Third Consecutive UDRP win but this time with RDNH finding!

Hello and Assalamo Alaikum,

Not sure if this is the longest break I’ve taken in publishing posts but there were several reasons behind that but I feel of having more time in near future so that I can concentrate on blogging.

I wanted to thank my readers who contacted me during this break to know if everything is alright at my end. I really appreciate for their concern and glad to know many domainers want me to continue writing it.

So coming back to the main point of this post, first of all I would like to thank Mr. Howard who represented me in successfully defending the domain and that too with RDNH finding which is really a great feeling. Previously he represented me in two other UDRP cases which includes Kitchn.com, and PrintFactory.com. ALL credit goes to Howard Neu for saving another valuable domain.

In June I was hit with UDRP on AguaDulce.com which means “Sweet Water” in Spanish language and is municipality and city name as well in some part of the world.

Below is some part of the excerpt from the decision including RDNH:

It is understood and accepted by both of the Parties that they are based in different jurisdictions. Nevertheless, as the panel noted in Fakir Elektrikli EV Aletleri Diş Ticaret Anonim Şirketi v. Development Services, Telepathy, Inc., WIPO Case No. D2016-0535, “the fact that a respondent is in a different jurisdiction than a complainant is something that some people can consider to be of greater significance than it actually is, particularly if the complainant has a significant online presence”. In the present case, however, while there is evidence before the Panel that the Complainant has a website at “www.puertoaguadulce.com”, this has not been evidenced as a significant online presence which may be presumed to have come to the Respondent’s attention at or before the point of registration of the disputed domain name. No reason has been put forward as to why the unrelated mark would have stood out from other uses of the phrase “agua dulce” on the Internet.

In addition to giving details of its website, the Complainant puts forward a series of media articles relating to the activities of its port. These articles represent, in the Panel’s view, reasonably substantial and independent coverage of the Complainant’s activities and its use of the AGUADULCE mark. However, such coverage is in the specialist trade and business press only and some of it is presented in the Spanish language alone. At best, this establishes some notoriety of the Complainant within its own field of operations and, in particular, it reinforces the Complainant’s submission that it trades and is known as “Puerto Aguadulce” rather than as simply “Aguadulce”. It is true that the Complainant’s business features an obvious international dimension which might lead to the view that its notoriety extends beyond Colombia, at least within its own industry. However, there is no evidence before the Panel which demonstrates on the balance of probabilities that any such notoriety transcends the Complainant’s own field, or that this would have reached Pakistan in general or the Respondent in particular.

The Complainant seeks to bolster its case on the probability of the Respondent’s knowledge by reference to a “Google” search for the term “aguadulce”, featuring the Complainant’s website in prominent position. However, the Respondent reasonably counters with his own “www.bing.com” search which shows a single mention of the Complainant’s business portal website some distance down the rankings while, on the contrary, demonstrating a multiplicity of unconnected, mainly geographic, results. The discrepancy appears to result from the localization of the Complainant’s search. It is notable for example that its search returns are in Spanish, while the Respondent’s search returns are in English. In any event, the Complainant’s results are not conclusive of what the Respondent might be expected to have seen by way of a search in his own location.

What both Parties’ searches do demonstrate, taken together, is that a range of alternative meanings and possible uses of the term “aguadulce” (or “agua dulce”) exist, the majority of which do not denote the Complainant or its mark. There is considerable emphasis to be found on these alternative meanings or uses in the Respondent’s search and this provides adequate support for his case that he was not aware of the Complainant when he came to register the disputed domain name and that he did so to take advantage of its dictionary meaning. On the whole, the Panel considers that the results of the Parties’ searches could not be considered to be supportive of the Complainant’s case on registration and use in bad faith.

The Complainant points to an article on the Respondent’s website indicating that the Respondent has knowledge of and invests in “.co” domain names, being the country code for Colombia. The Complainant does not, however, submit that this fact alone could support an inference of the Respondent’s knowledge of Colombia itself or, by extension, of the Complainant or its trademark, nor in the circumstances would the Panel necessarily make such inference in the absence of other supporting evidence.

