WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Arcelormittal (SA) v. CLAY RUSH
Case No. D2019-1357
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Arcelormittal (SA), Luxembourg, represented by Nameshield, France.
The Respondent is CLAY RUSH, United States of America (“USA”).
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <arcelorrnittal.biz> (the “Domain Name”) is registered with Gandi SAS (the “Registrar”).
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on June 13, 2019, naming the Respondent as “Redacted for Privacy”. The Center transmitted its request for registrar verification to the Registrar the same day. The Registrar replied on June 14, 2019, confirming that it had received a copy of the Complaint, that the Domain Name was registered with it, that the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Policy” or “UDRP”) applied, that the Domain Name was created on September 19, 2012 and would expire on June 5, 2020, that it had been and would remain locked during this proceeding, and that the language of the registration agreement was English. The Registrar identified the registrant as CLAY RUSH and provided the full contact details held on its WhoIs database.
The Center provided the registrant and contact information disclosed by the Registrar to the Complainant on June 20, 2019 and invited the Complainant to amend the Complaint. The Complainant filed an amended Complaint the same day, naming the Respondent as CLAY RUSH.
The Center verified that the amended Complaint satisfied the formal requirements of the 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 paragraphs 2 and 4 of the Rules, the Center formally notified the Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on June 25, 2019. In accordance with paragraph 5 of the Rules, the due date for Response was July 15, 2019. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on July 16, 2019.
The Center appointed Jonathan Turner as the sole panelist in this matter on July 24, 2019. The Panel has submitted the Statement of Acceptance and Declaration of Impartiality and Independence, as required by the Center to ensure compliance with paragraph 7 of the Rules. Having reviewed the file, the Panel is satisfied that the amended Complaint complied with applicable formal requirements, was duly notified to the Respondent, and has been submitted to a properly constituted Panel in accordance with the UDRP, the Rules and the Supplemental Rules.
4. Factual Background
The Complainant is one of the largest steel producing company in the world and has business operations in more than 60 countries. It is the owner of international trademark no. 947686 for the word “ArcelorMittal” registered on August 3, 2007. It is also the registrant of the domain names <arcelormittal.com> and <arcelormittal.biz>, both registered in 2006.
The Domain Name does not currently locate any web page.
5. Parties’ Contentions
The Complainant contends that the Domain Name is confusingly similar to its registered mark ARCELORMITTAL, from which it differs only in the substitution of the letter “M” by the letters “RN” and the addition of the generic Top-Level Domain (“gTLD”) suffix. The Complainant observes that this is a clear case of typosquatting.
The Complainant submits that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name. The Complainant states that the Respondent is not commonly known by the Domain Name or any corresponding name and has not been authorized to use the Complainant’s mark. The Complainant points out that the Domain Name does not locate any active web page and thus is not being used for any bona fide offering of goods or services or any legitimate noncommercial or fair use. The Complainant infers that the Respondent has not made any demonstrable preparations to use the Domain Name for a bona fide offering of goods or services.
The Complainant alleges that the Domain Name was registered and is being used in bad faith. The Complainant states that its ARCELORMITTAL mark is well known and distinctive, and infers that the Respondent registered the Domain Name with full knowledge of it. The Complainant also draws attention to the facts that the Domain Name contains a miss-spelling of the Complainant’s mark and that it does not locate any active web page. The Complainant argues that there is no plausible use of the Domain Name that would not be illegitimate.
The Complainant requests a decision that the Domain Name be transferred to it.
As stated above, the Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
In accordance with paragraph 4(a) of the Policy, the Complainant must prove: (i) that the Domain Name is identical or confusingly similar to a mark in which it has rights: (ii) that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name; and (iii) that the Domain Name has been registered and is being used in bad faith. It is convenient to consider each of these requirements in turn.
In accordance with paragraph 14(b) of the Rules, the Panel shall draw such inferences as it considers appropriate from the Respondent’s failure to file a response. This includes the acceptance of plausible evidence of the Complainant which has not been disputed.
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The Panel finds that the Complainant has registered rights in the mark ARCELORMITTAL.
The Panel further finds that the Domain Name is confusingly similar to this mark. As has been determined in numerous UDRP decisions, the gTLD suffix does not provide any relevant distinction. The only other difference between the Domain Name and the Complainant’s mark is the substitution of the letters “RN” for the letter “M”. In lower case in many fonts “rn” is virtually indistinguishable from “m”. There is an obvious confusing similarity. As the Complainant observes, this is a clear case of typosquatting.
The first requirement of the UDRP is satisfied.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
The Panel is satisfied by the undisputed evidence that the Respondent has not made any use of the Domain Name or any corresponding name for a bona fide offering of goods or services or for any legitimate noncommercial or fair purpose. The Panel further infers from the lack of any evidence of any preparations to use the Domain Name that the Respondent has not made any demonstrable preparations to use it for a bona fide offering of goods or services. The Panel is also satisfied that the Respondent is not commonly known by the Domain Name.
Given the nature of the Domain Name as an obvious miss-spelling of the Complainant’s mark, there is no other basis on which the Respondent could claim to have any rights or legitimate interests in it. The second requirement of the UDRP is satisfied.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
The Panel is satisfied on the undisputed evidence that the Respondent knew of the Complainant’s widely used and distinctive mark when it registered the Domain Name. In view of the Domain Name’s nature as an obvious miss-spelling of that mark, there does not appear to be any bona fide reason for the Respondent to register or use it, and it is therefore to be inferred that the Respondent registered and is now holding it in bad faith. As has been determined in other UDRP cases, the passive retention of the Domain Name with a view to its use or sale for an illegitimate purpose is a form of use of the Domain Name sufficient to satisfy the third requirement of the UDRP. The Panel concludes that the third requirement of the UDRP is satisfied.
All three requirements for a successful Complaint under the UDRP are met and it is appropriate to direct that the Domain Name be transferred to the Complainant.
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 <arcelorrnittal.biz> be transferred to the Complainant.
Date: August 7, 2019