Russ “Dutch” Boyd gets a royal flush.
the tables and WIPO.
Last month I wrote about arbitration proceedings for the domain PokerHost.net. The complainant — online poker company Poker Host Inc which operates PokerHost.com — seemed to be fudging dates in its filing.
The arbitrator agreed, finding in favor of respondent Russ “Dutch” Boyd, and also found Poker Host Inc. guilty of reverse domain name hijacking because of its fuzzy use of dates:
The Panel finds that the Complainant brought the Complaint either without any attempt to verify whether it had a case for claiming that the Respondent had registered the Domain Name in bad faith or knowing that it did not have any viable case on this point. In these circumstances, the Panel concludes that the Complaint was brought in bad faith and constitutes an attempt at reverse domain name hijacking.
This was a case of a generic domain being registered before a company decided to use the term as its trademark:
The Panel is satisfied on the evidence that the Respondent registered the Domain Name before the Complainant established its online poker room website and before the Complainant registered POKER HOST as a trademark. The phrase “poker hostâ€ has a descriptive connotation and the Respondent had no reason to suppose that the Complainant had any trademark rights in it when he registered the Domain Name.
The panel found that Boyd didn’t have rights or legitimate interests in the domain because it was merely a parked page. (It seems like you can flip a coin to decide if a UDRP panel will decide if parked pages are a legitimate use or not.)
The full decision will be posted soon on WIPO’s web site.
[Editor: if you are involved in a UDRP that you think is egregious, please contact me for a possible story.]