We’ve reported in the past on major sites like Twitter having to pursue cybersquatters, who take advantage of common typo mistakes when typing a URL, as part of their effort to scam users into taking bogus surveys, and in the process provide the site with personal data.
Thanks to a submission on Hacker News, we’ve come across an ingenious use of cybersquatting, taking it to a whole other level, but this time it’s for a good cause. The JAG Foundation, a non-profit helping underprivileged kids in South Africa, has taken advantage of the fact that the South African sunflower oil product, Sunfoil, isn’t using the domain you’d expect.
Of course the explanation includes a link to the organization’s website, encouraging visitors to make a donation.
While Sunfoil’s logo can be spotted on South Africa’s cricket fields, where it’s sponsoring the South African Test Series, it’s not as easy to find online, and the JAG Foundation is using that to its advantage.
Cybersquatting is not a word that engenders any kind of sympathy or goodwill, but in this case, we think the JAG Foundation managed to come up with a great, and somewhat cheeky way to put Sunfoil’s lack of a Web presence to good use.
Cybersquatting is, of course, not all fun and games, as this in-depth post by our own Paul Sawers shows, and can often lead to quite a bit of negative publicity. In the JAG Foundation’s case, however, the publicity gained from the move is bound to be nothing but good.