Disney Enterprises, Inc. v. nusair bawla
Claim Number: FA0809001225829
Complainant is Disney
Enterprises, Inc. (“Complainant”), represented by J. Andrew Coombs, of J. Andrew Coombs, A Professional
REGISTRAR AND DISPUTED DOMAIN NAME
The domain name at issue is <mydisneystore.com>, registered with Godaddy.com, Inc.
The undersigned certifies that he has acted independently and impartially and to the best of his knowledge has no known conflict in serving as Panelist in this proceeding.
Louis E. Condon as Panelist.
Complainant submitted a Complaint to the National Arbitration Forum electronically on September 22, 2008; the National Arbitration Forum received a hard copy of the Complaint on September 23, 2008.
On September 22, 2008, Godaddy.com, Inc. confirmed by e-mail to the National Arbitration Forum that the <mydisneystore.com> domain name is registered with Godaddy.com, Inc. and that Respondent is the current registrant of the name. Godaddy.com, Inc. has verified that Respondent is bound by the Godaddy.com, Inc. registration agreement and has thereby agreed to resolve domain-name disputes brought by third parties in accordance with ICANN's Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the "Policy").
On September 25, 2008, a Notification of Complaint and Commencement of Administrative Proceeding (the "Commencement Notification"), setting a deadline of October 15, 2008 by which Respondent could file a response to the Complaint, was transmitted to Respondent via e-mail, post and fax, to all entities and persons listed on Respondent's registration as technical, administrative and billing contacts, and to email@example.com by e-mail.
Having received no response from Respondent, the National Arbitration Forum transmitted to the parties a Notification of Respondent Default.
On October 21, 2008 pursuant to Complainant's request to have the dispute decided by a single-member Panel, the National Arbitration Forum appointed Louis E. Condon as Panelist.
Having reviewed the communications records, the Administrative Panel (the "Panel") finds that the National Arbitration Forum has discharged its responsibility under Paragraph 2(a) of the Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the "Rules") "to employ reasonably available means calculated to achieve actual notice to Respondent." Therefore, the Panel may issue its decision based on the documents submitted and in accordance with the ICANN Policy, ICANN Rules, the National Arbitration Forum's Supplemental Rules and any rules and principles of law that the Panel deems applicable, without the benefit of any response from Respondent.
Complainant requests that the domain name be transferred from Respondent to Complainant.
A. Complainant makes the following assertions:
1. Respondent’s <mydisneystore.com> domain name is confusingly similar to Complainant’s DISNEY mark.
2. Respondent does not have any rights or legitimate interests in the <mydisneystore.com> domain name.
3. Respondent registered and used the <mydisneystore.com> domain name in bad faith.
B. Respondent failed to submit a Response in this proceeding.
Complainant, Disney Enterprises, Inc., is a worldwide producer of children’s entertainment goods such as movies, television programs, books, and merchandise. Complainant has registered its DISNEY mark (Reg. No. 1,162,727 issued July 28, 1981) with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”).
Respondent registered the disputed <mydisneystore.com> domain name on October 27, 2007. The disputed domain name resolves to a website that displays third-party advertisements, as well as information and services not approved or licensed by Complainant.
Paragraph 15(a) of the Rules instructs this Panel to "decide a complaint on the basis of the statements and documents submitted in accordance with the Policy, these Rules and any rules and principles of law that it deems applicable."
In view of Respondent's failure to submit a response, the Panel shall decide this administrative proceeding on the basis of Complainant's undisputed representations pursuant to paragraphs 5(e), 14(a) and 15(a) of the Rules and draw such inferences it considers appropriate pursuant to paragraph 14(b) of the Rules. The Panel is entitled to accept all reasonable allegations and inferences set forth in the Complaint as true unless the evidence is clearly contradictory. See Vertical Solutions Mgmt., Inc. v. webnet-marketing, inc., FA 95095 (Nat. Arb. Forum July 31, 2000) (holding that the respondent’s failure to respond allows all reasonable inferences of fact in the allegations of the complaint to be deemed true); see also Talk City, Inc. v. Robertson, D2000-0009 (WIPO Feb. 29, 2000) (“In the absence of a response, it is appropriate to accept as true all allegations of the Complaint.”).
Paragraph 4(a) of the Policy requires that Complainant must prove each of the following three elements to obtain an order that a domain name should be cancelled or transferred:
(1) the domain name registered by Respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights; and
(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.
Complainant has set forth evidence demonstrating that its DISNEY mark was registered with the USPTO in 1981, which well predates the registration of the disputed domain name. Therefore, the Panel finds that Complainant has sufficient rights in its DISNEY mark in order to achieve UDRP standing under Policy ¶ 4(a)(i). See AOL LLC v. Interrante, FA 681239 (Nat. Arb. Forum May 23, 2006) (“Complainant has submitted evidence of its registration of the AOL mark with the USPTO. The Panel finds that such evidence establishes Complainant’s rights in the mark pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(a)(i).”); see also Ameridream, Inc. v. Russell, FA 677782 (Nat. Arb. Forum May 24, 2006) (holding that with the complainant’s registration of the AMERIDREAM mark with the USPTO, the complainant had established rights in the mark pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(a)(i)).
