Casinos.org owner can keep domain but panel fails to find RDNH.
As a follow up to an article on Domain Name Wire back in June, the owner of Casinos.org has successfully defended his domain name in a UDRP case.
Cedric Rimbault of Rungis, France, registered a French trademark for Casinos.org and registered the c-a-s-i-n-o-s.org domain name. He then tried to buy the domain name Casinos.org for as much as $9,000. When the owner asked for $115,000, Rimbault filed a claim against him, claiming the domain name infringed his trademark rights.
Unsurprisingly, the panelist found in favor of the respondent. With an argument like this, it’s no wonder:
The Complainant maintains that the disputed domain name is identical and confusingly similar to his CASINOS.ORG mark, and that the Respondent’s use of the disputed domain name compounds the confusion, since the Complainant uses his mark to advertise casinos over the Internet. According to the Complainant, the Respondent has made no effort since acquiring the disputed domain name “to develop a real Websiteâ€, does not own a corresponding trademark, and thus has no right to and no reasonable interest in the disputed domain name.
But here’s the amazing part. Panelist William R. Towns basically punted on the question of reverse domain name hijacking, writing:
While the Panel has determined based on the facts and circumstances before it that the Complainant has failed to meet its burden of proof with respect to the third element of the Policy, the Panel is not persuaded that the Complainant acted in bad faith in invoking the Policy in this case.