Posts from — March 2011
Registrars Jump On Bob Parsons Video To Offer Special Discounts For Those Wanting To Transfer Domains Out Of GoDaddy.com
Two domain registrars, NameCheap.com and Domainit.com just jumped on the Bob Parsons hunting controversy by offering special discounts for domain name transfers including contributions for each domain transferred to a wildlife charity.
In response to the masses of users looking for a new provider, two companies, DomainIt and NameCheap have both stepped up to offer deals to any clients looking for a quick alternative.
Use coupon code “DomainitCares” to get the deal.
NameCheap.com sent out an email to customers today saying:
“We at Namecheap are very disturbed by this video of a competitor killing an elephant for sport.
“We’ve decided to throw our support behind our Elephant friends by offering domain transfers at a price where we actually lose money.”
“Show your protest by saying BYEBYEGD again and transfer your domains to Namecheap for $4.99 for the next 24 hours through 11:59pm EST on 3/31/11 (limit 10 per user, valid for all com/net/org domains).”
On top of that, we’ll donate $1 for each transfer to SaveTheElephants.org
March 31, 2011 Comments Off on Registrars Jump On Bob Parsons Video To Offer Special Discounts For Those Wanting To Transfer Domains Out Of GoDaddy.com
Wow Sedo.com is on fire as the sales just keep coming.
Just hours after writing about some nice .Org sales on Sedo, here comes another batch of .Com sales from today:
If you want to know what Nuruko is check out the wikipedia.org entry for it or Google Images
SharkCapital.com is going to the evaluegroup.com.
CurioCity.com is owned by Marchex and is pending escrow transfer.
March 31, 2011 Comments Off on The Hits Keep Coming For Sedo As Another $80K In Sales Led By CurioCity.com At $25K
IndianOil.com Beats Back A WIPO Challenge from Indian Oil Corporation Who Won A UDRP On IndianOil.Org In January
Back at the time we asked, knowing that the same company filed a UDRP against the com version , whether IndianOil.com would be next?
On this issue of whether the complainant held a trademark the panel found:
“the Complainant contends that the transfer of the disputed domain name to another registrar represents deceptive, fraudulent and misleading activities by the Respondent and that such a transfer is contrary to the injunctive command in paragraph 8(a) of the Policy which prohibits such transfer to another holder during a pending administrative proceedings and thus constitutes “cyber flying”.
“Furthermore, having observed that there were false details in the registrant’s record such as the e-mail address “email@example.com” and the telephone number “+000.0000000000”, the Complainant represents this as an attempt to mislead the Panel and as constituting evidence of abuse of the process of law and of the UDRP proceedings.”
“In respect of the Complainant, the Panel felt that it could have provided further evidence of its rights under trademark registrations and of its submission that the use by the Respondent of the domain name and the website to which it resolved was to direct Internet visitors to competitors of the Complainant. In particular, it could have provided documentary evidence of trademark registration and evidence of specific products and competitors allegedly promoted on the Respondent’s website.”
“In respect of the Respondent, although it relied on the lack of documentary evidence by the Complainant of its trademark registration, it would have been useful had it provided specific evidence of the date and number of domain names involved in the change of registrar and explained what appear to be inconsistencies in addresses in respect of the transfer of the domain names to a different registrar. ”
While the “Panel concludes that the Complainant has not established that it has a registered trademark, The Panel is, however, satisfied that the Complainant has made out its case for an unregistered trademark in India for the term INDIANOIL. ”
“The Panel has reached this conclusion because the evidence is to the effect that there has been at least 40 years of use of the term INDIANOIL as a trademark to indicate certain petroleum products as being the products of the Complainant between 1959 and 2001 when the disputed domain name was registered by the Respondent.”
“Furthermore, according to the evidence, the Complainant operates a network of 17606 fuel stations, presumably less in 2001, yet most likely still the largest in India, one of said stations with the Trademark being shown in a photograph at page 44 of said book Exhibit H. Accordingly, there has been use of the trademark with a logo and as the trademark alone.”
