Metro Group obtains, but not

 The German Metro Group is a gigantic distributor (retail and wholesale) and known for aggressively policing its trade mark rights in the term METRO. In two decisions brought under the "Swiss UDRP" against the registrants of the domain names and, it came out only partially on top.

In the case of, which was used to advertise the services of a bar, the sole panelist held that METRO was undisputedly well known for gastronomy services and that adding a descriptive element ("bar") to a well known trade mark was insufficient to avoid likelihood of confusion.

In a second case, decided only six weeks later, another panelist came to a different conclusion regarding the domain name This domain name was used to advertise the services of a snack bar. The panelist doubted that METRO was well known for restaurant services. In any case, "Metro" was also a commonly understood term for subway. The respondent's snack bar was located in a pedestrian underpass beneath a railway station and below a building known as the "Metro house". In this context, Metro was understood descriptively by the relevant public. Transfer of the domain name was denied.

Decisions DCH2009-0009 and  DCH2009-0011 (in German).

Posted by: Mark Schweizer @ 14.45
Tags: Switzerland, WIPO, domain names, SWITCH,

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