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Posts tagged ‘Google’

EPIC Wants FCC’s Full Report on Google Street View

The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), an internet privacy advocacy group, filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request on Wednesday with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for the full release of its report on the investigation of Google Street View. Google Street View was under investigation for the collection and storage of data from unencrypted wireless networks. The investigation started when it was determined that Google Street View collected data about personal online usage from unsecured Wi-Fi networks for four years while intending to simply collect the locations of Wi-Fi access points. Read more

Recent UDRP Proceedings: Don’t Buy Misspelled Domains

In several cases decided recently, the UDRP transferred the rights to several domain names using common misspellings to the complainant. For example, in one decision dated September 30, Google Inc. gained the rights to 37 domain names from Zhou Murong. These 37 domain names ranged from common misspellings to domain names actually containing the word Google. Examples include: gogledeals.com; googeldeals.com; gooogledeals.com; and my personal favorite, googeebooks.com.

Other sites have had similar problems with common misspellings of their websites being used to steal traffic from their actual site. Other examples where the rights to the domains were transferred to the owner of the correctly spelled name are:

  • Etsy, Inc. received the rights to etsyy.com
  • Enterprise Holdings, Inc. received the rights to
    enteriserentacar.com

With all three of these cases, there have been two things in common. First, the respondent has not responded to the filed complaint. And secondly, each misspelled website was simply a host for third party links, occasionally featuring competitor links for the website they were misspelling.

As discussed with other similar cases, the case for transference of the domain rights is a lot easier to make when the respondent does not respond to the complaint. Thus making it a lot easier to establish that the three points necessary for transference:

(1) the domain name registered by Respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights;

(2) Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and

(3) the domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

In each case, it was fairly easy to prove all three points due to the nature of the website and fact that the respondents did not respond to the complaint. Because of the common misspellings of the websites in question and the fact that each company had trademarks for their names, it was easily shown that each website was registered in bad faith and was simply created to steal potential traffic from the correctly spelled website. Each case also resulted in the rights to the domain name being transferred to the owner of the domain they were misspelling.

You can read the actual decision for Google, Etsy, and Enterprise by clicking on their names.

Five for Friday: Internet Free Edition

Unfortunately, ever since Hurricane Irene, our office has not had internet service.  Apparently a card in Verizon’s central office blew out that affected our company and a few other businesses around the Tysons Corner area where our office is located.  Watching the three stooges over the past week trying to remedy the situation has been frustrating and time consuming.  The worst part is that Verizon essentially has no idea when internet service will be restored – it could even be weeks.  Needless to say, we cannot stand for something like that happening to us or to others and we took matters into our own hands.  More on that in the blog post following this one in a bit.

Also, my guest blog for Daniel Sharkov’s website appeared this week.  His site is great – offering a wealth of practical advice for bloggers and non-bloggers alike.  My guest blog, which gives tips for lawsuit-free blogging is here.

Now, we of course, present our weekly Five for Friday post where we touch on five interesting internet law stories (and sometimes non-legal stories).

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