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Username: pvos
Date/Time: Tue, October 24, 2000 at 2:43 PM GMT
Browser: Netscape Communicator V4.06 using Windows 98
Score: 5
Subject: proposal for handling trademark and conflicting .web registrations

Message:
 

 
For the record, I have domains registered with .web since 10/96. I also have domains registered with NSI since 10/93. 

The two thorniest issues that I see folks debating which are relevant to the end users use of the .web domains are the following:

1) use of trademarks
2) conflicting good faith registrations

In the first case, I would propose a simple policy be that any holder of REGISTERED trademark that was either filed or registered PRIOR to the time of a .web registration be given precedence.  This means that for example, toyota.web would automatically convey to Toyota if they asserted their claim.  I have no problem with companies being able to protect their legitimate trademarks.  Remember the litmus test for trademark is "confusingly similar."  That is not as vague as may seem.  Confusion in the marketplace serves no legitimate use - hence the need for trademark protection.  By requiring the trademark have priority in its date of registration or filing this will prevent folks trying to speculate on trademarks.  That is already a bit difficult to do since one has to show the trademark was reduced to practice,-- in other words, used in interstate commerce- prior to the application.  I don't think resolving this matter requires a moratorium.  The trademark holder simply has to assert and prove their contention of prior use.  The mechanisms for handling that sort of dispute are well established and workable.

The second case is directed to the folks who registered a .web domain on some other registry PRIOR to its registration on IODs.  The point being this: Everyone who registered a .web domain name did so with the hope/intention of staking a prior claim.  Clearly, there can only be ONE prior claim.  Clearly, many people have legitimately registered their .web name in good faith.  Equally clearly, many people are spinning the roulette wheel and registering domain names in as many places as they can - hedging their bets.  I think that by giving priority to the earliest registration where competing registrations exist is consistent with the solution suggested for point 1 above.  It means that some .web domain registrants will lose their claim, but it also means that the users who were legitimate and demonstrable pioneers will be protected.  Resolving this matter should be trivial.  Insertion dates and payment receipts are all that are needed to establish the claim.

FWIW - YMMV

thanks for taking the time to read this lengthy post.

Peter Vos
(NIC handle PV12)
(IOD registrant since '96)
     

 


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