Citigroup Inc. v. Chen Ying Quan
NAF Case: FA 1701001714851
March 13, 2017
This decision shows that cases are now flowing in, under the new gTLDs, showing ICANN was right in providing dispute resolution processes for the new gTLDs. And many of the same issues keep arising. This case concerned the language of the proceeding and Multiple Respondents. It is a good case to cite on either of those issues.
Language of the proceeding
The language in which UDRP cases are conducted is the language of the registration agreement under which the domain name was sold. This one was in Chinese.
But the Complainant can always ask the panel to conduct the case in another language, often English. Citigroup did so in this case.
The evidence showed the Respondent had targeted English-language trademarks and English-language TLDs and replied to Citigroup’s cease and desist letters in English. The panel decided this showed the Respondent was at ease using English and it was therefore fair to all sides to run the case in English. But each case will depend on its own facts.
The issue of 'multiple respondents' is always a tricky one, as the rules provide that a claim must be against a single respondent. The evidence revealed that what appeared to be multiple respondents was in fact one party registering domain names under different entities. The 14 domain names at issue were clearly owned and controlled by Cheng Ying Quan who the Panel found was one person using multiple aliases. The claim was therefore in order and could go ahead.