Human Rights Watch was awarded the domain name HumanRightsWatch.com in a otherwise unremarkable UDRP opinion.
“The organization has a United States Trademark on the term since 2003 and “uses the HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH mark to identify its efforts promoting and protecting human rights worldwide”.
Respondent has not used the disputed domain name for a bona fide offering of goods or services, or a legitimate noncommercial or fair use. Complainant alleges that Respondent uses the disputed domain name to promote links such as “Human Rights Watch,” “Human Rights Watch Jobs,” “Africa,” and “Volunteer Jobs,” and that Respondent earns pay-per-click revenue from the promoted links.
“The Panel agrees and finds that Respondent’s use of the disputed domain name in connection with monetized links relating to Complainant does not constitute a bona fide offering of goods or services as protected by Policy.”
The question is why would a trademark holder wait 10 years to grab a direct match .com of their trademark; in this case the name of a non-profit organization, especially when it was used as a parked domain letting someone make money off their own goodwill?
We have made this point many times before but trademark holders who wait so long to enforce their rights empower Cybersquatters by making Cybersquatting profitable.
We don’t like over reaching trademark holders but allowing someone to make money off you’re good name for 10 years does not help the problem.