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Posts Tagged ‘Long Term Use’

MAGIC BRA Can’t Find Support With UDRP Panel

Monday, May 17th, 2010

Let this be another lesson to domain dispute attorneys, simply having a U.S. trademark registration is not always enough. In the recent domain name dispute of A & H Sportswear Co., Inc. v. Hu Yanlin (WIPO D2010-0476, May 12, 2010) a single member Panel was faced with an interesting international dispute over the domain www.magicbra.com. Complainant is the manufacturer and designer of women’s apparel. Complainant is the owner of two trademark registrations for MAGIC BRA, 2756417 and 3335611 dating from as early as 1994. The Respondent filed a response and raised numerous objections. Some of Respondent noteworthy arguments include the following:

[T]he term “magic bra” is a descriptive term which not only refers to a brassiere which will make breasts look bigger but also refers to different methods of breast enlargement such as by nutritional, sports or medial operative means and the Complainant cannot claim exclusive rights over general and descriptive words which are used in accordance with their natural meaning….Complainant has no registered trade mark rights in China and to his knowledge does not sell its MAGIC BRA products in that country….[E]ven in the United States there appears to be several trade marks which incorporate the words “magic bra” and therefore even in the United States the term is common or descriptive…..

Interestingly when on looks at the USPTO database, there is another company who has two other trademark registrations, MAGIC BRA COLLECTION SWIM (Reg. No. 3552163) and MAGIC BRA COLLECTION (Reg. No. 3593248). The owner of those marks appears to maintain a website at www.magicbraswim.com. As Respondent noted, it does not appear as though Complainant is operating a website of their own.  The Panel agreed with the Respondent noting as follows:

The Complainant asserts that its MAGIC BRA mark is well-known and that it owns exclusive rights in relation to the mark and that people would associate the mark with products produced by the Complainant and that it has not authorised the Respondent to use its mark and essentially that the Respondent is using its mark to attract traffic to its website. However, none of these bald assertions are supported by any evidence or even by circumstantial evidence which would allow the Panel to draw appropriate inferences.

The Panel accepted Respondent’s assertions that it did not know about Complainant before registering the domain. Additionally, the Panel noted that since the disputed domain was written entirely in Chinese, and Complainant had failed to provide any evidence of registration or use in China, it would be unlikely to compete with Complainant. The Panel recognized that it was being used for a prking site, it was unclear to the Panel if that domain had been parked since its registration and if so, why Complainant waited seven years to complain. The Panel found that the two operated in separate geographical markets and found Complainant failed to submit evidence of bad faith. For all these reasons, the Panel DENIED the request for transfer.

Arbitrator Slams Complainant For “Paltry” Record Evidence

Wednesday, January 13th, 2010

In the recent cybersquatting case of Digital Alchemy, LLC v. Digital Alchemy c/o Ramon Felciano FA1295928 (Nat. Arb. Forum, January 12, 2010) a single member Panel was faced with a dispute over the domain www.DigitalAlchemy.com. Complainant operates in the field of electronic CRM for the Hospitality Industry and maintains a web site at www.data2gold.com. Complainant claims no registered trademark but states it has common law rights dating back to 1996.  Respondent is a consulting firm based in San Francisco, California, specializing in business, product, and technology strategy for life sciences, healthcare and technology markets. Respondent claims to have been offering its consulting services since 1993.

Paragraph 4(a) of the ICANN UDRP Policy requires that the Complainant must prove each of the following three elements to obtain an order that a domain name should be cancelled or transferred: (1) the domain name registered by the Respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the Complainant has rights; (2) the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and (3) the domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

In addressing the first element, the Panel noted that the disputed domain is identical to the DIGITAL ALCHEMY mark. But the Panel found that Complainant failed to demonstrate it has rights to the mark. The Panel criticized the Complainant’s contention that it had used the mark in connection with its services since 1996, noting that it was a conclusory statement lacking sufficient evidence. The Panel further finds that Complainant failed to present evidence of secondary meaning. The Panel cited to another prior decision and explained.

 In declining to recognize the complainant’s common law mark in Kip Cashmore the panel stated:  “Here, Complainant has not presented any credible evidence establishing acquired distinctiveness [for the complainant’s goods and services]. The record is devoid of any declarations of unaffiliated parties attesting that the mark of Complainant serves as an identifier of origin or services. Complainant’s record consists of merely a declaration of Complainant with unsupported facts…” Here the record is even more paltry than in Kip Cashmore, as there isn’t even a self-serving declaration by Complainant that its mark serves as an identifier of its goods and services in the public’s mind.

