Merlin Kauffman recently sold the domain name TestTube.com for an undisclosed price to the Discovery Communications who is using the domain name to launching a new online science network targeting young men, called TestTube.com. The domain name is owned by "Revision3 - A Discovery Communications Company" and looks like it transferred in March of this year. Discovery Communications owns the Discovery Network and many other broadcast channels. According to MediaPost.com, "The new ad-supported network will debut with 15 short-form original series, launching with an expected 10 million video views monthly and hoping to get to 20 million by year's end. All this comes from its Revision3 digital unit, which Discovery bought a year ago. Discovery will also be distributing the new shows on YouTube, Microsoft Xbox, Apple TV, Roku boxes, TiVo DVRs and on smartphones and tablet devices, including iPad, iPhone and Android devices. TV shows will focus on science-oriented content -- one about human sexuality, "Laci Green’s Sex+", and another that distorts time to show things one might otherwise miss with the human eye another called "Distort." A third examines positive results of catastrophes -- "Thanks Disaster," and there is a "Mythbusters" spinoff. MediaPost's article quotes JB Perrette, chief digital officer of Discovery Communications as saying: “Discovery is in the business of igniting curiosity --from on-air to online -- and for all types of audiences. “This is another step in our mission to be the No. 1 nonfiction video and media company on all screens. We’ve doubled our original online video output this year, and are growing new audiences with TestTube and other digital networks that are creating great content that entertains and engages" If your wondering Worldwide Media, Inc, owns the plural of the domain name TestTubes.com
Arrigo Enterprises, Inc. lost it bid to grab the domain name Arrigo.com away from PortMedia Domains who was represented by Ari Goldberger of ESQwire.com.
The term Arrigo is a common Italian surname.
The domain name was owned by the domain holder for 12 years and the Complainants trademark was first registered in 2012.
The panel however declined to make a finding of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking.
Here are the relevant facts and findings by the three member panel:
Complainant has rights to the ARRIGO mark by way of registration of the mark with the USPTO (Reg. No. 4,271,171, filed April 15, 2012, registered on Jan. 8, 2013), in association with automobile dealerships, automobile financing, repair or maintenance of automobiles, and the leasing of automobiles.
Complainant further argues that it has used the mark in commerce since December 1989.
Complainant asserts that the mark is used specifically in furtherance of Complainant’s automobile dealership in Florida.
Complainant avers that its dealership is one of the largest Chrysler/Jeep/Dodge dealerships in the United States.
However, Complainant has not provided evidence to suggest the mark would be known beyond Southern Florida.
Accordingly, the Panel does not consider this account to provide a sufficient basis for secondary meaning in the ARRIGO mark and finds, for the purposes of Policy ¶ 4(a)(i) and the present case, that Complainant’s rights in the mark does not date back to at least December 31, 1989.
“Complainant asserts that Respondent has used the domain name for almost twelve years as merely a landing page where Internet users are solicited through an array of random hyperlinks.
The Panel notes that Complainant does not provide evidence of the content of the disputed domain name, but the Response includes an image purporting to show that the domain name is used to host hyperlinks.
The Respondent admits to pay-per-click advertising revenues. Respondent argues that its rights are in fact bolstered by the fact that Respondent receives such revenues. Respondent claims that its advertising services are bona fide, and Respondent is not alone in using hyperlink advertisements on its domain name content pages.
The Panel agrees that the hosting of a hyperlink website can, under the right set of circumstances, constitute a Policy ¶ 4(a)(i) bona fide offering of goods and services.
Complainant argues that Respondent has made a thinly veiled attempt to sell this domain name.
Complainant contends that the domain name’s content page explicitly tells the Internet user: “To purchase this domain name, click here.”
Complainant believes that the fact that Respondent is willing to give up ownership to any buyer is evidence that Respondent lacks rights and legitimate interests.
Respondent states that its offer to sell this specific common/generic term domain name is in itself a bona fide offering of goods. Respondent insists that there is no evidence that Respondent ever intended to register and offer the domain name for sale specifically to extort Complainant and its ARRIGO mark.
Respondent notes that it owns thousands of generic-term and other brand-potential domain names. Respondent claims that its rights and legitimate interests rest in the fact that it holds onto “brandable” domain names, such as the <arrigo.com> domain name, because of the value on resale. Respondent states that it is careful to choose possibly brandable names, but makes sure that these names have no existing trademark registrations. Respondent avows that it in no way registered this domain name in an attempt to target Complainant and its ARRIGO mark.
Previous panels have found that the holding of a domain name for resale can in some circumstances constitute a Policy ¶ 4(c)(i) bona fide offering of goods and services.
The Panel agrees that Respondent’s Policy ¶ 4(a)(ii) rights and legitimate interests rests on the fact that it registers and sells generic domain names—an arrangement practiced by many business entities.
The Panel accordingly finds that under the present circumstances, Respondent’s offer to sell this specific common/generic term domain name is in itself a bona fide offering of goods.
Respondent further argues that Complainant’s mark is not exclusively used in Complainant’s business. Respondent claims that the ARRIGO mark merely embodies a common Italian surname. Respondent states that its decision to register this domain name reflects Respondent’s interest in obtaining generic terms, but not because these generic terms are a particular party’s intellectual property.
