Wizzair v. Wizzairsucks.com arbitration begins!

// August 26th, 2009 // Uncategorized

It’s final.  The arbitration deadline date has been set for September 13th, 2009.  This gives me 20 days to tender my response after having received their official Complaint.  I received the Complaint from Wizzair’s Legal Team… herein referred to as WizzLegal, Monday August 24th.  This gives me 20 days to prove Wizzairsucks.com is not “confusingly similar” to their “Wizz” trade mark, I have a legitimate interest in the domain Wizzairsucks.com… (ie not a cybersquatter), and I purchased the domain in “Good Faith.”

The decision is to be decided by a single panelist appointed by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

However I am skeptical towards this process in general and in the WIPO in particular.  In my short examination of the institution’s brief history I found a large amount of questionable and often contradictory rulings.  I found examples of both outcomes supporting my position and possible failure for reasons of a capricious nature.  The organization of its body I feel supports the rights and complaints of the complainant who pays for the process more than the respondent who does not.  This is nearly always the case historically for every other human endeavor where two parties are involved and one is paying disproportionately more.  My rudimentary understanding is that while the burden is on the complaint to pay for this process, they therefore have a greater ability for a favorable outcome.  They choose the number of panelists to suit their advantage; the respondent can choose to have three panelists only if they agree to pay 1/2 the expense.  The expense being ~$500 regardless of the case against them having merit or not.

While I understand the necessity for the WIPO’s existence in the vast amount of cases dealing almost exclusively on Trademark infringement in Squatter cases.  These would undoubtedly prove frivolous and needlessly tie up whatever courtrooms they ended up in. In such cases I see the WIPO as a great benefit being a third-party.  However I do not believe this body or any other which seems to me keenly built to suit commercial interest over any other deserves the right to decide what is, and what is not free speech. Certain WIPO panelists have said as much, but others have from time to time side-stepped their mandate.

In one case in particular, the Respondent, who was described as childish lost a series of domains to Walmart, i.e. WalmartCanadaSucks.com only to win in a later case for the domain WallmartCanadaSucks.com (Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. wallmartcanadasucks.com and Kenneth J. Harvey)

The UDRP has a narrow scope. It is meant to protect against trademark infringement, not to provide a general remedy for all misconduct involving domain names.” – WIPO Panelist in Wallmartcanadasucks.com Arbitration

Using the WIPO in a single panelist showdown is something akin to coin flipping.  The coin deciding the panelist and the panelist deciding the scope of their own powers and whether or not to exceed them or their mandate.

See the case of the sleepy WIPO panelist and the legal advice of “know your panelist.”

One Response to “Wizzair v. Wizzairsucks.com arbitration begins!”

  1. [...] news fellow Wizzair unfortunates!  Due to our ongoing legal proceeding with Wizzair (read previous posts for details) we have obtained new email addresses!  That work!!!  Yes that’s right… actual email [...]

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