I don’t follow the panelists logic in this UDRP.
If I told you about the domain name BBB.cc, what would come to mind?
If you’re in the U.S., it would undoubtedly be the Better Business Bureau. If you were a domain trader or in China, it would probably be a three-letter repeating domain name.
Not according to a World Intellectual Property Organization panelist, though. To panelist Kimberley Chen Nobles, it’s clear that BBB brings up the BBB cycling gear made by Augusta Benelux B.V.
In a UDRP filed against someone in China, Nobles wrote:
The disputed domain name is identical to the Complainant’s extensively used and well-known trademark and the Respondent must be aware that Internet users would be led to believe that the disputed domain name and any resolving website would be owned, controlled, established or otherwise associated with the Complainant and its cycling goods. See AXA S.A. v. P.A. van der Wees, supra. This is particularly so given that the “.cc” TLD has become a favored TLD for cycling clubs. Moreover, the Respondent’s holding of the disputed domain name prevents the Complainant from reflecting its mark in the same domain name. The Respondent has made no efforts in more than thirteen years to use the disputed domain name in connection with a bona fide offering of goods or services or to make noncommercial fair use of the disputed domain name. Additionally, the Respondent’s asking price for the disputed domain name was more than EUR 30,000, well in excess of the Respondent’s costs in registering the disputed domain name. This is further indication of bad faith.
That first sentence is quite a stretch.
And .CC is popular for cycling clubs? I learn something new every day.
My bet is that The Chinese registrant registered this domain because it’s three repeating characters. There’s not mention in the case that it resolved to a parked page with ads for bicycles.
I’ll give the panelist a little bit of relief since the domain owner didn’t respond, but the decision doesn’t make sense to me.