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Eminem has won a cybersquatting case against a British company who used his name without permission.Eminemmobile.com, which sells ringtones and picture messages, has been ordered to hand the domain name back to the star within ten days. The site featured a disclaimer stating it is unofficial and not connected to Eminem but the ruling made by the United Nation’s World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) found that Tim McIntosh and Visitair, which runs the site, had no legitimate rights to the domain name. It must transfer back to the rapper within the ten day period unless the company decides to appeal against the ruling. Eminem is the first rap star to use WIPO in settling a dispute over a domain name. Other singers, including Robbie Williams, Madonna and Celine Dion have used the organisation in the past to settle similar disputes. It is the second legal battle Eminem has been involved in this year, as he pursues a claim against Apple Computer for alleging the company used his hit single Lose Yourself in a TV advert without permission.
See : http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/music/3653089.stm
‘Abusive Registration’ under the Nominet UK Dispute Resolution Policy
In March 2004 Google Inc won an action brought under the Nominet UK Dispute Resolution Service against LWD Internet who registered the domain name froogle.co.uk the day after Google launched its online shopping service ‘Froogle’. The independent expert’s decision has broadened the scope of the term of ‘Abusive Registration’ under the Dispute Resolution Policy. To establish that a domain name registration is abusive, a complainant must prove that the registration and the use of the domain name took unfair advantage of or was unfairly detrimental to his rights. For example, pre Google, an offer to sell a domain name for inflated financial consideration or use of a domain name in a manner that damages a complainant’s reputation had been considered sufficient proof. However, the independent expert in this case decided that the mere fact that the domain name was registered only one day after Google’s launch of their Froogle service was enough to prove that the registration was abusive.

From Pictons ‘In The Know’ email newsletter May 2004. http://www.pictons.com
Email: ip@pictons.com

For details of recent decisions of the Czech Courts in domain name disputes by Dr Karel Cermak see :http://www.mondaq.com/article.asp?articleid=25549&email_access=on