WIPO

 

WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center

 

ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION

Arthur Guinness Son & Co. (Dublin) Limited v. Feeney OíDonnell and John OíDonnell

Case No. D2000-1710

 

1. The Parties

The Complainant in this administrative proceeding is Arthur Guinness Son & Co. (Dublin) Limited, a corporation organized and existing under the laws of the Republic of Ireland, with its principal place of business located at St Jamesís Gate Brewery, Dublin 8, Ireland. It is a subsidiary of Diageo plc.

The Respondents are Feeney OíDonnell and John OíDonnell of 26 Castleknock Vale, Dublin 16, Ireland.

 

2. The Domain Names and Registrar

The domain names at issue in these proceedings are <guinnessdraught.com>., <guinnessdraught.net> and <guinnessdraught.org>.

The Registrar of the disputed domain names is Register.com, Inc. with a business address in New York, New York, USA.

 

3. Procedural History

On December 7, 2000 the Complaint was received by the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center ("the Center") by e-mail and in hard copy on December 11, 2000 in accordance with the Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy ("the Rules") and the WIPO Supplemental Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy ("the Supplemental Rules"). The appropriate fees were paid by the Complainant.

On December 14, 2000 the Center sent a Request for Registrar Verification to the Registrar and, on December 19, 2000, the Registrar confirmed that the said domain names were registered through the Registrar, that on that date the Respondents were the current registrants and administrative contacts for each of the said domain names, that the Policy applies to the registrations of said domain names and that the said registrations were in active status.

In accordance with Paragraph 4(a) of the Rules and paragraph 5 of the Supplemental Rules, the Center verified that the Complaint satisfied the formal requirements of the Policy, Rules and Supplemental Rules and that payment in the required amount had been made by the Complainant.

On December 21, 2000, the Center sent a Notification of Complaint and Commencement of Administrative Proceeding relating to the said domain names to the Respondents by Post/Courier (with enclosures), by facsimile (Complaint without attachments) and by e-mail (Complaint without attachments). A copy of said Notification was sent to the authorized representative of the Complainant by e-mail. Further copies of said Notification were sent to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers ("ICANN") and the Registrar.

Said Notification of Complaint and Commencement of Administrative Proceeding inter alia advised the Respondent that the Administrative Proceedings had commenced on December 21, 2000 and that the Respondent was required to submit a Response to the Center on or before January 9, 2001.

On January 5, 2001, the Second Named Respondent contacted the Center by e-mail and requested an extension of time of seven (7) days within which to formulate a Response. On January 8, 2001, the Center extended the time to file the Response by a period of seven (7) days to January 16, 2001 and advised the Second Named Respondent by e-mail. A copy of the Center's e-mail was sent to the authorised representative of the Complainant in accordance with paragraph 2(h) of the Rules.

On January 16, 2001, the Center received an e-mail from the authorised representative of the Respondent requesting a further extension of time. In response, the Center advised the authorised representative of the Respondent that in the interests of ensuring the expedited nature of these proceedings, the request for a further extension of time would be submitted to the Administrative Panel for decision.

No Response was received from the Respondent by the due date.

On January 17, 2001, the Center sent a Notification of Respondent Default to the Respondent and indicated that as the Complainant had designated a single member Administrative Panel, the Center would appoint a panelist from its published list.

On January 17, 2001, the authorised representative of the Respondent submitted a Response by e-mail and submitted that the Respondents should not be prejudiced by reason of the failure of the Center to communicate its intention to refuse to grant a short extension of time.

On January 25, 2001, the Center invited James Bridgeman to act as Administrative Panel in these Administrative Proceedings and on January 26, 2001, having received a Statement of Acceptance and Declaration of Impartiality from said James Bridgeman, the Center proceeded to appoint this Administrative Panel. On the same date, the case file was transferred to the Administrative Panel.

In the view of the Administrative Panel, the proper procedures were followed and this Administrative Panel was properly constituted.

 

4. Factual Background

The Complainant is the registered proprietor of a number of Irish trade mark registrations (the Respondents have an Irish address) including Irish registered trademark GUINNESS , registration number 38,205, registered on March 2, 1931 in international class 32 and Irish registered trademark GUINNESS, registration number 99,605 on December 15, 1980 in international class 32.

