Sedo.tv – What domain not to register #4

Really? Do you call yourselves domainers?

I have done a couple of posts in the “What domain not to register” series I started: What domain not to register #1 and What domain not to register #2 and #3 but this one really takes the cake.

I was going through the Namejet backorders today and sorted domains by bidders. I saw that 5 people have backordered the domain sedo.tv that is going into auction in about 4 days. High bid is at $70. This is an expiring domain that is registered at Enom so it goes into auction at Namejet.

It was owned by Sedo GmbH up untill last year. It went into “Reactivation Period” last year, meaning it expired. Then it went behind Whois Privacy. Was it auctioned last year at Namejet and someone bought it? Is it Sedo or last year’s winner that let it expire this year?

I don’t care about trademarks and all that in this situation. Really? Are you all 5 domainers? Do you list your domains at Sedo? Are you going to list Sedo.tv at Sedo and try to sell it at, you’ve guessed it, SEDO? This is the point where it becomes simply unethical. As domainers we do business with 5 or 10, maybe 15, companies at most, at a time. Is it really necessary to go after a domain that one of these companies owned?

I will give Sedo the heads up. Sorry “Namejet 5″ but I have to do this. There is some possibility that they don’t care about the domain anymore. But they registered it when they were starting the company back in 2000.

I wonder if more people will add Sedo.tv to their backorders after reading this post… Actually I don’t.

UDRP complaint for xyram.com denied at NAF

Complainant was JPI Commercial, LLC from Minnesota, USA. Respondent was Alan Capalditallon from United Kingdom.

Complainant, a pharmaceutical company, owns numerous US and EU trademark registrations for XYREM, used in connection with various pharmaceutical goods and services. Respondent is a professional product designer in mechanical engineering.

Respondent registered the disputed domain name, xyram.com, on April 21, 2006.

Complainant submitted the Complaint to the National Arbitration Forum on August 16, 2012. The National Arbitration Forum appointed David E. Sorkin as Panelist.

The Panelist found for the Complainant in the first 2 elements of the UDRP: Identical and/or Confusingly Similar and Rights or Legitimate Interests. The Panel said the disputed domain name comprised of the term “xyrem” with the top-level domain suffix “.com” appended thereto. The relevant portion of the domain name was identical to Complainant’s registered trademark XYRAM, but for the substitution of the letter “e” for the letter “a.” In light of the very similar visual appearance and pronunciation, the Panel considered the domain name to be confusingly similar to Complainant’s mark. Also The Panel said the Respondent offered no such evidence of his rights or legitimate interests, beyond an unsubstantiated assertion that he intended to use the domain name as a brand name in the future. The Panel therefore concluded that Complainant met its burden on this element.

The third element of the UDRP Policy requires Complainant to prove that Respondent both registered and is using the disputed domain name in bad faith. The Panel said that Complainant asserted that Respondent had constructive notice of Complainant’s mark as a result of Complainant’s US and EU trademark registrations. But constructive notice is insufficient under the Policy; actual knowledge is required. The Panel also said that although Respondent was under no duty to perform a trademark search prior to registering the domain name, see Trade Me Limited v. Vertical Axis Inc, D2009-0093 (WIPO Apr. 7, 2009), Respondent claimed that he exercised “due diligence” and “after relevant checks” did not believe he was infringing on any registered marks. Complainant questions this claim, asserting that had Respondent searched the Community Trademark Database in 2006, he would have found Complainant’s registration. The Panel said that a simple search of the CTM database for XYRAM, the term of interest to Respondent, yields no indication of registrations by Complainant or any other entity. Of course, absent other evidence that Respondent was intentionally targeting Complainant’s mark, there is no reason to expect that Respondent would have searched for Complainant’s XYREM mark rather than for XYRAM.

The Panel noted that Complainant’s strongest argument was based upon the website containing an image of a medicine bottle and pills, potentially supporting an inference that Respondent was aware of the connection between the domain name and Complainant’s mark. This website, however, was apparently automatically generated by Sedo.com, a domain name marketplace. Respondent is of course responsible for the content of the site, as he delegated control to Sedo.com. But, the fact that a third party with whom Respondent contracted made a connection between the domain name and Complainant’s mark in late 2010 through mid-2011 is not particularly probative of Respondent’s intentions when he registered the domain name more than four years earlier.

