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Recent Case Notes & Commentary

Descriptive or Generic Term as Domain Name – not Bad Faith

LiveOne Group, Ltd. v. Kim KwangPyo / MediaBlue Inc. NAF; Claim Number: FA1210001467218; (Dec. 10, 2012).

This recent decision has again noted that if the domain name is a descriptive term, it will not give rise to a finding of bad faith, although, of course other facts may do so. The point was dealt with briefly in the decision.[1]

“Respondent also contends that there is no evidence of bad faith registration or use because Respondent registered the <> domain name which incorporates a descriptive term that became available when its prior registrant failed to renew it. A respondent is free to register a domain name consisting of common terms and that the domain name currently in dispute contains such common terms. The Panel finds that Respondent did not register or use the <> domain name in bad faith under Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii). See Zero Int’l Holding v. Beyonet Servs., D2000-0161 (WIPO May 12, 2000) (“Common words and descriptive terms are legitimately subject to registration as domain names on a ‘first-come, first-served’ basis.”); see also Target Brands, Inc. v. Eastwind Group, FA 267475 (Nat. Arb. Forum July 9, 2004) (holding that the respondent’s registration and use of the <> domain name was not in bad faith because the complainant’s TARGET mark is a generic term); see also Miller Brewing Co. v. Hong, FA 192732 (Nat. Arb. Forum Dec. 8, 2003) (finding that because the respondent was using the <> domain name, a generic phrase, in connection with a search engine, the respondent did not register and was not using the disputed domain name in bad faith).”

See also, the note on the decision in Publicare Marketing Communications GmbH v. G.E.D. Faber / GAOS BV, WIPO Case No. D2012-1580 this website.

[1] The editor was a member of this Panel


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