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Bindi Irwin's Website -- The Real Story?

10/19/2006 11:28 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Bindi IrwinAccusations of cyber thievery, anti-Semitism and all-around bad taste were hurled at a man named Wayne Smith after it was reported that he cybersquatted on a website named after the daughter of late crocodile hunter Steve Irwin. Now, the man behind the outrage is defending his decision to scoop up the Internet domain bindiirwin.com.

Wayne, a self-described "homeless man" who registered bindiirwin.com just after her father Steve Irwin's death - and was excoriated all over the globe for it -- tells TMZ that his intention was never to profit off the deed and that he did it to "save the Irwins a lot of grief."

"I'm just a homeless guy who was shocked to hear that Steve was dead and upon learning bindiirwin.com wasn't registered decided to secure it before cybersquatters grabbed it," said Wayne.

So, why wasn't Wayne immediately heralded as a hero?

Days after Smith, a former volunteer at the wildlife enthusiast's beloved Australian Zoo, bought the rights to BindiIrwin.com, reports that the site contained links to several anti-Israel websites spread throughout the globe. While Smith vehemently denies that the site hosted anti-Semitic content, he does admit that bindiirwin.com was programmed to redirect visitors to a remotely hosted non-profit message board. "I did have a political forum at the board which of course contained controversial topics but I closed it. I realised [sic] that it would be in poor taste to have politics and wildlife discussions together."

Despite the worldwide condemnation, Smith still denies that he is a cybersquatter -- someone who registers, traffics, or uses a domain name with bad-faith intent to profit from the goodwill of a trademark belonging to someone else. "If I hadn't secured that domain and voluntarily handed it over to the Irwins, then I can guarantee a cybersquatter would have purchased it."

The website is now owned and operated by Steve Irwin's friend and former manager John Stainton, who has since programmed the site to automatically redirect visitors to the official website for the Australia Zoo.

47 COMMENTS

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1.

Brian    

TMZ quoted Mr. Smith thusly:

"I did have a political forum at the board which of course contained controversial topics but I closed it. I realised [sic] that it would be in poor taste to have politics and wildlife discussions together."

The use of '[sic]' in this instant is inappropriate. "sic" denotes an error in the original authour's words or passge. However, the word 'realised' is spelt with an 's' (and not a 'zed') in most of the Commonwealth countries, including Canada, the U.K., Republic of Ireland, Autralia, New Zealand, etc. it is not unlike the difference between the Americanised spelling of "colour" (Amer.: 'color').

Please respect other countries' grammar and diction and do not attribute an "error" to them in situations such as these.

Cheers.

2875 days ago
2.

Bella    

Brian---GET A LIFE!

2875 days ago
3.

Jack    

Hey Brian,

Thanks for your english lesson. You're a scholar, right? NOT! learn how to spell. It's AMERICANIZED.......with a "Z",.......not "S"............FYI!

2875 days ago
4.

jennifer    

According to this article, this website is now owned and operated by Steve's former manager, so I'm sure it's in good hands. Question: How does a self-described homeless man set up a web page and monitor it?

2875 days ago
5.

TJ    

JACK 3: The writer is in the UK and he spelled Americanised correctly. You should not assume everyone on these message boards are in the USA...they are from all parts of the world. You don't need to be so rude and insult people for your ignorance.

2875 days ago
6.

RPD    

Hey Brian:

"The use of '[sic]' in this instant is inappropriate. "sic" denotes an error in the original authour's words or passge. However, the word 'realised' is spelt with an 's' (and not a 'zed') in most of the Commonwealth countries, including Canada, the U.K., Republic of Ireland, Autralia[SIC], New Zealand, etc. it is not unlike the difference between the Americanised spelling of "colour" (Amer.: 'color')."

I added a [sic] to your comment since you don't know how to spell Australia - now that is an error!! Get over yourself!

2875 days ago
7.

RPD    

Maven:

How do you know he's in the UK - maybe he's just a dumb blowhard.

2875 days ago
8.

dani    

WE GET THE POINT!

sheesh. post your comments about the actual story, instead of how parts were spelled.

that website shouldnt be owned/operated by any one except Bindi. after all it is HER name.

2875 days ago
9.

RebeccaBBBBBBB    

U got to have to have a sick mind to use an 8 yr old's good name to promote that shit.

2875 days ago
10.

Caroline    

Jack, in other parts of the world "Americanized" is spelled with an "s". That was the whole point of his rant.
In other news, Brian doesn't have enough work to do at his job.

2875 days ago
11.

kiki    

Brian -
One more correction. SPELLED NOT SPELT!! Please respect our grammar

2875 days ago
12.

Jennifer Scott    

What an adorable little girl, she reminds me of a little elf or pixie! Too cute, as far as the web site I feel the Irwin's shoud have control of it, It is registered under the child's name after all. Sure do feel sorry for this family, they should be focused on trying to move on with their lives instead of having to worry about some web site.

2875 days ago
13.

LuvCereza    

The moral of the story is:

"If you think your going to be famous one day, secure your name or someone else will try and profit off of it."

2875 days ago
14.

Lisa D    

#18 your right on the money there,,,for sure someone would make money from this cutie, and she deserves all the money in her name to be, spent on ways she see fit, not some nobody who is making money from a little girl they do not even know...This little girl is going places, wait and see.

2875 days ago
15.

We, are not amused.    

"z" or "s", WTF difference does it make? Part of the great fun of reading/posting here is seeing how stupid most of , eh YOU GUYS ARE (not me!).
The pimping of the heir apperent to the Steve Irwin whack-job factory continues! Enough allready.
PS: # 1, 8, 10 & 13
you're right: this is one butfugly child. Looks like her dear departed though! Hope they make a ton of $$, so they can continue their stewardship of wildlife.
Jolly good, mate, Jolly Good!

2875 days ago
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