WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Kansas City Steak Company, LLC v. On behalf of kansascitysteakes.com OWNER, c/o whoisproxy.com / Tulip Trading Company
Case No. D2018-1094
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Kansas City Steak Company, LLC of Kansas City, Missouri, United States of America (“United States” or “US”), represented by Dodd Call Black, PLLC, United States.
The Respondent is On behalf of kansascitysteakes.com OWNER, c/o whoisproxy.com of Alexandria, Virginia, United States / Tulip Trading Company of Charlestown, Nevis, Saint Kitts and Nevis.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <kansascitysteakes.com> is registered with Key-Systems GmbH dba domaindiscount24.com (the “Registrar”).
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on May 16, 2018. On May 16, 2018, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On May 17, 2018, 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 May 22, 2018, 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 May 24, 2018.
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 May 24, 2018. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was June 13, 2018. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on June 15, 2018.
The Center appointed Clive Duncan Thorne as the sole panelist in this matter on June 25, 2018. 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 a number of US trademark registrations using the words “Kansas”, “city”, “steak”, and/or “steaks”. In particular it relies upon US registration no 3894581 KANSASCITYSTEAKS.COM, registered on December 21, 2010 for inter alia, “mail order and online ordering services featuring steak, seafood and wholesale distributor services in the field of food”. Copies of relevant registration certificates are exhibited to the Complaint.
The Complainant also owns numerous domain names including <kansascitysteaks.com>, <kansascitysteaks.net>, <kansascitysteaks.biz> and kansascitysteaks.co>.
The disputed domain name <kansascitysteakes.com> was registered on January 8, 2018, which resolves to a parking page displaying commercial links including those of the Complainant’s competitors. Additionally at various times, the disputed domain name has resolved to various pages purporting to provide updated versions of Adobe’s Flash Player software which is asserted in the Complaint as an attempt at phishing by the Respondent. Evidence of this is adduced in the Complaint.
In the absence of evidence to the contrary from the Respondent the Panel proceeds to decide the Complaint on the Complainant’s evidence which it finds to be true.
5. Parties’ Contentions
The Complainant contends;
1. It is the owner of trademark registrations which are identical or confusingly similar to the disputed domain name.
2. The Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the disputed domain name.
3. In particular there is no evidence that the Respondent conducts a business using the disputed domain name.
4. The disputed domain name was registered and is being used in bad faith.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The Panel finds that the Complainant, based upon the evidence referred to above, owns registered trademark rights in inter alia the mark KANSASCITYSTEAKS.COM and similar marks incorporating the words “Kansas”, “city”, “steak”, and/or “steaks”. The disputed domain name differs from the mark KANSASCITYSTEAKS.COM only by the addition of the letter “e”; <kansascitysteakes.com>.
Accordingly the Panel finds that the disputed domain name <kansascitysteakes.com> is confusingly similar to a trademark in which the Complainant has rights.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
In accordance with the Complainant’s submissions the Panel finds that there is no evidence of the Respondent conducting any bona fide business using the disputed domain name. Nor is there any evidence of authorization by the Complainant to use the disputed domain name.
The evidence shows that the use of the disputed domain name is to host a parked page comprising pay-per-click links, some of which resolve to websites that directly compete with the Complainant’s business. Moreover there is evidence that the Respondent is using the domain name to host a phishing page, attempting to install malware or viruses by misleading Internet users to update their Adobe Flash Player software.
On the evidence the Panel therefore finds that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the domain name in dispute.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
The Complainant submits on the evidence that the disputed domain name was registered primarily for the purpose of disrupting the Complainant’s business. The Respondent is attempting to attract for commercial gain Internet users to the Respondent’s website or other online locations including competitor websites or phishing websites. This creates a likelihood of confusion with the Complainant’s marks. This constitutes improper use of the Complainant’s reputation and goodwill and is also an example of typo-squatting.
There is ample authority from previous Panel decisions cited by the Complainant that this use of a domain name constitutes registration and use in bad faith which on the evidence the Panel now finds.
Taking into account all of the above and the available record, the Panel finds that the disputed domain name was registered and used by the Respondent 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 <kansascitysteakes.com> be transferred to the Complainant.
Clive Duncan Thorne
Date: July 9, 2018