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.
New York times article on .ORG
This is one reason that as soon as someone files a UDRP you should file a Court action in your home country, to seize Jurisdiction. Won’t always work but usually.
I am going to sticky your answer as a bookmark in my web browser as this is something I have always wondered about. For a fair few domainers, we may have a worthwhile asset but can’t afford to travel around the world defending names. Thanks 🙂
PureTalk’s lawyer doesn’t seem to be the sharpest knife in the drawer. Either that, or not quite so ethical — he or she appears to rather bill the client for legal fees than to just advise the client to go buy the domain name from the owner as is customary for a normal acquisition of any business asset. All these attempts at trying to go around capitalism — buyer and seller trading under an agreement to terms — will likely end in nothing for the client but a large legal bill.
these PureTalkUSA guys seems to be “pure” idiots.
Do not buy anything from them.