Company tries to get PureTalk(.)com through ACPA.
Pure Talk, a mobile virtual network operator, has filed a lawsuit (pdf) to try to obtain the domain name PureTalk(.)com. The company uses the domain name PureTalkUSA.com.
This is the company’s second attempt to get control of the domain without buying it. In June, the company filed a cybersquatting claim under UDRP. The panelist denied the claim because the domain was registered before Pure Talk had any trademark rights, so it couldn’t have been registered in bad faith.
Now, the company is trying its hand with an in rem lawsuit against the domain for violating the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA). The lawsuit suggests that the domain was transferred to another owner after Pure Talk obtained trademark rights. That argument works in UDRP, but it can be harder under ACPA. I’m not sure why the company didn’t point out the potential ownership transfer in its UDRP.
Intriguingly, the company’s trademark for Pure Talk states a first use date of 2017. PureTalkUSA.com has been used for much longer, though.
The lawsuit also erroneously states that the registry for the domain is “VeriSign, Inc. d/b/a Public Interest Registry” and refers to Public Interest Registry as the registry a second time. Public Interest Registry is the registry for .org, not .com. Verisign is the .com registry.
But the in rem lawsuit strategy might just work. The domain owner needs to show up to defend the domain in court, or the judge might issue a default judgment.