Moving to the second element, the Panel continued its analysis. The Panel found Complainant failed to present a prima facie case. Respondent presented evidence of doing business since 1993 under the Digital Alchemy name, which was prior to Complainant’s use. The Panel dismissed Complainant’s Additional Submission argument that there was no proof of continuos use by Respondent, noting the UDRP had no such requirement. The Panel also dismissed Complainant’s contention that the offer to sell the domain, after being solicited by Complainant did not satisfy this element.

In addressing the final element, bad faith, the Panel explained:

Given Respondent’s use of the Digital Alchemy name in its business since 1993, and the Panel’s finding that Respondent has rights and legitimate interests in the domain name, the Panel concludes that Respondent did not register and is not using the domain in bad faith. Indeed, as prior panels have held, once a panel has determined that a respondent has rights and legitimate interests in a domain name, the question of bad faith is moot.

Ultimately, the Panel found that Complainant failed to prove any of the three elements, and DENIED the request for transfer.

Life Extension Foundation Wins Its Domain

Wednesday, November 25th, 2009

In the recent domain name dispute decision of Life Extension Foundation, Inc. v. PHD Prime Health Direct Limited (FA1289603, Nat. Arb. Forum, November 25, 2009) a three member Panel agreed to transfer the domain www.lifeextensionfoundation.com to Complainant. Life Extension Foundation maintains web sites at www.lef.org and www.lifeextension.com. As their web site states:

The Life Extension Foundation is the world’s largest organization dedicated to finding scientific methods for addressing disease, aging, and death. The Life Extension Foundation is a non-profit group that funds pioneering scientific research aimed at achieving an indefinitely extended healthy human lifespan. The fruits of this research are used to develop novel disease prevention and treatment protocols.

 Our law firm represented Life Extension Foundation in this dispute, so we will refrain from providing our normal commentary. If you would like to know more details please read the decision (here).

OFFICE DEPOT Takes Care Of Business With Cybersquatter, Nine Years Later

Friday, November 20th, 2009

office_depot_logo

In the recent domain name dispute decision of The Office Club, Inc. and Office Depot, Inc. v. Name Holding Company c/o Name Holding FA1287148 (Nat. Arb. Forum, November 16, 2009), a single member Panel was faced with a dispute over the domain www.officedpot.com. Complainant, Office Depot is the well known office products retailer and has used the OFFICE DEPOT mark since 1986. Office Depot maintains a website at www.officedepot.com. Respondent registered the disputed domain in May 2000 and failed to respond to this dispute.

Paragraph 4(a) of the ICANN UDRP Policy requires that Complainant must prove each of the following three elements to obtain an order that a domain name should be cancelled or transferred:(1) the domain name registered by Respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights; and (2) Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and (3) the domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

In addressing the first element, the Panel noted that Complainant established rights in the OFFICE DEPOT mark. The Panel explained that the disputed domain differed from the mark only in that there was no space and the domain had removed the second letter “e” from the word. The Panel found this to be too close and thus confusingly similar to the OFFICE DEPOT mark.

Moving to the second element, the Panel noted that Office Depot presented a prima facie case, b ut still reviewed the record in consideration of the elements. The Panel found that Respondent was not commonly known by the disputed domain. Additionally, the disputed domain resolved to a web site where links to competitors were presented. This was considered to not be a bona fide offering of services. As a result, the Panel found Office Depot satisfied the second element.

The Panel analyzed the last element, bad faith, the Panel found that Respondent’s web site was disrupting Office Depot’s business by its competitive activity. Additionally, since Respondent was presumably commercially benefitting from the competing products and services, this was an intentional creation of likelihood of confusion.

Ultimately, the Panel found that Office Depot proved all three elements and ordered the domain be TRANSFERRED.

RADIO SHACK Doesn’t Suck?

Tuesday, October 6th, 2009

        radio-shack

In the recent domain name dispute decision of TRS Quality, Inc. v. Gu Bei (WIPO D2009-1077, September 25, 2009) a single member Panel was faced with a dispute over the domain www.radioshacksucks.com. Complainant is the parent company of the Radio Shack Corporation (now known as “the Shack” if you have seen the new ads). They maintain a web site at www.radioshack.com and own numerous U.S. trademark registrations for the RADIO SHACK mark. The disputed domain was registered on April 27, 2007 and Respondent failed to respond to the Complaint.

