The company filed UDRP after failing to purchase the domain name from the current owner.
A National Arbitration Forum panelist discovered that Ecostream LLC attempted to hijack an upside-down domain name.
The company, which provides water management and oil recovery services, filed a dispute against the domain name ecostream.com. The company uses ecostreamusa.com.
According to the case decision, Ecostream LLC started using the Ecostream trademark after the respondent registered the domain, so this case was dead on arrival.
Worse still, Ecostream doesn’t have a trademark or submit evidence showing common law rights, so it didn’t even pass the first part of the UDRP (which the domain is identical or similar to a mark in which the plaintiff has rights).
Upon discovering the reverse domain name hijacking, National Arbitration Forum panelist Terry Peppard wrote:
Based on the record before us, highlights on this issue include the following:
1. throughout these proceedings, the Complainant was represented by experienced legal counsel;
2. The Complainant was aware, when it filed its Complaint, that the Respondent had acquired its domain name before the Complainant could establish common law rights in the ECOSTREAM mark on which it relies;
3. Complainant has provided no evidence that Respondent obtained its domain name registration in bad faith in anticipation of Complainant acquiring rights to its claimed trademark; and
4. Complainant filed its Complaint only after its efforts to purchase Respondent’s domain name failed.
On these facts, we find both that the Complainant’s complaint is unfounded, as stated above, and that the Complainant’s submissions demonstrate that in filing and pursuing these proceedings, the Complainant attempted in bad faith to obtain by abusing the process of the policy what he could not obtain to his satisfaction by negotiation (often referred to as filing a “Plan B”). Accordingly, plaintiff is guilty of reverse domain name hijacking as defined in the Rules…
The domain owner did not respond to the dispute, but Peppard noted that the panelist was “forced to consider” reverse domain name hijacking given the circumstances.
Maslon, LLP represented the Complainant.