The Wall Street Journal (subscription required) now reports that it was US Airways that registered the web domain names referenced below. The airline said it was precautionary measure.
"The purchase of these domain names, along with any potential transaction names, is simply a step to ensure others do not use our marks in a way that might negatively impact our brand," US Airways said.
Although it "is not imperative that US Airways participate in further consolidation … we are interested in studying potential value-enhancing opportunities, including a possible US Airways-AMR transaction," US Airways added. The Tempe, Ariz., company, the nation's fifth-largest airline by traffic, declined further comment.
American declined to comment.
Somebody, and according to this site it's likely either American Airlines or US Airways, is thinking ahead and locking up the domain names that might be used by a combined airline following a merger.
On Friday, the same day American parent company AMR asked for an extension on its bankruptcy reorganization, American Airlines or U.S. Airways registered a number of domains for the combined entity. The domains were registered through DNStinations, an affiliate of brand protection company MarkMonitor.
Among the domains registered:
american-usairways.com, .net, and .org
americanairlinesusairways.com, .net, and .org
americanusairways.net (the .com was registered by someone else in 2010)
usairways-american.com, .net, and .org
usairwaysamerican.com, .net, and .org
usairwaysamericanairlines.com, .net, and .org
usandaa.com, .net, and .org
The company also registered domains playing on the “AA” theme. These domains would likely be used to promote the value of the combined entity:
aadvantageofus.com, .net, and .org
advantageofus.com, .net, and .org
oneworldoneairline.com, .net, and .org
The web site tells us that the registrar, MarkMonitor, is a brand protection registrar and would not let "cybersquatters"register the domains in the hopes of selling them for a pretty penny later.
UPDATE: American spokesman Bruce Hicks said, "we know nothing about those domain names."