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Newsletter/ April 26, 2002 No. 86

Deprivation of the ownership of a domain name indicating a famous product that infringes the trademark right even if the domain name is previously registered.

(Korean Network Information Center made a decision to cancel the domain name, in response to the mediation requests of its subordinate committee, Korea Domain Name Dispute Mediation Committee which was filed by the companies such as Nestle and Lithtec.)

Now, an ordinary person will be prohibited from having the ownership of a domain name indicating famous trademarks even if he has previously registered the domain name.
This is because a decision has been made that the ownership of the domain name is cancelled if it infringes the trademark right of well known companies or trademarks, irrespective of prior registration of the domain name.
In response to mediation requests filed by three companies of Nestle Korea, Lithtec, and Richemont Korea, in which they argued that their trademark rights were infringed respectively by domains of 'nescafe.co.kr', 'ziebart.co.kr' and 'cartier.co.kr' and therefore registrations of these domains must be canceled, KDNDRC (Korea Domain Name Dispute Resolution Committee), affiliated organization of KRNIC (Korea Network Information Center), stated on the 28th day of this month that it has made a mediate conclusion that the domain owners cannot own these domains.
The KDNDRC also concluded that these domains must be transferred from the domain owners to the trademark right owners.
Thus, unless the domain owners appeal against the mediate conclusion and file an opposition to the court within 14 days from the date of conclusion, these domains are destined to be transferred to the three companies or cancelled, according to the mediate conclusion.
Especially, even when the domain owners file the opposition, the mediate conclusion of KDNDRC is estimated to actually have legal force, because the recent judicial precedents show the court judges have concentrated on whether there is a flaw in the mediation procedure, rather than on the contents of the mediation.
The mediate conclusion is expected to be an impetus to resolve a great number of domain disputes between real owners of famous trademark and owners of the domains indicating the famous trademarks.
Eventually it comes to a situation in which people, who have registered domains indicating famous or analogous trademarks in a bid to sell them, must hand over the domains to the enterprises having the original trademark.
On the other hand, after being informed that Mr. A has registered a domain of nescafe.co.kr, which indicates the trademark of Nescafe in the United States that is its mother company, Nestle Korea filed a request to cancel the domain registration to the KDNDRC on the 4th day of last month.
In addition, after hearing that Mr. B, has occupied in advance a domain of cartier.co.kr, which infringes the trademark of Cartier International in the United States that is its mother company, Richemont Korea filed, the request on January 24.
Earlier than this, Lithtec filed a mediation request on January 22, after Mr. C completed registration of the domain of ziebart.co.kr that infringes the trademark of Ziebart, its cooperative company.
The KDNDRC started the service as an affiliated committee of KRNIC on January 4 in an effort to resolve rapidly-increased disputes about domain names and to make an effective use of internet-address resources, and are currently working on procedures of four dispute mediation cases, as well as the mentioned mediation request cases.

"ON-LINE STAMP SYSTEM" IS JUDGED ON COURT

(Daum brings a lawsuit to the Fair T
 
 
 
 
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