“On balance, and without other evidence to rely upon to the contrary, the probability is that the trademark was initially descriptive, but that it acquired some distinctiveness, even if it was not as famous as the Complainant contends, particularly in 2001 when the disputed domain name was registered.”
“Accordingly, the Panel concludes on the balance of probabilities that the Complainant has rights in a trademark, an essential element to be established under the Policy and that the trademark is a common law trademark for INDIANOIL.”
“The Panel also finds that the disputed domain name is identical to the trademark and that accordingly the Complainant has made out the first of the three elements that it must establish.”
“The Respondent seeks to rebut the prima facie case against it by relying heavily on the fact that the disputed domain name consists of two words, one being an adjective fashioned from the name of a geographical entity, namely ‘indian’ and the other being a generic word, namely ‘oil’. ”
“As such, this gets the Respondent off to a good start, because the development of UDRP jurisprudence has been in the direction of recognizing the legitimate interest of a domain name registrant who invokes the name of a country or state in a domain name and also the right of a registrant who merely uses a common, dictionary or, as sometimes arises, a generic word that is open to all comers and over which no one else can have superior rights. ”
“Like everything else, this proposition is subject to exceptions and they will be considered later. But in the absence of exceptions the jurisprudence has, if anything, encouraged rather than discouraged the use of these groups of words in domain names.”
“In the case of generic words, the trend has been the same. Thus, the author David Lindsay of International Domain Name Law, ICANN and the UDRP has been able to say: “Where a respondent registers a generic term as a domain name and there are no indications of bad faith, then the respondent will have rights or legitimate interests in the domain name…Another way to state this principle is that the first person to register a generic term as a domain name in good faith will have legitimate interests in that domain name. ”
“In the present case, as the geographical entity has been put into the form of an adjective to qualify the noun ‘oil’ the combined effect of the two words is really to create a generic expression. ”
Accordingly, the use of that generic expression in the disputed domain name will give rise to a right or legitimate interest unless the Respondent has disqualified itself by evidence suggesting that it was intending “to capitalize on the complainant’s trademark interest.”
“This sometimes is put as whether the respondent was targeting the complainant or whether it was acting in bad faith. In other words, the legitimate interest does not arise automatically, for, as the WIPO Overview puts it:
“2.2 Does a respondent automatically have a legitimate interest in a domain name comprised of a generic (dictionary) word(s)?
“Consensus view: If the complainant makes a prima facie case that the respondent has no rights or legitimate interests, and the respondent fails to show one of the three circumstances under Paragraph 4(c) of the Policy, then the respondent may lack a legitimate interest in the domain name, even if it is a domain name comprised of a generic word(s). Factors a panel should look for when determining legitimate use would include the status and fame of the mark, whether the respondent has registered other generic names, and what the domain name is used for (a respondent is likely to have a right to a domain name “apple” if it uses it for a site for apples but not if the site is aimed at selling computers or pornography). (Emphasis added).””
“The essential question, therefore, is whether it has been established or can be inferred from the evidence that the Respondent was targeting the Complainant and its trademark, acting in bad faith towards it or capitalizing on the Complainant’s trademark interest.”
“Applying those tests, it must first be said that the evidence shows that the Complainant’s trademark must be very well known in India, but there is little evidence presented to show us the renown of the trademark outside of India.”
On the balance of probabilities, the Panel’s view is that the standing of the trademark outside India is probably similar to the standing of the trademark in Jet Marques v. Vertical Axis, Inc.:
“ The Complainant’s evidence of the use of the trademark outside France is insufficient to establish the reputation outside that country for which the Complainant contends. The Panel accepts that the trademark may be known by those engaged in the travel industry, but the Respondent does not appear to fit into that category. The Respondent’s website appears to do little more than provide a platform for sponsored advertisements provided by others, with the Respondent deriving click-through revenue in exchange for providing that service.”
