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Does a trademark entitle the owner to get the name from the owner?

First Name or Trademark, what counts?

9:40 pm on Aug 21, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I own a domain name which is a common first name, and it was intended for a former employee who has that name.

Now a German company who has registered that name as a "Wortmarke" claims the domain.
Comparable to the US PTO, you can register the name in one or more classes, which is electronic parts in their case.

Maybe one day we are not allowed to use our firstnames anymore? Is there any precedence?
I do not believe they can be successful?

[edited by: tedster at 1:55 am (utc) on Aug. 22, 2004]
[edit reason] remove specific [/edit]

2:46 am on Aug 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member rfgdxm1 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

You really need to ask a lawyer. Where I live in the US, trademarks deal with commercial interests. The mere word isn't a trademark necessarily. "Tide" is a trademark of a popular laundry soap in the US. It also refers to oceans. If I have a site with "tide" in the name about oceanography, that isn't a trademark violation. However, if that site sells laundry soap...
5:53 pm on Aug 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Hi rfgdxm1, thanks for the answer!
I did a research of all relevant extensions, and they own NO domain name up to date. Maybe they missed out in registering their name. If it is a Trademark, the registration is preferred in the "New" TLDs, and authorities can take it from the domain-owner who knowingly infringes a trademark.This is ok.
But in the case a trademark owner misses out in registering his name, and than tries to get it transfered from someone who has a right in his 1st- or family name, I believe that does not work- the holder of a family or first name has - in my opinion - a stronger, more generic right than a trademark owner who has a right in one or two or three classes amongst a thousand?
Please post! Thanks!
7:55 pm on Aug 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Hello DomainAngler. I did some research and the best overview of the domain dispute process that I found is at domains.dantobias.com/conflicts/
3:57 pm on Aug 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Hi fourstardragon,
thank you very much for the link.
I just had little time to review domains.dantobias.com/conflicts/ ,
but I already agree: One of the most knowledgable "essay" about the domain "business". Being a consultant for 40 years I used to say when people are getting married 'check what happens at your divorce!' as to people building a new company 'check what happens when it gets bankrupt', so now I can tell domain registrants: check what happens when your name gets a dispute!' By thinking about it, you will act wiser and set it up to already avoid divorce, bankruptcy - and dispute!

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