There has been an interesting legal battle brewing with regards to the domain name Adventist.com.
Davide F. Schiavetti of Rothwell, Figg, Ernst & Manbeck, P.C. broke down parts of the case on Jdsupra.com.
Mr. Schiavetti likes to refer to domain investing as, “domain name warehousing”. The parties in this case are, The General Conference Corporation of Seventh-day Adventists and Philanthropist.com, Inc. In the article Mr. Schiavetti cites Philanthropist.com, Inc. as owning 9,000 domain names. From a check I did it looks like it could be more like 14,000.
From the article:
Philanthropist.com acquired the domain name “Adventist.com” for roughly $8,000 and sought to sell it for about $120,000. As a result, The General Conference Corporation of Seventh-day Adventist (also “Respondent” or “GCCSA”) sent a cease-and-desist letter based on the GCCSA’s rights in the “ADVENTIST” marks and demanded transfer of the domain name. In response, Petitioner filed petitions to cancel all of the GCCSA’s marks for “ADVENTIST”, alleging that the GCCSA’s ownership of the “ADVENTIST” marks hinders its ability to sell the domain.
The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board heard the case and ruled against Philanthropist.com Inc. Since the article was published on Jdsupra.com last month it looks like they are not giving up. 10 days ago they filed an appeal.
You can get all the details of the case by just typing in Adventist.com as it redirects to the case.
Michel Payette says
That’ll cost a lot of money to both parties!
I’m wondering if the respondent can sue them back for damages and attorneys’ fees.
This is a foolish filing by the domain owner. The name is in the grey area because the term is 99% related to that church. I’d expect them to be able to be able defend the name because of the 1% and a case can be made, but it is not certain win either.