Finally the Panel said that with little or no evidence on either side, the Panel was left to speculate as to Respondent’s motives upon registering the disputed domain name. The similarity to Complainant’s mark is substantial, but the mark is not sufficiently famous or distinctive to lead the Panel to reject Respondent’s explanation as entirely implausible, nor to support an inference that Respondent must have had Complainant’s mark in mind upon registering the domain name. The Panel, therefore, was left to decide this issue based upon the burden of proof, and found that Complainant failed to meet its burden of showing that Respondent registered and used the disputed domain name in bad faith.

So the Panel concluded that relief shall be DENIED.

The new Afternic – Redesigned website coming next week

We just got a press release from Afternic. A couple of days back Afternic announced the launch of NameFind, a one-stop, name generation tool. Next week Afternic will launch the new and redesigned Afternic. Afternic is promising a centralized Offer Area to allow easy management of offers and price requests and a new simplified escrow process.

It is true that the Afternic website was in desperate need of a redesign. The old offer/counteroffer system was very complex to both buyers and sellers. I have been working with Afternic for many years and I still don’t know how it works. Also the escrow process was in need of the simplification needed to reach the higher standards offered by other marketplace companies. I look forward for these changes next week.

Here is the complete press release:

Our dedication to your success doesn’t stop at the launch of NameFind, which we invited you to explore earlier this week. Soon you will be seeing a whole new Afternic, developed especially for you. Next week we will be launching the newly redesigned Afternic.com, saturated with novel features and upgrades to make selling your domains even easier than before.

The new Afternic is a clean, simplified, improved user experience for both buyers and sellers. The Member Center has been upgraded to include personalized Member Portfolio Pages to feature domains from your portfolio, Domain Profile Pages for all active domains, Parking Management allowing editing and viewing of all parking data, and a centralized Offer Area to allow easy management of offers and price requests. In addition to these upgrades, the new Afternic features a simplified escrow process, and an improved shopping cart experience with tiered service pricing.

As a current Afternic member, all your information and domains will be transferred seamlessly to the new Afternic, with nothing required of you. Next week we will be sending out another email with specific information on what to expect when you log on to the new site, and more detail on the new site features. We hope you enjoy the upgrades we have developed for you, and should you have any questions, do not hesitate to reach out to us. Afternic continues to be the premier full service domain marketplace.

The Afternic Team
781-839-7990

EURid is sponsoring .eu Alternative Dispute Resolution procedure at less than half price (600 Euro)

The Czech Arbitration Court (CAC) and .eu registry EURid are running a special fee reduction to make the .eu Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) process even more accessible to the European public. EURid is sponsoring the .eu ADR procedure at the Czech Arbitration Court by providing a financial contribution for this time period. The cost of a basic proceeding is cut by more than 50%.

The .eu Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) procedure is used for challenging .eu registrations and it is the equivalent of UDRP (Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy). All cases are conducted online and by email, and in 21 official EU languages. Cases take an average of four months to resolve. EURid appointed the CAC in 2005 as its ADR provider. In order to make .eu ADR decisions, the CAC selects one or more panellists from its list of 136 accredited international experts.

As of 1 July 2012 there is a temporary discount on ADR fees of EUR 700 per filing an ADR complaint. The discount will be granted per each filed complaint irrespective of the number of domain names in dispute and the type of panel requested (for example the fee for disputing one domain name before the single-member panel will be EUR 600 instead of EUR 1 300, the fee for disputing six domain names before the three-member panel will be EUR 3 300 EUR instead of EUR 4 000 etc.). The discount is applicable to all complaints submitted until 31 December 2012 and paid until 31 January 2013 at the latest. Please see the complete schedule of fees here.

This move comes in response to recommendations made in an external audit of the .eu ADR service prepared for EURid. The  auditor said that the .eu ADR procedure is functioning well but, according to the audit, a fee reduction would further raise the visibility of the service and improve access.

Auditor said that the .eu ADR service is functioning well but this discount shows the opposite is happening. During 2011, only 47 .eu ADR cases were filed and 42 decisions were published, of which 38, or 90%, were in favour of the complainant.  This show that the ADR  procedure is on fast decline and this is what this discount tries to fix. In total since .eu’s launch in 2005, there have been over 1000 .eu proceedings. I think the auditor should have commented the time cases take to resolve. An average of four months is a lot more that the time UDRP cases are decided.

“The Czech Arbitration Court is the out-of-court institution appointed to rule on .eu domain name proceedings. We hope that the new fee structure will help even more people resolve their disputes with respect to contested .eu domain name registrations,” said Board Member of the Czech Arbitration Court, Petr Hostas.

