Legal News

RDNH Finding in DSPA.com UDRP

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A UDRP was filed against the 4 letter DSPA.com domain name at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), and the decision was published today. The case was decided in favor of the domain registrant, a domain investor who owns a valuable portfolio of domain names. The 3 member WIPO panel ruled this was a case of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking (RDNH). Attorney John Berryhill represented the domain registrant in the proceeding.

The complainant in the dispute was a company called DSPA B.V., which uses the DSPA.nl ccTLD domain name for its business. According to the decision, the complainant had owned the domain name several years ago, and the registrant acquired it in an expiry auction. Coincidentally, I was one of the four underbidders in this 2017 auction on NameJet.

In this decision, the panel once again acknowledged that domain investors have a legitimate right to register short acronym domain names as investments:

Webinar: How to Win a UDRP Dispute

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The Canadian International Internet Dispute Resolution Centre (CIIDRC) is hosting a webinar that might be of interest to domain investors. How to Win a UDRP Dispute is a free webinar featuring the Hon Neil Brown QC, Barry Penner QC, and John Rogers, C. Arb. as its keynote speakers. The webinar was announced on the CIIDRC Twitter account:

DownPat.com Sold by NameFind in November, Expired in March

Andrew Allemann wrote about the DownPat.com UDRP, which was decided in favor of the domain registrant who acquired the domain name via GoDaddy Auctions for $861. Although the domain registrant won the UDRP in a decision I agree with, I think what happened to the complainant really stinks.

In looking at the Whois History at DomainTools, I see DownPat.com was previously registered to NameFind, the domain name portfolio company owned and operated by GoDaddy. The domain name appears to have been acquired by GoDaddy when it acquired Michael Berkens’ portfolio several years ago.

1919.com Lost in UDRP Decision

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A UDRP was filed against the high value 1919.com domain name at the National Arbitration Forum (NAF). The complainant in the UDRP is a company called 1919, LLC, and the domain registrant did not respond to the UDRP. The UDRP was decided by a single panelist, The Honourable Neil Anthony Brown QC, and the UDRP was decided in favor of the complainant.

At a quick glance, I was surprised to see the complainant prevail, despite the fact that the registrant did not file a response to the proceeding. I don’t recall many other UDRP cases involving short numeric domain names that were decided in favor of a complainant.

After reading the decision, there was a key finding from the panelist that likely weighed heavily on the decision:

UDRP Filed Against Picture.com at WIPO

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Late last week, I noticed a UDRP was filed against the generic, high value Picture.com domain name. The UDRP was filed at the World Intellectual Property Organization. It is WIPO Case D2020-2016.

Picture.com was originally created more than 25 years ago – in September of 1994. The domain name is registered under privacy proxy, and it forwards to a purchase inquiry page at Uniregistry Market. In October of 2019, domain investor James Booth announced that his company acquired Picture.com, although it is unclear if his company still owns this valuable asset:

Don’t Email Trademark Domain Names for Sale

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Chalk this one up to something that should be common sense, but I received an email solicitation this morning that made me think it serve some good to share my thoughts. Buying domain names with common trademarks is a bad idea. Sending out email solicitations trying to sell these domain names is an even worse idea.

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