Add two more companies to the reverse domain name hijackers list.
There have been so many reverse domain name hijacking cases over the past week that it’s time to consolidate more than one decision in the same post.
Earlier today I wrote about a reverse domain name hijacking case brought by French clothing company Modz. Here are two more decisions, both published by World Intellectual Property Organization today.
Airtango AG tries to reverse domain name hijack AirTango.com
Live streaming company Airtango AG was found guilty of reverse domain name hijacking for AirTango.com despite the domain owner not responding to the complaint.
The company sent two emails to the privacy email for Airtango.com demanding transfer of the domain name. The first message said:
airtango is aiming to play a major role in the fastest growing digital market, world-wide LIVE / real time video content and in this light offers a platform that manages, organizes and delivers video content through the Internet or via exclusive airtango Live-Points. For further details, please refer to www.airtango.de. Since airtango wishes to even stronger promote and support its global expansion, airtango is in need of the international Internet presence airtango.com.
It filed the UDRP after not receiving a response from the owner.
The problem for Airtango was that the domain was registered well before it existed. (Looking at historical Whois records, it’s quite possible the domain changed ownership since the complainant existed. It seems that the complainant’s legal counsel didn’t look at historical Whois. For the purposes of the case, however, the complainant believed the domain was registered before the company existed.)
Airtango AG, represented by Dr. Meyer-Dulheuer & Partners LLP, Germany, seemed top misquote prior UDRP decisions to imply that the registration date didn’t matter. It lifted a statement from a prior UDRP in which the panel said the registration date didn’t matter, but that referred to the first element of UDRP (whether the domain is confusingly similar to the complainant’s trademark) in which date indeed doesn’t matter.
Laboratorios del Dr. Esteve, S.A. tries to reverse domain name hijacking AdSalutem.com
Spanish pharmaceutical company Laboratorios del Dr. Esteve, S.A. was found guilty of reverse domain name hijacking for its attempt to get the domain name AdSalutem.com.
The domain name is owned by a German company that sells a diet program. It says that “ad salutem” is a form of Latin greeting which means “good health to all”.
The panel found that the complainant, represented by Oficina Ponti, filed the case in bad faith:
The Complainant is professionally represented in this matter and, in the opinion of the Panel, knew or ought to have known that it had no reasonable chance of prevailing in this proceeding for the reasons set out above, including in particular the absence of any evidence of its own use of the term “ad salutem” in commerce. Further, the Panel notes the Complainant’s prior attempt to purchase the disputed domain name from the Respondent, at which time no suggestion of any impropriety on the part of the Respondent was made. The Respondent has also adduced sufficient evidence for the Panel to conclude on balance that the Complainant’s primary motivation in bringing this proceeding was to obtain the disputed domain name for commercial reasons of its own. The Panel finds in all the circumstances that the Complaint was brought in bad faith and constitutes an abuse of the administrative proceeding.