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Archive | March, 2010

Continuing Legitimate Interest in Domain Name After Termination of Business Relationship

A respondent’s right to continue using a trademark in its domain name after termination of its business relationship with the trademark holder is a contract issue, but under the right factual circumstances refusing to relinquish the domain name is actionable under UDRP. Ordinarily, permissive registration is conclusive against the complainant in a UDRP dispute because […]

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Calibrating Trademark Holder’s Reputation Outside its Jurisdiction

That any aggrieved trademark holder can institute a claim against any respondent however distant their countries of residence means only that the former has jurisdiction to maintain the proceeding. To advance its cause the complainant has to demonstrate that at the time the domain name was registered its reputation extended to the respondent’s country of […]

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Exercising Self Help to Effect Settlement of a Claim

Nothing could be easier for a registrar owed money (or, in the case herein discussed, the reseller of a registrar) to simply change the registration of the domain name into its own name and hold it for ransom. Grace From Fire, LLC v. Worldwidedomains, Inc, D2010-0143 (WIPO March 9, 2010) (<>). But, is it […]

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Taking Unfair Advantage of the Complainant’s Trademark

Ordinarily, a trademark must have been in existence before the registration of the domain name for a finding of bad faith registration, but this is not invariable and depends on factors other than timing. The issue is addressed in paragraph 3.1 of the WIPO Overview, which states: Consensus view: Normally speaking, when a domain name […]

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Uncovering and Confirming Knowledge

The basic ingredients for bad faith are knowledge and intention.  Denying is more common than admitting them, and although having knowledge of a complainant and its trademark is not necessarily prejudicial to a respondent’s right or legitimate interest in the disputed domain name, proof of intention must be met by counter proof.  While the foundation […]

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Domain Names Composed of Geographic Indicators

Regions, Cities, Municipalities and Towns may wish to control the use of their names on the Internet but there is an insuperable barrier, namely that naked geographical indicators are not covered under the UDRP and protection under trademark law for geographic terms is uncertain. Nevertheless, there have been a number of recent challenges by public […]

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Extent of Panel’s Independent Investigation

Rules 12 and 10(a) of the Rules of the Policy are closely connected. Rule 12 grants panelists authority to request information from parties, while Rule 10(a) of the Rules of the Policy has been construed to authorize panelists to undertake some minimal research – “The Panel shall conduct the administrative proceeding in such manner as […]

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Legitimate Interest Despite Interim Parking

Parking is not prima facie illegitimate, but it may require plausible explanation where the respondent has knowledge of the complainant’s trademark and has incorporated it into the domain name. Authorized dealers, resellers, distributors, consultants and, in Alstom v. Industrial Tests, Inc., D2009-1702 (WIPO February 6, 2010), companies in the business of testing equipment manufactured by […]

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Not Appropriate for UDRP Determination

UDRP’s remedial niche is limited to disputes of abusive registration of domain names rather than trademark infringement. The WIPO Final Report states that the “scope of the procedure is available only in respect of deliberate, bad faith, abusive, domain name registrations or ‘cybersquatting’and is not applicable to disputes between parties with competing rights acting in […]

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Researching the Past; Blocking Access and Bad Faith

The Panel in Rba Edipresse, S.L. v. Brendhan Hight / MDNH Inc., D2009-1580 (WIPO March 2, 2010) (discussed a few days ago on another subject) reminded us that “the ‘robots.txt doctrine’ that bad faith may be found if access to the archive of the historical contents of a website is blocked by a respondent after […]

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