Now that Rio De Janeiro, Brazil has been awarded the Summer Olympic Games in 2016, it’s important that domain investors keep in mind the words “Olympic” and “Olympics” in relation to sporting events is a highly protected trademarked term. The International Olympic Committee is familiar with the UDRP process, and the USOC has also filed UDRP cases against for domain names that they believe infringe on their marks.
The Brazilian Olympic Committee already owns Rio2016.com, Rio2016.org, RioDeJaneiro2016.org, and they probably believe they have the right to any domain name related to Rio and the year 2016 – even without the Olympic trademark. Whether or not this is true may depend on usage (I am not an attorney and won’t speculate), but whether they have the rights to names or not doesn’t mean they won’t take action to get these names via UDRP or other means.
Last year, the Chicago Bid Committee made an attempt to take control of Chicago2016.com. They own Chicago2016.org, and they felt that the .com should belong to them as well. The owner of the domain name was forced to take legal action of his own to keep it, and as of the present time, the domain name is still owned by him.
If you are thinking about making money trading in Olympic-related domain names, you might want to think again and not take chances with the IOC or any other Olympic Committee.
Congratulations to Rio de Janeiro.
Now Rio will be host the Olympics games …. and its good for Chicago..
This is an interesting topic for me because I own a few Olympic-related domains. It never occurred to me when I purchased them that there might be a trademark issue.
It seems to me that the word “Olympic” has several different uses, which made me think originally that there was no trademark issue. Your post has made me question that logic. I’d appreciate others thoughts on whether domains containing the word “Olympic” infringe on a trademark.