[gnso-rpm-wg] TMCH review objectives

Rebecca Tushnet rlt26 at law.georgetown.edu
Fri Sep 23 16:15:38 UTC 2016

And is the additional system cost (one component of effectiveness) of individualized review of pricing worth this hypothetical increased risk of later infringement? If post-Sunrise registrations of expensive domain names have led to infringement, I hope we will be able to collect evidence of that. Likewise with the hypothetical effect of encountering an unregistered domain in a new gTLD. In an age of search engines, I thought we had gotten past the idea that a consumer would type in a domain name and then give up if no website, or a nonconfusing but non-trademark owner website, resolves.  I also highly doubt there's evidence that consumers think less of a trademark owner for not registering every variation.

Rebecca Tushnet
Georgetown Law

Sent from my phone. Apologies for terseness/typos.

On Sep 23, 2016, at 11:39 AM, Phil Corwin <psc at vlaw-dc.com<mailto:psc at vlaw-dc.com>> wrote:

I believe I just addressed that question in the email I posted – if unreasonably high sunrise pricing deters a rights holder from registering a  domain corresponding to a verified TM registered in the TMCH then it may be registered in the general availability period by an infringer, which in turn imposes a variety of costs on the TM owner (including those of bringing a subsequent URS, UDRP, or judicial action) and also creates the possibility of confusion and harm for the general public.

This is not to say that all Premium pricing is unreasonable, as it is generally recognized that certain words and terms have inherent additional value in the DNS context – it really requires a case by case analysis.

Philip S. Corwin, Founding Principal
Virtualaw LLC
1155 F Street, NW
Suite 1050
Washington, DC 20004

Twitter: @VlawDC

"Luck is the residue of design" -- Branch Rickey

From: gnso-rpm-wg-bounces at icann.org<mailto:gnso-rpm-wg-bounces at icann.org> [mailto:gnso-rpm-wg-bounces at icann.org] On Behalf Of Rebecca Tushnet
Sent: Friday, September 23, 2016 11:10 AM
To: Silver, Bradley; gnso-rpm-wg at icann.org<mailto:gnso-rpm-wg at icann.org>
Subject: Re: [gnso-rpm-wg] TMCH review objectives

TMCH’s goal of “protection” against what, though?  How does high pricing contribute to trademark infringement?  High pricing may deter purchases of domain names, no doubt, but with what result for the system overall?

Rebecca Tushnet
Georgetown Law
703 593 6759

From: Silver, Bradley [mailto:Bradley.Silver at timewarner.com]
Sent: Friday, September 23, 2016 11:00 AM
To: Rebecca Tushnet; gnso-rpm-wg at icann.org<mailto:gnso-rpm-wg at icann.org>
Subject: RE: TMCH review objectives

I would add that the question of pricing feeds into the concept of effectiveness, because if the TMCH is serving as a database for registries to target brand owners for higher pricing based on the value of their brands, then this is antithetical to the TMCH’s primary goal to provide protection for verified right holders.

From: gnso-rpm-wg-bounces at icann.org<mailto:gnso-rpm-wg-bounces at icann.org> [mailto:gnso-rpm-wg-bounces at icann.org] On Behalf Of Rebecca Tushnet
Sent: Friday, September 23, 2016 10:26 AM
To: gnso-rpm-wg at icann.org<mailto:gnso-rpm-wg at icann.org>
Subject: [gnso-rpm-wg] TMCH review objectives

Hello, all.  On the last WG call, concerns about pricing of domain names during the Sunrise Period arose. This led to a question of whether pricing is within the remit of this WG – and the broader question of what the purpose of our TMCH review is.  There seemed to be a desire to focus on the TMCH’s effectiveness. The predicate question, then, is: effectiveness at what?  Here are some suggestions for discussion: (1) minimizing the cost of operating the system for all concerned; (2) minimizing the number of actions that ultimately need to be brought against infringing registrants; (3) minimizing the number of noninfringing registrants whose legitimate uses are blocked or deterred.  If the system is reasonably balancing those objectives, I suggest, then it is effective; potential changes should be directly related to improving performance on one or more of these metrics without unduly hampering the others.

Rebecca Tushnet

Rebecca Tushnet
Georgetown Law
703 593 6759

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