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WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center

 

ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION

Consorzio per la Tutela dell’Asti v. Mr. Stanley Filoramo

Case No. D2004-0347

 

1. The Parties

The Complainant is Consorzio per la Tutela dell’Asti, Asti, Italy, represented by Studio Legale Jacobacci e Associati, Italy.

The Respondent is Mr. Stanley Filoramo, Montrйal, Quйbec, Canada.

 

2. The Domain Name and Registrar

The disputed domain name <astidocg.net> is registered with Wild West Domains, Inc.

 

3. Procedural History

The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on May 12, 2004. On May 12, 2004, the Center transmitted by email to Wild West Domains, Inc., a request for registrar verification in connection with the domain name at issue. On May 12, 2004, Wild West Domains, Inc., transmitted by email to the Center its verification response confirming that the Respondent is listed as the registrant and providing the contact details for the administrative, billing, and technical contact. The Center verified that the Complaint satisfied the formal requirements of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Policy”), the Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Rules”), and the WIPO Supplemental Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Supplemental Rules”).

In accordance with the Rules, paragraphs 2(a) and 4(a), the Center formally notified the Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on May 17, 2004. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5(a), the due date for Response was June 6, 2004. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified both parties of the Respondent’s default on June 10, 2004.

The Center appointed Zbyněk Loebl as the sole panelist in this matter on June 16, 2004. The Panel finds that it was properly constituted. The Panel has submitted the Statement of Acceptance and Declaration of Impartiality and Independence, as required by the Center to ensure compliance with the Rules, paragraph 7.

 

4. Factual Background

The following information is derived from the Complaint and the supporting evidence and materials submitted by the Complainant.

Consorzio per la Tutela dell’Asti is an entity created in 1932 in order to control the use of the denomination of origin ASTI for sparkling wines. It has under Italian law the exclusive right to authorize in the field of beverages the use of the names ASTI, SPUMANTE ASTI, ASTI SPUMANTE (“spumante” meaning in Italian “sparkling wine”) and ASTI DOCG (DOCG being the acronym of “denominazione di origine controllata e garantita,” “denomination of origin controlled and guaranteed”). Denomination of origin is regulated in Italy in a similar manner as a collective trademark.

Consorzio per la Tutela dell’Asti has registered several trademarks including the word ASTI, inter alia, in Canada, Paraguay and Peru.

The Respondent redirected the disputed domain name to a pornographic website and subsequently has promoted domain name registration services. The Complainant provided evidence that the Respondent registered several other domain names identical to, or confusingly similar with well-known European trademarks, all of them pointing to pornographic websites.

The Respondent has made no response to the Complainant’s allegations, despite being properly served with the Complaint.

 

5. Parties’ Contentions

A. Complainant

Complainant contends that the disputed domain name is confusingly similar with registered trademarks of the Complainant and it is identical with the denomination of origin ASTI DOCG held by the Complainant; that the Respondent has no legal rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name; and that the Respondent registered and is using the disputed domain name in bad faith.

As evidence that the disputed domain name is confusingly similar with registered trademarks of the Complainant and that it is identical with the denomination of origin of the Complainant, the Complainant enclosed evidence of multiple registrations of trademarks ASTI in different countries and it referred to an Italian Ministerial Decree dated November 29, 1993, which confers on the Complainant the sole authority to authorize in the field of beverages the use of the name ASTI DOCG.

As evidence that the Respondent has no legal rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name, the Complainant draws the Panelist’s attention to the following: (i) lack of evidence of any bona fide offer of goods or services; the Respondent in reality only offered pornographic images for a fee through its website; (ii) the Respondent has never been commonly known in the normal course of business by the trademark, trade name or domain name ASTI or ASTI DOCG; and (iii) the only use which Respondent made of the domain name was commercial, and the possibility of a non-commercial fair use seems very remote.

As evidence of bad faith, the Complainant draws the Panelist’s attention to the fact that the Respondent registered several other domain names identical to, or confusingly similar with well-known European trademarks, all of them pointing to pornographic websites. Panels have already concluded that Mr. Filoramo operates in bad faith in several cases.

B. Respondent

The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.

