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Lately I've been brainstorming small business names with some clients. It seems as though anytime they come up with a particular name, we check the domain name it will often be available but as a "Premium" domain that is literally THOUSANDS of dollars.

It's as if we're being punished for picking a great name. It feels like domain squatting except being perpetrated by the registrars themselves. I'm out of the loop on how this all came about, since years ago, if you had a great idea and the domain was available, all you paid was the normal registration fee.

Does anyone have the backstory on this racket and whether there's any light at the end of the tunnel? Perhaps some effort to release the premium domains? So many of the people searching are new small businesses that don't have $5,000 handy to just throw at a domain name.