JP Communications Awarded “Top10 Wholesale” in Domain Name Dispute
Oct 1, 2009
-- Arbitration Decision Affirms JPC Rights To Leading Industry Site Name Top Ten Wholesale and Similar Brand Domain Name Top10 Wholesale --
SAN DIEGO -- October 1, 2009 -- JP Communications, Inc., publisher of leading Internet vertical search and directory sites that connect wholesalers, manufacturers and distributors -- including its flagship brand Top Ten Wholesale (R)Top Ten Wholesale (R) -- won transfer of the domain name Top 10 Wholesale from a user who invalidly registered and used a JPC network site name by merely changing a word to a number.
The decision to re-assign rights to a similar-sounding web site name was issued by the National Arbitration Forum, using the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy developed by ICANN, Internet Commission on Assigned Names and Numbers.
“We’re very pleased with the UDRP panel’s decision to award the Top10 Wholesale site name to us. We are the original owners of the high-ranking Top Ten Wholesale search site name,” said Jason Prescott, CEO of parent company JP Communications, Inc.
Under legal rules and precedents set by Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy, JP Communications demonstrated previous usage and registration of the original site name – Top Ten Wholesale.com – and also showed that the respondent (defendant company in the complaint) had registered a confusing similar name – Top 10 Wholesale – in order to siphon off commercial online searchers from a higher traffic JPC wholesale network site.
Prescott added: “JP Communications only had to make a case showing, first, we had established rights to the trademark Top Ten Wholesale; and, second, that the other company registered and used a confusing, similar name (Top 10 Wholesale) in bad faith … by not using it for legitimate wholesale search, product sourcing and services.”
“So the arbitration panel’s decision easily, and legally, transferred the disputed domain name from the former registrant to Top Ten Wholesale and JPC, Inc,” concluded Prescott.
Details from National Arbitration Forum Decision on Claim FA0906001270452:
· JPC established common law and then US Patent and Trademark Office rights to the name Top Ten Wholesale that predate the respondent company’s registration of the disputed Top 10 Wholesale name;
· Typographical changes – such as changing Top Ten to Top 10 – or even adding a new higher-level domain name -- from dot-com to dot-net – do not reduce confusion among Internet users searching for wholesale services. The respondent company could profit from the confusion it caused by receiving click-through referral fees from Internet users who expected Top Ten Wholesale’s information and services, plus wrongly suggesting JPC / Top Ten Wholesale’s endorsement or affiliation with the other company.
· The domain name Top 10 Wholesale.com was used in bad faith, as evidenced by:
o Confusion caused among wholesale users, noted above;
o Top 10 resolving to a web site that featured click-through ads and third-party web sites unrelated to wholesale searching, products, directories and services;
o Respondent company registered the name Top 10 Wholesale but was not commonly referred to by that name. In fact, the other company was registered as an advertising service, not a bona fide source of wholesale goods or services.
Final decision to transfer the disputed domain name to JP Communications, Inc. was formalized July 31, 2009.
About TopTenWholesale (R)
TopTenWholesale.com, the flagship Internet property of JP Communications, is a leading wholesale directory and search engine that directly connects resellers and buyers in the global and domestic general merchandise trade with wholesalers, manufacturers, distributors, drop-shippers, importers and exporters. Top Ten Wholesale offers vertical, industry-specific, search services, directory listings, industry news and online advertising for over 100 wholesale product categories, including apparel, footwear, jewelry, accessories, health and beauty products, merchandise closeouts and toys and gifts.
About JP Communications, Inc. (R)
Parent company and network publisher of various vertical search engines and directories, JPC, Inc. includes TopTenWholesale.com, Wholezilla.com, OffPriceNetwork.com, WholesaleU.com and Top Ten Wholesale Keyword Trends. JPC’s mission is to be the information superhighway for the general merchandise industry, facilitating buying and selling of wholesale products in dozens of product categories across the entire supply chain, from manufacturers, outsourcers, importers and wholesalers to wholesale liquidation specialists, distributors, resellers, store owners and online retailers of every size.