The Complainant also focuses on the Respondent’s past history concerning the registration of alleged dictionary word domain names. It cites three cases in which the Respondent was involved, on the basis that the Respondent’s bad faith intent, if established in these cases, might taint the Respondent’s protestations of good faith in the present proceeding. The Complainant is correct that the sole panelist in one of these cases, namely Gerald Hill v. Abdul Basit Makrani, supra, found against the Respondent. The complainant’s mark in Gerald Hill was CARIBBEAN-DIRECT and the domain name concerned was . The Respondent did not reply to the complainant’s contentions and it is clear that the panel placed considerable emphasis on the Respondent’s failure to engage with the complaint. For example, the panel noted that “the only such purpose [for the registration of the domain name] suggested in the case file was the Respondent’s apparent intention to sell the disputed domain name […]”. and “[…] the Respondent has not come forward to argue that he has any such rights or legitimate interests, in the face of the Complainant’s prima facie case against him. Following the majority of panel authority on this issue, referred to above, this would by itself be sufficient for the Complainant to establish that the Respondent lacks rights or legitimate interests.”

It is notable that the Complainant chose not to address the Panel in any detail on the other two cases which it cites involving the Respondent, namely Kitchn Norge AS v. Abdulbasit Makrani,supra and Aurelon B.V. v. AbdulBasit Makrani, supra. By contrast, the three-member panels in each of these cases reached decisions in the Respondent’s favor. These cases concerned the domain names , being intended by the Respondent as a contraction of the word “kitchen”, and respectively. While the facts are broadly similar to that of the present case, one difference is that the Respondent used both of these domain names to display pay-per-click links associated with the generic meaning of the words concerned. There was also, as here, a general offer of sale of the domain name concerned on each of the respective websites. The panel in each case found that there was no evidence that the Respondent’s use of the domain name demonstrated any intention on the Respondent’s part to target the complainant concerned and that there was no evidence that the Respondent had ever known of the rights of either of said complainants.

Before leaving this topic, the Panel notes that the Complainant also stated that the Respondent has been the respondent in other unspecified UDRP cases before another provider. The Panel has searched the records of the provider concerned for the Respondent’s name in a variety of alternative configurations and has not been able to find any such cases. The Panel also performed a “Google” search keyed to the same variations of the Respondent’s name with results limited to the provider’s website. This, too, did not return any relevant cases. The Complainant is clearly in the best position to provide the Panel with full citations of all and any cases upon which it seeks to rely. In the absence of such citations, this particular submission of the Complainant is to be disregarded. Accordingly, in all of the above circumstances, the Panel does not consider that the Respondent’s past history provides support to a material extent for the proposition that the Respondent is likely to have known of the Complainant’s marks and was targeting these by virtue of the disputed domain name.

The Panel notes in passing that the Complainant refers to the alleged use of the disputed domain name to obtain click-through revenue from the diversion of Internet users. However, the mechanism whereby such alleged click-through revenue is allegedly generated is not further described by the Complainant, nor do the corresponding screenshots produced by either the Complainant or the Respondent show the presence of any apparent pay-per-click or affiliate links.

The Complainant relies upon the case of Telstra Corporation Limited v. Nuclear Marshmallows, supra, to demonstrate use of the disputed domain name in bad faith as a consequence of the Respondent’s alleged passive holding thereof. The term “passive holding” as described in Telstra means circumstances of respondent inaction following the registration of a domain name. The panel in that case indicated that such circumstances could amount to bad faith in the meaning of the Policy, subject to a review of all the facts in each specific case. In Telstra itself, factors which the panel identified as demonstrating respondent bad faith were, first, that the complainant’s trademark was widely known nationally and internationally, secondly, that the respondent had provided no evidence of any actual or contemplated good faith use of the domain name concerned, thirdly, that the respondent had taken active steps to conceal its true identity, fourthly, that the respondent had actively provided and failed to correct false contact details, and fifthly, that taking into account all of these aspects, it was not possible to conceive of any plausible actual or contemplated active use of the domain name by the respondent which would not be illegitimate, such as by constituting passing off, an infringement of consumer protection legislation or an infringement of the complainant’s rights under trademark law.

On the facts of this case, the disputed domain name does not appear to the Panel to be passively held. It is being offered for general sale via the Registrar’s website and, rather than remaining passive, the Respondent has shown by its response to the Complainant’s inquiry that it replies to communications initiated through such site regarding possible sale of the disputed domain name. This could not be described as inaction, but even if it was, the Panel considers that the Complainant would not be able to fulfil the criteria described in the five factors in the Telstra case, nor any other similar criteria on the facts of this case.