The Complainant has submitted copies of the registration certificates for these trade marks and states that these Irish trade mark registrations are not, to the knowledge of the Complainant, the subject of any challenge to their validity.

In addition, the Complainant is the proprietor of more than 70 registered trade marks in various countries worldwide, for the mark GUINNESS.

 

5. Partiesí Contentions

A. Complainant

The Complainant requests this Administrative Panel to direct that the said domain names be transferred to the Complainant.

In addition to its registered trade marks in Ireland and throughout the world (as described above), the Complainant submits that it has common law trade mark rights in and to the trade mark GUINNESS in Ireland and in many other jurisdictions.

The Complainant submits that it began selling its GUINNESS brand products in Dublin, Ireland as early as January 1764, and the Complainant has exported beer products around the world since at least as early as 1769. Since then, through continuous sales, advertising and promotion, GUINNESS brand beers have become some of the worldís most famous and best-selling alcoholic beverages. The GUINNESS branded product is brewed in fifty countries and sold in one hundred and fifty countries. Approximately ten million glasses of GUINNESS brand products are purchased each day. Beer sold under the mark GUINNESS is heavily promoted and advertised throughout the world, and is the worldís market leader in the "black beer" or stout sector having approximately 80% of the world-wide market in that sector.

The GUINNESS Group has a global presence on the Internet through its <www site http://www.guinness.com>. This site is accessible from anywhere in the world and contains extensive information about the GUINNESS brand, promotions, games and other material. In support of these submissions, the Complainant has furnished a print-out of the content of the said www site current as of December 7, 2000.

The Complainant submits that the domain names in issue contain a word which is identical to and/or confusingly similar to the Complainant's said registered trade marks. Further, the Complainant submits that the domain names contain a word which is identical to the mark GUINNESS in which the Complainant submits it has common law trade mark rights.

The Complainant submits that the Respondents should be considered as having no rights or legitimate interests in the said domain names given the worldwide fame and notoriety of the GUINNESS trade mark. Said domain names are not ones which another trader would legitimately choose unless that trader sought to:

create an impression of an association with the Complainant;

create an impression of an association with the Complainant's beers;

attract business from the Complainant; and/or

misleadingly divert members of the public from the Complainant to the Respondents.

The Complainant has not licensed or otherwise permitted the Respondents to use the said trade marks or any other trade mark incorporating the GUINNESS mark. The Complainant has not licensed or otherwise permitted the Respondents to apply for or use any domain name consisting of or incorporating the GUINNESS mark. For these reasons, the Complainant contends that the Respondents have no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the said domain names in issue.

Turning to whether the said domain names in issue were registered and are being used in bad faith by the Respondents, the Complainant submits that by virtue of the widespread use and reputation of the GUINNESS trade mark, members of the public in Ireland and around the world would mistakenly believe the Complainant to be the registrant of the said domain names or said domain names to be in some way associated with the Complainant, especially given the meaning of the word "draught" in the English language.

Given the widespread use and fame of the GUINNESS mark, the Complainant submits that the Respondents must have been aware that in registering the domain names they were misappropriating the valuable intellectual property of the owner of the GUINNESS trade mark.

The Complainant further submits that by registering the said domain names, the Respondents engaged in a pattern of conduct which prevents the Complainant from registering domain names which correspond to the Complainantís trade marks contrary to paragraph 4 (b)(ii) of the Policy. It is further submitted that the said domain names were registered in circumstances which indicate that the Respondents acquired said domain names primarily for the purpose of selling, renting or otherwise transferring said domain name registrations to the Complainant, owner of the relevant trade marks, in breach of paragraph 4(b)(i) of the Policy.

The Complainant alleges that on March 23, 2000, the Complainantís representative, UDV, wrote to the Respondents objecting to their use of the domain name <guinnessdraught.com> and requesting that they transfer said domain name registration for <guinnessdraught.com> to the Complainant. On March 31, 2000 the Respondents replied to UDV stating that they were willing to transfer said domain name to the Complainant upon receipt of confirmation that the mark <guinnessdraught.com> was a registered trade mark. The Complainant submits that the Respondents thereby acknowledged that they had no rights in the said domain name.

