Panelist respects the limited scope of UDRP.
The UDRP, a quick and inexpensive dispute resolution policy for cybersquatting, is limited in scope. But over time some panelists have tried to make it more of a court, bending the lines to find in favor of complainants even when it’s not a clear-cut case of cybersquatting.
Which is why I find William R. Towns’ decision in a recent case so refreshing.
Ticket Software LLC, which operates a site at TicketNetwork.com, filed a complaint to get TicketSNetwork.com.
I’ll let these lines from Towns’ decision in favor of the respondent speak for themselves:
…where a respondent registers a domain name consisting of “dictionaryâ€ terms because the respondent has a good faith belief that the domain name’s value derives from its generic or descriptive qualities, the use of the domain name consistent with such good faith belief may establish a legitimate interest…But the domain name must have been registered because of, and any use consistent with, its attraction as a dictionary word or descriptive term, and not because of its value as a trademark
…In addition, the TICKETNETWORK mark when used with the Complainant’s online ticket exchange service does not have a high degree of inherent distinctiveness, and to some degree might be considered descriptive in relation to that business. The Policy was not intended to permit a party who elects to register or use a common term or terms as a trademark to bar others from using the common term in a domain name, unless it is clear that the use involved is seeking to capitalize on the goodwill created by the trademark owner.
…And while the Respondent is using the disputed domain name to attract Internet users to a website with advertising links to online ticket providers, this is not inconsistent with the use of the disputed domain name in a descriptive sense
…it is paramount that panels decide cases based on the very limited scope of the Policy. Id. The Policy provides a remedy only in cases where the complainant proves that the domain name “has been registered and is being used in bad faithâ€.
Thank you, Mr. Towns.