Battle Over Chicago2016.com Continues

The battle for the chicago2016.com domain name has garnered a lot of press over the last week, with the Los Angeles Times one to look at the issue in detail. The Times notes the registrant has about 40 city domain names registered that combine a city and year that also includes Tokyo2016.com, another candidate city for the 2016 summer Olympics.To attempt to head off the arbitration decision that is expected, the registrant, Stephen Frayne, an engineer who is studying entrepreneurship, “turned to U.S. District Court in Chicago, seeking to halt the arbitration proceedings and to protect his claim on Chicago2016.com and Tokyo2016.com.” The lawsuit “seeks an unspecified amount of damages”.Frayne says he is not interested in selling, but in public discussion and is framing the dispute as a free speech issue for discussion “public debate on whether the Olympic bid is the best use of officials’ time, taxpayers’ money and local citizens’ money, and about how the Olympics would impact the city.”Jeff Handelman, chairman of the trademark litigation group at Brinks Hofer Gilson & Lione and a local trademark attorney told The Times, “If what the gentleman is doing is duplicating a well-established naming pattern that Olympic committees have used for so many years, I find that interesting. I wonder what the intent is.”To read the Los Angeles Times article in full, see www.latimes.com/technology/chi-thu-chicago2016-dotcom-battlsep18,0,7670317.story.

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