Paragraph 4(a) of the UDRP Policy directs that the Complainant must prove each of the following: (i) that the Domain Name registered by the Respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or a service in which the Complainant has rights; and (ii) that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name; and (iii) that the Domain Name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

In addressing the first element, the Panel found that the domain contained all of Complainant’s mark with the addition of the generic word sucks. The Panel explained:

Indeed, considering the vulgar and offensive meaning of the term, it is unlikely to believe that companies would publish a website with such a self-denigrating domain name. On these grounds are based some panel decisions which concluded that a domain name containing a well-known trademark and the term “sucks” is not “confusingly similar” to the mark included in the domain name.

But the Panel also noted:

However, as held i.a. in La Quinta Worldwide L.L.C. v. Heartland Times LLC, MD Sullivan, WIPO Case No. D2007-1660, “it is not self-evident that Internet users would always take notice of the slang word following the trademark in the Domain Name and recognize its negative import”, also in light of the fact that many Internet users potentially interested in the Complainant’s services accessing to the web site “www.radioshacksucks.com” may be not fluent English-speakers.

The Panel found that Radio Shack met its first element burden and moved to the second element. The Panel noted that Complainant showed a prima facie case and explained the necessity to review the contents of the disputed domain. The Panel relied on a previous decision for the standard to apply in such a case:

Simply having a domain name with “-sucks” in the name cannot, by itself, establish fair use; one must look to the content of the website to determine if there is an exercise of free speech which allows the Respondent to rely on the fair use exception. To do otherwise would legitimize cybersquatters, who intentionally redirect traffic from a famous mark, simply through the use of a derogatory term.

In light of this the Panel found that Respondent’s domain did not point toward a legitimate gripe web site, and instead contained pay-per-click links at third party commercial web sites. The Panel also found that there is no relationship between the Complainant and Respondent and that no licence or authorization was present.

The Panel found the second element was satisfied and moved onto the last element of bad faith.  The Panel found that Respondent must have known about Complainant due to its 85 year existence prior to registration of the domain. The panel further explained that the third party pay per click links on the pages resulted in an attempt to attract users to the web site for commercial gain. Lastly the Panel found that Respondent’s failure to respond was bad faith.

Ultimately, the Panel found that Radio Shack satisfied all elements and ordered the domain be TRANSFERRED.

AMWAY Is Not Buying What This Cybersquatter Is Selling

Monday, July 20th, 2009

In the recent domain name dispute decision of Alticor Inc. v. Konstantin Becker a/k/a Sei-Sexy FA 1265965, (Nat. Arb. Forum July 15, 2009), a single member Panel was faced with a dispute over the domain www.amway-products.com. Complainant markets and sells over 450 products under the AMWAY mark, and has a trademark registration fro AMWAY dating back to the 1960s. Complainant maintains a web site at www.amway.com. Respondent did not provide a response to the Complaint.

Paragraph 4(a) of the Policy requires that Complainant must prove each of the following three elements to obtain an order that a domain name should be cancelled or transferred: (1) the domain name registered by Respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights; and (2) Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and (3) the domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

In addressing the first element, the Panel noted that Complainant does have federal trademark rights but also explained “The Policy does not require that the mark be registered in the country in which Respondent resides.”  The Panel also found that the addition of the generic term “products” and the top-level domain “.com” was insufficient to distinguish the domain from the AMWAY mark. Thus, the Panel found Complainant satisfied the first element.

Moving to the second element, whether the Respondent had any rights or legitimate interests in the domain, the Panel observed that Respondent’s failure to respond to the Complaint allows for the Panel to infer a lack of rights. The Panel went further and found as follows:

Respondent is using the <amway-products.com> domain name to sell Complainant’s products.  Complainant alleges that Respondent is attempting to pass itself off as an authorized distributor of Complainant’s products, undoubtedly for financial gain.  The Panel therefore concludes that such use does not constitute a bona fide offering of goods or services or a legitimate noncommercial or fair use of the subject domain name pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(c)(i) or (iii). 

