ICANN & .MUSIC gTLD: Upholding US vs. International trademark law
It seems that no-one is willing to tell it like it truly is: despite its multi-national personnel and leadership, ICANN is clearly upholding the laws of the United States and the USPTO in particular.
This shocking revelation comes as a further slap in the face of established entrepreneurs, such as Constantine Roussos of the .MUSIC brand and a gTLD applicant.
It does not get any simpler, really; Roussos and his company have applied for the .MUSIC gTLD and have had several years of a headstart, via the use of the .MUSIC brand and its assorted registered trademark.
The registered mark for .MUSIC can be found in the European database of trademarks, or by clicking here.
According to Roussos, one ICANN panelist asserts that the registration of the .MUSIC mark was not “bona fide“.
This hilarious claim is a classic example of ineptitude by those who have been bestowed with the approval of the gTLD applications.
In the US, the USPTO does not permit trademark applications that begin with a dot. In the European Union and other countries, however, there is no such restriction on the type of brand, product or service that can be trademarked.
It’s clear, that ICANN does not take into account this obvious difference and is actively enforcing US laws only.
The scandalous result, is that applicants such as Constantine Roussos, who have spent millions of dollars to build a brand, are facing competition in the gTLD market by behemoths such as Google, who have no track record of use, nor own a trademark.
In our opinion, ICANN’s role needs to be investigated further, because the current process of applying for or opposing gTLDs is clearly ridden with legal and practical holes; meanwhile, applicants that are not as big as Google are being used as “guinea pigs” in the process.