Car rental company gets greedy with domain arbitration.
Vanguard Trademark Holdings USA LLC, the trademark affiliate of National Car Rental, has been busy filing domain arbitration cases lately. One of those caught my eye today: GreenMeansGo.com, filed with World Intellectual Property Forum.
It caught my eye because “Green Means Go” is a common and generic phrase. Alas, that doesn’t keep a trademark holder from trying to grab the domain.
The company actually does have a trademark for “Green Means Go.”, which it filed in 1994. But this trademark doesn’t give the company exclusive rights to “Green Means Go”, a common phrase. A Google search for the phrase in quotes returns only generic uses of the term with nothing related to the car company.
The trademark is for goods and services related to “automobile rental and reservation services”. I looked up the parked domain GreenMeansGo.com and looked at its historical thumbnails in DomainTools. Nowhere can I find any sort of link for car rental.
Right now there are links on the page for “Online Traffic School”, “Traffic Ticket”, and “Car Insurance Quote”. This makes sense, as I usually associate the phrase with driving. But it stops there. Unless there’s some sort of damning evidence that shows the current owner registered this domain way back when with National Car Insurance in mind, Vanguard’s case should be denied.