Good question... I dunno what is the right answer. I'll do some poking around and get back to you if I discover an useful answer. You should email the people at Godaddy as they probably could assist you..
Don't worry to "reveal" the registrar. You are not accusing any company-you're just wondering if that's true or not. Come on now tell us.....
Ya, like Ron said, I think it is highly unlikely. Unless it is a really really small registar (which I'm not sure how many register's can be considered small), I don't think the major companies have time to search through the millions of whois requests per day. It is more likely just a coincidence..
My 2 cents.
Regarding your domain, at Ebay I saw a bunch of **gas.XXX on auction..
And btw you should have registered a HostGator like "gasprize.com" right away..
The .net was even registered at some point and time so one would assume the .com must have been a recent drop and someone ran across it searching keywords on droplists or whatever. Be assured you weren't being watched and apparently were not the first one with the light glowing above your head..
If I got paranoid every time names were available and then the next day they were not I'd would one well labeled Schizophrenic...
You know, I've wondered the same thing before. It's happened to me at a couple of registrars, not often. But I didn't know if it was just coincidence or what. There's no doubt in my mind that they have access to user search lists. If someone is regging searched names, it's prolly just some rogue employee that's also into domains..
The world will never know.......
I think gasgiveaway.com did the same thing? I checked it last night, available, gone today? Can anyone get a whois on it?.
I think this is a screwball whois problem...
Gas Prices is going up like nuts. It is no surprise to see many domainers showing interest in registering gas-related domains. Who won't want to visit gasgiveway.com to get some gas money?.
It may very well be a coincidence. At my local ccTld I'm quite a big player. Right now I'm owning 0.25% of all registered domains and I'm registering about 0.50% of all new domains..
Only last week I got two phone calls from people accusing me for doing exactly what you are talking about here. I'll bet this is just a coincidence..
Just for the record: I'm not! =)..