WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Statoil ASA (“Statoil”) v. Cameron Jackson
Case No. D2015-2226
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Statoil ASA (“Statoil”) of Stavanger, Norway, represented by Valea AB, Sweden.
The Respondent is Cameron Jackson of Sydney, Australia.
2. The Domain Names and Registrar
The disputed domain names <statoil.site> and <statoil.xyz> are registered with Instra Corporation Pty Ltd.
Instra Corporation Pty Ltd. (the “Registrar”).
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on December 8, 2015. On December 8, 2015, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain names. On December 9, 2015, 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.
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 and 4, the Center formally notified the Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on December 15, 2015. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was January 4, 2016. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on January 5, 2016.
The Center appointed William F Hamilton as the sole panelist in this matter on January 19, 2016. 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 an international energy company with extensive worldwide operations. The Complainant has been in business for over 40 years providing energy products and services. The mark STATOIL (the “Mark”) was first registered in Norway in 1974 and as of 2015 is registered in numerous countries around the world including Australia. The Complainant is the owner of several hundred domain names containing the trademark STATOIL, including <statoil.com>.
On November 8, 2015, the Respondent sold the domain name <statoil.club> to the Complainant.
On November 19, 2015, the Respondent registered the disputed domain name <statoil.xyz>
On November 19, 2015, the Respondent offered to sell the disputed domain name <statoil.xyz> to the Complainant.
On November 29, 2015, the Respondent registered the disputed domain name <statoil.site>.
5. Parties’ Contentions
The Complainant asserts that disputed domain names are confusingly similar to the STATOIL mark because the disputed domain names utilize the Mark standing alone in conjunction with a general Top-Level Domain (“gTLD”). The Complainant asserts that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain names as the Complainant never provided the Respondent with authorization to use the Mark or the disputed domain names. The Complainant asserts that the Respondent does not operate nor conduct any bona fide business in connection with the disputed domain names. Finally, the Complaint asserts that the disputed domain names were registered in bad faith and are being held by the Respondent in bad faith to extort additional “settlement” payments from the Complainant.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The disputed domain names each consists of the Mark followed by a gTLD. As the gTLD designation may be disregarded for the purpose of this proceeding, the Panel finds that the disputed domain names are identical to the Complainant’s Mark. See, e.g., Statoil ASA v. Scandinavian Health Systems AS, WIPO Case No. D2014-0631 (transferring <statoil.company>) and Statoil ASA v. VistaPrint Technologies Ltd, WIPO Case No. D2014-1949 (transferring <statoil.name>).
The Panel finds the first element of paragraph 4(a) of the Policy has been met.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
The Complainant has specifically asserted that the Respondent has never been authorized to use the Complainant’s Mark or the disputed domain names. There is no evidence that the Respondent is conducting any bona fide business in connection with the disputed domain names. The disputed domain names resolve to websites without content that state: “Domain Parked with Only Domains.” The Respondent failed to come forth with any evidence of rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain names.
The Panel finds the Respondent lacks any rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain names and that the Complainant has met the second element of paragraph 4(a) of the Policy.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
The Respondent registered the disputed domain names immediately following the purchase by the Complainant from the Respondent of the domain name <statoil.club>. Clearly, the Respondent was made aware of the Mark and the Complainant’s rights in the Mark as a result of the <statoil.club> negotiations, if the Respondent was not already aware of the Mark when registering the domain name <statoil.club>. The Respondent’s registration of the disputed domain names following the Complainant’s purchase of <statoil.club> from the Respondent is in bad faith. The disputed domain names are being used in to extort additional payments from the Complainant. In these circumstances, the passive holding of domain names in connection with offers to sell constitutes evidence of bath faith registration and use. Telstra Corporation Limited v. Nuclear Marshmallows, WIPO Case No. D2000-0003.
The Panel finds that the disputed domain names were registered and are being used in bad faith. Thus the third element of paragraph 4(a) of the Policy is met.
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 names <statoil.site> and <statoil.xyz> be transferred to the Complainant.
William F Hamilton
Date: January 24, 2016