You might have heard that the world wide web turned 25 this week. In celebration of this milestone, I decided to use the Wayback Machine to see how Sex.com, the most expensive domain name of all time, has evolved.
Things haven’t always faired well for Sex.com. In 1995, Stephen M. Cohen convinced a Network Solutions employee to transfer the ownership from Gary Kremen to him after providing a fake fax. These forged documents allowed Cohen to $50,000 to $500,000 a month off Sex.com’s click-through advertising. At the time, it received upwards of 25 million unique visitors a month.
Cohen continued to operate that version of Sex.com until Kremen won his suit in November 2000. Cohen was ordered to pay $25 million into court; in April 2001, the California District Court awarded Kremen an additional $40 million for lost earnings, for a total judgment of $65 million. When Cohen’s arrest warrant was issued, he fled to Mexico. Kremen offered a $50,000 reward for information, but Cohen remained at large while continuing to file appeals that were rejected. In October 2005, Cohen was arrested in Tijuana, Mexico for immigration violations, and was handed over to US authorities.
Kremen would then go on to sell Sex.com for $13 million in 2010 to us. Sex.com still holds the record for the most expensive domain name ever sold.
Because of its tumultuous history, people have often referred to Sex.com as a cursed domain. Well, I’m here to show you just how far we’ve come since Sex.com’s inception in 1996.
Are you ready to see how Sex.com has evolved throughout years despite all the fraud, legal battles, and more money you and I will ever being thrown around?
Chances are you’ll feel a little nostalgic, because if you’re like most people in the world, Sex.com was the first thing you looked at when you had 60 free minutes of AOL dial-up.
Sex.com in 1996:
Sex.com in 1999:
Sex.com in 2002:
Sex.com in 2005:
Sex.com in 2006:
Sex.com in 2007:
Sex.com in 2010:
Sex.com in 2011:
Sex.com in 2012:
One thing’s for sure, Sex.com has come a long way.
Maybe it’s just me, but my favorite version of Sex.com is the current one. It’s free, easy to use, full of dope pictures and videos. What more could you ask for?
Maybe we’ll try going back to the 1996 version if you guys are really feeling nostalgic. But no guarantees.