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Converse.CO UDRP Decision Turns on Price Inference

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In general, I thought UDRP panels have gotten past the issue of pricing as it relates to generic / descriptive one word domain names. A domain registrant who owns a one word .com – or alternative extension – domain name that is descriptive in nature should be able to make their own determination about the pricing based on their own expectations.

I am sure most of you have heard of the sportswear and shoe company called Converse. My daughter has a pair of the canvas Converse Chuck Taylor shoes, as do millions of others around the world. Converse is a well-known brand.

However, converse is also a dictionary term related to being engaged in conversation. With chat technology and chatbots in the news of late due to advancements in artificial intelligence, conversation related keywords are probably worth more now than ever before. In addition, I have been seeing startups and other businesses using non .com domain names quite a bit, and they seem to be selling for more. For instance, Doron Vermaat reported the $52,000 sale of Fire.CO just 3 days ago.

Nissan Going after Nissan.ai

Nissan is an automaker that uses NissanUSA.com for its website here in the US. The reason it uses an off-brand domain name is because it lost a very long legal battle to try and wrest control of Nissan.com. That domain name had long been owned by a man named Uzi Nissan, who had it for his business. You can read about the legal battle on Wikipedia. Mr. Nissan passed away in 2022.

It looks like Nissan is now trying to take control of another Nissan domain name. This time, the company has its sights set on Nissan.ai, and it is using the UDRP process. As you know, .AI is the ccTLD extension for the country of Anguilla, and it has become popular with the advancements in artificial intelligence and the venture funding devoted to AI-related companies.

Karen Bernstein Appointed as UDRP Panelist

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Karen Bernstein is an Intellectual Property lawyer who has considerable domain industry expertise. Karen has been involved in the domain space for quite some time, and she is a regular participant at domain industry events.

According to a LinkedIn post she shared yesterday, Karen has been appointed as a UDRP panelist at the National Arbitration Forum.

Cabot.com: UDRP Panelist Made the Right Call

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A UDRP was filed against the Cabot.com domain name at NAF. There are more than 1,000 companies with Cabot in their branding listed on LinkedIn alone and there are 46,000 people results. That alone should indicate the wide usage of the Cabot term. The Cabot I am most familiar with is a cheese company, and it was not the complainant here.

The complainant in the UDRP is Cabot Brand Co. Ltd. Just looking at that alone, I wouldn’t know which Cabot company is filing the UDRP. The domain registrant did not respond to the UDRP. Despite this, the UDRP was denied.

EU Gives More IP Protection to Food & Drink Producers

Did you know that some well-known food and drink varieties are protected intellectual property regulations? Popular types of drinks and foods that are protected by IP laws include Champagne, Kalamata Olives, Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, and Prosciutto di Parma. These protections have implications for domain name registrants.

According to a press release from the Council of the European Union, these IP protections are going to be strengthened by the EU. Interestingly, the press release specifically mentions domain names:

Pitstop.com UDRP: Whois Privacy Prevented RDNH

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When I saw a UDRP had been filed against PitStop.com by a company called Distribuidora Automotiva S.A., I spent a couple of minutes checking the Whois history at DomainTools. My non-legal conclusion was that this UDRP is DOA and it will result in a finding of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking (RDNH).

The domain name was defended by attorney John Berryhill, and the three member UDRP panel ruled in favor of the registrant. This was not a surprise. PitStop.com is a descriptive domain name, with the “pit stop” phrase used by brands and used generically throughout the world. One entity should not have the right to control the .com domain name for a descriptive term, in my opinion.

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