UDRP Filed Against Zero.com, Which Sold for Over $329k (Updated)

Zero.com UDRP

A UDRP has been filed against the Zero.com domain name at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). The complainant in this case is listed as CKL Holdings N.V. The Zero.com UDRP is WIPO Case D2016-1382.

When I saw the UDRP in the WIPO database, I had to do a double take. Zero.com was created back in June of 1992, nearly 25 years ago. The domain name looks like it is privately registered, as the registrant is listed as DNStination Inc. When I visited Zero.com today, the domain name only resolved to an ISP error page for me, although I am not sure if that changed as a result of the UDRP filing.

A Whois History search at DomainTools shows that the DNStination Inc. has been the registrant since at least early 2011. A search of NameBio shows that Zero.com “last sold for $329,420 on 2010-10-24 at SnapNames.” I did a search of Archive.org and it does not look like they have any archived pages since early 2011, so it doesn’t even appear that the domain name has been used.

I did a Google search for CKL Holdings N.V and Zero to see if I could find more information about why the company filed a UDRP, and I found a trademark for the word “Zero” on the TMDB.eu website. I did a search for the term “zero” in the USPTO’s database, and there are thousands of results. There are tons of registered domain names that have the word “zero” in them.

I am not sure why the  complainant  believes it should be able to get  the very valuable Zero.com domain name via the UDRP process, but I am sure I will find out when the decision is published.

I will be following this UDRP proceeding and will provide an update once I see a decision rendered.

Update: This UDRP case has been terminated.

Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of DomainInvesting.com. Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the DomainInvesting.com Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn
  1. Seems pretty crazy that someone would file a UDRP against zero.com, especially since there is no infringing use – indeed no use at all.

    Strangely enough, there already was a UDRP filed against zero.com by a German company – one of the earliest UDRPs filed back in 2000. The complaint was denied:


    A complaint was also filed against zero.net, in 2008, by a different company, Pirelli tires. It was also denied:


    Pirelli tires also filed a complaint against zero.org, and this time they succeeded in seizing the domain. The domain owner did not respond, but nevertheless it is still an atrocious decision by the Honorable Karl V. Fink (Retired). Fink found that ‘zero’ is confusingly similar to ‘pzero’, that the domain owner’s lack of use meant the domain owner had no legitimate interest in the domain, and most egregiously, that the lack of a developed website was evidence of bad faith registration and use:

    “The Panel finds that the lack of any content associated with Respondent’s disputed domain name evinces registration and use in bad faith pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii).”


    This history of complaints against ‘zero’ domains shows how the UDRP has been mispurposed to go after valuable dictionary word domains, and with the assistance of pliable panelists, at times successfully used to facilitate the theft of those domains contrary to the governing intellectual property laws.

  2. I did a quick search and, as far as I can see, CKL Holdings N.V. is owned by Michael Gleissner, who is also a well-know domainer … weird, isn’t it?
    And it seems a Jonathan Morton, attorney in NY, is a business “associate” … https://www.linkedin.com/in/jonathan-morton-80421451
    He’s registering TMs to try to grab premium names or what?
    And there’s a connection to the Apollo UDRP, filed by Fashion One Television, which is also owned by Michael Gleissner … 🙂
    IMHO Zero chances of getting any of the two names … 😀

    • And guess who owns a recent TM for “apollo” … 🙂
      FASHION ONE TELEVISION LIMITED is the Original Applicant for the trademark APOLLO ™ (UK00003046299) through the UKIPO on the 2014-03-12
      Trademark classes: Internet protocol television (IPTV) transmission services; Simulcasting broadcast television over global communication networks, the Internet and wireless networks; Television broadcasting. Television entertainment services; production, presentation and syndication of on-line television channels via the Internet and other electronic media; production, presentation, syndication and distribution of television programmes and sound and video recordings for broadcasting by television, cable, satellite, video and by electronic means including via the Internet.

    • IMHO Michael Gleissner is being ill-advised … and that way he’ll waste a lot of time and money …
      Michael, call us and I’ll explain you a few things about TMs, UDRP and Domains … 🙂

  3. Seems like Michael Gleissner wants to own every domain. He bought XXX,XXX number of domains in the last few years under his Bigfoot Ventures, NextEngine Ventures LLC, and other companies.

  4. Next ones who could be targeted? Maybe the owners of Michelle.com, Alexander.com, Anna.com, Jessica.com, Julia.com, Kevin.com, RAV.com, Robo.com and FastClick.com …
    Why? Because those are some of the other terms/names that CKL Holdings NV has recently registered Trademarks for … 😀
    All of them through the same attorney, JONATHAN GRANT MORTON, 246 WEST BROADWAY 4TH FLOOR, NEW YORK, NY 10013, now also in Japan … General Counsel – Intellectual Property Attorney at CKL Brands LLC & Fashionone Inc.

