What is the Anti-Cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act of and does it prohibit The act provides a cause of action to a trademark holder when someone. What is cybersquatting? Cybersquatting is the act of purchasing a domain name that uses the names of existing businesses, which are usually trademarked. The Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (“ACPA”)’ provides a cause of action for trademark owners against cybersquatters2, who regis- ter domain.

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The ACPA has been effectively used to combat a number of wrongs. In addition, the ACPA has been used to combat gripe sites — Anticybersquattinf sites critical of the mark holder set up at a domain containing his mark. Four of the statute’s nine factors evidence a bad faith intent to improperly profit from another’s mark.

The monetary remedies discussed above are all available in ACPA actions against domain name registrants over whom a court has established personal jurisdiction.

Click here to view table. The ACPA has also been successfully used to prevent the tarnishment of a mark by its use in the domain of a Web site containing pornographic or other materials with antivybersquatting the mark holder does not wish his mark associated.

Infringement was easily circumvented by either not linking a web site to the domain name or by posting a site that was unrelated to the trademark owner’s business. Courts thus routinely look to offers by cat defendant to sell the domain name as evidence of his bad faith. This can be done where the domain name registrant resides in a foreign country. The trademark counterfeiting provision of the Lanham Act also allows parties to elect to receive statutory damages instead of actual damages or profits, but similarly fails to provide guidelines to courts for determining an appropriate award.

Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act Law and Legal Definition

As a result, consumers have come to rely heavily on familiar brand names when engaging in online commerce. The Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act “ACPA” applies to any person who “registers, traffics in, or uses a domain name” that is identical or confusingly similar to a distinctive mark, or that is dilutive of a famous mark, and who “has a bad faith intent to profit from that mark.

One of ACPA’s primary deterrents is the threat of large statutory damage awards. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit “registering a famous trademark as a domain name and then offering it for sale to the trademark owner is exactly the wrong Congress intended to remedy when it passed the ACPA.


Names or Nicknames Similarly, individuals whose name or nickname are identical to a company’s mark have been held to have anticybfrsquatting claims on a domain containing that mark. Cybersquatters target distinctive marks for a variety of reasons.

But if someone is operating a web site under another brand owner’s trademarksuch as a site called ”cocacola. In the cases where courts have awarded statutory damages in cybersquatting cases, they typically do not discuss in any detail their rationale for awarding statutory damages. The practice of cybersquatting harms consumers, ahticybersquatting commerceand the goodwill equity of valuable U.

Specifically, the Fifth Circuit held that the duration of the offending use of the domain name did not have to be considered when calculating statutory damages. The authors are aware of only one case that has found an ACPA violation but refused to award statutory damages for substantive reasons. Regardless of what is being sold, the result of online brand name abuse, as with other forms of trademark violations, is the erosion of consumer confidence in brand name identifiers and in electronic commerce generally.

Instead, courts compare the mark to the second-level domain component of the domain at issue, the Home Depot in homedepot. These include “cybersquatting,” which occurs when a registrant obtains a domain name containing another’s mark and offers to sell it to the mark holder for a tidy sum.

Anticyberqsuatting ACPA, however, also permits in rem actions against domain names where the plaintiff is unable to establish personal jurisdiction over, or “through due diligence was not able to find,” the registrant.

Likewise, a dilution claim could be prevented by avoiding making initial offers of sale to the legitimate trademark owners, thus defeating the courts’ lines of precedent construing offers to sell domain names as a form of use in commerce. The ACPA does not prevent the fair use of trademarks or any use protected by the First Amendmentwhich includes gripe sites. See, Panavision Int’l, L. Without In re Wrighttrademark owners would have to litigate two cases: As long as the domain name is dropped within five days, the anticybersquxtting will recover all of his initial registration costs under current rates.

Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act

We also heard the account of a cybersquatter purporting to sell Dell Computer products under the name ”dellspares. Related USA articles Resolving domain name disputes: Designer Skin LLC v.

Finally, one anticybersquattint in” an offending domain when he transfers or receives the domain in exchange for consideration, such as via a sale, purchase, loan, pledge or license. The court noted, however, that it did not decide the issue of whether a counterfeiting plaintiff who elected to receive statutory damages was precluded from an award of attorneys’ fees for “exceptional cases” under Section a.


Similarly, individuals whose name or nickname are identical to a company’s mark have been held to have legitimate claims on a domain containing that mark. AntiCybersquatting Consumer Protection Act. The courts in these cases awarded statutory damages after a trial 4contested motion for summary judgment 10unopposed motion 2and default judgment There, the court found that a disgruntled customer violated the ACPA by registering a domain name containing defendant’s trademark, at which he operated anticybersqhatting Web site critical of defendant.

There are also recent cases where there is no one to initiate legal action against because cybersquatters have given false or misleading contact information to the registration authority.

Registration of multiple domain names containing marks owned by third parties also evidences bad faith. Several courts have also looked to copyright case law in determining statutory damages under the ACPA.

Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act – Wikipedia

In comparing the mark to the domain name, courts do not consider the generic top-level domain component of the domain name, such as the. Other instances of diverting unsuspecting consumers to pornographic web sites involve malicious attempts to tarnish a trademark owner’s mark anticyberaquatting to extort money from the trademark owner, such as the case where a cybersquatter placed pornographic images of celebrities on a site under the name ”pentium3.

Congress viewed the legal remedies available for trademark owners before the passage of the ACPA as “expensive and uncertain.

This decision will hopefully deter cybersquatting while at the same time making it easier anticybersquwtting trademark owners to collect on statutory damage awards under the ACPA. While the ACPA contemplated the purchase of domain names for resale to trademark owners, it did not contemplate the more modern practice of domaining. If you would like to learn how Lexology can drive your content marketing strategy forward, please email enquiries lexology. Retrieved from ” https: To view all formatting for this article eg, tables, footnotesplease access the original here.

Despite the problems it presents to trademark owners and consumers, cybersquatting, is not illegal per se. Reverse domain hijacking Cybersquatting Domain name drop list Domain name speculation Domain sniping Domain parking Domain tasting Domain name warehousing Doppelganger domain Type-in traffic Typosquatting Domain name front running.

Share Facebook Twitter Linked In. Kicking squatters off your domain cpnsumer Moreover, a few trends are discernible.

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