Skip to content
November 9, 2010 / Nate Harris

Almost Awesome, Inc. v. USAthletics

Summary of Almost Awesome, Inc. v. USAthletics
(Nat. Arb. Forum Claim No. 1344656)

Filed: September 2, 2010; Decided: October 28, 2010 (Panelist: Jonas Gulliksson)

Disputed domain name: <walkjogrun.com>

walkjogrun.com

The Parties

Complainant Almost Awesome, Inc. (“Awesome”) owns a U.S. Trademark registration for the mark WALKJOGRUN for online sports training, with a priority date of October 8, 2009. Awesome also owns the domain name <WalkJogRun.net>.

Respondent USAthletics is the director of operations of the track & field program at University of California-Berkeley. [The decision doesn’t explain how “USAthletics” is the name of an individual coach.] He has coached several Olympians and NCAA individual champions. He registered the disputed domain in February 2000, though he has never used it to offer goods or services.

Identity or Confusing Similarity

The Panel points out that it is irrelevant, for the first prong of the UDRP, which party is the senior user of the mark/disputed domain name. Accordingly, as Awesome has established rights in the mark WALKJOGRUN, the disputed domain name is identical to Awesome’s mark.

Rights or Legitimate Interest

The Panel notes that USAthletics has not demonstrated any of the circumstances identified in Paragraph 4(c) of the Policy. “In light of the fact that there has been no demonstrated preparations to use, or any use at all, by the Respondent the Panel finds that the second element of the Policy is fulfilled.”

Bad Faith

The Panel supports the approach of requiring bad faith registration and use. “It is well-established consensus that the prior registration of the domain name to that of the trademark rules of bad faith registration.” Because Awesome did not have any right in its mark prior to 2005, USAthletics could not have originally registered the disputed domain in bad faith. As for bad faith-registration-by-renewal, USAthletics’ non-use of the disputed domain name is not enough to support a finding of bad faith, especially since Awesome only recently began asserting its rights to the mark.

Accordingly, Awesome has failed to satisfy this prong.

Decision

The Panel concludes that relief shall be DENIED.

Commentary

If Awesome continues to assert its trademark rights, can it snag USAthletics for bad faith registration the next time the disputed domain is up for registration?

Epilogue

<walkjogrun.com> points to a site that says “Sorry! This site is not currently available.”

Advertisements