August 10, 2004

Confirmation: Geographical names are for the first come

"[N]ot simply a domain name but an entire web site business": this is what the owner of replied when asked to transfer this domain name to the Mexico Tourism Board. The Board then decided to launch a UDRP action against him, and lost:
"[T]he Panel f[ound] that Respondent registered based upon the sense of MEXICO as a geographic name, not upon any trademark sense. Respondent has used the disputed domain name to operate a web site providing a portal to access a global information network featuring topics relating to Mexico, as Complainant admitted to the USPTO in 2001. Accordingly, the Panel finds that Respondent is and since 1997, has been making a fair and bona fide use of the domain name and thus has a legitimate interest in it."