On April 20, 2000, the authorised representative of the Complainant wrote to the Respondents stating that there was no trade mark registration for <guinnessdraught.com>, but that this did not preclude the Complainant from taking action against a domain name incorporating the word GUINNESS which is a registered trade mark. The letter also contained details of the proposed transferee of the domain name. The Complainant has furnished this Administrative Panel with copies of this correspondence.

The Complainant further submits that in the absence of a reply from the Respondents, a reminder letter was sent to the Respondents by the authorised representative of the Complainant on April 27, 2000. The Second Named Respondent replied with a holding letter on May 7, 2000 stating that the Respondents were considering the information and trade mark details and would be in further contact. On May 22, 2000, the authorised representative of the Complainant wrote a further reminder letter asking for a substantive reply. The Complainant submits that the Respondents replied by letter which was dated March 31, 2000, but was actually received by the Complainantís representative on June 9, 2000. This letter again asked for clarification as to whether <guinnessdraught.com> was a registered trade mark. The Complainant's response on June 13, 2000 reiterated that while <guinnessdraught.com> was not a registered trade mark this did not preclude the Complainant from taking action. The Complainant submits that since this exchange of correspondence the Respondents have failed to take any further steps to comply with the Complainantís requests to transfer said domain name <guinnessdraught.com>.

The Complainant submits that while no approach has been made to the Respondents in regard to <guinnessdraught.net> and/or <guinnessdraught.org>, it is submitted that such an approach would be pointless, in light of the position adopted by the Respondents in relation to <guinnessdraught.com>.

The Complainant further argues that the Respondents are not using any of the domain names for active web sites, which further supports the Complainantís position that the Respondents registered the domain names at issue in bad faith and possibly for the purpose of selling, renting or otherwise transferring the domain names to the owner of the <GUINNESS> trade mark or to a competitor of the Complainant.

The Complainant submits that the Respondents will never be capable of using the domain names in issue for a legitimate purpose as the fame of the GUINNESS trade mark is such that members of the public will always assume that there is an association between the Respondents and the Complainant and/or between the Respondents and the GUINNESS trade mark.

Therefore, having regard to all the facts and circumstances, the Complainant submits that the domain names in issue were registered and are being used in bad faith.

The Complainant refers to the comments of the administrative panels in two earlier successful complaints, viz. Diageo p.l.c. v. John Zuccarini (WIPO Case No. D2000-0541) and Diageo plc v. John Zuccarine, Individually and t/a Cupcake Patrol (WIPO Case No. D2000-0996). In each of these administrative proceedings the respective administrative panel ordered the transfer of third party domain names containing the GUINNESS trade mark or typographical variations of the GUINNESS trade mark. The Complainant submits that these cases confirm the legitimacy of the Complainantís claim to have rights in the GUINNESS name and that the registration of GUINNESS (or related) domain names by third parties unconnected with the Complainant amounts to bad faith on the part of the Registrant.

B. Respondent

The Respondents admit that the Complainant is the registered proprietor of a large number of trade marks in various countries worldwide and that same are valid and subsisting. However, the Respondents deny that they have infringed the said registered trade marks as alleged by the Complainant or at all.

The Respondents deny that the said domain names are allegedly identical, or confusingly similar, to various trade marks in which the Complainant claims it has rights. Further or in the alternative, the Respondents submit that even if the domain names are "similar" to a trade mark in which the Complainant claims it has rights by having the element GUINNESS included therein, they are not "identical or confusingly similar" to the Complainantís said trade mark.

The Respondents submit that they intend to make it clear that the domain names are in no way affiliated with the Complainant and in no way intend to be associated with the Complainant or with Complainantís products as alleged or at all.

The Respondents reject the argument made by the Complainant as to why the Respondents should be considered as having no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain names that are the subject of the Complaint. The Respondents state that the Complainant and Respondents are not competitors.

The Respondents further submit that before the Respondents received any notice of the dispute, the Respondent had the intention to use the domain names in the course of a real and genuine trade in respect of a bona fide offering of goods and services to include, inter alia, a portal site of Irish tourist attractions, history, traditions, art, architecture and landmarks (including a tourist guide and information site regarding famous Dublin pubs and/or Irish pubs). The Respondents have offered to demonstrate a prototype of this site for the Administrative panel if requested. The Respondents state that their proposed use would in no manner be affiliated or associated with the Complainant or with Complainantís products.

