Guy who got an early trademark for .eco sends a nastygram to registrars and Afilias.
One of the core tenants of the new top level domain name application process was that being the first to announce your interest in a particular domain (or even marketing it, for that matter) didn’t give you rights to the domain. You had to apply like everyone else.
That didn’t stop a lot of people from “trademark frontrunning.” I use this term to refer to people who tried to get trademarks for top level domain names before they applied.
One such applicant was Moses Boone of Colored Planet. He tried to get a trademark for .Eco.
In fact, he was somewhat successful.
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office doesn’t issue trademarks for top level domain names. But Boone was able to get a trademark for .eco for “Design, creation, hosting and maintenance of internet sites for third parties; Hosting of digital content on the Internet; Providing specific information as requested by customers via the Internet.”
He used this trademark to unsuccessfully object to a rival applicant’s .eco bid.
.Eco officially launched in general availability last month and there are about 500 .eco domain names in the zone file.
Like a couple of other applicants that are throwing good money (and time) after bad, Boone is still trying to stir up the hornet’s nest about his trademark.
Boone sent an oddly-worded email to some domain name registrars as well as backend registry provider Afilias this week demanding that they “Cease and Desist in any further use of the .ECO® trademark in association with the sale, marketing, distribution, promotion or other identification of your products, or services.”
Boone may have a bone to pick with ICANN over how .eco was ultimately awarded as a community application, but the trademark claim seems silly.