“Secondly, the evidence is that the Respondent has registered many other generic names, over 280, including many that are combinations of the adjective Indian and a noun, such as <indiangasolineprices.com>, <indiantrees.com>, <indiancorn.com>, <indianbeers.com>, <indianjewelry.com> and many which are the combination of a geographical entity fashioned into an adjective together with the noun ‘oil’, such as <egyptianoil.com> and <albertaoil.com>. This practice, especially given that it is the Respondent’s business to register such names, not only tends to suggest that it was probably not targeting the Complainant, but makes it inherently unlikely that it was doing so.”
“Thirdly, judging by the use the Respondent made of the disputed domain name and the website to which it resolved, it was not targeting the Complainant. The website to which the disputed domain name resolves is a parking page with links to all of the blandishments of modern life from dating services to finance and motor cars and is clearly designed to be a generalist site to which users will find their way while searching, as they do, for generic websites that promote general goods and services.”
“In this regard, the Panel notes the allegation of the Complainant that the website has links to the Complainant’s competitors which are said to constitute strong evidence that the Respondent really was targeting the Complainant. The Panel cannot see how this can be so.”
“Even on the screenshot of the Respondent’s home page exhibited to the Complaint there were no links to apparent competitors of the Complainant and there are none such on the website as it presently appears. ”
“In any event, the Panel finds that on this issue, there are no links to competitors of the Complainant and nothing to suggest that the Complainant was targeted by the Respondent. ”
“The links are essentially generic themselves and, contrary to the Complainant’s submissions, this is an entirely legitimate use of the internet and the domain name system, provided that the registrant does not transgress on the rights of others.”
“Accordingly, the Panel finds that the Respondent has rebutted the prima facie case against it and has shown a right or legitimate interest in the disputed domain name.”
“The Panel has found that the Respondent has in essence registered a generic expression, along with over 280 others, and that its primary intention, which it has carried out, was to earn income from the display of links to generic goods and services and to make money by that means.”
“On the other hand, the Complainant is a large company well known in India. There is however less, apart from passing references to the Complainant’s joint ventures overseas, that supports the notion that the trademark is famous or well-known world-wide.”
“In particular, for a finding of bad faith the question is: would the Complainant and its trademark be known to people outside India, in particular in Barbados where the Respondent is based, so that it could be assumed that the Respondent must have been motivated by bad faith towards the Complainant? Furthermore this possible renown outside of India may come predominantly from its trade name rather than the trademark, while in UDRP cases it is only rights based on the latter which are considered.”
“On the Respondent’s side are the facts that the Complainant must be less well known outside India, that the Respondent acquired the name when it fortuitously came up for sale, that the disputed domain name consists of ordinary words over which no-one has a monopoly, that it has regularly registered generic domain names to aim at or do damage to the Complainant and that it has used the disputed domain name to conduct a legitimate business. All of these factors tend to tilt the scales in favour of the Respondent and are inconsistent with its having acted in bad faith. ”
“Stripped to its real essence, this proceeding is one where the Respondent has run a pay-per-click site of a general nature by using a generic domain name and promoting goods and services that are not associated with the Complainant’s industry. That is not evidence of bad faith.”
“Nor is it evidence of bad faith that the Respondent used a Privacy Service, as the reasons for using one are valid and its use has not prevented the Complainant from prosecuting this claim.”
“Accordingly, the Panel finds that the disputed domain name was not registered or used in bad faith.”
“On the question of laches, the Panel merely wishes to say that as a result of the decision in The New York Times Company v. Name Administration Inc. (BVI), NAF Claim No. FA1349045, laches is “a valid defence in any domain dispute where the facts so warrant.” In the present case, however, the Panel is of the view that the case should be decided on the substantive issues already expounded and that it is unnecessary to go into a long discussion on whether the facts warrant a finding on the issue of laches.”
