Heartland Payment Systems loses claims to “Heartland” domain names.
So far the Uniform Rapid Suspension (URS) policy for new top level domain names appears to be working.
URS was designed to be a faster and cheaper version of UDRP for slam dunk cases of cybersquatting. Since UDRP was meant to be for clear-cut cases as well, the burden of proof is very high in URS cases.
Richard Branson was the first to lose a case, for Branson.guru.
Now Heartland Payment Systems, Inc, which describes itself as a Fortune 1000 company that handles $80 billion worth of payments per year, has lost two cases.
It filed URS cases against Heartland.ventures and Heartland.holdings.
Much like the word “Branson”, “Heartland” can refer to much more than the payments company. Short of a smoking gun, such as the domain owner trying to sell the domain to the complainant or putting up parking links related to the trademark’s usage, this type of case is doomed to fail.
In this case Heartland Payment Systems pointed to a blog post it says was authored by the domain owner. The blog post claims the domains were purchased for speculation.
Yet there’s nothing wrong with buying a generic term domain name for speculation purposes. So the domain owner won despite not responding to the dispute.
Panelist Douglas M. Isenberg heard both of the Heartland cases and was also the panelist for Branson.guru.
The GTLDs will die very quickly if we continue to see generic keywords across all extensions being hit with actions, especially if they are one sided for corporate users. They live to see another day with this ruling.
Or you could look at it another way,that URS seems to be more straight forward & effective and is doing the job correctly, unlike UDRP
It is too early to tell, so far the rulings have been very geo, or very branded. It will be interesting to see how they handle parking pages, as many domains on godaddy, and enom default to parking links eventually. The panel members still haven’t figured out unintentional parking based on registration to date.
Registering domain names purely for speculative purposes should be banned. CW
Buying property, stocks, options, precious metals, commodities should also be banned. We should also meet on a mountaintop, and all hold hands and sing campfire songs as well.
Bram C. says
Playing the lottery should also be banned while we’re at it. To much speculation there.
Wow. Two cases out of 400,000 domain registrations. I think the ratio speaks for itself.