Popular online game will need to pay if it wants .com domain name.
MMORPG TribalWars has lost an arbitration case over the domain name TribalWars.com, which is owned by BuyDomains.
InnoGames, the company behind the game, filed the dispute at World Intellectual Property Forum in January.
The arbitration panel determined that the domain name was not registered in bad faith because it was acquired prior to TribalWars gaining any sort of global rights in the name. In fact, it appears that TribalWars’ main English web site at TribalWars.net wasn’t registered until 2006.
The UDRP decision is worth reading if you’re ever responding to a similar UDRP because the panel detailed many of BuyDomains‘ arguments:
-It closely follows a policy of registering and maintaining only those domain names that, at the time of their registration, incorporate common and/or generic words, phrases, acronyms, abbreviations and/or descriptive terms for which the available evidence suggests no single party has exclusive rights.
-The Domain Name provides advertising consistent with the two-word phrase’s online gaming connotations.
-Company uses technology to regularly screen acquired domain names for conflicts with exclusively-owned, descriptive, or fanciful trademarks applied for and/or registered at, among other places, the United States Patent & Trademark Office. Screening also extends to trademarks which, at the time of registration of the relevant domain name, have a significant market presence on the Internet. When BuyDomains acquired the Domain Name and ran its screening check, queries on the expressions “tribal wars” and “tribalwars” revealed no active, pending, or expired applications for the Complainant’s mark at the USPTO, the World Intellectual Property Office, or the German Trademark Office.
-Robots.txt blocks search traffic to avoid any chance that domains appear next to other similar domains in Google
BuyDomains also produced evidence from Domain Tools to refute some arguments.