Domain Name Wire

Domain Name Wire

Displaying posts tagged under "udrp"

  • LeadPages is a Reverse Domain Name Hijacker

    1. BY - Jan 29, 2015
    2. Policy & Law
    3. 2 Comments

    WIPO panel finds that lead generation technology company abused UDRP.

    A three person World Intellectual Property Organization panel has found the company behind LeadPages.net to have engaged in reverse domain name hijacking in a cybersquatting complaint.

    Avenue 81, Inc., which offers lead generation software and tools at LeadPages.net, filed a cybersquatting complaint against Karl Payne, the owner of LeadPages.com.

    Payne registered the .com domain name in 2004. LeadPages.net was formed and its domain name registered in late 2012. Obviously, they chose the .net domain name because the .com was taken.

    After first trying to acquire the domain name for as much as $15,000, LeadPages.net filed the complaint with WIPO. The company argued that, since his most recent renewal of the domain name, Payne had switched the use of the domain name from inactive to promoting a service to take advantage of misguided traffic. Click here to continue reading…

  • Was Michele.watch registered for Porn or for Watches?

    1. BY - Jan 28, 2015
    2. Policy & Law
    3. 2 Comments

    Domain name registrant came up with a creative defense in UDRP.

    Michele WatchA National Arbitration Forum panel has ordered the domain name Michele.watch transferred to watchmaker Fossil Group, Inc.

    I’ve got to hand it to the respondent in this case. He put up a spirited defense of his registration of Michele.watch.

    Enadin Kucevic said he didn’t register the domain name to take advantage of Fossil’s Michele brand of watches. Instead, he registered it for use as a porn site. The idea was that visitors could “watch michele” do pole dances and such.

    He actually had me siding with him in his defense…at first. The problem is that Kucevic registered a number of other brands in .watch that would be harder to defend: bering.watch, breda.watch, breil.watch, croton.watch, stuhrling.watch, swisslegend.watch, and timeforce.watch. Oh, and he also listed Michele.watch and other domains for sale on Sedo.

    The rationale panelist Maninder Singh used to decide the case is rather weak and boilerplate. But the registration of other watch brands pretty much doomed the domain name owner’s argument that Michele.watch was created for a porn site, not because of the watch brand.

  • Photo.com — sold for over $1 million twice — saved in UDRP

    1. BY - Jan 26, 2015
    2. Policy & Law
    3. 1 Comment

    Complainant makes interesting allegations in UDRP.

    A three person WIPO panel has handed down a decision in a UDRP for Photo.com in a case I wrote about in October.

    The complainant owns Foto.com, but there’s a lot more to the story than just a company using UDRP to go after a great domain name.

    According to complainant Fotocom Société Anonyme:

    Complainant contends that Respondent is actually controlled or influenced by its former Chief Executive Officer (hereinafter “Panos”). According to the Complaint, Panos was Complainant’s CEO from 2005 until 2011, and it is alleged that in 2010 Panos launched a “competing activity” under the name “Photo.com.” It is further alleged that in 2010, Panos, in his position as CEO, hired a United Kingdom law firm to pursue the acquisition the Domain Name photo.com from a domain broker. Complainant alleges that Panos was actually secretly bidding against his own company and that, in February 2010, the Domain Name was sold for USD 1,250,000 to a company, xxlpix Limited, controlled by Panos. Complainant even alleges that the purchase price for the Domain Name Panos surreptitiously acquired was actually financed by Complainant’s money, through the “illegal diversion” of company funds “through illegal offshore mechanisms.”

    If that was the case, the current domain name owner says it had nothing to do with that past purchase.

    Photography company motiondrive AG says it acquired the domain name via domain broker DomainHoldings for over 1 million euros in 2012.

    It appears that Photo.com has sold for over a million dollars twice in the past five years.

    motiondrive AG claims Fotocom is engaged in “a delusional crusade”; Fotocom still believes Panos is the owner of the domain name.

    The panel denied the complaint. Even if Fotocom’s allegations are true, they aren’t the type of issue a UDRP panel addresses.

  • Investment firm RVK engaged in Reverse Domain Name Hijacking on RVK.com

    1. BY - Jan 21, 2015
    2. Policy & Law
    3. 8 Comments

    Company changed its brand last year, filed UDRP to get matching three letter domain name.

    RVK financial

    They want the matching domain name, but would rather not pay for it.

    A World Intellectual Property Organization panel has found investment advisory firm RVK (formerly R.V. Kuhns & Associates, Inc.) guilty of engaging in reverse domain name hijacking over the domain name RVK.com.

    The company, aided by law firm Tonkon Torp LLP, filed a UDRP against domain name owner Gregory Ricks.

    According to the decision, the initial complaint said the firm has been using the RVK mark in commerce since April 2000. After Ricks responded that he registered the domain name before that date, RVK amended its complaint with a new affidavit claiming first use in 1992. The 1992 date relied on use in letterhead, and the panel determined that the 1992 date was unfounded.

    The panel noted that, even if the 1992 date were proven, there is still no evidence that the respondent was aware of the mark and that he engaged in bad-faith conduct. Ricks claims to have never received correspondence from RVK prior to the November 2014 UDRP filing. Click to continue reading…

  • MomAndMe.com spared in UDRP. Should have been RDNH?

    1. BY - Jan 20, 2015
    2. Policy & Law
    3. 1 Comment

    Indian company should not have brought case.

    A single member World Intellectual Property Organization panel has ruled against Mahindra & Mahindra Limited of India in its UDRP against the owner of MomAndMe.com.

    Even though the domain name owner didn’t respond, this case should have been a candidate for reverse domain name hijacking.

    The complainant claims rights dating as far back as 2007. The domain name owner appears to have registered the domain name in 2000. Case closed.

    More worrisome is how easy it is to figure out that MomAndMe.com’s owner has rights or legitimate interests in the domain name:

    • The whois reflects “Mom and Me”
    • Simply Googling the phone number in whois shows that it is a scrapbooking store in Utah. In fact, if you call the number, a friendly woman picks up the phone at the scrapbooking store.
    • Archive.org shows that the domain was previously used for a site about scrapbooking. (It no longer resolves.)

    I usually don’t blame panelists for ignoring the issue of reverse domain name hijacking when the respondent doesn’t reply to a case. But in this case, I think panelist Alistair Payne should have considered it.