.kr domain dispute – Samsung v local food company

Samsung, the South Korean electronics company, is embroiled in a court battle over the domain name sens.co.kr with a small local food supply company, whose name has been withheld, reports AFP.An earlier court decision said the domain name should be transferred to Samsung, however the company is appealing this decision.The history of the dispute seems to be:

  • in May 1996 Samsung registered SENS as a trademark for its computers and monitors
  • in 1998, the food company – which supplies gimbap, a popular Korean-style fast food made from dried seaweed and stuffing, to fast food shops – registered the domain name sens.co.kr
  • Samsung recently won a hearing from the .kr dispute resolution service.

The food company is unhappy! To them, there is no confusion between the companies with one a food supplier, the other an electronics company. The company also claims that by forcing them to transfer the domain name gives preferential treatment to a company like Samsung.It is not clear from the article what rights the food company has to the domain name, apart from having registered it in 1998. The domain name sens.co.kr doesn’t appear to resolve to a website.The AFP story is available in full from www.theage.com.au/articles/2007/09/26/1190486375581.html

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