The Respondents also reject the arguments made by the Complainant that the said domain names were registered and are being used in bad faith.

The Respondents deny that said domain names were registered or acquired for the purpose of selling, renting, or otherwise transferring the domain name registrations to the Complainant, as the alleged owner of the trademark, or to a competitor of the Complainant as alleged or at all.

The Respondents further deny that said domain names were registered in order to prevent the Complainant from reflecting its trademarks in a corresponding domain name and the Respondents deny that they have engaged in a pattern of such conduct as alleged or at all.

The Respondents state that the said domain names were not registered by Respondents in an intentional attempt to attract for commercial gain, Internet users to the Respondentís web site or other on-line location, by creating a likelihood of confusion with the Complainantís mark as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement of the Respondentís web site or location or of a product or service on the Respondentís web site or location, nor were the said domain names registered by the Respondents to disrupt the Complainantís business in any manner or at all.

The Respondents further submit that the genuine use intended to be made of the domain names by the Respondent is not in any way "identical or confusingly similar" to the Complainantís products nor are they likely to deceive or cause confusion with the Complainant or with the Complainantís products.

Further, the Respondents submit that such genuine uses of the domain names by the Respondent conform with honest practice in industrial or commercial matters and are not "identical or confusingly similar" to the Complainant or with Complainantís products nor are they likely to deceive or cause confusion with the Complainant or with the Complainantís products as alleged or at all.

Furthermore, the Respondents submit that the proposed uses of said domain names by the Respondents conform to honest practice in industrial or commercial matters.

The Respondents state that their submissions are supported by the documentation furnished in the Complaint relating to correspondence between the parties.

 

6. Discussion and Findings

Preliminary Issue regarding the late filing of the Response

The Center granted the Respondents an extension of time to January 16, 2001, within which to file a Response. The Response was not filed until

January 17, 2001. The authorised representative of the Respondent submitted that the Respondents should not be prejudiced by reason of the failure of the Center to communicate its intention to refuse to grant a further short extension of time. This Administrative Panel finds that the Center was not obliged to grant any further extension of time and the Center took the proper steps in sending a Notification of Respondent Default on January 17, 2001 when the Respondent failed to file a Response within the extended time limit. Nonetheless, the Administrative Panel finds that since the Response was filed only one day late, the delay was de minimis and this Administrative Panel has admitted and considered the submissions set out in the Response.

Substantive Issues

The onus is on the Complainant to prove that:-

(i) the domain names are identical or confusingly similar to a trade mark in which the Complainant has rights;

(ii) the Respondents have no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain names; and,

(iii) the domain names were registered and are being used in bad faith.

The Respondents accept that the Complainant has rights in the trade mark GUINNESS and the Complainant has established that the said trade mark is a famous mark registered in numerous jurisdictions by the Complainant and other members of the Complainant's group of companies in respect of beer.

The Respondents take the view that the said domain names are not identical to the said trade mark and even if there is a similarity, any similarity does not amount to a confusing similarity.

Whether a domain name is confusingly similar to a trademark or not is a question of fact in each case and although the Complainant has referred to the decisions of the administrative panels in earlier administrative proceedings viz. Diageo p.l.c. v. John Zuccarini (WIPO Case No. D2000-0541) and Diageo plc v. John Zuccarine, Individually and t/a Cupcake Patrol (WIPO Case No. D2000-0996), this Administrative Panel must compare the domain names and trade mark in issue in these proceedings and is not concerned with other domain names. The facts in earlier administrative proceedings are not relevant in this regard.

In deciding this question of fact, this Administrative Panel can be assisted by the formulae indicated in case law and decisions of earlier administrative panels.

As both parties are resident in Ireland, it would seem to be appropriate to apply Irish law to this question. To date there has been no decision of the Irish Superior Courts to assist. The question has however been canvassed in other administrative proceedings and in the courts of other jurisdictions.

In Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Walsucks and Walmarket Puerto Rico, WIPO case D2000-0477, the question of confusing similarity was considered in the following terms:

"The question whether a domain name and a trademark are confusingly similar involves the application of a multifactored test exemplified in the decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in AMF Inc. v. Sleekcraft Boats, 599 F.2d 341 (9th Cir. 1979). The Sleekcraft factors are directed to whether there is a "likelihood of confusion" between two marks. While developed in the context of comparing two trademarks, the Sleekcraft factors have more recently been employed by the federal courts to compare domain names to trademarks, and domain names to domain names. The Sleekcraft factors were, for example, employed by the federal district court in Bally Total Fitness The Sleekcraft factors were relied upon by the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in Brookfield Communications v. West Coast Entertainment, 174 F.3d 1036, 1053-61 (9th Cir. 1999).

