had been in their position I would have invited the owner of www.Zuurberg-Inn.co.za to a complimentary weekend as a ‘thank you’ for the marketing efforts and then negotiated a meeting of the minds.

As it now stands, both parties do not trust each other at all and are pretty combative.

Maybe time will heal the wounds.

Place your comments below:

3 thoughts on “About

  1. It would be nice to see what the good people at the Zuurberg Mountain Inn have to say in this comments section.

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