“Stripped to its real essence, this proceeding is one where the Respondent has run a pay-per-click site of a general nature by using a generic domain name and promoting goods and services that are not associated with the Complainant’s industry. That is not evidence of bad faith.”
Interestingly as long of a decision as this case is, and by UDRP standards its quite long, nowhere did I read in the decision even a mention of the IndianOil.Org case which was decided two months ago.
In that case the same complainant was awarded the domain based off of the same trademark and set of facts as the current situation (a parked domain), with a couple of differences.
Here there was a three member panel while in IdianOil.org there was a one member panel and here the domain holders were well represented while in the IndiaOil.org case no response was filed.
March 31, 2011 Comments Off on IndianOil.com Beats Back A WIPO Challenge from Indian Oil Corporation Who Won A UDRP On IndianOil.Org In January
Afilias Supplemental Letter to Request Phased Equitable Reallocation of Non-Compliant .INFO Sunrise Domain Names
March 31, 2011 No Comments
.Org Sales Are Hot On Sedo.com: As Names.org Just Sold For $18K After Failing To Sell On NameJet.com
Names.org a domain name I’m pretty sure I have seen recently for sale on NameJet.com just sold on Sedo.com for $18,000.
On Namejet.com I saw an auction for this domain end on March 13th, at around $12K with NameJet Reserve as the high bidder, meaning that the domain did not reach the undisclosed NameJet reserve.
Other .Org domains found buyers on Sedo.com
Congrats to all Sellers and Buyers.
March 31, 2011 Comments Off on .Org Sales Are Hot On Sedo.com: As Names.org Just Sold For $18K After Failing To Sell On NameJet.com
The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) just released its domain dispute filing data for 2010. The results show that trademark holders filed 2,696 cybersquatting/typosquatting cases that included 4,370 domain names with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (WIPO Center). The number of cases represent an increase of 28% over the 2009 level and of 16% over the previous record year for filings, 2008. This growth trend indicates that brand owners are becoming more aware of the harmful effects caused by online trademark infringement including consumer confusion, inflated keyword budgets and lost revenue.
Since the UDRP’s launch in December 1999, the WIPO Center has received over 20,000 UDRP Cases, involving 35,000 domain names. WIPO arbitrates domain disputes for both generic and country code Top Level Domains (gTLDs and ccTLDs). Domain dispute cases filed with WIPO in 2010 included parties from 57 countries.
Interestingly, in 91% of cases, panels found evidence that domains were registered and being used in bad faith, thus deciding in favor of complainants. The top five vertical markets for WIPO complainant activity were the retail, banking and finance, biotechnology and pharmaceuticals, Internet and IT, and fashion sectors. While a majority of the cases (82%) related to registrations in the .com domain extension, domain disputes over country code Top Level Domains rose to 15% of all cases in 2010.
If your business is being damaged by cybersquatters infringing on your trademarks by diverting web traffic to pay per click ads sites, committing affiliate fraud, selling counterfeit goods or redirecting domains with your brands to your competitors, please contact Safenames to discuss your legal options. Safenames legal team has experience filing UDRPs for both gTLDs (.COM/.NET/.ORG) and most ccTLDs including CO.UK, .SE and COM.AU.
If you would like to discuss filing a UDRP or online brand enforcement strategies and online brand monitoring for your trademarks, please contact your Safenames account manager.
If you are not currently a customer, you may also contact the the Safenames US office at +1.703.574.5313 and firstname.lastname@example.org, or the Safenames UK office at +44 1908 200022 and email@example.com to discuss how we can help.
March 31, 2011 Comments Off on Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) for Domain Name filings increase 28% in 2010
According to Microsoft’s blog, by Brad Smith, Senior Vice President & General Counsel, of Microsoft, the Company filed “a formal complaint with the European Commission as part of the Commission’s ongoing investigation into whether Google has violated European competition law.”