Turning briefly to the Response, the Panel accepts that the term “agua dulce” can represent a dictionary phrase in the Spanish language meaning “sweet water” or, in an alternative and potentially more apt translation, “fresh water”. As a general rule, anyone can register such words in a domain name without transgressing the Policy and one cannot infer without evidence, which is lacking in this case, that one user of such words is necessarily being targeted. Some dictionary words may be so well-known in connection with a particular business or trademark (for example, DELTA, UNITED or APPLE) that the general rule would be displaced but that is not the case here. Similarly, a very specific combination of dictionary words might lead to an inference of targeting, for example, if the disputed domain name had contained the dictionary word “puerto” along with “aguadulce”.

However, this is not the case with the Spanish translation of “fresh water” which could be of value to multiple organizations.

The Panel acknowledges that the registration of the disputed domain name appears to correspond to those others in various languages which the Respondent indicates are part of its stock-in-trade. It is not unlikely that the Respondent could have chosen the disputed domain name independently of a trademark in the circumstances of this case. The Panel further accepts the Respondent’s contention that a domain name consisting of a dictionary word or phrase in any particular language is likely to have an intrinsic value on the secondary market which would justify an uplift in price, such as that quoted to the Complainant when it expressed an interest in the disputed domain name. There is no evidence before the Panel that such uplift has anything to do with the goodwill inherent in a mark as opposed to some intrinsic value of the disputed domain name itself.

In all of the above circumstances, the Panel finds that the Complainant has not established the third element under the Policy and the Complaint fails.

D. Reverse Domain Name Hijacking

In the present case, the majority of the Panel (Andrew Lothian and Nick Gardner) is of the opinion that the circumstances in which the Complaint was brought should lead to a finding of RDNH. The majority detects a lack of candor in the Complainant’s case which is inconsistent with its certification of completeness and accuracy in accordance with the Rules.

The majority of the Panel are of the opinion that the Complainant was doubly on notice regarding the importance of the dictionary phrase here due to the Complainant’s citation of past cases involving the Respondent, in which the Respondent’s registration of such words and phrases as domain names, and the corresponding uplift in value, is fully canvassed. The manner of such citation in the Complaint itself did not represent a fair presentation of the Respondent’s past history. The Complainant chose to highlight quotations from the no-response case Gerald Hill v. Abdul Basit Makrani, supra, in which a finding of registration and use in bad faith was made against the Respondent, and then merely to list two further cases in which he was involved. As outlined above, both of the latter two cases featured the decision of a three-member panel, a comprehensive response and a finding in the Respondent’s favor. The Complainant made no exposition of these cases at all. The Panel unanimously considers that the way in which the previous cases were quoted was at best careless and at worst misleading, given that the juxtaposition of the three cases in the manner put forth in the Complaint inevitably confers the wrongful impression that they were all decided on a similar basis to Gerald Hill. It was left to the Respondent to set the record straight in this regard.

As outlined above, the Complainant’s case asserted that the Respondent has also been party to cases before another provider of UDRP decisions. Despite making reliance on such unspecified cases, the Complainant failed to provide any details, including appropriate case numbers, which would have allowed the Panel to review and assess their relevance to the matter in hand. The Panel as a whole were unable to find any cases involving the Respondent before such provider. That is not to say that the Complaint is necessarily incorrect as far as this submission is concerned, but rather that the Panel is unimpressed by the making of an unsupported submission of this nature, particularly in light of the criticisms above regarding the three previous cases before the Center which were accurately cited in the Complaint. In the Panel’s opinion, this is indicative of a lack of care and/or of candor in the presentation of the Complainant’s case which cannot be overlooked in the assessment of RDNH.

Taking all of the above aspects together, while acknowledging the minority position on this topic as outlined above, the majority of the Panel finds that the Complaint was brought in bad faith in an attempt at Reverse Domain Name Hijacking and constitutes an abuse of the administrative proceeding.

Decision

For the foregoing reasons, the Complaint is denied.

The law firm (Brigard Castro) which according to their website says “a firm that is fully committed to its clients” who represented the complainant are bunch of morons and Reverse Domain Name Hijackers who not only mislead the panelists by falsely mentioning that I was involved in other cases whereas they failed to provide any such reference but they also concealed the entire proceedings and the final outcome of my last two UDRP decisions which went completely in my favor. Looks like their motto “a firm that is fully committed to its clients” means they’re fully committed to harm goodwill of their clients. They also asserted that I tried to instigate people on how to profit from .CO domains

It’s really satisfying to see the decision with complainant getting Reverse Domain Name Hijacking label. So everyone please remember that the Brigard Castro and their client are Reverse Domain Name Hijackers.

Once again I thank Mr. Howard Neu for representing and defending the domain successfully plus getting RDNH finding as well.