Respondent’s <mydisneystore.com> domain name contains Complainant’s entire DISNEY mark, the generic words “my” and “store,” as well as the generic top-level domain “.com.” Previous panels have found that the addition of generic words such as “my” and “store” does not create any meaningful distinction. See Am. Express Co. v. MustNeed.com, FA 257901 (Nat. Arb. Forum June 7, 2004) (finding the respondent’s <amextravel.com> domain name confusingly similar to Complainant’s AMEX mark because the “mere addition of a generic or descriptive word to a registered mark does not negate” a finding of confusing similarity under Policy ¶ 4(a)(i)); see also ESPN, Inc. v. MySportCenter.com, FA 95326 (Nat. Arb. Forum Sept. 5, 2000) (finding that the “domain name MYSPORTSCENTER.COM registered by Respondent is confusingly similar to Complainant’s SportsCenter mark”). Moreover, “.com” is an irrelevant addition under Policy ¶ 4(a)(i). See Reese v. Morgan, FA 917029 (Nat. Arb. Forum Apr. 5, 2007) (finding that the mere addition of the generic top-level domain “.com” is insufficient to differentiate a disputed domain name from a mark).
The Panel finds that Policy ¶ 4(a)(i) has been satisfied.
The Panel finds that Complainant has met its task of demonstrating a prima facie case supporting its allegation that Respondent lacks rights and legitimate interests in the disputed domain name. As such, Respondent receives the burden of proving its rights or legitimate interests. See Towmaster, Inc. v. Hale, FA 973506 (Nat. Arb. Forum June 4, 2007) (“Complainant must first make a prima facie case that Respondent lacks rights and legitimate interests in the disputed domain name under Policy ¶ 4(a)(ii), and then the burden shifts to Respondent to show it does have rights or legitimate interests.”); see also G.D. Searle v. Martin Mktg., FA 118277 (Nat. Arb. Forum Oct. 1, 2002) (“Because Complainant’s Submission constitutes a prima facie case under the Policy, the burden effectively shifts to Respondent. Respondent’s failure to respond means that Respondent has not presented any circumstances that would promote its rights or legitimate interests in the subject domain name under Policy ¶ 4(a)(ii).”).
Respondent has failed to respond to the Complaint. Thus, the only potential evidence by which the Panel can scrutinize as to whether Respondent is or was commonly known by the disputed domain name remains the WHOIS registration information. However, the registrant of record is listed as “nusair bawla.” Moreover, there is no alleged license or permission for Respondent to use Complainant’s mark in any way. Therefore, the Panel finds that Respondent is not commonly known by the disputed domain name under Policy ¶ 4(c)(ii). See Instron Corp. v. Kaner, FA 768859 (Nat. Arb. Forum Sept. 21, 2006) (finding that the respondent was not commonly known by the <shoredurometer.com> and <shoredurometers.com> domain names because the WHOIS information listed Andrew Kaner c/o Electromatic a/k/a Electromatic Equip't as the registrant of the disputed domain names and there was no other evidence in the record to suggest that the respondent was commonly known by the domain names in dispute); see also St. Lawrence Univ. v. Nextnet Tech, FA 881234 (Nat. Arb. Forum Feb. 21, 2007) (concluding a respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in a disputed domain name where there is no evidence in the record indicating that the respondent is commonly known by the disputed domain name).
Moreover, the disputed domain name resolves to a website that features third-party advertisements, as well as information and services not authorized by Complainant. Respondent presumably benefits through the receipt of referral fees. The Panel finds that this use cannot constitute a bona fide offering of goods or services under Policy ¶ 4(c)(i) or a legitimate noncommercial or fair use under Policy ¶ 4(c)(iii). See Disney Enters., Inc. v. Kamble, FA 918556 (Nat. Arb. Forum Mar. 27, 2007) (holding that the operation of a pay-per-click website at a confusingly similar domain name was not a bona fide offering of goods or services under Policy ¶ 4(c)(i) or a legitimate noncommercial or fair use under Policy ¶ 4(c)(iii)); see also Summit Group, LLC v. LSO, Ltd., FA 758981 (Nat. Arb. Forum Sept. 14, 2006) (finding that the respondent’s use of the complainant’s LIFESTYLE LOUNGE mark to redirect Internet users to respondent’s own website for commercial gain does not constitute either a bona fide offering of goods or services pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(c)(i), or a legitimate noncommercial or fair use pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(c)(iii)).
The Panel finds that Policy ¶ 4(a)(ii) has been satisfied.
The Panel finds that Respondent’s use of a confusingly similar disputed domain name creates a likelihood of confusion regarding Complainant’s mark and the disputed domain name, which presumably operates to commercially benefit Respondent. The Panel therefore finds that Respondent has engaged in bad faith registration and use under Policy ¶ 4(b)(iv). See Allianz of Am. Corp. v. Bond, FA 680624 (Nat. Arb. Forum June 2, 2006) (finding bad faith registration and use under Policy ¶ 4(b)(iv) where the respondent was diverting Internet users searching for the complainant to its own website and likely profiting); see also Am. Univ. v. Cook, FA 208629 (Nat. Arb. Forum Dec. 22, 2003) (“Registration and use of a domain name that incorporates another's mark with the intent to deceive Internet users in regard to the source or affiliation of the domain name is evidence of bad faith.”).
The Panel finds that Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii) has been satisfied.
Complainant having established all three elements required under the ICANN Policy, the Panel concludes that relief should be GRANTED.
Accordingly, it is Ordered that the <mydisneystore.com> domain name be TRANSFERRED from Respondent to Complainant.
Louis E. Condon, Panelist
Dated: October 30, 2008
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