The Panel also reviewed the Whois information provided by Respondent was not commonly known by the domain. The Panel found Complainant satisfied this element as well. Moving to the final element, bad faith, the Panel reviewed the use of the web site and explained:

The Panel agrees because Respondent’s use of a domain name confusingly similar to Complainant’s mark, which resolves to a commercial website offering Complainant’s products for sale, likely disrupts Complainant’s business.  Therefore, the Panel concludes that Respondent has engaged in bad faith registration and use of the contested domain pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(b)(iii)….Bad faith registration and use of the <amway-products.com> domain name under Policy ¶ 4(b)(iv) can also be inferred based on Respondent’s use of a confusingly similar domain name to attract Internet users to a website that offers Complainant’s products for sale.  The Panel may presume that Respondent profits from such use.

Ultimately the Panel found that Complainant satisfied all three element s and ordered the domain be TRANSFERRED.

SKOAL Tells Cybersquatter To Chew On Something Else

Wednesday, July 15th, 2009

In the recent domain name dispute decision of U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Manufacturing Company LLC v. Four Feathers LLC, FA1266017 (Nat. Arb Forum July 14, 2009), a single member panel was faced with a dispute over the domain www.skoal.com. As explained in the brief factual background, “Complainant, U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Manufacturing Company LLC, sells smokeless tobacco products and has been in business since the 1800s.  Complainant holds multiple trademark registrations with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) for its SKOAL mark (i.e., Reg. No. 504,609 issued December 7, 1948).” Complainant appears to maintain a web site at www.skoalbrotherhood.com. The disputed domain was registered in 1997. (There is no discussion throughout the opinion about the delay in bringing this dispute.)

Paragraph 4(a) of the Policy requires that Complainant must prove each of the following three elements to obtain an order that a domain name should be cancelled or transferred: (1) the domain name registered by Respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights; and (2) Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and (3) the domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

In addressing the first prong the Panel found the domain was identical except for the additional of the generic top-level domain “.com.” As many Panels in the past have explained this is insignificant and this Panel quickly moved to the second element.

In discussing the second element, the Panel explained:

 The Panel finds Complainant has made a sufficient prima facie case.  Due to Respondent’s failure to respond to the Complaint, the Panel may assume Respondent does not have rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name.  However, the Panel will examine the record to determine whether Respondent has rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name under Policy ¶ 4(c). 

The Panel found that respondent’s web site contained links to competing products and that this was not a bona fide offering of goods and services. The Panel also determined that there was no evidence presented to show that Respondent was commonly known by the domain.

Moving to the last element, bad faith, the Panel found as follows:

Respondent is using the <skoal.com> domain name to resolve to a website featuring links to competing products presumably for the profit of Respondent.  The Panel finds Respondent’s use of the disputed domain identical to Complainant’s SKOAL mark to redirect Internet users interested in Complainant’s products to competing website links constitutes disruption and bad faith registration and use under Policy ¶ 4(b)(iii)….In addition, the Panel finds Respondent presumably receives click-through fees from links on the disputed domain name sponsored by Complainant’s competitors.  Respondent likely profits from Internet users’ likelihood of confusion with Complainant’s affiliation with the disputed domain name.  The Panel finds that this use of the disputed domain name constitutes bad faith registration and use under Policy ¶ 4(b)(iv).

Ultimately, the Panel finds that Complainant proved all three elements and agreed to order the TRANSFER of the domain.

4INKJETS Prints Up A Win

Tuesday, July 7th, 2009

In the recent domain dispute decision of LD Products, Inc. v. Gary Lam c/o XC2 (Nat. Arb. Forum FA 1265729, July 2, 2009) a single member Panel was faced with a dispute over the domain www.4inkjetss.com. As explained in the decision, “Complainant is an Internet retailer for printer supplies and accessories, which markets its products under the 4INKJETS mark.  Complainant registered the 4INKJETS mark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) on September 20, 2005 (Reg. No. 2,998,115, filed August 3, 2004).  Complainant has operated its printer supplies business, and advertised its products under the 4INKJETS mark, since at least as early as 1999, and since that time Complainant has grown its business to US $27 million in sales in 2007 and US $34 million in 2008.” Complainant maintains a web site at www.4inkjets.com.

Paragraph 4(a) of the Policy requires that Complainant must prove each of the following three elements to obtain an order that a domain name should be cancelled or transferred: (1) the domain name registered by Respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights; and (2) Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and (3) the domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

The Panel addressed the first element, noting Complainant’s trademark registration and significant common law rights in the mark dating back to 1999. The Panel found that the disputed domain was typosquatting, in that it merely added an additional letter s to the end of the top level domain.