EURid’s General Manager, Marc Van Wesemael, added, “At EURid, we enable anyone with a legitimate prior rights claim to challenge a .eu registration. Making the .eu ADR process more available, especially to Europe’s small businesses, by lowering the fee during 2012 is one way of doing this.”

EURid also plans to engage with the European Company Lawyers Association (ECLA) to help raise awareness about using .eu proceedings as a quick alternative to formal court hearings or litigation. In the same spirit, the CAC plans to enhance the .eu ADR online platform and procedural routines.

Who owns the .xxx domains of the 49 categories featured in Search.xxx?

I did a review on the new search engine at Search.xxx dedicated to developed .XXX websites and .XXX content only launched by ICM Registry.

ICM Registry, the registry operator of .xxx, announced that Search.xxx got passed 100K unique visitors and 500K searches in the first 24 hours since the launch.

As soon as you make your first search 49 “Quick Search” links/categories appear of the left hand side. I thought about checking whois in order to find out who owns the corresponding domain names to these 49 categories.

Search.xxx – Quick Search Links

It seems that 30 out of the 49 .xxx domain names are “Reserved by ICM Registry for Premium Generic Domain Names Program”. These domains are available at premium prices. Last week ICM Registry secured a $650,000 order for over 40 premium .XXX domains by IRIS SARL, a company based in Luxembourg. The order included hentai.xxx, sluts.xxx, cougars.xxx and many more so you can get an idea on what price you can expect to pay if you want to buy one of 30 premium domains. For more information please contact: premium@icmregistry.com.

Frank Schilling (Name Administration Inc.) owns 8 of the 18 registered domains. e.g. hardcore.xxx, anal.xxx and lesbian.xxx. ThinlineNV Inc., a Panama based company, owns another 3. One of the domains is currently not registered and is available for registration although I am not sure what it means exactly: StraightForGay.XXX.
StraightForGay.com has been registered since 2002. 4 other companies each own a single .xxx domain from the list.  Another 3 .xxx domains are behind privacy but 2 of them most surely are owned by IRIS SARL.

Please see below the complete list. Marked with bold are the domains that are reserved by ICM Registry for the premium generic domain names program.

“Quick Search” links (who owns the .xxx domain name)
Amateur (Name Administration Inc. that also owns Amateurs.xxx)
Anal (Name Administration Inc.)
Asian (Name Administration Inc. that also owns Asians.xxx )
Babes (Behind privacy but most probably onwed by IRIS SARL that didn’t buy babe.xxx)
Bareback
BBW
BDSM
Bear
Big Dick
Bisexual
Black
Blonde
Blowjob
Boobs
Brunettes
Creampie (Hyper Village Inc that doesn’t own Creampies.xxx)
Cumshots
Dildo (ThinlineNV Inc. that also owns Dildos.xxx)
DILF
Double Penetration
Facials
Fetish (Behind privacy)
Gangbang
Gay (Liberty Media Holdings)
Gloryhole
Hardcore (Name Administration Inc.)
Hentai (Behind privacy but owned by IRIS SARL)
High Definition
Interracial
Latin (Name Administration Inc., Latins.xxx is owned by Worldwide Media Inc.)
Leather
Lesbian (Name Administration Inc. that also owns Lesbians.xxx)
Masturbation
Mature
MILF (Name Administration Inc.)
Orgies
Pornstar
POV
Public
Reality
Shemale (Smy Web. that also owns Shemales.xxx)
Spanking
Squirting
Straight For Gay (available for registration)
Threesome
Toys (ThinlineNV Inc.)
Uncut (C1R Distribution, LLC.)
Vintage (ThinlineNV Inc.)
Webcam (Name Administration Inc. that didn’t buy Webcams.xxx)

EURid publishes .eu identity magazine for Autumn 2012

EURid, the European Registry of Internet Domain Names, manages the .eu top-level Internet domain under contract to the European Commission. EURid publishes the .eu identity magazine twice a year. The magazine contains articles on general interest and Internet-specific subjects. Click here to view a flash version of the latest issue or download it in .pdf format. You can find previous issues of the .eu Identity magazine in the magazine archive.

The latest issue has some interesting articles such as “What’s in a web address” that gives advice on how to market your business online and how to choose domain names. It gives special advice on registering multiple domain names and misspellings.

It also has an article about the .eu Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) procedure that is used for challenging .eu registrations. It seems that for six months, from 1 July 2012, basic proceedings are half price at 600 euros. EURid is sponsoring the .eu ADR procedure at the Czech Arbitration Court by providing a financial contribution for this time period. This is truly a first.

