Here are some needed reforms to UDRP.
Uniform Dispute Resolution Procedure (UDRP) has some problems. Here are four quick ways to improve it.
1. Only allow an additional submission if specifically asked for by panel. UDRP rules prescribe that the complainant in a case can only make an addition submission (usually a response to the respondent’s claims) if specifically asked to do so by the arbitration panel. But most of the time an additional submission is submitted it has not been requested by the panel. This slows down the process and places an additional burden on the panelists. UDRP providers such as National Arbitration Forum and WIPO should only forward additional submissions to the panel if requested to do so by that panel.
2. Eliminate venue shopping. Because complainants can choose which arbitration provider will hear a case, it leads to venue shopping. Arbitration companies that don’t rule in favor of complainants enough lose business and eventually shut down (this has already happened). Filings under UDRP should be randomly distributed or rotated to arbitration companies.
3. Change repeat filing procedures. A complainant can refile the same exact case, causing the respondent to spend more money and resources responding. Panelists frequently decide to not hear a case again, but only after the case has gone through its regular pleadings and the respondent has had to answer. Instead, a complaint should be forwarded to a one person panel for an initial decision on whether or not to proceed. Only if it decides to proceed will the respondent be asked to submit his response. Also, any particular domain should only be allowed to be filed a second time at the same arbitration provider; no switching from NAF to WIPO or vice-versa.
4. Put some teeth into Reverse Domain Name Hijacking. Reverse Domain Name Hijacking (RDNH) doesn’t have any financial penalties. Add some.