Your cable company might be a reverse domain name hijacker.
Charter Communications, which does business as Spectrum, has been found guilty of reverse domain name hijacking in a cybersquatting dispute it brought against the owner of MySpectrumNews.com.
Based on the decision, it appears that Spectrum tried to acquire this domain name that was registered well before it created the Spectrum brand. When acquisition talks didn’t go where the company hoped, it filed a UDRP.
Not only did the owner of MySpectrumNews.com register the domain before Charter’s Spectrum brand was introduced, but they actually put the domain name to use.
Spectrum argued that the domain name was renewed in bad faith. Even though that argument didn’t go anywhere, it turns out that the domain name hasn’t even been renewed since the Spectrum brand was introduced. A quick look at historical Whois records show that was renewed in 2011 for a day in late 2017.
A unanimous three-member World Intellectual Property Organization panel wrote:
Complainants should have known that Respondent’s original use of the disputed domain name in the manner outlined above was likely to prove fatal to their prospects in this proceeding. Complainants’ reliance on the “update date” as the date of Respondent’s renewal was fundamentally wrong. The Panel might overlook this mistake were it not the primary pillar of Complainants’ bad faith contention, causing the Panel concern that Complainants knew or should have known that they had built their case on an erroneous factual premise.
Furthermore, before launching this case, Complainants engaged in lengthy and detailed negotiations with Respondent to buy the disputed domain name. Frustrated by these negotiations, Complainants strained too hard to find a theory, making erroneous assertions of fact regarding the renewal date their central contention and lobbing baseless allegations (such as the false contact assertion) in an effort to achieve via the UDRP what they could not achieve by negotiation.
I’m shocked that Charter and its attorneys at Loeb & Loeb, LLP filed this dispute.
Very fair panel, and excellent decision.
C.S. Watch says
Righto. I wonder if Ms. Corwin knows that she exceeded to a ~100K+ award for RDNH upon the domain hold. To recoup her legal costs, and to keep parasites like Loeb & Loeb and Charter Communications under control, maybe she’d wish to call attorney Gary N. Schepps in Dallas at (214) 210-5940.
(This site covered a domain owner whose attorney, Gary Schepps, has sued not only the complainant guilty of RDNH, but the lawbreaking attorney as well. https://domainnamewire.com/2017/04/13/panelist-makes-right-call-zeca-com-case/#comments.)
Jamie Zoch says
“renewed in bad faith” OMG!
Owner should only sell for $50,000 or higher now.
Al Frank says
Lol are you serious about, Should only sell it for 50,000 or higher what’s higher to you 70 ?
They are a billion dollar company that tried to take/scare/force it from her, Because she didn’t want to sell it to them.
She should get 5 to 10 million dollars for HER Domain Name.
I bet you are one of those people who after she sold it for nothing would say, oh she should have asked for more.
C.S. Watch says
Why would an attorney so blatantly violate federal law? Loeb & Loeb’s victim is a woman in her 50s who has a graphic design shop with her daughter (plus ten other women and a dachsund). The firm likely thought, ‘These are women we can easily shake down and scare off. And they’re not going to be able to afford legal to defend themselves.’ http://corwindesign.com/?page_id=21.
Loeb’s own attorneys back up that hypothesis: ‘The stunning under-representation of racial minorities and women among the partners speaks volumes and limits the firm’s world view. The corporate culture feels like 1970…’ https://www.glassdoor.com/Reviews/Loeb-and-Loeb-Reviews-E26656.htm
And how about these apples: David Newman of Loeb & Loeb was hired by the WIPO as a faculty member of the WIPO’s 2015 Mediation and Arbitration Workshop. Apparently he’s spreading an inside joke at Loeb that the UDRP is a corrupt tool with zero accountability. Nice.
If this Respondent had not made the financial sacrifice to retain a law firm to mount a response, or had scrimped and used a single panelist, would Loeb & Loeb’s sniggering contempt for the UDRP have paid off?
If the WIPO’s own representatives believe that it’s open season for abuse and theft, then it is imperative that there be an RDNH finding on every single ‘one panelist’ or ‘no response’ dispute in which the domain predates the mark. There’s no gray area there, so there must be no exceptions. Failing that duty, that unethical panelist must be stricken from the UDRP rosters immediately.