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  1. #1
    SitePoint Zealot solutionsphp's Avatar
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    Domain Legal Question

    In the sixties, there was a company called Acme Widgets. They disappeared in the early 70s. In 2003, the domain name acmewidgets.com was set to expire and I grabbed it. In 2005, a new company (unrelated to the original) was started called Acme Widgets Group. They purchased acmewidgetsgroup.com. I think they own a trademark on "Acme Widgets Group". Since I bought the acmewidgets.com domain 2 years before this company was started, am I clear of any trademark dispute? OR, could they file a claim with ICANN? I am NOT using the domain for anything other than directing it to a page that provides a link to the domain's for sale page at TDNAM.com.

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
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    isn't acme widgets the name for all made up businesses in economics...like john and joe wade or something?

  3. #3
    SitePoint Guru El Camino's Avatar
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    There is nothing to stop them filing a claim. The question is whether they will win. IANAL, but given the background in your post I suspect you would win - but UDRP rulings have been inconsistent.

    In order to win the plaintiff must show that:

    http://www.icann.org/udrp/udrp-policy-24oct99.htm#4a

    (i) your domain name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the complainant has rights; and

    (ii) you have no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name;
    and

    (iii) your domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

  4. #4
    SitePoint Zealot solutionsphp's Avatar
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    Thanks for your replies!

    kgbrooklyn, yes I was using "acmewidgets.com" as an example only--this isn't the actual domain name.

    El Camino, do you think "acmewidgets.com" could be considered "confusingly similar" to "acemewidgetsgroup.com"?

    Does domain speculating count as a legitimate interest?

    Also, I had a few friendly email exchanges with the owner of Acme Widgets Group in 2005 and they were interested in buying the domain from me. They left it at "we'll be in touch" and I haven't heard anything since. I have been hesitant to get back in touch with them in case that's considered solicitation (and "bad faith"). I wonder if this history would affect a claim in any way?

  5. #5
    whagwan? silver trophybronze trophy akritic's Avatar
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    Personally, I don't think 'domain speculating' would be classed as legitimate, though I don't think what you are doing or have done classifies as 'bad faith' either. That's just a personal opinion/gut feeling.


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