I wanted to convey a message to all people around the world, I will try my best to defend my properties and won’t let them go easily. Any one planning to file complaint against any of my domain in future, just remember that it’s not really easy to snatch any of my domain. Better to buy the domain in a proper manner through proper channel, else get ready for the hard consequences.

Any feedback is welcome.

This negotiation turned into successful sale

Hello and Assalamo Alaikum,

There have been many times fellow domainers ask about how I negotiate and what messages were exchanged in the entire communication. As everyone knows that most leads don’t end up successfully but let me share one of the recent successfully completed sale in which I’ll include the communication from beginning till the end. But just for the privacy of domain buyer, I’ll exclude domain name and buyer detail.

Inquiry came in via Uniregistry lander on 7th April 2019 and concluded on 16th April 2019.

Buyer: I am interested in your domain depending on price.

Me: I gave price quote of $4888 and won’t share the exact template I usually use.

Buyer: OK thank you; my budget is $3,000. Do you have other domain in that range that are unique? I am trying to think of a new business name that also has a domain available at the $2K to $3K price range.

Me: Thanks for your offer of $3000 which is appreciated. 

We’ve hundreds of domains which fits your price range but below are some of them for you to check: 

Here I gave around 10 brandable domains to check if he is interested in any of those.

If you like any of the above name, let me know. Or please mention specific keyword/niche so I’ll check in our portfolio which fits your need.

Buyer: OK thanks, none of those would work. I am looking for words that relate to nature (water, trees etc).

Me: Thanks for sharing. Below are some names which will fit your requirement but few are above your budget.

Here I listed around 10 domains related to water/trees.

Buyer: Too expensive for me. 🙂

Me: Yeah, I can understand. However, if you like to proceed with the purchase of xxxxxxxxxx.com, let me know.

Buyer: Thanks. I have up to $3K for a domain for a new business, name is TBD based on domain. I like xxxxxxxxxxx.com best but I cannot afford.
xxxxxxxxxxx.com is my 2nd pick so far and more reasonable for me. I own a domain www.xxxxxxxxx.com. If I can include that domain in a deal to close the gap I would consider. This was going to be my company name for many years but since i bought it long ago several new companies have come out with similar names like www.xxxxxxxxxx.com etc.

Me: Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

No matter you buy domain from me or elsewhere but I’ll give you honest suggestion. Using xxxxxxxx.com is confusing and three word domain. To cover up the typo/mistype traffic, you must have xxxxxxxx.com as well so there won’t be any leaked traffic. However, the best for sure is xxxxxxxxx.com and we’ve declined several decent offers to date on this one. But it looks like xxxxxxxxxxx.com could be the best match specially for you considering the budget.

In order to make a quick and fair deal, we would sell it for $4500 only.

What do you think?

Buyer: I appreciate your offer. That price is too high in my opinion looking at market value as well as value to me, however good for you if you can sell 
it for that much. For a purchase price of $xxx thats a great return. I am going to keep monitoring DropCatch for some other options. Good luck, if you look at your value/return again and decide you’re interested to transact, my email address is xxxxxxxxxx@xxxxxx.com.

Me: I can understand your point but purchase price doesn’t matter when selling any domain.

Thanks and wish you all the best in your endeavors.

Buyer: Thank you, I agree purchase price does not matter, just noting fantastic return. Congrats on your success I saw you sold symphony.com that is pretty cool. Best of luck.

Me: Thank you very much.

It’s unfortunate the deal didn’t go through but let me tell one thing, you’re a nice gentleman.

Buyer: Hi AbdulBasit, I appreciate your note. I have been looking around and still like this domain the best. I would purchase for $4,500. Let me know how we proceed.

The buyer knew how much I paid for the domain, most probably using NameBio and found out I acquired via DropCatch. It was good to see he understood that purchase price really doesn’t matter when selling a domain.

Also make sure one should never get upset if someone says you paid xx and now asking $xxxxx for it. Buyer always try to get the best deal and seller wants as maximum as possible.

It’s part of business so be prepared for everything coming your way. In short, always be nice with everyone.

Feel free to share your experience and/or if you like to give any feedback on the above negotiation.

From $16888 quote to $16888 domain sale

Hello and Assalamo Alaikum,

It was a fantastic last week of March where I closed two good sales. I had a great February month especially due to the sale of LiftLab.com whose detail can be found here in case anyone missed it. Last month wasn’t much of a difference when I closed the following two sales.