In Sleekcraft, the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit enumerated eight factors to be weighed on the question of likelihood of confusion. These are: (1) strength of the mark; (2) proximity of the goods; (3) similarity of the marks; (4) evidence of actual confusion; (5) marketing channels used; (6) type of goods and the degree of care likely to be exercised by the purchaser; (7) defendant's intent in selecting the mark; and (8) likelihood of expansion of the product lines."

Applying the Sleekcraft test, this Administrative Panel concludes as follows:

1. strength of the mark: the Complainant has established that GUINNESS is a famous mark with a long history and has developed a world-wide fame;

2. proximity of the goods: the Complainant's core business is the brewing and sale of beer, although the Respondents have not provided any evidence that they are engaged in any business, they have submitted that they intend to create a portal www site which would be inter alia " information site regarding famous Dublin Pubs and/or Irish pubs";

3. similarity of the marks: to date the Irish courts have not addressed the rules of comparison for domain names with trademarks, however in Coca-Cola v. F Cade & Sons Limited [1957] I.R. 196, the Irish Supreme Court applied the test for the comparison of trademarks set out by Parker J. in In Pianotist Co's Application (1906) 23 R.P.C. 774 at 777 as follows:

"You must take the two words. You must judge them, both by their look and by their sound. You must consider the nature and kind of customer who would be likely to buy those goods. In fact you must consider all the surrounding circumstances; and you must further consider what is likely to happen if each of those trade marks is used in a normal way as a trade mark for goods of the respective owners of the marks."

Applying this test, this Administrative Panel is conscious that the Complainant's GUINNESS trademark registered in respect of beer is the initial element in each of the said domain names and that for English-speaking users of the Internet the second element <draught> is a reference to beer contained in and served from casks or kegs;

4. evidence of actual confusion: the Complainant has not submitted any evidence of actual confusion in the marketplace, however, the Respondents have not linked the said domain names to any www site as yet;

5. marketing channels used: as all domain names are, by their nature, addresses for www sites, this element does not assist this Administrative Panel in these Administrative Proceedings;

6. type of goods and the degree of care likely to be exercised by the purchaser: if the Respondents use the said domain names as the addresses for their proposed www site as described in the Response, this would include the provision of information to prospective visitors to Irish pubs. In the view of this Administrative Panel, it is likely that this would cause at least an initial confusion among persons interested in Irish pubs, surfing the Internet, as to whether the Respondent's proposed www site was connected with the Complainant;

7. the Respondent's intent in selecting the mark: In applying the Sleekcraft test to a comparison of trademarks and domain names in the context of ICANN administrative proceedings, this element of the test would apply to the Respondent's intention in selecting the domain name. The Respondent has not given any explanation as to why they chose these domain names. This Administrative Panel takes an inference from the fact that the Respondents have not given any explanation as to why they chose to register a domain name which incorporates the Complainant's famous trade mark along with a word which is an obvious reference to beer, which is the Respondent's primary product, in circumstances where the Respondents have not made any claim to any connection with the Guinness name or to any trade in draught beer;

8. likelihood of expansion of the product lines: on the evidence submitted by each of the parties this element of the test does not appear to be relevant.

This Administrative Panel therefore concludes that the said domain names are confusingly similar to the Complainant's said trade mark as the Complainant has rights in a famous mark registered and used by the Complainant in respect of beer whereas the Respondents propose to use the said domain names in respect of providing information about Irish pubs. There is an obvious connection between the sale of beer and information about pubs.

Laying the said domain names and the said trademark side by side and comparing them in the context of the surrounding circumstances leads to the inevitable conclusion that there is a strong similarity. This conclusion is reached by this Administrative Panel considering both the visual and aural similarity of the domain names and the Complainant's trademark. Furthermore, in considering the surrounding circumstances, the Respondents claim that they intend to use the Internet as their marketing channel and the Complainant's have submitted evidence that their group of companies are already using the Internet as a marketing tool.