 

6. Discussion and Findings

Since the Respondent has not filed any response and consequently has not contested any of the Complainant’s contentions, this case shall be decided based on the allegations and documents submitted by the Complainant.

Under paragraph 4(a) of the Policy, the Complainant must prove each of the allegations referenced in the headings of paragraphs A.,B. and C. below.

A. Identical or Confusingly Similar

The Panel finds that the disputed domain name <astidocg.net> is confusingly similar to the trademark ASTI registered by the Complainant in several countries and the trademark ASTI was registered, for example, in Canada in 1988 (although by a different owner, the Complainant was registered as new owner by a decision dated January 5, 2004), Paraguay and Peru in 2003. The “DOCG” addition in the disputed domain name is purely generic and it does not prevent the confusing nature of the disputed domain name.

Such a conclusion has been confirmed by many previous WIPO decisions in which it has been ruled that the addition of generic words does not change the confusing nature of the similarity, see Telstra Corporation Limited v. Ozurls, WIPO Case No. D2001-0046, Quixtar Investments, Inc. v Dennis Hoffman, WIPO Case No. D2000-0253; and Jefferson Smurfit Group plc v. Stephen Davidson Inc., WIPO Case No. D2000-1117. In addition, the disputed domain name is identical to the Italian denomination of origin ASTI DOCG for sparkling wines, which is regulated under Italian law similarly as a collective trademark.

B. Rights or Legitimate Interests

The Panelist finds that the Complainant has presented evidence and argued convincingly that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interest in the disputed domain name. By not submitting a response, the Respondent failed to demonstrate any rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name. Based on the arguments and evidence brought by the Complainant and described in Sections 4 and 5 above, the Panelist finds that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name.

C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith

The Panelist considers that, based on the evidence presented by the Complainant, the Respondent registered the disputed domain name in bad faith.

The Panelist considers it evidence of bad faith that the Respondent has linked the disputed domain name to a commercial pornographic website (see, among others, Motorola, Inc. v. NewGate Internet, Inc., WIPO Case No. D2000-0079; Ty, Inc. v. O.Z. Names, WIPO Case No. D2000-0370; Six Continents Hotels, Inc. v. Seweryn Nowak, WIPO Case No. D2003-0022), and a pattern of behavior of the Respondent regarding other well-known trademarks as evidenced in the numerous WIPO decisions (Centrale del Latte di Torino & C. S.p.A. v. Mr. Stanley Filoramo, WIPO Case No. D2003-0931, S.p.A. Egidio Galbani v. Stanley Filoramo, WIPO Case No. D2003-0978, Lanificio F.lli Cerruti S.p.A. v. Mr. Stanley Filoramo, WIPO Case No. D2003-0740, Jil Sander AG v. Mr. Stanley Filoramo, WIPO Case No. D2003-0816, Miroglio S.p.A. v. Stanley Filoramo, WIPO Case No. D2003-0887, Consitex S.A., Lanificio Ermenegildo Zegna & Figli S.p.A., Ermenegildo Zegna Corporation v. Stanley Filoramo, WIPO Case No. DWS2003-0004, Mr. Diego Della Valle v. Mr. Stanley Filoramo, WIPO Case No. D2003-0941, Perlier S.p.A. v. Mr. Stanley Filoramo, WIPO Case No. D2003-0848, Cameo S.p.A. v. Mr. Stanley Filoramo, WIPO Case No. D2003-0857, Helmut Lang S.a.r.l. v. Mr. Stanley Filoramo, WIPO Case No. D2003-0822, G. Bellentani 1821 S.p.A. v. Stanley Filoramo, WIPO Case No. D2003-0783, Giuseppe Citterio Salumificio S.p.A. v. Mr. Stanley Filoramo, WIPO Case No. D2003-0787).

The Panelist also finds it very likely that the Respondent had prior knowledge of the Complainant’s trademark when the Respondent registered the disputed domain name.

 

7. Decision

For all the foregoing reasons, in accordance with paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the domain name <astidocg.net> be transferred to the Complainant.

 


 

Zbyněk Loebl
Sole Panelist

Date: June 30, 2004

 

Источник информации: https://internet-law.ru/intlaw/udrp/2004/d2004-0347.html

 

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