WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Camden Lock Limited, Northside Developments Limited v. Domain Finance Inc., Minakumari Periasamy
Case No. D2011-0530
1. The Parties
Complainant is Camden Lock Limited, Northside Developments Limited, Westminster, London, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Internally represented.
Respondent is Domain Finance Inc., Minakumari Periasamy, Sri Damansara, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <camdenlock.com> is registered with eNom.
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on March 23, 2011. On March 23, 2011, the Center transmitted by email to eNom, a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On March 23, 2011, eNom transmitted by email to the Center its verification response confirming that Respondent is listed as the registrant and providing the contact details.
The Center verified that the Complaint satisfied the formal requirements of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Policy” or “UDRP”), 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”).
In accordance with the Rules, paragraphs 2(a) and 4(a), the Center formally notified Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on March 25, 2011. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5(a), the due date for Response was April 14, 2011. Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified Respondent’s default on April 15, 2011.
The Center appointed Sandra J. Franklin as the sole panelist in this matter on April 27, 2011. The Panel finds that it was properly constituted. The Panel has submitted the Statement of Acceptance and Declaration of Impartiality and Independence, as required by the Center to ensure compliance with the Rules, paragraph 7.
4. Factual Background
One or both of the companies listed as “Complainant” is listed to have used the term “Camden Lock” commercially since the 1970’s to promote the Camden Lock area near London. Complainant does not hold a trademark registration for “Camden Lock”. The <camdenlock.com> domain name was apparently created in 1997, approximately 14 years ago.
5. Parties’ Contentions
Complainant makes the following assertions:
1. Complainant has rights in the CAMDEN LOCK mark and Respondent’s <camdenlock.com> domain name is confusingly similar to Complainant’s mark.
2. Respondent does not have any rights or legitimate interests in the <camdenlock.com> domain name.
3. Respondent registered and used the <camdenlock.com> domain name in bad faith.
Respondent did not reply to Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
Paragraph 15(a) of the Rules instructs this Panel to "decide a complaint on the basis of the statements and documents submitted in accordance with the Policy, these Rules and any rules and principles of law that it deems applicable."
In view of Respondent's failure to submit a response, the Panel shall decide this administrative proceeding on the basis of Complainant's undisputed representations pursuant to paragraphs 5(e), 14(a) and 15(a) of the Rules and draw such inferences it considers appropriate pursuant to paragraph 14(b) of the Rules. The Panel is entitled to accept all reasonable allegations and inferences set forth in the Complaint as true unless the evidence is clearly contradictory. See Vertical Solutions Mgmt., Inc. v. webnet-marketing, inc., NAF Claim No. 95095 (July 31, 2000) (holding that the respondent’s failure to respond allows all reasonable inferences of fact in the allegations of the complaint to be deemed true); see also Talk City, Inc. v. Robertson, WIPO Case No. D2000-0009 (February 29, 2000) (“In the absence of a response, it is appropriate to accept as true all allegations of the Complaint.”).
Paragraph 4(a) of the Policy requires that Complainant must prove each of the following three elements to obtain an order that a domain name should be cancelled or transferred:
(1) the domain name registered by Respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights; and
(2) Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and
(3) the domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
First and foremost, Complainant must prove that it has trademark rights in a mark that is confusingly similar to the domain name in dispute. Here, Complainant claims that it has rights in CAMDEN LOCK by virtue of a “passing-off” law in the United Kingdom, with no discussion of that law or how it applies to the case at hand. In the body of the Complaint, Complainant does not state how the mark is used, but primarily refers to its advertising materials and expenditures. In an unsworn Witness Statement at Annex 8 of the Complaint, a director of the two companies, a Professor Fulford, mentions in passing that the name “Camden Lock” is used to promote restaurants, stalls, and entertainment facilities. He states that “Camden Lock” is not a geographic term but rather that he and a co-founder “invented” the name “Camden Lock” for its business.
A review of the many Annexes to the Complaint reveals that Complainant appears to have made considerable expenditures on various forms of advertising for the Camden Lock area. However, various maps and other documents included in the Annexes also reveal that Camden Lock is a geographic area near London, contrary to Professor Fulford’s statement. Camden Lock and Hampstead Road Lock are locks jointly operated by the London Borough of Camden. Complainant’s alleged mark contains nothing but the geographical term Camden Lock, which is indistinguishable from the many other legitimate uses of “Camden Lock”. See Port of Helsinki v. Paragon International Projects Ltd., WIPO Case No. D2001-0002 (February 12, 2001) (refusing to transfer <portofhelsinki.com> because geographic indicators are not per se trademarks, and Complainant failed to show any registered or common law trademark rights); see also Stadt Heidelberg v. Media Factory, WIPO Case No. D2001-1500 (March 6, 2002) (denying transfer of <heidelberg.net> because complainant failed to show trademark rights in city name Heidelberg).
The Panel finds that Complainant has failed on the present pleadings and evidence to carry its burden of proving rights in the mark CAMDEN LOCK. Since Complainant has failed in these proceedings to establish the first required element of the Policy, it is not necessary to determine the remaining elements and the Complaint must fail.
For the foregoing reasons, the Complaint is denied.
Sandra J. Franklin
Dated: May 4, 2011