“We thought it important to be transparent and provide some information on what we’re doing and why.”
“By the European Commission’s own reckoning, Google has about 95 percent of the search market in Europe. ”
“At Microsoft we’ve shown that we’re prepared to work hard and invest literally billions of dollars annually to offer Bing, a search service that many now regard as the most innovative available.”
” But, hard work and innovation need a fair and competitive marketplace in which to thrive, and twice the Department of Justice has intervened to thwart Google’s unlawful conduct from impeding fair competition.”
“In 2008 the DOJ moved to file suit against Google for its unlawful attempt to tie up and set search advertising prices at Yahoo!, causing Google to back down. And last year the DOJ formally objected to Google’s efforts to monopolize book content, a position affirmed by a federal district court in New York just last week. Unfortunately, even this has not stopped the spread by Google of new and disconcerting practices in the United States.”
“As troubling as the situation is in United States, it is worse in Europe.”
“Our filing details many instances where Google is impeding competition in these areas. A half-dozen examples below help illustrate some of our concerns.”
“First, in 2006 Google acquired YouTube—and since then it has put in place a growing number of technical measures to restrict competing search engines from properly accessing it for their search results. Without proper access to YouTube, Bing and other search engines cannot stand with Google on an equal footing in returning search results with links to YouTube videos and that, of course, drives more users away from competitors and to Google.”
“Second, in 2010 and again more recently, Google blocked Microsoft’s new Windows Phones from operating properly with YouTube. Google has enabled its own Android phones to access YouTube so that users can search for video categories, find favorites, see ratings, and so forth in the rich user interfaces offered by those phones. It’s done the same thing for the iPhones offered by Apple, which doesn’t offer a competing search service.”
“Unfortunately, Google has refused to allow Microsoft’s new Windows Phones to access this YouTube metadata in the same way that Android phones and iPhones do. As a result, Microsoft’s YouTube “app” on Windows Phones is basically just a browser displaying YouTube’s mobile Web site, without the rich functionality offered on competing phones. Microsoft is ready to release a high quality YouTube app for Windows Phone. We just need permission to access YouTube in the way that other phones already do, permission Google has refused to provide.”
“Third, Google is seeking to block access to content owned by book publishers. This was underscored in federal court in New York last week, in the decision involving Google’s effort to obtain exclusive and unfettered access to the large volume of so-called “orphan books”—books for which no copyright holder can readily be found. Under Google’s plan only its search engine would be able to return search results from these books. As the federal court said in rejecting this plan, “Google’s ability to deny competitors the ability to search orphan books would further entrench Google’s market power in the online search market.” This is an important initial step under U.S. law, but it needs to be reinforced by similar positions in Europe and the rest of the world.”
“Fourth, Google is even restricting its customers’—namely, advertisers’—access to their own data. Advertisers input large amounts of data into Google’s ad servers in the course of managing their advertising campaigns. This data belongs to the advertisers: it reflects their decisions about their own business. But Google contractually prohibits advertisers from using their data in an interoperable way with other search advertising platforms, such as Microsoft’s adCenter.”
“This makes it much more costly for Google’s advertisers to run portions of their campaigns with any competitor, and thus less likely that they will do so. That is a significant problem because most advertisers figure that they have to advertise first with Google. If it’s too expensive to port their advertising campaign data to competing advertising platforms, many won’t do it. Competing search engines are left with less relevant ads, and less revenue. And while this restraint isn’t visible to consumers, its effects are nonetheless felt across the Web. Advertising revenue is the economic propellant fueling the billions of dollars needed for ongoing search investments. By reducing competitors’ ability to attract advertising revenue, this restriction strikes at the heart of a competitive market.”
