The incredible game of duping the USPTO to get single letter .com trademarks.
Did you know Amazon.com has a registered trademark for A.com?
It’s true. A company filed for a trademark on A.com back in 2005, and submitted evidence of its use in commerce by showing a screenshot of a-dotcom.com. The company later assigned the trademark to Amazon.com.
This got me thinking — how many other companies have registered for single letter .com with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office? I started compiling a list, then realized John Berryhill already did so in an excellent analysis a few years ago. (I had read his analysis a while back but forgot about it. Otherwise I wouldn’t have spent my time on it.) But I was most of the way through the list when I remembered this, so I completed it since John’s list is several years old.
John discovered that many of these applications were filed shortly after news got out that ICANN might distribute single letter .com domains, which were previously restricted. (Three .com’s were assigned before this restriction: q.com, x.com, and z.com.)
What I confirmed is an incredible game of trying to dupe the USPTO in an effort to get priority if single letter .com’s are ever allocated. In addition to small players, companies ranging from Major League Baseball to Overstock.com are all in the game. Here’s a summary of each letter of the alphabet.
a.com (registered) assigned to Amazon.com.
b.com (registered) NSDB Pty Ltd Austrailia filed an intent to use and then said it was using it in commerce as of 2010. They own Bangk.com, although nothing has ever been done with it. Proof of use of b.com? A password protected page on Bangk.com that shows “b.com”
c.com (denied) Several applications (including one by 4g service provider Clear) but all are dead.
d.com (registered) Joseph Carlucci, an individual, for online retail store. Specimen of use in commerce is an Amazon affiliate store…that obviously doesn’t exist (at least not at D.com).
e.com (canceled) registered in 1998 but canceled. Another applicant, The Everybody Network, filed in 2010 and the mark was published for opposition in January 2011.
f.com (registered) Proof it was used in commerce? A screenshot of fdotcom.com.
g.com (registered) Registered to G-dotcom LLC in 2006 for one field of use and GQXZP2, LLC in 2009 for another field of use. GQXZP2, LLC’s proof of use in commerce is a graphic on Overstock.com, that reads “G.com – Great Products and Great Prices”
h.com (applied – intent to use) applicant Major League Baseball’s MLB Advanced Media, L.P. I have no idea what their interest is in the domain.
i.com – (registered) registered by GQXZP2, LLC, the same company that has a g.com trademark. Shows another specimen from Overstock.com that reads “I.com For Everything You Need”.
j.com – (registered) Lost Reality Studios, Inc. Specimen is a page from “Online Times” that says J.com on it.
k.com (registered) Gregory Freeman (not the same guy at Domain Capital). Originally an intent to use application, he then submitted multiple specimens of use for each class of goods or services. These range from an online storefront that doesn’t mention k.com to a screenshot of discount-tickets.mobi and used-car-loans-online parked pages that don’t mention k.com. Then there’s a screenshot of “insurance-dept.com” that just shows “k.com” on the browser window.
l.com (registered) The Original Cast Lighting, Inc. and Lost Reality Studios, Inc, the same company that has j.com. Lost Reality Studios showed another print out from “Online Times” with L.com on it.
m.com (registered) by M-dotcom LLC – use in commerce was web page m-dotcom.com (seems to be same group behind one of the g.com registrations)
n.com – 6 dead registration filings
o.com – (registered) four registered by Overstock.com
p.com (registered) by P.COM, INC and assigned to THIRTY ONE SARL SOCIETE A RESPONSABILITE LIMITEE (SARL). Proof of use was a printout from p-com.us
q.com 5 dead applications
r.com (registered) Jeffrey Alan Ripley. His specimen was a printed brochure that said “r.com” on it and a business card with “r.com”. A second trademark was originally filed by another group that showed trademark-register.com/r/ with “Welcome to R.com. We look forward to assisting you with your trademark needs.” as proof of use. This second one was later assigned to Ripley.
s.com (registered) registered by S.com, Inc. and transferred to a UK company.
t.com (6 registered) registered to Deutsche Telekom, owner of T-Mobile (for a little while more)
u.com (registered) registered to U. Inc., who submitted a page from colleges.com that said “Welcome to U.com, The Online home of U. Magazine.”
v.com 4 dead applications
w.com (registered) W-dotcom LLC specimen was page from wdot-com.com
x.com (abandoned) PayPal, which actually owns the domain
y.com (pending) Yahoo, published for opposition in December 2010
z.com 3 dead applications