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September 17, 2010 / Nate Harris

RapidShare AG and Christian Schmid v. Helena Clouse

Summary of RapidShare AG and Christian Schmid v. Helena Clouse
(WIPO Case No. D2010-1086)

Filed: June 30, 2010; Decided: September 8, 2010 (Panelist: Alan L. Limbury)

Disputed Domain Name: <>

The Parties

Another complaint by RapidShare, the file-sharing service.

Respondent Helena Clouse, who did not respond to the complaint, registered the disputed domain on March 5, 2005. The site points to a website advertising “RapidShare news, tips and hacks.”

Identical or Confusingly Similar

Complainant cites RapidShare AG and Christian Schmid v. rapidsharedvd, (WIPO Case No. D2010-0616), where the suffix “dvd” was appended to the RAPIDSHARE mark. Yet the Panel is not convinced:

Here however, the suffix “ownload” is not appended to the entirety of the trademark but to the word “Rapid”, itself an adjective having no inherent distinctiveness. For this reason, the Panel is not satisfied that the word “rapidownload” is confusingly similar to the mark RAPIDSHARE.

Because RapidShare has not satisfied the first prong, the other two are not considered.


The complaint is denied.


The Panel here reduces the mark to “rapid”, noting that the word is “an adjective having no inherent distinctiveness.”  That approach seems to miss the point that  “download” is a synonym of “share” in this context. It’s arguable whether the disputed domain is  close enough to RapidShare’s mark, but it seems like the Panel failed to consider whether the disputed domain as a whole was similar to RapidShare’s mark.


<> still points to a site that refers to RapidShare.