Advertising industry must help us stop cybersquatters

Advertising industry must help us stop cybersquatters
The Times looks at cybersquatting and the problem it’s becoming. Clive Gringras, a partner at Olswang and representing Microsoft in its UK cybersquatting cases, writes of The Dyslexic Domain Name Company Limited who had registered more than 6,000 domain names, including some targeting Microsoft. When faced with the prospect of court action, the organisation agreed to hand over the domain names and pay damages to Microsoft. Another cybersquatter Olswang is pursuing has registered over 19,000 domain names. These registrations are an infringement of trade marks all over the world. Gringras gives 4 reasons why cybersquatting is widespread. First, cybersquatters have kept as quiet as possible to avoid the attention of lawyers and few brand owners are alive to the practice and have not yet focused their litigators’ minds on it. Second, pay-per-click advertising provides very high profits for cybersquatters, so there are many of them. Third, cybersquatters register so many brand names, they bank on being able to surrender any complaining brand owner’s domain names but be left freely to infringe the remaining brands in their portfolio. Finally, brand owners need their own sophisticated software tools to find infringing domain names. Gringras concludes “As it stands, the economics of this infringing activity are clearly tipped in favour of cybersquatters. Until the pay-per-click advertising industry takes a more responsible attitude towards cybersquatters, we fear this practice will continue. In the meantime, brand owners should act to prevent online fraudsters profiting from their good name.”
http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/law/corporate/article1515229.ece

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