Social networking behemoth wins domain name from Australian company.
Facebook has won the Facebook.com.au domain name from Australian company Callverse Pty Ltd. The domain name currently advertises a “click to call service” that is “coming soon”.
The decision was handed down by a three person panel at World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). The decision has not been posted online yet so details of the dispute are not available. Domain Name Wire will post details once they are available.
It appears that Callverse bought the domain name from former registrant “Cocktail King Australia” and Braden Yuill between June and October 2007. [See update]
.Au is the country code domain for Australia. These domains are not freely salable on the domain name aftermarket, although this may change in the coming months (and .au domains have been sold in the past). Registration is limited to Australian companies and individuals, many of whom have stockpiled the domain names for the day that the registry relaxes domicile rules on them.
It will be interesting to see the details on this case and if Callverse challenges it. Facebook competitor MySpace won a decision for MySpace.co.uk, despite the domain being registered before MySpace was founded. However, the owners of MySpace.co.uk won it back on appeal.
[Updated 6/13 10:30 AM CDT: I’ve read the decision and here are some additional facts:
-Facebook said that Cocktail King Australia is related to Callverse
-Callverse changed what was on the web site after being served a cease & desist by Facebook
Sale of .au names is permissible now:
@ Nic -thanks, I was under the impression that this wasn’t fully implemented yet.
Looks like Facebook also picked up Facebook.ie
domainers should be aware of this