Broker offered domain name for sale, which Kitchens To Go used as an opening to get domain below market value.
Kitchens To Go, LLC has been found guilty of reverse domain name hijacking for a cybersquatting complaint it brought against the domain name KTG.com.
The owner of KTG.com died and left the domain names to his sister. His sister then hired a domain broker to try to sell the domain names, and the broker contacted Kitchens To Go to see if it wanted to buy the domain. Kitchens To Go uses the domain name KitchensToGo.com but also owns K-T-G.com.
A World Intellectual Property Organization panel determined that Kitchens To Go did not meet any of the three elements necessary to win the case. The panel neatly summarized Kitchens To Go’s actions:
The facts point clearly towards the Complainant, having taken no steps in respect of the disputed domain name since it was first registered in 2001, taking the opportunistic view that, once it had been offered the disputed domain name for sale for a sum greater than the likely costs of registration, it could force the Respondent to sell it for a sum which was less than its market value. Failing that, that it could try to apply further pressure by bringing an unmeritorious claim under the Policy which made exaggerated accounts of rights and sweeping and unsupported assertions of bad faith against the Respondent.
Kitchens To Go was represented by Tressler LLP, which doesn’t appear to have specific experience with IP or domain name disputes.
The domain owner was represented by Zak Muscovitch of Muscovitch Law P.C.