A couple of weeks ago, I saw that Finwise.com was pending delete and would be auctioned. I liked the name because it was a mashup of two words – fin (for financial) and wise. FinWise seems like a pretty nice brand name. I did not backorder the domain name, though, because a search I did showed there is a bank called FinWise Bank, and I was concerned they could claim a right to this name, particularly because it would have a new registration date.
FinWise.com was caught by DropCatch.com, and the domain name was sold for $4,190. Fortunately, I did not bid on this domain name because a UDRP was filed against FinWise.com at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
Most interestingly (to me), the UDRP was not filed by the bank I had noticed prior to the auction. In fact, the complainant in the UDRP is a company called Finwise BV. In looking at Google, it would appear that Finwise BV uses the inferior Finwise.eu domain name for its website.
From my perspective, FinWise could be considered a mashup of two generic terms. A LinkedIn search shows quite a few companies called FinWise, so I am not sure a panel will be able to rule that the registrant bought in bad faith to capitalize on the registrant’s trademark. In addition, prior to its expiration, it looks like FinWise.com had been owned by a totally different financial services company in India called Finwise.
I understand why Finwise BV would want to have this domain name, but the fact that there is more than one FinWise shows that this is domain name could be considered generic in nature. In essence, why should a UDRP panel award this domain name to Finwise BV when there are quite a few other companies also called FinWise.
I will keep an eye on the UDRP.
Update: The domain registrant was represented by attorney Howard Neu, but the complainant won the UDRP. You can read the decision here.
To many stupid bidders at Dropcatch alwsys playing with Tm names, good lesson to be learned here
Front runners probably offered the domain to the complainant before the auction was over, giving them grounds for a bad faith argument. And now the respondent would have to prove that it wasn’t him/her.
Thanks for the heads up, Elliot
i’ll be following this one!
Can someone file a UDRP 5 or 10 years later after I have registered the name and then TM it ?