Follow up: Panel finds against clothing manufacturer.
Photo from Wikimedia Commons
Here’s a follow up to Domain Name Wire’s story in July about Wicked Fashions filing a UDRP for SouthPole.com. Wicked Fashions manufacturers a line of clothing called SouthPole. Domain owner Chad Wright has won the dispute (full decision from National Arbitration Forum).
The panel found that the domain wasn’t registered in bad faith and that the respondent had legitimate interest in it. Although it’s a no brainer that Wright won this case, the panel asserted that Wright’s use of generic domain names for pay-per-click search engines was a legitimate business. Not all panels agree with this. Of course, it didn’t hurt that the panel found Wicked Fashions’ allegation that the parked domain included links to competitors “patently incorrect”.
As presented by the evidence, Respondent’s business model is legitimate under the Policy. Complainant’s allegations about Respondent are incorrect or inconsistent. Complainant’s allegation that Respondent’s website corresponding with the domain name carries links to competitors of Complainant is incorrect and not supported by the evidence in any way. Complainant’s allegations about Respondent’s activities are inconsistent. Complainant first alleges Respondent is not engaged in any business or commercial enterprise, but then charges Respondent with having benefitted from a pay-per-click revenue scheme. Respondent openly admits that it obtains pay-per-click revenue from use of the domain name and many other domain names it owns and that this is the platform of its business.