The Panel agrees that when the term “arrigo” has been long used as a mere surname of Italians, the registration of a domain name including that term gives Respondent rights and legitimate interests in the generic value of embodying a generic term in the domain name. See
The Panel holds that Complainant has failed to make a prima facie case that Respondent lacks rights and legitimate interests in the disputed domain name under Policy ¶ 4(a)(ii). The Panel finds to the contrary, that Respondent does have rights and legitimate interests in the disputed domain name under policy ¶ 4(a)(ii).
Because Respondent has rights or legitimate interests in the <arrigo.com> domain name pursuant to Policy 4(a)(ii), it is axiomatic that Respondent did not register or use the disputed domain names in bad faith pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii).
The Panel finds that while the doctrine of laches does not apply as a defense, and correspondingly chooses to disregard Respondent’s assertions, the absence of any complaint over a long period of time in which domain names are in active use can suggest that such use does not give rise to a serious problem. “
As a matter of course, the Panel chooses to disregard Respondent’s assertions of a defense based on laches.
Reverse Domain Name Hijacking
Even though the Panel finds that Complainant has failed to satisfy its burden under the Policy, this does not necessarily render a finding of reverse domain name hijacking on behalf of Complainant in bringing the instant claim. In order for reverse domain hijacking to exist, there must be a showing of bad faith on the part of the Complainant.
There is no evidence of bad faith on the part of the Claimant.
Afternic, announced their partnership with Directi, the largest domain registrar in Asia and seventh-largest registrar in the world. Directi will join the Afternic reseller network as a Premium Partner, incorporating Afternic’s vast inventory of premium domains for sale through their BigRock brand.
This exclusive relationship brings premium domains to India for the first time, opening up new domain options for small to medium size business owners and domain investors across the globe. The entire Afternic portfolio of six million premium domain names will be available to BigRock customers, many of which are eligible for immediate ownership through Afternic’s Fast Transfer network.
“Welcoming Directi to the Afternic platform is a watershed moment for us, given their strength and size in the domain industry,” said Jason Miner, Chief Operating Officer for Afternic. “With nearly all of the top 20 domain registrars signed to the Afternic network and offering premium domains to their customers, we are delivering on our mission to create the only true global premium domain marketplace.”
Bhavin Turakhia, founder of BigRock said of the partnership, “We’re excited that our customers now have access to Afternic’s premium domain listings directly from the BigRock platform. The quality and size of Afternic’s inventory will improve the experience for our customers and give them a greater range of choices in their domain research and selection process.”
Afternic’s premium domains will be available to Directi’s ResellerClub and LogicBoxes resellers in the near future.
Another .Co is in the news today as H2.co announced its holding its inaugural meeting at LinkedIn’s global headquarters in Silicon Valley in October 2013.
Talk about name dropping.
Lets start with Reid Hoffman who is a Partner at Greylock and Co-Founder and Executive Chairman at LinkedIn
The organization which used to be known as h2global.org is now using a .Co H2 (h2.co), ]which has become “an exclusive leadership network consisting of 250 of the technology industry’s most influential operating executives across 9 global chapters, is now broadening its offerings to include a set of integrated online member community tools as well as an annual global conference.
“On this, its 3-year anniversary, H2 is announcing the launch of its first annual global member and innovation leadership conference, H2O.”
“Founded with the goal of connecting senior leaders in the startup community to facilitate idea exchange and knowledge sharing, H2 launched its first events in Silicon Valley, London, and Singapore in May 2010.
Since then, the network has grown to include additional chapters in Beijing, Berlin, India, New York, Sao Paulo and Tokyo.
Membership in H2 is on a referral and chapter approval basis, and its Member Forums follow a structured group discussion format that is topic-driven and member-led under the Chatham House Rule to promote trusted and open conversations around key executive-level themes in the digital sphere.
“As opportunities flow through congregations of people, the right human networks can play a pivotal role in achieving success,” said H2 advisor Reid Hoffman, Partner at Greylock and Co-Founder and Executive Chairman at LinkedIn. “H2 has created a global network and trusted community for startup leaders to help them achieve both company and career success.”
“Taking place in October 2013 in Silicon Valley, the conference will provide a unique convening point for H2 Members and invited leaders from some of the most influential startups around the world to discuss current core foundations and innovation trends in the industry. In addition, H2 today is also making available a powerful set of online community tools designed to enhance member-to-member connectivity and leverage expert industry insights across the network.
“In connecting startup leaders around the world over the last three years, we know that building and maintaining robust industry playbooks to inform executive-level decision-making has never been more important or challenging,” said Nayan Patel, Founder & CEO of H2. “We are excited to see how H2 is providing significant value for our members in this regard, and look forward to the continued development of our platform based on the needs of our membership and direction of the industry.”
In two UDRP decisions that are expected to be published later today, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) denied Congressman’s Ron Paul, bid to obtain the domain names RonPaul.com and RonPaul.org
The Congressman filed two UDRP’s one for both of the domain name RonPaul.com and RonPaul.org against Whois Privacy Services Pty Ltd / JNR Corp and another UDRP on just the domain name RonPaul.org against DN Capital Inc., Martha Roberts.
It will be very interesting to read the decision which may include a Reverse Domain Name Hijacking finding as the Congressman’s claim was based on a common law trademark right rather than a registered trademark.
The two cases are D2013-0278 and D2013-0371 and were both filed in February of this year.