WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Southwire Company, LLC v. Contact Privacy Inc. Customer 1241595243 / Southwire wire
Case No. D2017-1787
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Southwire Company, LLC of Carrollton, Georgia, United States of America (“United States” or “US”), represented by Eversheds Sutherland (US) LLP, United States.
The Respondent is Contact Privacy Inc. Customer 1241595243 of Toronto, Canada / Southwire wire of Kampala, Uganda.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <southwirec.com> (the “Domain Name”) is registered with Google Inc. (the “Registrar”).
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on September 14, 2017. On September 15, 2017, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the Domain Name. On September 16, 2017, the Registrar transmitted by email to the Center its verification response disclosing registrant and contact information for the disputed domain name which differed from the named Respondent and contact information in the Complaint. The Center sent an email communication to the Complainant on September 20, 2017 providing the registrant and contact information disclosed by the Registrar, and inviting the Complainant to submit an amendment to the Complaint. The Complainant filed an amendment to the Complaint on September 20, 2017.
The Center verified that the Complaint together with the amendment to 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 September 21, 2017. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was October 11, 2017. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on October 12, 2017.
The Center appointed Dawn Osborne as the sole panelist in this matter on October 17, 2017. 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 the owner of the registered mark SOUTHWIRE (US Patent and Trademark Office Registration No. 0635490, registered on October 9, 1956) for its products in, inter alia, the US with first use in commerce recorded as 1950. It is the owner of <southwire.com>.
Registered in 2017, there is no evidence that the Domain Name has been used.
5. Parties’ Contentions
The Complainant’s contentions can be summarised as follows:
The Complainant is one of North America’s leading manufacturers of wire and cable (used for electricity) in business since the 1950s. It is the owner of the registered mark SOUTHWIRE for its products in, inter alia, the US. The mark is well known for the Complainant’s products. The Complainant owns a number of domain names containing “Southwire”, including <southwire.com>.
The Domain Name is confusingly similar to the Complainant’s mark containing it in its entirety, simply adding the letter “c” at the end.
The Complainant has not authorised the Respondent to use its SOUTHWIRE marks. The Respondent is not commonly known by the Domain Name. There is no evidence of the Respondent’s use in relation to a bona fide offering of goods or services or legitimate noncommercial or fair use.
The Domain Name is a typosquatting registration showing the Respondent was well aware of the Complainant and its business. There is no active use of the Domain Name. This may damage the reputation of the Complainant if people visiting the site see that it is down, and conclude that the Complainant’s services are no longer in use. The Respondent has set up MX records for the Domain Name showing that it may be used for abusive emails.
The Respondent is hiding behind a privacy registration such that the Complainant has not been able to communicate with the Respondent.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
A. Identical and/or Confusingly Similar
The Domain Name consists of the Complainant’s SOUTHWIRE trade mark (registered in, inter alia, the US for cable and wire products), the additional letter “c” and the gTLD “.com”. Adding one letter “c” to the Complainant’s SOUTHWIRE registered mark does not distinguish the Domain Name from it as the SOUTHWIRE mark is still clearly recognisable in the Domain Name.
The gTLD “.com” which is a necessary component of a domain name and forms a functional role in the Domain Name does not serve to distinguish the Domain Name from the SOUTHWIRE mark which is the distinctive component of the Domain Name.
Accordingly, the Panel holds that the Domain Name is confusingly similar to a mark in which the Complainant has rights.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
The Complainant has not authorised the use of its mark. The Respondent has not answered this Complaint and there is no evidence or reason to suggest the Respondent is, in fact commonly known by the Domain Name.
There is no evidence of any use of the Domain Name.
As such the Panel finds that the Respondent does not have rights or legitimate interests in the Domain Name and that the Complainant has satisfied the second limb of the Policy.
C. Registration and Use in Bad Faith
The Respondent has not answered this Complaint or explained why it should be allowed to register a domain name containing the Complainant’s distinctive registered mark in what appears on the face of it to be a typosquatting registration.
Typosquatting is suggestive of bad faith registration and use and indicates the Respondent is well aware of the Complainant and its business otherwise it is difficult to see a reason for the registration with a letter “c” added.
As such, the Panel holds that the Complainant has made out its case that the Domain Name was registered and used in bad faith and has satisfied the third limb of the Policy.
For the foregoing reasons, in accordance with paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the Domain Name <southwirec.com> be transferred to the Complainant.
Date: October 25, 2017