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Visit the Faroe islands .com : UDRP complaint denied on the basis of free speech

Where in the world are the Faroe Islands?

According to Wikipedia:

“The Faroe Islands is a self-governing archipelago, part of the Kingdom of Denmark. It comprises 18 rocky, volcanic islands between Iceland and Norway in the North Atlantic Ocean, connected by road tunnels, ferries, causeways and bridges. Hikers and bird-watchers are drawn to the islands’ mountains, valleys and grassy heathland, and steep coastal cliffs that harbor thousands of seabirds.”

visit-the-faroe-islands

The Faroe Islands in the North Atlantic.

A Danish company has registered the trade mark VISITFAROEISLANDS since June 2014 and has used the trade mark in its domain name visitfaroeislands.com since 2001. They are using that domain to promote tourism for the Faroe Islands.

Meanwhile, the domain visitthefaroeislands.com is being used for an entirely different reason; to promote awareness about whaling activities and the so-called “whale clubbing” by local fishermen.

Thus, the UDRP for the domain visitthefaroeislands.com had this finding delivered by the sole panelist the WIPO:

“Based on the content of the website to which the Disputed Domain Name resolves, the Panel accepts that the Respondent is not operating the website with an intent for commercial gain. The Panel is persuaded that the Respondent registered and is using the Disputed Domain Name with a view to voicing its concerns about whaling activities and other issues on the Faroe Islands, as opposed to obtaining commercial gain or for any other dishonest purpose.”

The complaint was denied on the basis of free speech, and there was no evidence of a trademark infringement.

For the full text of the UDRP decision click here.

 


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