All Questions in Domain Names >> URLs a problem for trademarks?

URLs a problem for trademarks?

Posted by . updated on 11/11/2009
I'm trying to name my new media business. I'm having a devil of a time trying to find a good name that hasn't been taken as at least a .com URL. Many times the taken URLs have nothing to do with either my business type or even any business you might logically associate with the name. And, of course, many are taken by opportunists who simply grab up names and create those slimey click-thru springboard pages.

So question #1 is: If a desireable name is taken as a URL, but not trademarked (at least in the same business type), is it still practical to proceed with trademarking it as a company name and then use a modified URL.

Question #2: Assuming the answer to the previous question is affirmative, is there then a way force somebody who is squatting/aggregating on the related URL to relinquish it?

Your help is greatly appreciated! Thanks!

Jeffrey
Answers (1)
 
JSonnabend
Quote
So question #1 is: If a desireable name is taken as a URL, but not trademarked (at least in the same business type), is it still practical to proceed with trademarking it as a company name and then use a modified URL.

URL usage, without more, does not constitute trademark usage.  As a result, such uses should not be an impediment to your adoption of a mark.  That doesn't mean the domain owner won't try to make hay of your subsequent trademark use, but the his/her efforts should prove fruitless.

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Question #2: Assuming the answer to the previous question is affirmative, is there then a way force somebody who is squatting/aggregating on the related URL to relinquish it?

As a general proposition, domain registrations which predate trademark rights will withstand attacks from the subsequent trademark owner.  In other words, you'll face an uphill battle to gain control of the domain from the registrant.

- Jeff
 

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