It is likely that there would be an initial confusion among persons visiting a www site as proposed by the Respondents.

Finally, given the fame of the Complainant's mark, and the fact that the said domain names are a combination of the Complainant's mark in respect of the brewing and sale of beer and the word "draught" which is an obvious reference to beer, this Administrative Panel takes an inference that the Respondents chose the said domain names to endeavour to take advantage of the similarity between the said trade mark and the said domain names.

In reaching this conclusion this Administrative Panel refers to the approach taken by the administrative panel in the NAF decision (NAF FA95080 of July 24, 2000) where it was stated:-

"Courts and other UDRP Panels have recognized that the intentional registration of a domain name while knowing that the second-level domain contains anotherís valuable trademark weighs in favor of a likelihood of confusion. See Minnesota Min. and Mfg. Co. v. Taylor, 21 F.Supp.2d 1003, 1005 (D.Minn. 1998); Intermatic Inc. v. Toeppen, 947 F.Supp. 1227, 1235-1236 (N.D.Ill. 1996)."

Moving on to decide whether the Respondents have any rights or legitimate interests in the said domain names, the Respondents have sought to base their arguments on paragraph 4.c.(i) of the Policy and claim that they have such rights or legitimate interests in the said domain names because of their use of, or demonstrable preparations to use, the said domain names in connection with a bona fide offering of goods or services before they received any notice of the dispute.

The Respondents have failed to provide this Administrative Panel with any evidence of their plans, although the Respondents have offered to demonstrate a prototype of their www site for this Administrative Panel, if requested. They have not provided any evidence that the preparations they claim to have made pre-dated their receipt of any notice of the dispute. The Complainant has submitted evidence that the Respondents had notice of this dispute as early as March 23, 2000. The Respondent did not establish their www site in the period of almost ten months between March 23, 2000 and the date on which the Respondents filed their Response on January 17, 2001.

What is more decisive, however is that the Complainant has submitted convincing evidence that the proposed use of the said domain names by the Respondents could not be a bona fide use, as members of the public would be likely assume the existence of an association between the Respondents proposed www site and the Complainant, especially given the meaning of the word "draught" in the English language.

In the circumstances, this Administrative Panel concludes that the Respondents have no rights or legitimate interests in the said domain names.

As to the question of bad faith, if one accepts that the Respondents intend to establish a www site as they have indicated, given the fame of the Complainantís trade mark, such use would undoubtedly be an attempt to attract, for commercial gain, Internet users to the www site, by creating a likelihood of confusion with the Complainant's mark as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement of the www site or of a product or service on such www web site.

Paragraph 4(b) of the Policy sets out certain circumstances, which in particular but without limitation, if found by the Administrative Panel to be present, shall be evidence of the registration and use of a domain name in bad faith. Sub-paragraph 4(b) (iv) gives the example of circumstances where Respondent's use of the domain name amounts to an intentional attempt to attract, for commercial gain, Internet users to a www site or other on-line location, by creating a likelihood of confusion with the complainant's mark as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement of the www site or location or of a product or service on your web site or location. In the view of this Administrative Panel the circumstances outlined in paragraph 4(b)(iv) relate to circumstances where such activity is actually taking place.

In the present case such activity has not taken place because the www site has not been established by the Respondent. This decision therefore is not based on paragraph 4(b)(iv) and is not intended to be an extension of the construction of paragraph 4(b)(iv). The examples cited in paragraph 4(b) however are non-exhaustive and illustrative only. This decision is based on the particular circumstances of the present case and it is clear to this Administrative Panel that any use of the said domain names by the Respondent would inevitably be unlawful and the Respondent must have known this when the said domain names were being registered and subsequently.

In the circumstances, this Administrative Panel is satisfied that the Complainants have established that the Respondents have registered and are using the said domain names in bad faith.

 

7. Decision

With specific reference to Paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules this Administrative Panel decides that the Respondents have registered the said domain names confusingly similar to the Complainant's trade mark, that the Respondents have no rights or legitimate interests in respect of those domain names and that the Respondents have registered and are using said domain names in bad faith. Accordingly, this Administrative Panel decides that the said domain names should be transferred to the Complainant.

 


 

James Bridgeman
Sole Panelist

Dated: February 9, 2001