Search.xxx – A review of the new .xxx search engine

ICM Registry, the registry operator of .xxx, launched today, September the 27th, a new search engine at Search.xxx dedicated to developed .XXX websites and .XXX content only.

ICM Registry claims to have 21 million pages of .XXX indexed by the new search engine. In an announcement about the new search engine 10 days ago, ICM Registry gave some important guidelines for .xxx webmasters.

And here is my preliminary review:

Search.xxx works like any other search engine. You put in a few keywords, click on the search button and the search results appear. As soon as you make your first search 49 “Quick Search” links appear of the left hand side. I just learned today what a DILF is!!! :) Do you want to know who owns the .xxx domains of the 49 categories featured in Search.xxx? Click here.

But let’s see the customization options.

First of all, all visitors to search.xxx are greeted by a landing page that requires all visitors to be at least 18 years of age. The service provides access to adult entertainment content and is not appropriate for minors. Visitors have to click a button that says “I am 18+” in order to enter.

Before you start searching you can choose the dark theme that changes the default white background to a dark blue one which I prefer.

Then you can choose your language. Search results are offered in 19 languages so far. Changing the language doesn’t change the “Quick Search” links of the left hand side.

Finally you can choose your sexual preference: Straight or Gay. There is no provision to choose if you are a gay woman or a gay man. Search results are then based on the chosen sexual orientation.

Search.xxx

All .XXX websites offered in the search engine are scanned daily for malware by Mcafee and labeled for adult content by Metacert. Also search.xxx is free of all pop ups and pop unders. Search.xxx is mobile optimized and can be easily accessed using a mobile device.

Please note that the .xxx entire extension is blocked in most if not all companies.

NameMedia introduces NameFind.com in association with Afternic

NameMedia, that owns Afternic, launched NameFind.com today, a new website that is a collaborative, one-stop, name generation tool. NameFind is a discovery and acquisition tool that gives entrepreneurs the information they need when they are making one of the most important business decisions: naming their company or brand.

All Afternic domain names that have an assigned price will now be included in search results on NameFind as well, exposing them to a new audience of entrepreneurs and small business owners.

NameFind users can view available domain names alongside trademark information and social media availability, which shortens their research time and gets them to the decision to buy your domain name faster. Users are also able to share their name ideas with their network, putting Afternic domain names in front of even more people.

The NameFind platform anticipates both legal and marketing considerations, showing a matrix of options: domain names (including unregistered, aftermarket and premium variations), available social media handles on Facebook, Twitter and other social networks, and U.S. trademark registrations.

You can read the official release about the launch here.

ngf.com successfully defended at NAF – PPC is a bona fide offering of goods or services

A three-member Panel denied the UDRP complaint for the domain name ngf.com. Complainant was the National Golf Foundation, Inc. and Respondent was Mediablue, represented by Ari Goldberger of ESQwire.com Law Firm.

The Complaint was submitted to the National Arbitration Forum on July 18, 2012. Pursuant to Complainant’s request to have the dispute decided by a three-member Panel, the National Arbitration Forum appointed Kyung Jik Kwak (Chair), The Honourable Neil Anthony Brown QC and Carol Stoner, Esq. as Panelists for the three-member Panel.

Complainant is a nonprofit corporation that conducts surveys of members of the golf industry to collect information and prepare various reports based on that information. Complainant is primarily known in the U.S. and holds “NGF”  trademarks registered with the Principal Register of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) on November 8, 2005 and September 16, 2008. This was the first UDRP complaint for the National Golf Foundation, Inc.

Respondent registered the ngf.com domain name on July 28, 2005. Respondent registers common word domain names and combined letter domain names for investment and development. Respondent uses ngf.com to host a parking service, which is a pay-per-click website that features hyperlinks to various sites based on keyword advertising inventory and user search behavior.

The Panel found that Complainant’s trademark registrations with the USPTO were valid proof of Complainant’s rights in the mark NGF and that the ngf.com domain name was identical to Complainant’s NGF mark. So the first element of the UDRP (Identical and/or Confusingly Similar) was satisfied.

