Get a Hyphen, You Pervert!
Be careful which domain name you choose, or this could happen…
By Dave Fox
I received an urgent text message over the weekend from a friend who was deeply concerned about certain services being offered at a massage parlor here in Singapore.
This friend of mine, who has asked to remain anonymous, had been feeling stressed, so she decided to go get a massage. Her quandary was that apparently, some of the massage places in her neighborhood are reputed to be quite good, where are others are reputed to be quite … ahem … “good.”
Some feature certified massage therapists who provide the sort of wholesome, Sunday afternoon massage my friend was seeking, whereas others feature “massage therapists” (wink) who are extremely skillful in other sorts of rubbing techniques (wink, wink) for which professional certification does not exist.
“I wasn’t looking for a happy ending,” my friend said when I phoned her after receiving her text message.
Before going for her massage, she had asked some of her friends for recommendations. A couple of them had told her about a good place called the Han Dynasty Spa. They had assured her that everything at the Han Dynasty Spa was professional – and not in a “professional” (wink, wink, wink) sort of way.
So she went there and had her 90-minute massage, which she described as painful but effective, and never creepy. Her horror, and the thing that had compelled her to contact me while still at the massage parlor, was the spa’s website.
“You’re an editor,” she wrote. “Someone needs to do something about this!”
Upon entering the building, she had seen the spa’s business card. Upon first glance at their domain name, she froze, worried she had gone to the wrong kind of place.
“The website for the Han Dynasty Spa,” she texted, “is www.handynastyspa.com.”
Personal note to the Han Dynasty Spa: I’m not usually a proponent of putting punctuation in domain names because it makes them cumbersome to say. In your case, however, I’ll make an exception. If you want to differentiate yourselves from that other kind of massage parlor, your domain name really could use a hyphen. (Ahem … after the third letter.)