First, a direct inquiry came for BoostCamp.com via WHOIS in early February for which I quoted $6888. I got counter offer of $1750 which I declined. After going back and forth in exchanging several emails, the buyer agreed upon the originally quoted price of $6888. Payment was received last week. Unless the payment doesn’t arrive in escrow, I don’t consider it a successful sale as we’ve seen many potential buyers backed out with silence after even starting escrow. So all in all, it took more than a month to complete this deal. But all ended well as I didn’t need to pay any commission and pocketed full amount. By the way, I acquired the domain last year for low-mid 3 figures.

I used Sedo.com escrow and put the escrow fee to be paid by buyer. Sedo escrow service is better than Escrow.com mainly due to their not so much complicated verification requirements which is especially frustrating for one time buyer. Thanks for the members of NamePros who suggested using Sedo escrow when I asked I need to know some alternative to Escrow.com where I can receive funds in PayPal.

The only issue I face using Sedo escrow is when I initiate a transaction, the request goes to Sedo to start transaction whereas it should automatically be started like at Escrow.com. They must make it automated instead of current manual system which seems bit outdated.

Another sale was super quick and smooth. The buyer came via Uniregistry lander on Avellino.com which I acquired two years back for low 4 figures.

I originally quoted $16888. Buyer simply agreed to price and asked how to proceed with next step. Started Uniregistry checkout which is very smooth and easy to use. The only issue is their service fee which is on high side considering the escrow fee was paid by buyer and still their service fee which I’d to pay was $186. Still I’m happy using their escrow compare to Escrow.com. So currently I prefer using either Sedo escrow or Uniregistry checkout. In both cases, I put on escrow fee to be paid by buyer.

Feel free to share your recent domain sale(s) with any detail if you like to.

Some more great features added to DotDB

Hello and Assalamo Alaikum,

Almost a year back I published an article about a great service DotDB which I’ve been using it regularly or I say it clearly that on daily basis.

Since that time, they’ve introduced several new features which are worth sharing with you all. One of the most awaiting thing was to have exclude function and now it does have the function and some more additional new functions like Bulk Search, Export data, API access

What I would love to see them have is to reduce pricing for both Pro and Expert plan so it could be more reasonable especially for Expert plan. I can understand the hard work, investment and lot more involved but to be more competitive and have edge over your competitor, one need to offer a great overall service.

Also while frequently using both at Dofo and DotDB, I finally found the difference between results at both sites. Suppose you type in Print,Factory at Dofo to show results between space which shows the opposite result as well. I mean Dofo shows factory print, factory printing as well whereas at DotDB, when I type print factory, it shows results starting with print or the middle but factory word doesn’t come at first in any way. I think if DotDB adds this feature as well, would make it even better service.

I would suggest anyone interested in using on frequent basis must try their Pro plan for 7 days free trial. It’s worth giving a shot.

I’m sure the developer of DotDB (Lin) will take this feedback positively like in past as well and he’s a good fried of mine.

Feel free to give your feedback and I’m sure Lin or his team would be happy to listen and implement it if necessary.

First five figure sale of 2019

Hello and Assalamo Alaikum,

It’s been long time since I reported my last five figure sale but it looks like the time has come which is the beginning of this year.

The inquiry came in mid October 2018 via Sedo broker Albert Schimmel looking domain for his client with budget in high 4 figures. Since my domain was listed with an asking price of $28,888 so there seems to be big gap. Since buyer’s identity is not disclosed until the sale is completed so you never know if there is any room for buyer to be flexible and come up close to asking price or even accept the BIN.

I responded by giving hint on having some flexibility if the buyer comes close to BIN. After going back and forth with broker in a period of one month, he said the lead is “pretty much dead”. After hearing such words from the broker, I realized the buyer don’t have the budget and will go for other option so I just thought to forget it….

And I really forgot it as well until last week…. when I suddenly received email from same broker after almost 3 months by saying he thinks of getting the buyer to offer $22,000 NET or may be a bit higher.

Now that was pretty much sale going to happen from a pretty much dead lead. Also it was quite close to asking price.

I accepted the offer but asked him to give a try of getting anything above that level but anyways of accepting this in case the buyer makes no move from this amount. I totally left on the sincerity of Albert who I believe gave his best all the way handling this deal and got the buyer to pay $22,500 NET which I suppose makes it $26,470 GROSS for the domain LiftLab.com. Correct me if I’m wrong.

Surprisingly the payment arrived in Sedo’s escrow account the very next day of initiating the transaction. And within next 24 hours, the domain transfer was completed and funds were released!

Thanks to Albert and Sedo team for making the deal so smooth.

Feel free to share your recent domain sale(s) with any detail if you like to.