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WTF seriously? 21 year old domain VisualVoice.com was challenged in UDRP

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WTF Seriously?

WTF Seriously?

Twenty one years!

That’s how long ago Michael McGloin – the registrant of the domain, VisualVoice.com – decided to get this domain.

In 1995 domain registrations cost $100 for two years and Network Solutions was the only domain registrar.

Since then, VisualVoice.com has been used to host Michael McGloin’s personal portfolio of artistic designs:

“I’ve designed thousands of t-shirts over the past 25 years and directed the design or chosen the art for thousands more, working with artists from all over the world.

My passion is finding the perfect artists for our brands, with non-competing styles and perfect harmony with our nature. “

In 2014, someone registered VISUAL VOICE as a trademark at the USPTO, and earlier this month filed a UDRP, trying to wrestle away this great aged, generic .com domain.

The UDRP was filed by Arthur Yarlett of Tennessee, who alleged the following:

“Respondent registered and is using the Disputed Domain name in bad faith.  Respondent has ignored Complainant’s attempts to purchase the disputed Domain Name. Respondent has not made an active use of the disputed Domain Name.”

To this bunch of malarkey, the Respondent stated the following:

“Respondent has rights and legitimate interests in the <visualvoice.com> Domain Name.  Respondent uses the disputed Domain Name periodically to display its art and design work.     

Respondent has not registered and is not using the disputed Domain Name in bad faith.  Respondent’s registration of the <visualvoice.com> Domain Name predates Complainant’s trademark registration. 

Respondent has no interest in selling the disputed Domain Name.  Complainant is attempting to reverse domain name hijack the <visualvoice.com> Domain Name.    

Respondent registered the <visualvoice.com> Domain Name on September 20, 1995.”

A single member panel at the National Arbitration forum found that the Respondent has made consistent “fair use” of the domain, VisualVoice.com, and that the registration occurred 19 years before the Complainant’s registration of the trademark.

Shockingly, there was no finding of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking, leaving us in a “WTF seriously?” moment.

To read all about this UDRP, click here.


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Comments

2 Responses to “WTF seriously? 21 year old domain VisualVoice.com was challenged in UDRP”
  1. OPI says:

    DECISION
    Having not established all three elements required under the ICANN Policy, the Panel concludes that relief shall be DENIED.

    Accordingly, it is Ordered that the domain name REMAIN WITH Respondent.
    Antonina Pakharenko-Anderson, Panelist
    Dated: September 26, 2016

  2. DomainGang says:

    OPI – thanks for the executive summary.

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