    • I should add also Alan.com, Carmen.com and many others … yes, CKL Holdings NV has got TMs also on those generic names/terms …

  5. “DNStination Inc.” is Markmonitor’s entity for holding defensive domain name registrations among other things.

    I can’t get too excited over this one. These are the people who expressly argued at ICANN that dictionary words should be reserved for trademark claimants.

    “Thank you. My name is Elisa Cooper. I’m speaking on behalf of the business constituency.

    The second issue is also around rights protection mechanisms, and it has to do with the fact that there’s some registries which are creating block lists meaning these domains are being held back from registration. While they typically contain dictionary terms, those dictionary terms are also trademarks for many companies. And so the issue is when though names eventually come off the block list, which is at the discretion of the registry, will they go through a sunrise period? Will the trademark owner have an opportunity to have a right at registration ahead of all others?”

    This is the world that Markmonitor wants. So screw ’em.

    • I forgot to add the reference:

      ICANN 49 Singapore Meeting, 27 March 2014 Public Forum, remarks of Elisa Cooper of Markmonitor on behalf of the Business Constituency.

  6. D2016-1340
    CKL Holdings N.V. – CASE ACTIVE

    CKL Holdings N.V. – CASE ACTIVE

  7. If this is the same Michael Gleissner that I’m thinking of and appears so based on several things… he owns a TON of high quality domains. Upwards of 300+ 3 letter .com’s, a slew of one word .com’s, some LL .com’s and these are the ones just under his name/email and not tied to BigFoot and NextEngine.

  8. Multiple trademark owners … Name sold for $329K …. Paying for a UDRP $5K or so. No penalty for losing the udrp other than spending the $5K.
    I wouldn’t be surprised if one day names like this get multiple udrps filed against them. The industry needs to have the udrp thrown out or reformed where there are penalties against those who file them and lose.
    Owners of names like this may as well have more money in reserve to add to their cost basis or get udrp insurance.

  9. American Franchise Marketing Limited (AFM). According to Companies Houser, AFM appears to be a one-man enterprise, whose director appears to be one Michael Gleissner.

    From xing.com,

    Trademarks (brands, company, work title) (Trade Marks Law)
    Markus knee Already
    Markus knee Already
    Posted in: Trademarks (brands, company, work title) … – 4/11/2016, 4:21 pm
    Cancellation proceedings American Franchise Marketing Limited

    does anyone have any experience with the part of the company “American Franchise Marketing Limited” from London? My client is presently facing cancellation proceedings before the EUIPO. The applicant seems arbitrary to coat brands with deletion requests lack of use. The Rechtsmissbräuchlichkeit of applications should be apparent for the post but unfortunately not of importance.
    Does anyone know this problem?
    I look forward to feedback.
    Jens God Life
    Jens God Life PREMIUM
    – 4/11/2016, 4:34 pm
    Google provided this out, maybe helpful: http://ipkitten.blogspot.de/2015/09/tuesday-tiddlywinks.html
    The IPKat: Tuesday tiddlywinks
    The IPKat: Tuesday tiddlywinks
    Markus knee Already
    Markus knee Already
    – 14/4/2016, 9:56 am
    Hello dear colleague and thanks for the link.
    Matthias Marcus
    Matthias Marcus
    – 5/23/2016, 7:05 pm
    We have an identical case. And after the recent cancellation notice by the EUIPO our client was immediately a friendly OFFERS ON to transfer the brand – far below market price. In addition, however, the assumption of the office costs while EUIPO (€ 700) was offered. This offer comes from the CKL Brands LLC, headquartered in NYC. For me it is clear that both companies ‘hand in hand’ work.

  10. I have also read several UDRP conclusions that refer to transfers/sales as “new registrations” used for the purpose of establishing “registered in bad faith”

    IMHO Domain registrations should replace TM registration.

    No doubt M.G. will also use this example Nat pointed out,
    “The Panel finds that the lack of any content associated with Respondent’s disputed domain name evinces registration and use in bad faith pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii).”

    Since domains have become tradable security investments I hope the owner uses it as a defense for non-use.

    If these decisions on “new registrations” and “non-use” continue, it could have a significant effect on values.

    A domain like zero.com could become worthless just by the number of TM’s associated.

    • Are they going to terminate flammea.com?

      They pulled this one because they realized they stepped in poo by going after Google.

      They are merrily still going after Paul Flammea over his own last name domain.

      I guess your suggestion was “don’t get into a fight with Google, but screw that guy in Australia”?

      These people are scumbags, and your pretended “representation” of them to get them to behave decently is simply false.

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