Zydus Lifesciences nailed for reverse domain name hijacking
Indian pharmaceutical company admonished for case against zydus.com.
A three-member World Intellectual Property Organization panel has found (pdf) Zydus Lifesciences Ltd to have engaged in reverse domain name hijacking.
The Indian pharmaceutical company filed a cybersquatting case against the registrant of zydus.com.
The Respondent swore that he registered the domain as a brandable term in 2004, not to target the Indian company. Zydus Lifesciences submitted a lot of information about its company but didn’t address its reputation dating to 2004, the panel determined.
Interestingly, the panel also gave the Respondent some leeway for pay-per-click links at the domain. Zydus didn’t submit a printout of the page but said it contained ads for “Zydus Pharma” and “India Pharma.”
The panel wrote:
If the Panel is correct that these are algorithmically generated links, and the page was accessed in India (as seems likely) the Panel is not particularly surprised it returned links which may relate to the Complainant. While the presence of “click through” links may in appropriate cases form a basis to show targeting, in the specific circumstances of this case, and in particular without additional supporting evidence of targeting, the facts as described in the Complaint do not in the Panel’s opinion establish that the Respondent was deliberately targeting the Complainant. The Panel therefore concludes that in this case even if the Disputed Domain Name was used in the manner described by the Complainant that does not support any finding of bad faith.
In finding reverse domain name hijacking, the panel wrote:
The Complainant is professionally represented in this matter and, in the opinion of the Panel, knew or ought to have known that it had no reasonable chance of prevailing in this proceeding for the reasons set out above. In particular the Complainant has in large measure ignored the key issue – the fact that the Respondent acquired the Disputed Domain Name in 2004. The Complaint has instead simply produced voluminous evidence directed at events after that date. Further the Complaint contains statements which are, at least on the evidence as filed, inaccurate – specifically that the Complainant’s predecessor had in some way adopted the term Zydus from 1952 and that the Complainant owned a US trademark registration for the term ZYDUS prior to the date the Disputed Domain Name was registered. The Panel also accept the Respondent’s case that it is more likely than not that the numerous unsolicited offers to buy the Disputed Domain Name received by the Respondent in early 2022 were made on behalf of the Complainant. These offers were undisclosed by the Complainant in the Complaint and would appear to indicate the Complainant
knew it did not have prior rights that would allow it to recover the Disputed Domain Name. At the very least the Complainant should have disclosed it had made these offers and explained why it had done so given the nature of the case it advanced in the Complaint.
The Panel is also of the view that the sheer volume of material produced by the Complainant, without a proper referencing to indicate the key parts of this material, tended to obfuscate matters in a manner the Panel found unhelpful.
Taking all of the above into account the Panel considers it appropriate to find that the Complainant was brought in bad faith and constitutes an abuse of the administrative proceeding.
AnantLaw represented the Complainant. Greenberg & Lieberman represented the domain owner.
© DomainNameWire.com 2022. This is copyrighted content. Domain Name Wire full-text RSS feeds are made available for personal use only, and may not be published on any site without permission. If you see this message on a website, contact editor (at) domainnamewire.com. Latest domain news at DNW.com: Domain Name Wire.