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Upstart German Digital Content Company Found Guilty Of RDNH

Case Number: D2017-2095

Complainant: Airtango AG

Represented by: Dr. Meyer-Dulheuer & Partners LLP

An upstart German tech company, Airtango AG, seeking to gain a foothold in the digital content and streaming market, has been found guilty of attempted reverse domain name hijacking by a single member panel of the World Intellectual Property Organization. Airtango had attempted to gain control of the domain airtango.com. The panelist, Tony Willoughby, made his finding despite the fact the domain owner, Gustavo Winchester, of Brazil, did not respond to the UDRP.

While Airtango does have several German trademarks for the term, “airtango”, all were issued in early 2017. The domain name was registered in 2002, long before Airtango applied for its trademark.

Mr. Willoughby wrote, “[T]he fact that the Domain Name was registered fourteen years before the Complainant and its trade mark rights saw the light of day had to be of crucial importance (and should have been seen to be of crucial importance) to the outcome of this case.”

The panel’s ruling was issued December 11, 2017.

Source: https://www.wipo.int/amc/en/domains/search/text.jsp?case=D2017-2095

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