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RDNH

RDNH Finding in AquaFX.com UDRP

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A finding of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking (RDNH) was been made in a UDRP filed against the AquaFX.com domain name. The UDRP was filed at the National Arbitration Forum (NAF), and the UDRP was decided by a three member panel. The domain registrant was represented by attorney Jason Schaeffer of ESQWire.com.

In order to win a UDRP proceeding, the complainant needs to prove three things (paraphrasing): 1) the domain name is identical or confusingly similar to a mark held by the complainant, 2) the registrant has no rights or legitimate interests in the domain name, and 3) the domain name was registered and is being used in bad faith. If a complainant proves 2 of the three elements, the complainant loses. All three must be proven.

In a typical UDRP decision that I read, if the complainant fails to prove one element, especially the first element, the panel will often decline to discuss the other aspects of the UDRP. There isn't much of a point to go into detail about whether or not the domain name was registered and being used in → Read More


Negotiation Dooms Complainant’s UDRP in Vallila.com Decision

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An interior design company in Finland called Vallila filed a UDRP to try and wrest control of the Vallila.com domain name from its rightful owner. The company operates on Vallila.fi, so owning the exact match .com domain name would have been ideal for them. Instead of buying the domain name, which the company tried to do but failed, the company opted to file a UDRP instead. They failed at that approach as well.

Vallila is a neighborhood in Helsinki, Finland. As such, owning the geographic exact match .com domain name is fair game. A company called Linkz Internet Services has owned Vallila.com for quite some time, and the Uniregistry-parked page has travel related advertising displayed.

In the UDRP decision, it was revealed that the company tried to acquire Vallila.com. The complainant discussed this in its filing, but apparently left out some pertinent information that was provided by the respondent's attorney, John Berryhill. Here's an excerpt from the section in the UDRP decision discussing Reverse Domain Name Hijacking: → Read More


RDNH Finding in ALO.com UDRP

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A three member WIPO UDRP panel ruled in favor of the domain owner in the ALO.com UDRP. In addition, the panel ruled that Reverse Domain Name Hijacking (RDNH) occurred. The domain name owner was represented by ESQWire.com (Jason Schaeffer and Ari Goldberger), and this is the second case in the last couple of weeks for the law firm where a finding of RDNH was made.

This seems like a pretty cut and dry UDRP decision. It doesn't really make sense that a complainant can win a UDRP when the domain name has been owned longer than the trademark of the company filing the UDRP even existed. In its argument, the complainant cited the "Octogen Case," which was just discussed in a sponsored post the Internet Commerce Association wrote published on CircleID. Putting the theory of "retroactive bad faith" to rest is important for domain name investors.

I think there are several aspects of the UDRP decision that stand out for domain investor rights, and I want to highlight a few of them. (more…) → Read More