DIARY: Dot-comical CEO wants to give the town a bad name

Businesses across the land have taken up the practice of slapping a ’dot-com’ at the end of their name to appear web-savvy and appeal to investors. But a town?

Businesses across the land have taken up the practice of slapping a ’dot-com’ at the end of their name to appear web-savvy and appeal to investors. But a town?

Businesses across the land have taken up the practice of slapping a

’dot-com’ at the end of their name to appear web-savvy and appeal to

investors. But a town?



It sounds ludicrous, but that’s the PR strategy currently being employed

by Joshua Kopelman, CEO of Half.com, who plans to save the town of

Halfway, OR (population: 365) by renaming it after his budding Internet

company.



Founded in the early 1800s, Halfway has struggled to weather the decline

of its logging and mining industries. The city council is hoping to

attract a lot of publicity (and tourists) by becoming the first city

with a dot-com name.



Of course, Kopelman thinks the move will be a boon to his business. ’Did

we do this to get attention? Sure we did,’ he said. ’But there’s also a

benefit for the town economy.’



Should it be approved, the name change will last only one year and will

not be legally binding, according to Kristin Keyes, Half.com’s director

of corporate communications.



Of course, the town’s elders would never be party to such a shameless

marketing stu ... oh, wait - the seven-member council has voted

unanimously to enter into final negotiations with Half.com, and a final

decision should be reached this month.



’We’re in a slump,’ said city planner Patti Huff. ’Half.com is our

ticket to where we need to be.’ Of course, if the town goes the way of

many dot-com startups, it might as well rename itself Half-wit.



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