Virgin and Richard Branson filed 4 URS complaints on 5 different New gTLD domain names in the past couple of days:
- richardbranson.holdings – richardbranson.ventures
Virgin had a DPML block for the term “Virgin” but that can’t stop registrations such as 2. and 3. Richard Branson didn’t have a DPML from Donuts so the domains from 1. were registered. He has since bought the DPML block. Richard Branson can NOT get a DPML block on the term “branson” so if he wants to get all “branson” new gtlds he has to go after each one.
1. The domains were registered in Go Daddy on February 15th from someone from California.
2. The domain was registered in Go Daddy on February 6th from someone from Oregon.
3. The domain was registered in Go Daddy on February 6th from someone from Sydeny, Australia.
4. Branson.guru is bit more complicated because “Branson” is a last name and also a city in Missouri. The owner is from Chicago. And these are several other “branson” new gtlds registered and most of the registrations are related to hotels:
All 4 URS complaints were filed at the National Arbitration Forum that is the only URS provider at this time.
Virgin and Richard Branson are registered with the Trademark Clearinghouse. Because of that they got an alert as soon as the domain names were registered and reacted with the URS complaints very fast.
The first ever URS complaint was filed for the domain names ibm.ventures and ibm.guru by IBM and the domains were suspended just 6 days after the URS complaint.
The first ever UDRP Complaint filed for a New gTLD domain name was that for the domain Canyon.Bike that is still pending at WIPO.
Through the URS Procedure ICANN offers a lower-cost, faster path to relief for rights holders experiencing clear-cut cases of infringement caused by domain name registrations. The URS filling fee at the National Arbitration Forum is $375 for up to 14 domain names. The URS can only lead to suspension of the domain names. The URS will not provide the transfer of the disputed domain name to the trademark holder. If the trademark owner wants to take ownership of and use the disputed domain, it should instead file a UDRP complaint or other legal action.