Why Twitter Singled Out TwitterSearch.com

Owner tried to “extort” Twitter.

As Robin Wauters wrote today, Twitter has filed a UDRP against the owner of TwitterSearch.com.

With so many domain names out there including “twitter” in them, why has the company singled out this one? I know the answer.

It turns out the owner of the domain name has been trying to sell the domain name for some time. Back in August a Domain Name Wire reader caught wind that the owner was trying to sell the domain name and let me know about it. Apparently the owner of TwitterSearch.com claimed “Twitter will buy it for a few hundred thousand dollars.”

Someone also let Twitter know about the sales pitch. A Twitter representative wrote back:

…I’ve been in touch with these people, and they’re very interested in extorting us and not very interested in working with us. Please regard their emails as spam and feel free to let me know if you have any further concerns.

My reader opined “I am sure Twitter will take action against the owner of the domain in a UDRP.”

He was right. I suspect the registrant trying to “extort” twitter is why this UDRP was filed. Now the company will get the domain name for about $1,500 in UDRP fees. So this case doesn’t necessarily mean people with twitter in their domain names need to run for the hills — although I’d recommend being careful if your product is related to the service.

The domain name is currently protected by whois privacy, but the original registrant of TwitterSearch.com was Popvox, LLC. It’s the same registrant of TwitterVision.com.


  1. says

    come on! twittersearch.com.

    If i register googlesearch.com (didn’t bother to check) i am sure google is gonna a file a udrp. Singled out or not. This is a no brainer.

  2. says

    re: google, interestingly enough there are many domain names with android in them yet i haven’t heard any udrp cases. i think when a service or a product is young, the business behind it takes a backseat because all these other domains promote their products. the story changes when the product becomes well known and has gained majority of the sales.

  3. says

    I wonder what the registrant thought about when trying to sell to twitter. Did he expect them to ponny up the money? because then everyone and their cat would star registering twitterbiscets, twiternames,twiterfind, and on and on and on. How about this gem twittersearchnow.com bam, thats 50k right here. Fell free register any or all of this domain names.

  4. says

    Reminds me of the domain auction of airtel.com.
    Slaich2000 bid on the domain and then tried to sell it to the company AIRTEL before paying for the domain purchase at pool.

  5. says

    Wait a minute. According to the Oxford Dictionary, twitter is an English dictionary word. It is being described as a “noun” that means a series of short, high-pitched calls or sounds. However the social networking site Twitter.com has used it as a name for their website, this does not mean that they own the word. All we need is less than 200,000 companies that become famous worldwide, and we no longer will be able to use the English language for our domain names. So the owner of the english word domain, would have a monopoly on the word domain, the owner of the word daddy would have a monopoly on the word daddy, the owner of the word register would have a monopoly on the word register and the owner of amazon would have a monopoly over the word amazon. I am sure that at a future date, when the trademark business becomes a hindrance to the progress of the Internet, ICANN will take a closer look at changing the UDRP and how it works. In the past and today you will find five stores on the same street sharing the word hamburger, and we never had a problem to identify which hamburger we wanted to eat. I think a closer look at ICANN’s policy regarding what is what is not a candidate for UDRP disputes will help us all.

  6. says

    ICANN does not get involved with UDRP’s.

    But i get your point but check windows.com.
    I am not saying it is right or justified… it’s matter of the money involved.

  7. mozz says

    Well, the issue goes beyond the use of an English word. From the initial post(article), it is evident that there is bad faith on the part of the current domain registrant. The attempt(s) to sell the domain using the pitch “Twitter will buy it for a few hundred thousand dollars.” …and their apparent interaction with Twitter thereafter, creates the same impression(granted that was only a Twitter representatives side of the story).

    I am unsure as to how the registrant used the domain name(parked page, development,etc.), but I suspect it may have crossed into a gray area, if not blatant infringement. If so, that would be further evidence of bad faith, among other things.

  8. says

    According to the Oxford Dictionary, twitter is an English dictionary word. It is being described as a “noun” that means a series of short, high-pitched calls or sounds.

    So are shell, head and shoulders, tide, and even face. Yet they’re all being used as trademarks. (And hang on, Facebook’s application for face is still pending…)

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