WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Star India Private Limited v. Suezen Jackson
Case No. D2014-0820
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Star India Private Limited of Mumbai, India, represented by Saikrishna & Associates, India.
The Respondent is Suezen Jackson of Lancashire, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (“United Kingdom”).
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <lifeok.info> is registered with GoDaddy.com, LLC (the “Registrar”).
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on May 17, 2014. On May 19, 2014, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On May 20, 2014, the Registrar transmitted by email to the Center its verification response confirming that the Respondent is listed as the registrant and providing the contact details. On May 22, 2014, the Center received an amendment to the Complaint.
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 the Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on May 23, 2014. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5(a), the due date for Response was June 12, 2014. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on June 13, 2014.
The Center appointed Andrew F. Christie as the sole panelist in this matter on June 18, 2014. 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
The Complainant is a group company of Star Group Limited (the “Star Group”). The Star Group owns and operates various branded television channels that have reached more than 300 million viewers in 53 countries across Asia, including India, and that are watched by approximately 100 million viewers every day.
One of the television channels owned, managed and operated by the Complainant is “Life OK”. The Life OK channel first aired on December 18, 2011, and is currently one of the fastest growing and most widely viewed Hindi general entertainment television channels in India. It currently enjoys a market share of 13% and is viewed by close to 100 million viewers each week. Since its launch, the Life OK channel has earned in excess of USD 18.69 million, and the Complainant has spent in excess of USD 17.24 million promoting and advertising it.
The Complainant has various trademark registrations in India, Hong Kong and the United Kingdom for a design mark that contains the text “Life OK” (hereafter the “LIFE OK trademark”), the earliest of which date from October 20, 2011. There are also various trademark applications pending in India and other countries for a design mark that consists of or includes the text “Life OK”, the earliest of which date from October 20, 2011, filed in the name of either the Complainant or the parent company of the Star Group of which the Complainant is a part.
The disputed domain name was registered on January 22, 2014. Screenshots taken by the Complainant on either May 4, 2014, or April 5, 2014, show that the disputed domain name at that time resolved to a website parking page which invited the making of an offer to purchase the disputed domain name.
5. Parties’ Contentions
The Complainant contends that the disputed domain name is identical to the Complainant’s registered LIFE OK trademark, as it contains the words “life” and “ok” in their entirety, with no prefix or suffix. The addition of generic Top-Level Domain (“gTLD”) extension “.info” in no way diminishes the likelihood of confusion and deception being caused to an Internet user, and indeed, all gTLDs are to be ignored when deciding the issue of similarity.
The Complainant contends that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interest in respect of the disputed domain name because: (i) the Respondent is in no way related to the Complainant or its business activities, and is not an agent of the Complainant; (ii) the Complainant has not entered into any agreement granting the Respondent any right, license or authorization to make use of its registered trademarks; (iii) the Respondent could have no possible justification for registering the disputed domain name (that incorporates the well-known LIFE OK trademark as well as the domain name <lifeok.com>) many years after the registration of the Complainant’s domain name <lifeok.com> and the LIFE OK trademark; (iv) there is no evidence whatsoever of the Respondent’s use of, or demonstrable preparations to use, the disputed domain name, in connection with a bona fide offering of goods and/or services; (v) the disputed domain name resolves to a website consisting of a parking page which is not a bona fide use, and instead, is seeking to make unfair and illegal commercial gain at the expense of the Complainant; (vi) the Respondent is not commonly known by the disputed domain name and appears to have no connection whatsoever to the LIFE OK trademark; (vii) the Respondent is not making any legitimate noncommercial or fair use of the disputed domain name but, rather, intends to make illegal profits every time an Internet user clicks on one of the links on the parking page of the website to which it resolves; and (viii) the Respondent has registered the disputed domain name with the sole intent to make illegitimate commercial gain and to tarnish the Complainant’s LIFE OK trademark.
The Complainant contends that the disputed domain name was registered and is being used in bad faith because: (i) it resolves to a website that is a parking page with details of the Registrar of the disputed domain name and, thereby, the Respondent intends to make illegal profits every time a sponsored link is accessed by an Internet user; (ii) one of the links on the parking page permits the making of an offer to purchase the disputed domain name; and (iii) the Complainant is extremely well-known and popular amongst the Indian populace and there is virtually no possibility whatsoever that the Respondent was unaware of its existence or presence in the market.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The disputed domain name incorporates the whole of the text component of the Complainant’s registered LIFE OK trademark, and adds only the gTLD <.info>. As is stated in the WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Second Edition (“WIPO Overview 2.0”) at paragraph 1.11: “as figurative, stylized or design elements in a trademark are generally incapable of representation in a domain name, such elements are typically disregarded for the purpose of assessing identity or confusing similarity, with such assessment generally being between the alpha-numeric components of the domain name, and the dominant textual components of the relevant mark”. The dominant textual component of the Complainant’s registered LIFE OK trademark is the character string “Life OK”. The disputed domain name incorporates the entirety of this character string (without the space between the words). Accordingly, the Panel finds that the disputed domain name is confusingly similar to a trademark in which the Complainant has rights.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
The Respondent is not a licensee of, or otherwise affiliated with, the Complainant, and has not been authorized by the Complainant to use its LIFE OK trademark. The Respondent has not provided any evidence that it has been commonly known by, or has made a bona fide use of, the disputed domain name, or that it has, for any other reason, rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name. The evidence provided by the Complainant shows that the disputed domain name was used to resolve to a website consisting of a parking page with various links to the website of the Registrar, one of which (via the phrase “Learn how you can get this domain”) resolved to a page at which an offer to purchase the disputed domain name could be made via the Registrar’s “Domain Buy Service”. According to the present record, therefore, the disputed domain name is not being used in connection with a bona fide offering of goods or services, or for a legitimate noncommercial or fair use. Accordingly, the Panel finds that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
The disputed domain name was registered several years after the Complainant first registered and began using the LIFE OK trademark. The evidence on the record provided by the Complainant with respect to the use of the LIFE OK trademark, combined with the absence of any evidence provided by the Respondent to the contrary, is sufficient to satisfy the Panel that, at the time the disputed domain name was registered, the Respondent most likely knew of the Complainant’s trademark and knew that it had no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name. Furthermore, the evidence on the record provided by the Complainant with respect to the Respondent’s use of the disputed domain name to resolve to a website at which offers can be made to purchase the disputed domain name, combined with the absence of any evidence provided by the Respondent to the contrary, is sufficient to satisfy the Panel that the Respondent most likely registered the disputed domain name primarily for the purpose of selling it to the Complainant or a competitor of the Complainant for valuable consideration in excess of documented out-of-pocket costs – which, according to paragraph 4(b)(i) of the Policy, is evidence of registration and use of the disputed domain name in bad faith. For all these reasons, the Panel finds that the disputed domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
For the foregoing reasons, in accordance with paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the disputed domain name <lifeok.info> be transferred to the Complainant.
Andrew F. Christie
Date: July 2, 2014