Law firm found guilty of abusing UDRP.
It’s bad enough when anyone tries “reverse domain name hijacking” through domain arbitration. It’s worse when the culprit is a law firm.
But Bin Shabib & Associates of Dubai tried just such a stunt, filing a case for BSA.com. A three person National Arbitration Forum didn’t buy it.
Bin Shabib & Associates argued that it had rights to the term BSA on the basis that it has filed a trademark application in the United Arab Emirates. As further evidence, it provided copies of its letterhead using the BSA mark an its web site (currently BSA.ae).
According to the respondent, here’s how the pre-UDRP correspondence between the two parties took place:
Respondent had no knowledge of Complainant until receipt of a September 23, 2009 email stating that Complainant had “full rights over the domain bsa.comâ€ and demanding that Respondent “vacate or transferâ€ the domain to Complainant. The same day, Respondent emailed stating “The domain bsa.com is not for saleâ€. The next day, Complainant insisted, stating “I need to buy the subject domain due to email project work I have to doâ€ and asking for a price. Respondent replied the same day stating “the domain is NOT for sale for any amountâ€. Complainant persisted with another request on September 24 to which Respondent immediately replied “Please stop sending us emails, we told you clearly twice already the domain name is not for saleâ€. Apparently not satisfied with taking no for an answer (twice), Complainant file the instant UDRP.
The respondent had purchased the domain name for $17,850 earlier this year at NameJet.
The panel found that the law firm had no rights to ‘BSA’, and that it was guilty of reverse domain name hijacking. The respondent was represented by domain attorney Paul Keating.