Posts Tagged ‘internet lawyer’

Metropark USA Wins Domain Name from a Cybersquatter in in rem Default Judgment

Friday, August 6th, 2010

U.S. Magistrate Judge Theresa Carroll Buchanan granted Plaintiff Metropark USA a permanent injunction transferring ownership of Defendant www.Metropark.net in the Anti-cybersquatting Consumer Protect Act and federal trademark infringement in the case Metropark United States v. Metropark, 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 78674 (D. Va. 2010).

The decision (but because it is a Magistrate ruling it is really only a recommendation) was rendered and entered in default on July 8, 2010 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Alexandria Virginia. In this federal cybersquatting claim, the D.C. for the E.D. Virginia exercised in rem jurisdiction over Defendant Domain Name www.Metropark.net and because the Domain Name registrant failed to reply to the complaint or otherwise appear before the court in these proceedings the Magistrate judge entered her recommendation in a default rulingcybersquatted trademark domain name against the Defendant Domain Name.

Brief history of the parties involved;

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Heavenly Valley Trademark Owner Wins ChateauHeavenlyVillage.com by Default Judgment in Cybersquatting Lawsuit

Tuesday, July 27th, 2010

The case is Heavenly Valley, LP, et al., vs. Lake Tahoe Development Company, LLC, CIV. NO. S-09-1533 FCD GGH, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California, (July 22, 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 74488) and was heard before U.S. Magistrate Judge Gregory G. Hollows.

cybersquatting lawsuitPlaintiffs Heavenly Valley filed the complaint on June 3, 2009 alleging that Defendant improperly and without authorization used the ‘HEAVENLY’ trademarks in the name ‘The Chateau at Heavenly Village.’

A quick search through the Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) revealed that among the myriad ‘HEAVENLY’ federally registered trademarks the Plaintiffs Heavenly Valley, a Delaware corporation limited partnership, are the registered owners of the ‘HEAVENLY VALLEY’ mark, Serial No. 74151462.

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Problems for the Average Internet User- Spoofed Web-sites, Phishing, Typo-squatting, Cyber-squatting

Thursday, July 8th, 2010

There was an interesting article posted by Sure Systems, on microsoft.com concerning the long ongoing Web-scam of spoofed Web-sites that are often involved with phishing scams. Phishing is when cyber-criminals attempt to acquire users’ sensitive online information, usually bank and email-accounts and passwords.

typosquatting and cybersquattingThese cyber criminals utilize spoofed sites and other methods (including typo-squatting) to trick users into believing they are at their intended Web pages so they will enter online their personal information and the phishing program will forward that data to the cyber criminal and also forward the user to their actually intended Web-site.

What the Sure Systems article focuses primarily on educating users on how not to fall victim to these cyber-scams by using scam recognition and available programs/applications to decrease your chance of becoming victim to a cyber-criminal.

Continue reading Problems for the Average Internet User- Spoofed Web-sites, Phishing, Typo-squatting, Cyber-squatting »

Police Department Loses its Domain Name to a Disgruntled Speeder After it Failed to Renew the Domain Name

Monday, June 21st, 2010

The Bluff City Police Department in Tennessee learned a valuable lesson after a speeder snatched up the domain name rights to www.bluffcitypd.com. It wasn’t that the Bluff City PD had failed to register the domain name; they’d been operating the domain name for years, rather the Bluff City PD let the ball drop when it failed to renew its registration of www.bluffcitypd.com.

This is a common problem faced by domain name owners and a common loophole exploited by cyber-squatters. Typically, a domain name will need to be renewed every year. If the domain name owner fails to renew its registration of the domain name, the registrar will usually treat the domain name as if the owner no longer wants it and will re-insert the domain name into the pool of available domain names.

This is exactly what happened to the Bluff City PD in this case. They hosted the domain name www.bluffcitypd.com on the registrar giant GoDaddy. Furthermore, it is not as if GoDaddy didn’t give ample notice to the Bluff City PD that its domain name was about to expire and required renewal if they wished to continue to hold onto the domain name. It is GoDaddy’s practice to send 5 warning emails to customers before a domain name expires; at 90, 60, 30, 15, and 5 days prior to expiration of the domain name. Also, GoDaddy sends 2 reminders after the domain name has expired; at 5 and 12 days after the domain name has expired. On top of all of this, there is an automatic renewal option, which the PD of course failed to employ; the Bluff City PD could have used this option to make sure their domain name would be automatically renewed before it ever expired.

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Attorneys Handling Cybersquatting Cases Under the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) and the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA)

Monday, October 5th, 2009

Traverse Legal’s internet attorneys are handling some of the largest Cybersquatting Cases ever filed – Contact us at 866.936.7447.  Our internet law lawyers can help you protect and defend your valuable domain names.

Internet law is complex because courts are not familiar with internet technology or the special laws passed by Congress to create special rights for companies doing business on the internet. Internet attorneys who specialize in internet law issues are critical in pursuing your legal rights.  For instance, domain names can be incredible assets for a business.  Like a well placed piece of commercial real estate, domain names can be the key to turning a dwindling business into a healthy and vibrant economic powerhouse.  A well thought out and developed domain name can increase sales, increase brand recognition, and extend a business’ reach across international borders.  Cybersquatting and cybersquatters seek to profit from the inherent value that domain names provide to trademark holders.  Cybersquatters and, more specifically, typosquatters will, for example, register domain names that are common misspellings or typographical errors of a business’ trademark to siphon off the web traffic and goodwill that a trademark owner has created in its brand and domain name.

Cybersquatting cases can be filed through two similar methods.  The first is the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP).  The UDRP is a contract created by ICANN that every domain name registrant of a major top-level domain name (.com, .net, or .org) must agree to in order to register a domain name.  Under this contract, the registrant agrees to have disputes over the domain name, specifically disputes over the abusive registration of a domain name, decided by arbitration under the Policy.  These arbitration proceedings are typically brought in front of the National Arbitration Forum or the World Intellectual Property Organization.

The second method is the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA).  The ACPA allows a plaintiff to bring a cybersquatting case in federal court against a person that registers or uses a domain name in bad faith that is identical or confusingly similar to the trademark or the personal name of the plaintiff.  This remedy allows the plaintiff to seek statutory damages of up to $100,000 per domain name and attorneys fees in exceptional circumstances.  Additionally, a plaintiff can bring an in rem suit against foreign defendants to recover a domain name that was registered with a registrar or registered through a registry located on US soil, but monetary damages are not available in an in rem suit under the ACPA.

If you are faced with a cybersquatting case under the UDRP or the ACPA, contact one of our cybersquatting attorneys today.  You may be entitled to recover your domain name through a cybersquatting case under the UDRP or the ACPA.