Facebook Captures Montenegro’s Facebook.me from Cybersquatter

Aug 24 2010 - 11:16

On July 13, 2010, the WIPO ordered that the domain name Facebook.me, obtained during Montenegro’s country code top-level domain (ccTLD) .me auction period in 2008, be transferred from the United Arab Emirates resident Amjad Abbas to Facebook, Inc.

Facebook, Inc. filed a complaint with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center on May 7, 2010, arguing that it owns numerous Facebook trademarks around the world and that its online social networking services are internationally renowned. The plaintiff also provided evidence that on April 12, 2010, the disputed domain name was one of the domain names offered for sale at a minimum price of USD 2,000 (EUR 1,575) on a website operated by the defandant Abbas, www.batfind.com.

Abbas argued that he had obtained and registered Facebook.me legally for approximately USD 5,115 (EUR 4,029). He claimed to have also registered Oracle.me, Trump.me and other domains, explaining he collected domain names as a hobby and to impress his friends, with possible future plans of creating non-profit personal blogs. The defendant stressed he did not register Facebook.me for commercial gain, adding that the registrar GoDaddy.com was well-aware of .me domain names auctioned as personal domain names, under the slogan “it’s all about YOU!”. Abbas also asserted that Facebook was not a registered trademark in neither Montenegro nor the United Arab Emirates in August 2008, when he registered the domain name.

The WIPO dismissed his claim, stating that his explanations for registering the domain name were not persuasive and ruled it was registered and used in bad faith.

For more information, please contact Jelena Jankovic at our Balkan Regional Office.

Source: WIPO

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