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Astronomical Increases in Domain Names: Low Constancy of Abusive Registrations

When ICANN implemented the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) in 1999 the number of registered domain names were in the low eight digits. Registered domain names passed the first million in 1997. Today, they are in the first third of nine digits, and continuing to grow. In its newly released publication gTLD Marketplace Health […]

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Declaring and Declining to Find Reverse Domain Name Hijacking

What to one panelist is clearly bad faith conduct in filing a UDRP complaint, to another is excusable for lack of proof. The disagreement over reverse domain name hijacking centers on the kind of evidence necessary to justify it and the nature of the burden. RDNH is defined as “using the UDRP in bad faith […]

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Earlier Registered Domain Names, Later Acquired Trademarks

The Rise of Cyber-Entrepreneurs Trademarks have a long history; domain names are of recent origin. Trademarks were “invented” to “identify and distinguish [one person’s] goods . . . from those manufactured or sold by others and to indicate the source of the goods. Domain names are merely function elements “invented” to identify and link locations […]

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Quintessential and Other Acts of Bad Faith in Acquiring Domain Names

There are two essential differences between the UDRP and the ACPA, one procedural and one substantive. The procedural difference is quite minor, a mere quirk that Panels adopted by consensus in the early days of the UDRP and deserves no more than a footnote. Under the UDRP, complainants have standing on proof that they have […]

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No Barrier to Reading Across the Dot

Even before the introduction of new top level domains in 2014 Panels had grappled with the before and after the dot issue with country code suffixes. The traditional procedure is to compare the characters of the accused domain names with the characters of trademarks for identity or confusing similarity. But this did not exclude the […]

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No Standing for Similar that is not Confusingly Similar

If a domain name is similar but not confusingly similar to the trademark in which complainant has rights the complaint must be dismissed for lack of standing. This makes sense because if the string of characters forming the second level domain is identical in part but not confusing as to the whole of the trademark […]

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Elevating Form Over Substance in Denying Relief for Cybersquatting

Denying relief for cybersquatting is generally supported by lack of proof of abusive registration not for inexactitude in characterizing whether a domain name is identical or substantially similar to a trademark in which complainant has a right. However, the formal requirement under paragraph 4(a)(i) of the Policy requires proof that it is one or the […]

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Recent Articles on Trademark and Cybersquatting

See also Anthology of Commentaries on Cybersquatting — 2014 Understanding the Legal Options Used to Fight Cybersquatting Compressed in as little as a word or two, or perhaps an expressive phrase, trademarks communicate powerful stories about who businesses are and what they stand for. They are at once guardians of reputations, ambassadors of goodwill and […]

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Not All Similarity is Confusing

Judged objectively not all similarity is confusing with domain names and trademarks. Paragraph 4(a)(i) of the Policy is not satisfied by simply showing that the trademark and the domain name bear a similarity of parts, unless it suggests the whole. The similarity must be confusing to an “objective bystander,” so stated by the minority Panel […]

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