The Panel then moved to the second element, wherein it acknowledged that Complainant made its prima facie case, shifting the burden to Respondent. Since Respondent did not reply to the complaint, the Panel accepts all reasonable allegations from Complainant as true. Therefore the Panel made the following observations and findings:

Complainant contends that Respondent is neither commonly known by, nor licensed to register, the disputed domain name.  Respondent’s WHOIS information identifies Respondent as “Gary Lam c/o XC2.”  Therefore, pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(c)(ii), the Panel finds that Respondent lacks rights and legitimate interests in the disputed domain name….Respondent is using the <4inkjetss.com> domain name to display links to third-party websites that are in competition with Complainant.  Complainant contends, and the Panel agrees, that Respondent is using the disputed domain name to collect click-through fees from those third parties, and thus the Panel finds that Respondent has not made a bona fide offering of goods or services under Policy ¶ 4(c)(i) or a legitimate noncommercial or fair use under Policy ¶ 4(c)(iii). 

The Panel then moved to the third element, bad faith, and the Panel made the following findings:

The Panel finds that Respondent is using the <4inkjetss.com> domain name to disrupt the business of Complainant by offering links to competitors, and that this use is evidence of Respondent’s bad faith registration and use of the disputed domain name pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(b)(iii)….The Panel agrees that Respondent is collecting click-through fees as a result of its use of the disputed domain name, and therefore finds that Respondent’s use of the disputed domain name is evidence of bad faith registration and use pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(b)(iv). 

Ultimately, the Panel found that Complainant proved all the elements and agreed to order the TRANSFER of the domain.

Is SHOE LAND Generic?

Friday, June 12th, 2009

In the recent decision of Shoe Land Group LLC v. Development, Services c/o Telepathy Inc. (Nat. Arb Forum 1255365, June 9, 2009) a three member Panel was faced with a dispute over the domain www.shoeland.com. Complainant, is a footwear retail store and maintains a web site at www.shoeland.net. Complainant claimed use of the mark SHOE LAND since March 1, 1997 and has a Federal registration for the mark since April4, 2006. Respondent replied to the ICANN UDRP complaint noting that they are a business who regularly registers domains with intrinsic value and generates revenue from pay-per-click advertising links. The disputed domain was registered in 1998.

As the Panel noted, Paragraph 4(a) of the Policy requires that the Complainant must prove each of the following three elements to obtain an order that a domain name should be cancelled or transferred: (1) the domain name registered by the Respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the Complainant has rights;  (2) the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and (3) the domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

The Panel began with the first prong, whether the domain was identical or confusingly similar to Complainant’s mark. The Panel found that complainant had sufficient rights under the Policy ¶4(a)(i), but noted as follows:

In its Complaint and Additional Submission, Complainant also asserts and provides evidence of its rights in the SHOE LAND mark through its continuous use of the mark in commerce since at least as early as March 1997. Nevertheless this use of the mark remained local, and does not provide the mark with secondary meaning. As a result, the Panel finds that Complainant does not have sufficient common law rights in the SHOE LAND mark under Policy ¶ 4(a)(i), dating back to March 1997. 

Regardless the Panel found Complainant had satisfied the first prong. Moving to the second prong, whether Respondent had any rights or legitimate interests in the domain, the Panel noted that Complainant failed to establish a prima facie case. Respondent argued, and the Panel agreed as follows:

Complainant does not have common law rights dating back as far as September 1998, when Respondent registered the disputed domain name, because Complainant’s SHOE LAND mark had not acquired secondary meaning by that time.  Respondent contends that the evidence put forth by Complainant fails to demonstrate that Complainant was well-known yet outside of the Orlando, Florida area, or that Complainant had spent much money promoting the SHOE LAND mark.    

Respondent also argued that it registered generic domain names as a business practice, which would satisfy the rights or legitimate interests section of the policy. The Panel agreed with this concept as well finding that “registering such a generic domain name is a business practice that confers upon the practitioner rights or legitimate interests in that domain name. As a result, the Panel finds that Respondent established rights in the disputed domain name pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(a)(ii).”