The Panel then found that Respondent has rights or legitimate interest in ngf.com. So the Complainant failed at the second element of the UDRP. The Panel said that while Respondent is not commonly known by the ngf.com domain name nor can Respondent claim noncommercial or fair use in this case, “NGF” is a combination of three letters, a common acronym that many different companies use and that has many different meanings. Respondent is in the business of registering common word domain and combined letter domain names for investment and development and ngf.com is one of these common word/combined letter domain names that it chose to register for this business. Because ngf.com displays hyperlinks that vary based on keyword advertising, inventory and user search behavior, some hyperlinks displayed are related to the golf industry while others are totally unrelated to golf. The hyperlinks displayed on ngf.com that were related to the golf industry were not of the type Complainant’s NGF trademarks are registered for, nor for the type of service Complainant provides. Complainant is a private industry and lobby group, and its NGF trademarks are accordingly registered for conducting business research and surveys for the golf industry and for association services, such as promoting the interests of golf enthusiasts, etc. The type of golf-related hyperlinks on ngf.com are for golf lessons or related goods and services. Based on the above, the Panel found that Respondent was making a bona fide offering of goods or services under Policy ¶ 4(c)(i).

Because the Panel found that Respondent had rights or legitimate interests in the ngf.com domain name, there was no need to further analyze whether the Respondent registered or is using the disputed domain name in bad faith. However, the Panel found no evidence that Respondent was aware of Complainant’s rights to the NGF mark. Considering that knowledge of Complainant is more or less limited to the U.S., especially more so at the time of registration of the ngf.com domain name, knowledge cannot be inferred for Respondent who resides in South Korea. It was thus the conclusion of the Panel that Respondent did not register the ngf.com domain name in bad faith.

Sedo made a mistake: Oops! Correction for Sedo’s Select 50 – It’s Whiskey.com!

A few hours ago I posted the top 50 domains for September from Sedo. It appears Sedo made a mistake on the top domain name! Apparently someone at Sedo made a typo and instead of whiskey.com, the number 1 domain name was written as whiskey.co. Honest mistake!

I just an email with subject: Oops! Correction for Sedo’s Select 50 – It’s Whiskey.com!Here is what it said:

We apologize for sending you another email, but there was a little mistake at the top of our Select 50 for this month. We have whiskey.com, rather than whiskey.co, listed exclusively at Sedo. We are sorry for any confusion or inconvenience this may have caused.

This is the complete and corrected first list of Sedo’s top 50 domains for September 2012:

No. Domain Name Asking Price
1. whiskey.com €1,200,000
2. printer.com   $950,000
3. autos.de
(German=cars) 
  €550,000
4. picture.com   $500,000
5. shout.com   $500,000
6. customerservice.com   $300,000
7. australien.de
(German=Australia) 
  €250,000
8. toys.net   $250,000
9. campaign.com   $200,000
10. werkzeug.de
(German=tool) 
  €199,000
11. bodas.es
(Spanish=weddings)
  €150,000 
12. savings.net   €120,000
13. umwelt.de
(German=environment)
  €120,000
14. businessguide.com     $95,000 
15. gayforum.com/.de/.at     €60,000
16. foto.eu
(various languages=photo) 
    €50,000
17. laptop.co.uk     €40,000
18. fenb.com
(with 7 TLDs incl. .net)
    $40,000
19. notebooks.co.uk
(incl. notebook.co.uk)
    €30,000
20. strippoker.net     $30,000
21. tablet.co.uk     $25,000
22. TLD.de     €25,000
23. wunschzettel.com
(German=wishlist)
    €25,000
24. netbooks.co.uk
(incl. netbook.co.uk)
    €25,000
25. monument.com     $25,000
26. sitio.com
(Spanish=site)
    $20,000
27. ordertickets.com     $20,000
28. UOO.com     €20,000
29. BVW.com     $18,000
30. MNK.com     $15,000
31. MEQ.com     $15,000
32. BXI.com     $15,000
33. DCY.com     $15,000
34. arbeitssuche.de
(German=job search)
    €15,000
35. PRV.com     $15,000
36. homesolarpanels.com     $10,000
37. whiskey.us       €8,000
38. spavacation.com       €7,500
39. FEPS.com       $7,500
40. privateschool.co.uk       €6,000
41. registerdirect.com       $6,000
42. recruiting.biz       €5,000
43. coolchat.com       $4,999
44. homeofficesupplies.com       $4,000
45. healthygiftbaskets.com       $4,000
46. compensation.info       €3,500
47. claims.info       €3,500
48. superbus.net       $2,000
49. kaboom.net       $2,000
50. prettyproperty.com          $499

If you are interested in any of these domains please contact Sedo at select50@sedo.com.