Domain Management

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'Combosquatting': New Attention for an Old Problem

A study (18-page PDF) from researchers at Georgia Tech and Stony Brook University has attracted attention to what it calls "combosquatting," but the practice has been around since the early days of domain name disputes. The study says combosquatting "refers to the combination of a recognizable brand name with other keywords (e.g., paypal-members.com and facebookfriends.com)." It adds that this practice differs from other types of cybersquatting "in two fundamental ways. more

WHOIS: How Could I Have Been So Blind?

A colleague was recently commenting on an article by Michele Neylon "European Data Protection Authorities Send Clear Message to ICANN" citing the EU Data Commissioners of the Article 29 Working Party, the grouping a determinate factor In the impending death of WHOIS. He is on point when he said: What the European Data Protection authorities have not yet put together is that the protection of people's mental integrity on the Internet is not solely due to the action of law enforcement... more

2017 Domain Name Year in Review

Given that it's been a few years since my last domain name year in review, I've really enjoyed looking back at this year's biggest domain name stories and seeing how this industry has evolved. This year, in particular, has seen some notable changes which are likely to impact the domain name landscape for years to come. So without further ado, here is my list for 2017. more

Artful Misrepresentations of UDRP Jurisprudence

The jurisprudence applied in adjudicating disputes between mark owners and domain name holders under the Uniform Domain Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) is essentially a system that has developed from the ground up; it is Panel-made law based on construing a simple set of propositions unchanged since the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) implemented them in 1999. Its strength lies in its being a consensus-based rather than dictated jurisprudence. more

Domain Name Disputes Deja Vu: Panavision.com and Panavision.org

History, it has been said, repeats itself. The same can be said of domain name disputes, as demonstrated by a pair of cases involving the same trademark ("Panavision") filed more than 20 years apart with remarkably similar facts. I can't hear the name "Panavision" without thinking about the origins of domain name disputes, so a decision involving panavision.org - coming more than two decades after litigation commenced over panavision.com - immediately made me nostalgic. more

Significant Increase in Registry Locked Names Across Top 500 Most Highly-Trafficked Sites

A recent study conducted by Brandsight has revealed that 28% of the top 500 most-highly trafficked sites now employ registry locking. In contrast, only 15% of the top 500 most highly-trafficked sites were leveraging registry locking in 2013. Back in 2013, only 356 of the top 500 most-highly trafficked sites could be registry locked, but that number has also risen significantly so that now 396 of the top 500 most-highly trafficked sites are eligible. more

Long-held Domain Names Transferred to Complainants

There has lately been a number of long-held investor registered domain names transferred to complainants under the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP). Two of the domain names were registered 23 years ago. This has provoked several commentators to complain that the UDRP is tilted in favor of mark owners and trademark-friendly panelists expressing hostility to the domain industry. I think we have to dig deeper than this. more

ICANN Issues Guidance to Domain Registrars and Registries in Light of Hurricane Maria

ICANN has issued a guidance notice to registrars and registries in relation to Hurricane Maria, which caused massive damage throughout the Caribbean. This isn't the first time that this has happened, with a previous incident in Asia triggering action from both registrars and registries to give domain name registrants impacted by the natural disaster breathing space. more

Apple (Not Surprisingly) is Not a Cybersquatter

It's highly unusual for a well-known trademark owner to be accused of cybersquatting, but that's what happened when a Mexican milk producer filed a complaint against Apple Inc. under the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) in an attempt to get the domain name lala.com. Not only did Apple win the case, but the panel issued a finding of "reverse domain name hijacking" (RDNH) against the company that filed the complaint. more

Confusing Similarity of Domain Names is Only a 'Standing Requirement' Under the UDRP

WIPO's newest overview of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) succinctly states what decisions have made clear through the years: The UDRP's first test is only a "standing requirement." Standing, under the law, simply means that a person or company is qualified to assert a legal right. It does not mean or imply that one will necessarily prevail on any claims. The UDRP includes a well-known three-part test that all trademark owners must satisfy to prevail, but the first element has a low threshold. more

Losing a UDRP Case: Questionable Decision or Questionable Submission?

Complainants naturally want to prevail on their claims of alleged infringing conduct and respondents (when they appear) naturally do their best to resist having their domain names taken from them in proceedings under the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP), but their success depends on their submitting the right constituents of fact and proof. In a forum that has adjudicated over 60,000 cases, it would be surprising if there were no questionable or badly reasoned decisions. more

Brands and Domains Conference Recap

The best and most knowledgeable experts of dot Brand met in the Brands and Domains conference, on October 2 and 3 in the Hague, Netherlands. Brand and project owners were also present, coming from all around the world -- from Australia or Japan to the USA and Canada. The keynote by Georges-Edouard Dias, CEO of Quantstreams and founder of the concept of brand hospitality, explained how customers are not anymore the targets of brands. more

Principles, Factors, and Elements that Promote or Undermine the Outcome of UDRP Cases

Panels adjudicating cybersquatting claims, defenses, and rebuttals under the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) expect parties to prove their contentions, and this means having a working understanding of what this entails. There is, first, a set of fundamental rules or principles -- such as pending applications for a mark do not constitute a right, or recognizing unregistered marks as constituting rights... more

Abusive and Malicious Registrations of Domain Names

When ICANN implemented the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) in 1999, it explained its purpose as combating "abusive registrations" of domain names which it defined as registrations "made with bad-faith intent to profit commercially from others' trademarks... Bad actors employ a palette of stratagems, such as combining marks with generic qualifiers, truncating or varying marks or by removing, reversing, and rearranging letters within the second level domain (typosquatting). more

Fighting Phishing with Domain Name Disputes

I opened an email from GoDaddy over the weekend on my phone. Or so I initially thought. I had recently helped a client transfer a domain name to a GoDaddy account (to settle a domain name dispute), so the subject line of the email -- "Confirm this account" -- simply made me think that I needed to take another action to ensure everything was in working order. But quickly, my radar went off. more

News Briefs

EFF Warns ICANN Not to Engage in Censorship, Says It Should Stick to Technical Role

Dell Loses Key Customer Support Domain Name for a Month, Site Exposed to Questionable Content

Cycling Legend Greg LeMond Sues Cybersquatters Upward of $6.6 Million

Russian Interference More Vigorous than Assumed, Over 39 States Targeted During Election

CADNA Returns to Lobby for Stronger Cybersquatting Laws

New Technique Detects and Eliminates Abusive Domains at Time of Registration

WIPO Reports Rise in Cybersquatting Cases, Triggered by New gTLDs

Facebook-owned Instagram Wants Domain Deal Upheld

Harm Caused by Typosquatting Is Still Modest, Research Suggests

Newly Released "Domain Name Arbitration" Book Offers Guide for Navigating UDRP

A Unique Seven-Month Long Study of the Typosquatting Landscape

WIPO Taking Screenshots of Filed UDRPs

Google Denied Right to Oogle.com, Registrant May Keep Domain

ICANN CEO: Top-Level Domain Expansion Has Been Anything But Rushed

Typosquatted Domain Names Pose Plenty of Risk But Surprisingly Little Malware

ICANN Asked to Delay New gTLD Expansion at the House of Representatives Committee Hearing

US Senate Committee Holds Hearing on ICANN's New TLD Expansion

Court OKs Private Seizure of Domain Names That Allegedly Sold Counterfeit Goods

UK Domain Registry Considers Criminal Domain Takedown Rules

FORUM Reports Steady Domain Dispute Filings in 2009, Also Issued Largest Single Decision on Record

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