Moving to the last prong, whether the domain was registered and used in bad faith, the Panel explained that since Respondent had proved it had rights or legitimate interests in the domain at the time of registration, then the registration could not have been in bad faith. The Panel explained:

The Panel finds that a respondent is free to register a domain name consisting of common terms, unless he is aware or should have been aware of the secondary meaning those common terms had at the time of the registration. Since the disputed domain name contains such common terms and as there was no secondary meaning at the time of the registration, the Panel is of the opinion that Respondent did not register  the <shoeland.com> domain name in bad faith under Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii).

The Panel also addressed a request by Respondent to find Reverse Domain Name Hijacking. The Panel explained that since Complainant provided evidenced of active promotion of the SHOE LAND mark since 1997 there could not be reverse domain name hijacking. The Panel further explained that reverse domain name hijacking requires bad faith on the part of Complainant and that none was present.

For an interesting counter perspective on the issue of reverse domain name hijacking, read the dissenting opinion by one of the Panelists, who believes this was a clear case of reverse domain name hijacking. He argues that the Complainant had no reasonable basis for arguing bad faith The single dissenting Panelist also chastises the Complainant for revealing emails and facts that the parties engaged in settlement discussions and sale of the domain negotiations prior to the dispute, despite the fact that those communications were labeled “Confidential-For Settlement Purposes Only.”

Ultimately, the Panel DENIED Complainant’s request for transfer and DENIED Respondents request for reverse domain name hijacking.

Jim’s Dead, But His Music and Persona Only Live On In One Jim Morrison Domain

Monday, June 8th, 2009

In the recent decision of The Estate of Jim Morrison a/k/a Lou and Pearl Courson v. Rick Sentieri, Communication Services Group (WIPO D2009-0334, May 29, 2009), a single member Panel was faced with a dispute over the domain www.jimmorrison.com . Jim Morrison was the hard partying, sultry and sexy front man for the 1960s band The Doors. Information about Jim Morrison and The Doors can be found at www.thedoors.com. Complainant represents Morrison’s estate and provided additional information about his success and credits, which included being a playwright and poet.

The Panel reviewed the three element ICANN UDRP Policy where Complainant must prove (i) the domain name registered by the respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the complainant has rights; and (ii) the respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and (iii) the domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

In addressing the first element, whether the domain was identical or confusingly similar to Complainant’s mark, the Panel first dealt with whether Complainant had a protectable mark. The Panel noted that Complainant did not have a federal trademark registration or application. However, after reviewing the evidence presented by Complaint initially and through an Additional Submission, the Panel found Complainant had established common law rights in the mark Jim Morrison. The Panel then quickly found that the domain was identical or confusingly similar to Complainant’s mark, since it wholly incorporated all portions of the mark.

Moving to the second prong, whether Respondent had any rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain, the Panel noted that once Complainant makes a prima facie case, the burden shifts to Respondent. The Panel referenced Respondent’s reply as follows:

Respondent refers to himself as “Rick Sentieri aka Jim Morrison.” He registered the Domain Name on March 1, 1997, twelve years ago. Respondent uses the Domain Name to operate a web site which sells posters of entertainers (including Jim Morrison and The Doors), and it advertises and sells other merchandise and services for third parties through links. Respondent’s (sole) reply of April 6, 2009 was an email having as the Subject Line: “please leave me alone you are making me sick and very unhappy.” The e-mail included a poem Respondent allegedly wrote and the following message:

“I have received your letter that has print outs of my web site, <jimmorrison.com>. Your organization has violated my webpage disclaimer. You must have written permission to produce copies of my web page. Please read disclaimer on the bottom of the <jimmorrison.com> (JIMMORRISON.COM 1996-2009 trademark of Rick Sentieri aka JIM MORRISON) Rick Sentieri aka Jim Morrison is a published author and singer who LIVES in Kenosha Wisconsin. His Jim Morrison.com videos have been downloaded THIS YEAR, over two hundred thousands times. Rick Sentieri aka Jim Morrison’s poetry is the best ever written. Potentially a Nobel Peace Prize winner. His poetry can be downloaded (some with his OWN voce reading his poems) here: http://jimmorrison.com/love.htm.”

Based upon Respondent’s failure to address Complainant’s allegations and evidence, the Panel took Complainant’s facts as proven and found that the second prong was satisfied. The Panel moved to the last element, whether the disputed domain was registered and used in bad faith. The Panel noted that Respondent was using the domain name to sell products and service of third parties with products bearing the JIM MORRISON mark that compete with Complainant’s products.

Ultimately, the Panel found Complainant had satisfied all three elements and granted the TRANSFER.

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