Company wants GreaterAustinRealty.com domain.
An Austin, Texas real estate firm has filed a lawsuit (pdf) it failed to win a UDRP it lodged against GreaterAustinRealty.com.
Real Estate Edge, LLC originally filed a UDRP against the domain name owned by Rodney Campbell, a real estate agent in Austin. A single-member World Intellectual Property Organization panelist ruled in favor of Campbell. The panelist noted that:
As viewed by the Panel, the Complaint does not make out a particularly strong case. The Complainant’s service mark does not appear to be especially well-known within Austin, Texas, that both the Complainant and the Respondent inhabit. Moreover, being composed of one geographical and two dictionary terms, the mark is not particularly strong on its own. Furthermore, even though it has established valid service mark rights, the Complainant has presented neither assertions nor any evidence whatsoever of the extent to which it has used the GREATER AUSTIN REALTY mark for business purposes. There is no recital or evidence of revenues, advertising costs and/or promotional material associated with the mark. Such information is critical if the Panel is to assess rights and interests in a domain name relative to such a descriptive service mark…Finally, the Panel must note that the Complainant’s position is weakened by the fact that it waited more than six years to seek a transfer of the disputed domain name, which is identical to its mark and bears the most common gTLD, “.com”.
Campbell uses the domain name for his own real estate business. He has a DBA for Greater Austin Realty that was filed last year.
The WIPO panelist also noted that there might be a trademark claim here but that it was outside the scope of UDRP.
I agree. This seems to be more of a trademark challenge than a cybersquatting issue.
The lawsuit, which was filed by a different lawyer than the one that represented Real Estate Edge in the UDRP, does not mention the failed UDRP filing.