Doh! AARP lawyer forgets to attach screenshot, loses case
Tuesday, January 24th, 2012
AARP wins two cases for similar domain names but loses third.
The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) just received determinations in three cases it filed for aarpdiscounts.info, aarpdiscounts.net, aarpdiscount.org, and AARPdiscounts.org.
It won rights to all of the domains except AARPdiscounts.info.
You may be asking yourself how three different panelists looked at very similar domains, all of which allegedly forward to monetization pages, and one disagreed with the others.
Here’s the answer.
In the AARPdiscounts.info case the AARP alleged that the domain diverts visitors to websites not related to the AARP, some of which are competitive. But it didn’t provide any proof. So panelist Tyrus R. Atkinson, Jr said sorry, an uncorroborated allegation isn’t enough.
In the case for aarpdiscounts.net and aarpdiscount.org, the panelist specifically said that the AARP provided screenshots of the use of the domains. For aarpdiscounts.org the panelist doesn’t specifically say the AARP provided screenshots but he still awarded the domain to the group.
It’s possible the lawyer didn’t have anything showing competitive use for AARPdiscounts.info. When I checked it this afternoon it forwarded to one of those “survey” sites. That’s still easy to prove as bad faith in a UDRP, but it requires a different argument.
Still, it’s going to be difficult for the lawyer to explain this result to his client.