I was looking through the recent UDRP filings at the World Intellectual Property Organization, and I saw one for the Milano.com domain name. The UDRP is WIPO Case D2015-2263, and the complainant is a company called Grupo Milano, S.A. de C.V.
The Milano.com domain name has a creation date of May 22, 1997, according to DomainTools. The domain name is parked, and I see advertising links related to the city of Milan, Italy.
According to DomainTools’ Whois history tool, in 2003, the domain name had a “MK Chow” as the administrative contact. This was the earliest historical record for this domain name that I could find in DomainTools. In 2010, the administrative contact was Ming K Chow and the registrant was 3 Mings LLC. Current Whois records show Ming K Chow and 3 Mings. I would assume that the MK Chow who was the admin in 2003 (and possibly before) is the same person as the admin / registrant now.
I did a Google search for the complainant, Grupo Milano, S.A. de C.V. and it looks like their website can be found on Milano.com.mx. That domain name was created in August of 2009.
There are several things I think of when I hear the word “Milano.” It is the last name of an actress name Alyssa Milano (who happens to own Alyssa.com). I also think about Milano cookies, which are made by Pepperidge Farm. In addition, and probably most famously, Milano is the Italian spelling for the city of Milan. In fact, you can find the city’s tourism office by visiting www.turismo.milano.it.
I will be following this UDRP closely. I do not see how all three requirements for a successful UDRP will be met, and I would not be surprised if a reverse domain name hijacking decision is rendered (assuming the domain owner files a response, requests that finding, and I am not missing something).
Update: Complaint was denied and a finding of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking was made by the panel
A nice geo-domain threatened by an overreaching company. Most likely an unreasonably low offer was countered by a seven digit quote.
The current content clearly sticks to the geo model. They’d better defend this though!
Judging from their models, the shirts’ patterns and the following sentence
“Grupo Kaltex, compañía 100% mexicana especializada en la producción de fibras sintéticas…”,they are probably just another of the thousands of tricky companies using Italian sound signs for which they obtained (…) a deceptive trademark, just to make costomers thinking they sell Italian clothes…
Maybe I am wrong, but I hope at least they will have to demonstrate the trademark is not a deceptive one. Hoping the panelists will ask them to exhibit large amount of evidence about the origin of the clothes they are selling, to prove that Milano is not a trademark used in a deceptive manner…
Luckily Milano.it is not assignable
Anyway it seems Milano.clothing is available, so it seems they are joking…………(almost a joke like all the new gTLDs: are not they something that can be compared to Nice classes?!?!…………..).
For me any ways being Italian I see both geo and cookies 🙂
I immediately think of the 1989 Alfa Romeo Milano (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alfa_Romeo_75) that my roommate drove back in college. Awesome sounding car — when it would actually start.
One of the silliest UDRP ever … hope the Panelists will find RDNH so that we can put it on Rick’s Hall of Shame 😀
Agree with Claudio on companies using deceptive brands … would-be copycats of Italian fashion and style …
Compaint denied and reverse domain name hijacking was found: http://www.wipo.int/amc/en/domains/search/text.jsp?case=D2015-2263
It seems they eventually bought milano.com after all as now they (milano.com.mx) operate it.
I wish we would know how this went after the denied UDRP and RDNH finding. I supposed they paid up.