All Questions in Domain Names >> Domain Name and Trademark Infringement

Domain Name and Trademark Infringement

Posted by . updated on 11/11/2009
Interesting,

I have owned a .com for 6 years doing business in my state.  I received a complaint for trade mark infringements form a company, that I need to respond too.  The complaint has everything under the sun as far as dirty deeds we have committed as internet spammers, conning people out of money acting like we are them.

There is not a shred of evidence on any of the allegations however, I need to respond legally or I'll loose somehow I'm sure.

They offered to buy my .com for poultry (insulting) sum of money and they would consider dropping any legal action.  I believe they know we're small and just want our .com name.

In good faith until it was resolved I shut down my .com - because I have not marketed it lately and the contact form was broken anyway.  I am a small business owner and feel I am getting pushed out of a legal business service from a bigger company.

My business uses common name using 3 common names pulled together that describes exactly what I do.   XxxxXxxxXxxx.com thier .com is xxx.com and their incorporation is like my .com name but with an "s".

How is this copyright infringement?  Should I just take a little sum of money to avoid legal issues or do I need to just reply legally with a lawyer.  Or am I in some real trouble here.
Answers (5)
 
JSonnabend
First of all, unless you feel the other party's claims have some legitimacy, I'm not sure I would advise taking down your website.  The downside to doing so might be greater than not doing so.

As for how to respond, your options range from doing nothing, to telling them to get lost, to rolling over, to suing (in many cases).  I would suggest speaking to a lawyer.  Not all lawyers are prohibitively expensive, and a terse response from a lawyer to the other side might go a long way in ending the matter.

- Jeff
 
 
mindquest
Much appreciated,

Couple of things - I received a legal complaint in the mail then recently a summons for for it.  Like a legal way of getting it.  Ignoring it seems scary but I like the sharp response.  Legal cost I've been told was like $1200 this to me is not cheap.  Does this sound expensive to you? There may not be an answer here, but thought I would put it out there.

I took down the site - just because I was afraid at first.  But now that they are trying to pay for .com makes me wonder if they are just trying to get it.  Its a neat .com name thats close there corporate name but not their .com name.  Their .com name is acronym for their corporate name without the "s" (confusing sorry)

Also, we do similar work but I am in the Midwest and they are in calif.  I do one portion of their entire service packages.

Not sure if there is a real solid question in there, just fishing for anything else.  This site is awesome, glad i ran into it.

Thank you for the help
 
 
JSonnabend
Were you served with the summons and complaint, or were "courtesy copies" (or some such thing) sent to you?  Sometimes larger companies try to scare smaller entities by including "courtesy copies" of complaints that have not even been filed (or that have been filed but are not being served).

Feel free to call me if you would like.  I'm happy to go over the matter in a free preliminary consultation.

- Jeff
 
 
mindquest
I called and left a message

Thanks
 
 
cpastor7
I had something similar happen to me a while back. Similar not exact circumstances.

I learned much of the time it is just scare tactics being employed by these large companies with no valid claims.

To be quite honest they letter sent me was quite convincing until I spoke with an IP litigation expert colleague of mine who told me they were just blowing smoke.

Good luck though.

 

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