Domain Manage

Nominet response from Sedo

Discussion in 'Sedo' started by sedo, Apr 19, 2007.

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  1. sedo

    sedo Sedo Staff

    Aug 2005
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    Hi everyone,

    In case you didn't see on our website, I wanted to quickly post the press release about Sedo's response to Nominet's DRS Policy Review. If you have any questions, please let us know.

    Kind regards,


    Nominet’s Dispute Resolution Service (DRS) Policy exists as a cost-effective and transparent method of resolving disputes in the .UK top-level domain (TLD). Disputes are settled through mediation or expert decision. Sedo supports the development and revision of the DRS policy to reflect the changing nature of the dynamic .UK domain name industry. In response to Nominet’s request for commentary on the revision of the DRS earlier this year, Sedo submitted a detailed overview of some of the changes and developments we consider of importance to better balancing the needs of domain registrants with the rights of trademark holders.

    A summary of the comments submitted by Sedo’s General Counsel, Jeremiah Johnston, is included below:

    Sedo identified the need for balance in the proposed recognition of descriptive words of distinctive character. We feel it is reasonable to recognise these rights but limits must be applied to ensure balance. Sedo believes the definition of these terms and the establishing of a high threshold with the burden of illustration to lie with the complainant is necessary to avoid frivolous complaints.

    In addition, where the inclusion of dictionary words which are protected by registered trademarks is a very contentious issue, Sedo sees the need for balance between expansion in the definition of “results” and additional checks to ensure complete, sufficiently researched and relevant complaints. Where dictionary words are not considered famous by the general consuming public, the burden of proving abusive registration should rest firmly with the complainant.

    Sedo is specifically concerned with confirmation under the Policy that the following are not evidence of abusive registration: offering to sell a domain name on a public marketplace; selling or monetizing domain traffic; and owning multiple domain names. Failing to recognize the legitimacy of these activities undermines the effectiveness of marketplaces, curtails entrepreneurialism in the UK domain industry and ultimately leads to a poor experience for domain buyers, who are predominantly small to medium-sized business seeking to purchase a relevant domain name from the secondary market. There is no evidence to suggest engaging in any of these entrepreneurial and legal activities is indicative of the abusive registration of any one domain name. Sedo’s Rights Protection Programme, which can be found on its site, would complement this addition, to ensure the promotion of transparency, efficiency and legitimate business development.

    Sedo supports the inclusion of a statement in the DRS stating that where evidence is finely balanced, the rights of the complainant shall be weaker and the likelihood of an abusive registration shall be less. Trademark law is hugely complex and where a fact scenario is finely balanced, the DRS should recognize the limits of its framework in requiring the claimant to pursue action before a legal court.

    Sedo supports an inexpensive and accessible resolution service but believes that an upfront service fee for the complainant helps prevents frivoulous claims. We believe that the payment of a reasonable upfront fee would be of nominal concern to a legitimate complainant.

    Finally, Sedo believes that the pool of panellists should be expanded to include domain professionals, provided there is no direct conflict of interest. The only way to ensure equitable and fair conditions is to include domain experts, even if such experts do not have a spefic legal background. Members of Sedo’s legal department would, of course, be very happy to be considered as a panellist should Nominet decide to implement this suggestion.

    Nora Cotter, Sedo’s Director of Operations, UK/International, comments “Sedo’s Rights Protection Programme was an industry-first in offering a transparent procedure for trademark holders to notify us of potential violations. As such, we have assisted hundreds of trademark owners in protecting their rights online. We believe the time is ripe for the revision of the DRS to account for the predominance of non-infringing domain names and the legitimate commercial interests that have developed in this exciting and dynamic industry. Domain owners deserve better than to risk losing their valuable assets in inequitable and cloudy circumstances. We applaud Nominet’s decision to review the Dispute Resolution Service and should our services ever be required as a panel member, we would be more than happy to assist.”
  2. Domain Forum

    Acorn Domains Elite Member

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  3. singlefile

    singlefile Active Member

    Oct 2004
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    Does anybody know when Nominet will publicise their final decision?

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