FRIDAY, 1 AUGUST 2008
Camerimage.com returns to its legitimate owner
The WIPO arbitration panel has ruled that the domain name camerimage.com had been used and registered in bad faith and ordered that the domain be transferred to its legitimate owner, Fundacja Tumult from Torun.
In accordance with paragraph 11 of the Rules, the language of the procedure is that of the registration agreement. Such a rule bases on a presumption that if a party is fluent enough in a specific language to enter into a registration agreement, it should be equally fluent to deal with an administrative procedure. Moreover, the claim that it is difficult in Poland to find a lawyer understanding legal English is highly unconvincing to the Panel.The Panelist decided to disregard arguments as regards difficulties in finding a competent English speaking lawyer.
The Foundation was the owner of the Polish trade mark R-104365, consisting of the word Camerimage, registered on 4 August 1998, in class 41. The protection right had not been renewed and expired on 1 August 2005 but the trade mark CAMERIMAGE was used all the time, regardless of the lapse of protection rights. The Complainant also operated a website http://www.camerimage.pl/, the official website of the Festival. It also held domain names such as : camerimage.com.pl, camerimage.org.pl, and camerimage.eu.
Mr Szymanski offered to set an establishment of a joint-venture with the Foundation. His proposal was rejected. After registering the disputed domain name Mr Szymanski offered it for a sale for a considerable amount of money, which was also turned down by the Complainant.
The Foundation contended in its complaint against Mr Szymanski that each of the three elements specified in paragraph 4(a) of the Policy were present in its case. However, the Foundation admitted it was not not aware of the fact that the protection right as to the registered trade mark had already expired.
The Panelist found that the contested domain name was identical to a trade mark in which the Foundation has rights:
This is not quite the end of the matter, as it the Complainant can show rights in an unregistered trademark consisting of the word "Camerimage". In view of this Panel there is no worldwide recognized concept of an unregistered or common law trademark and consequently it must be related to suitable territorial jurisdictions. As both the Complainant and the Respondent are Polish and the Festival is organized in Poland it seems that Polish law is relevant to this matter.The Panel was satisfied with the Complainant’s statements that Mr Szymanski had not any rights or legitimate interests to the word "camerimage" and he has registered and used camerimage.com domain name it in bad faith.
- WIPO Arbitration Rules can be found here,
- ICANN Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy can be found here,
- ICANN Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy can be found here.
Fundacja Tumult v. Roland Szymanski, Case No. D2008-0669, 29 July 2008.
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