“Fifth, this undermining of competition is reflected in concerns that go beyond Google’s control over content. One of the ways that search engines attract users is through distribution of search boxes through Web sites. Unfortunately, Google contractually blocks leading Web sites in Europe from distributing competing search boxes. It is obviously difficult for competing search engines to gain users when nearly every search box is powered by Google. Google’s exclusivity terms have even blocked Microsoft from distributing its Windows Live services, such as email and online document storage, through European telecommunications companies because these services are monetized through Bing search boxes.”
“Finally, we share the concerns expressed by many others that Google discriminates against would-be competitors by making it more costly for them to attain prominent placement for their advertisements. Microsoft has provided the Commission with a considerable body of expert analysis concerning how search engine algorithms work and the competitive significance of promoting or demoting various advertisements.”
March 31, 2011 Comments Off on Microsoft Files Anti-Trust Complaint With The EU On Google Where They Have a 95% Market Share
Bob Parsons triggered the controversy after posting an Internet video chronicling his elephant slaying during a trip to Zimbabwe“.
In a copy of a letter that TMZ obtained from PETA sent to Parsons, they “presenting him with its “first-ever Scummiest CEO of the Year Award (Your certificate is on the way)”
PETA “Will be ending our account with Godaddy.com and taking our domain-name business elsewhere and encouraging others to do the same.”
Parsons told TMZ, “I understand PETA has an agenda, but I refuse to go along with their extortion-style practice.”
Parsons claims he was only hunting “problem elephants” ones that destroy the villagers’ crops … adding, “I stand by my decision to help African villagers.”
Other publications have attacked Parsons for his elephant kill as well.
“Now, there are so many things wrong with this video that it’s hard to know where to start. ”
“First off: is it really appropriate to score a scene of hungry villagers in Zimbabwe tearing apart a dead elephant to the tunes of AC/DC’s “Hells Bells”?”
“And I can’t be the only one who found it creepy that Parsons had outfitted nearly everyone in the area with bright orange GoDaddy baseball caps.”
“Not to mention the fact that this is all taking place in Zimbabwe, a broken country oppressed by the tyrannical Robert Mugabe, where 64% of the population lives under the poverty line and nearly 100% live in fear. This is one step up from taking spring break in North Korea.”
“It’s been a long time since shooting an elephant has been considered fashionable.”
Even on Parsons own blog people are calling him out:
One person Roanna Martin writes:
“I have to tell you, Mr. Parsons, your attempts to excuse your behavior are lean.”
“You are traveling around the world to give money to one of the most corrupt, violent regimes in the world but you excuse that by saying that you are helping people.”
“Instead of shooting wild elephants with a gun (really brave of you by the way) why not do a man vs. elephant hand to hand combat kind of thing? That could bring money to the locals with the right promotion.”
“Tell me this, if your concern is with the people of Zimbabwe, what charitable acts have you performed there?”
Another person a Gene Taylor commented on his blog:
“I am a fan of Mr. Parsons. I am a fan and customer of Go Daddy! ”
“I have been to Zimbabwe. The elephants are NOT killing the crops and family’s that run the farms, Robert Mugabe is.”
“He is a ruthless dictator.”
“He took a prosperous country that use to have the second highest literacy rate in all of Africa and turned it into a killing field for not only it’s wildlife population, but it’s human population as well. It it not the elephant herds that need culling, it is uninformed trophy hunting tourists who pay huge sums of money just for the thrill of the kill.”
Personally, having listened to Mr. Parsons’ speech at DomainFest I walked away knowing he had a take no prisoners , and do whatever the hell I want, kind of attitude.
But when your the head and sold shareholder of a Billion dollar plus company with thousands of employees, its probably an attitude that needs some adjustment.
March 31, 2011 Comments Off on PETA Names Godaddy.com Bob Parsons With “First-Ever Scummiest CEO of the Year Award”
March 31, 2011 Comments Off on WIPO Domain Name Decision D2011-0091 for miumiutasche.com
March 31, 2011 Comments Off on WIPO Domain Name Decision D2010-2001 for indianoil.com