3 Member UDRP Panel Affirms Parking As A Legitimate Use Of A Domain Against TM Holder: ERAM.com
A three member UDRP panel just denied a complaint on the domain name ERAM.com brought by ERAM SA.
I’m not going to go into detail facts of the case, that was brought against Vertical Axis and defended by Ari Goldberger
You should know that ERAM had a Trademark on the term and is a large company that generates some 1,734 billion Euros in revenue.
I just wanted to point out this language of the panel as it related to the parking of a domain name:
“”At the heart of this case is the question of whether the use of a “parking” service by a respondent can give rise to rights or legitimate interests in a disputed domain name. ”
“A “parking” service is one in which domain names are registered in order to operate generic advertising services, either to offer these domain names for sale or to build them up as separate businesses. ”
“This question involves difficult issues of policy for the domain name registration system.”
“On the one hand, some observers of the system say that the operation of such services creates a type of rent on the system as a whole and that it is not clear that domain names were themselves ever intended to be objects to be bought and sold, particularly in those registration systems where domain names are not assignable per se.”
“Indeed, such parking services may well be contributing to Internet users navigating more via search engines than domain names, as why would one go to a domain name to end up in a search engine scenario?”
“On the other hand, Respondent is able to point to considerable numbers of panel decisions in which the operation of such services at a domain name comprised of a descriptive or dictionary has been held to give rise to a legitimate interest in the disputed domain name, provided there is no evidence that the registration was intended to create confusion with a particular trade mark, or willful blindness of the possibility that it might.”
“In this case the Panel finds, Complainant has not discharged its burden of establishing that Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name created by its operation of a ‘parking’ service.”
“This is a conclusion reached mindful of: the length of Respondent’s use of the disputed domain name (whether or not the issues of laches arises); evidence of third-party use of the term “eram” and of Complainant’s relatively weak trade mark rights outside its particular geographic and commercial field of use; and an absence of evidence of any intention on the part of Respondent to profit from confusion created with Complainant’s trade mark in that Respondent’s advertising does not prominently feature either shoes or apparel. ”
“Indeed, of the 84 links on the landing page at the disputed domain name, none can be said to target the goods or services offered by Complainant as none are for “shoes”.”
Congrats to Vertical Axis and Ari.