When one of the largest companies in the world files a UDRP, most would probably think the outcome would go in their favor, regardless of the descriptive nature of the domain name. Johnson and Johnson, one of the largest health and consumer goods companies in the world, filed a UDRP to try and wrest the Tucks.com domain name from its owner, Chad Wright of WebQuest.com, Inc.
Tucks is J&J’s brand of medicated ointment pads for hemorrhoids. J&J uses TucksBrand.com for its website.
The WIPO decision was just handed down, and the panel ruled in favor of WebQuest, who was represented by the Brooklyn-based law firm of Lewis & Lin. I asked Brett Lewis to comment on the decision and he said, “This is a great decision for legitimate domainers. The Panel thoughtfully evaluated the evidence, or lack thereof, and concluded that the Complainant had failed to demonstrate that the domain name, , which is a dictionary word, had been registered and used in bad faith.”
While the respondent conceded that J&J does have rights to the Tucks trademark, they argued five points in defense of the domain name. These points include that it’s a dictionary term, “Tuck” is a common last name, the name was owned for many years without incident, the owner had no intent to sell it to J&J, and upon a change of parking companies, Tucks-related ads showed accidentally until it was noticed by the owner and switched.
I want to share some of the panel’s findings, which I think are important for domain owners to note:
“The Panel accepts generally that a respondent may have a right to register and use a domain name to attract Internet traffic based on the appeal of a commonly used descriptive term, even when the domain name is confusingly similar to a complainant’s registered mark.“
“However, that domain name must have been registered because of its attraction as a dictionary word or descriptive term, and not because of any value corresponding to a trademark; the use of the domain name must also be consistent with its attraction as a dictionary word or descriptive term. “
“Although the Panel has some reservations about the overall credibility of Respondent’s Declaration, the Panel accepts Respondent’s sworn statement that he was not aware of the TUCKS mark at the time of registration. However, even allowing that the trademark was known to Respondent, the registration could have been in good faith and for a legitimate purpose if Respondent’s use of a common word was intended to be descriptive, as explained above.
The Panel takes into consideration that Respondent’s website did not refer to the TUCKS trademark or advertise complainant’s competitors for a full nine years after Respondent’s registration. The record also shows that the website, for at least a few years, used a dictionary meaning of the “tucks” term, before linking to Complainant’s competitors during a six-month period in 2011.“
“On balance, the Panel concludes that the Complaint provides insufficient evidence to conclude that the disputed domain name was registered in bad faith.”
There was quite a bit more to the decision than just what I posted, and you can download the full decision here (a Word document) since it has not been posted on the WIPO website yet.
To celebrate its impending achievement of 3,000,000 domain names under its management, NameCheap has made a couple of special offers to its customers. Since the company is just a bit short of the final 10,000 domain countdown, I want to share what the company is offering customers during the countdown and just after.
The big prize is that the company will be giving $3,000 to the person who registers the 3 millionth domain name. The prize will be paid either via NameCheap account credit or paid via Paypal.
The company is also offering specials for when it hits 10,000 before and 10,000 after the 3 million number.
According to the NameCheap contest page, “We’ll be giving away 1000 free** domains before the 3 million mark, and 1000 more after! If you buy or transfer any 10th domain between 2,990,000 to 3 million, we’ll credit the associated costs back to your account automatically.Moreover, once we reach that 3 million milestone, we’re giving away another 1000 domains for free** for every 10th domain purchase or transfer until we reach 3,010,000 domains!”
You should visit the page to read any disclaimers they may have to be sure you’re eligible.
Congratulations to NameCheap on the achievement.
I frequently place backorders on domain names that already have backorders on NameJet. I do this on names I am mildly interested in owning, knowing that I will have the option to participate in the auction after doing more research on the domain name. Backordering it basically allows me to have the option to bid without the obligation of winning if I am the only bidder.
For whatever reason, some NameJet auctions don’t happen when they are scheduled according to the newsletters that are sent daily. A name may appear in the Pending Delete Names currently available for backorder newsletter, but it may not necessarily go to auction the next day, although they usually do.
If you’ve placed a backorder for a domain name that has other bidders ahead of you, and the name doesn’t go to auction that day, other bidders may drop out or delete their backorder. If that happens, you might be in the leading bidder position when the name does go to auction. If nobody bids more than your bid, you will win the domain name. Had you not been sure about the name but simply placed the back order to follow along, you’re basically stuck with the domain name.
In the past few months, I haven’t gone through my backorder list to delete old backorders. I am now the leading bidder on a domain name I don’t really want to buy, but it’s my own fault for not keeping my backorder list updated. That’s now a priority for me, and it should be something you do as well.
Sedo’s Great Domains auction from April concluded last week, and the auction closed with over $175,000 in sales. The high sale was Drill.com, which ended at $40,500. Apps.net was the second highest sale at 24,100 EUR. Yali.com rounded out the top three, closing at $23,000.
The full list of sales is below. I don’t believe all of the sales have been finalized yet, so there could potentially be non-closing sales, but here’s the full list of domain names that met reserve and sold.
drill.com 40500 USD
apps.net 24100 EUR
yali.com 23000 USD
hbb.com 12100 USD
xee.com 10510 USD → Read More