Last month I wrote about how jeans company True Religion lost a domain name arbitration case with the owner of TrueReligion.com.
The owner of TrueReligion.com registered the domain name in 1998, many years before the jeans company came into existence. He originally used the domain name to write about Islam. But once the jeans company became very popular, he started using the domain name to profit from the True Religion brand.
The jeans company lost its UDRP domain name arbitration case. In order to win, it would have had to prove that the domain name was originally registered in bad faith back in 1998. That’s impossible since the jeans company wasn’t even around.
Having lost the arbitration, True Religion has now turned to the courts. The company filed a federal lawsuit (pdf) yesterday in U.S. District Court against the domain’s owner, Ali Ibrahim Abu-Harb of Riyadh.
True Religion has a legitimate beef with how the domain name has been used in recent years. That said, I take issue with a couple claims made in the suit.
61. Defendant has not made any prior use of the Domain Name in connection with the bona fide offering of any goods or services.
Yet the jeans company already stated earlier in its suit that the defendant had used the domain name for a site about Islam.
The suit also doesn’t mention the result of the UDRP case.
In the suit, True Religion also claims that “Defendant, through his agent, offered to sell the Domain Name for $1 million dollars to Plaintiffs”. I’ll be curious to see if this was in response to an overture by the Jeans company, rather than a proactive offer by the defendant. (The exhibit containing this offer has not been uploaded to the court’s docket yet.)
The content at TrueReligion.com recently changed to again discuss religion. It also has a message that the domain name is for sale for $300,000.
The suit does not explicitly ask that the domain name be transferred.