Hi, @treestwo. About this:
Is there some sort of public registry with netlify domains?
No, there is not.
However, almost all domain information is public. So, while we do not have something like an RSS for new sites deployed at Netlify, search engines do seem to have a way to index new subdomains of
netlify.app quickly. The speed with which they often find them implies they have a way of finding sites before they are submitted for indexing or linked to by other sites. I don’t work for the search engines, though, so I’m not sure what the mechanism for that initial indexing is.
My best guess is that end user’s browsers themselves (in this example, it would be specifically the developer’s browser - meaning your browser) that collect and report the domain information back to the search engines. However, this is only my speculation as to the nature of the new subdomain discover mechanism. I’ve often wondered about this myself and I would also love to learn the answer.
In this case, though, I also don’t see the site indexed either so even if the browser is reporting new domains back to the search engine, it still doesn’t explain what happened with the domain you wanted.
I do believe I have found the site/domain you are referring to by examining the account related to this forum email address. It does appear that someone did register the domain shortly after the same site subdomain was created at Netlify. So, I do see the coincidence but I cannot explain it.
In regard to this:
My netlify app isn’t indexed yet, so how would it be possible that someone snatched it up just before me?
We cannot say for certain why this happened as we don’t have any information about it.
Just as this is a mystery to you, it is also a mystery to us. We don’t have the answer to your question. Also, if you do uncover the answer to this mystery, please do feel free to share the information here as I’m curious about the answer too.