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Urgent advice needed!

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drbiohealth

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Hi,

I have a generic domain name, say xxxx.com. There is a company which has its website as exxxx.com. Also, the company has registered "exxxx.com" as a trademark. Questions,

1. Does the company exxxx.com have any grounds for reverse hijacking my domain?
2. Does joining their affiliate program change the situation in point 1.
3. Am I safe in joining some other affiliate program with similar product as exxxx.com?
4. If I get a service mark for xxxx.com, how much protection it would provide against any potential reverse hijacking?

Thanks in advance.

Cheers!
Raj
 
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draqon

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1. Possibly, but your example is not specific enough to provide sufficient information to judge. Using lots of asterixes is just a waste of our time.
2. Probably. It will show that you are intentionally misleading customers into thinking you are associated with exxxxx.com and furthermore it is evidence of bad faith usage since your usage is commercial.
3. Probably not. Not enough information to judge.
4. Very very little, I suspect.
 

drbiohealth

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Hi,

Thanks for your reply.

From what you say, it appears that I effectively cannot use the domain for doing business in the same area as the other company. However, I have found a few cases which contradicts this, for example, ecar.com is a TM, however both ecar.com and car.com do business in the same field. Likewise, there are many other such examples.

Still, do you have any specific tips how I can do business/affiliate in the same area as the other company?

Cheers!
 

draqon

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it really truly does make all the difference in the world how generic your domain is.

Look:

They own eCar.com and you own Car.com. You want to sell automotive information. Your domain is so generic that you are perfectly fine unless you sign up for their affiliate program.

They own eAmazon.com and you own Amazon.com. You want to sell books. You have a highly generic domain. But you are NOT fine because their trademark is being infringed.

You havent really explained which of these situations is more closely resembling your case.
 

Andrew Shaw

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that was very well put, it depends if the name after the "e" is tradmarked.
 

drbiohealth

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Very well put draqon! That clears it. Well, my case is pretty much closer to ecar.com. The term is a commonly used single word. Does this info help my case?
Cheers!
 

draqon

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in that case you should PROBABLY be fine, as long as you follow the following rules:

1) Dont sign up for their affiliate program. It will only anger them, inviting unnecessary problems.
2) You probably can sign up for competing affiliate programs if the word is THAT generic.
3) Make sure you make it very clear, in terms of the visual design of the site, that your site isnt associated or connected with eXXXXX.com. There must be no possible way that someone would confuse your site with theirs.
 

jberryhill

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What's "Urgent" about the question?
 

mixton

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I think you should contact with http://ESQWIRE.COM and give them more details, for example the dates of registration of both domains, dates of registering trademarks. I'm sure they will help you (as they helped me).
 

Zeeble

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If the domain is Generic such as "car", you should be fine....
 

drbiohealth

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Thanks guys for all your comments!

Thank you Draqon once again for your terse comments! I'll heed these points while developing the site. Regarding your point,

3) Make sure you make it very clear, in terms of the visual design of the site, that your site isnt associated or connected with eXXXXX.com. There must be no possible way that someone would confuse your site with theirs.

Do you have any generic wordings for some kind of disclaimer that can be put on the site without mentioning the specific name of the site exxxx.com? Or is it necessary to mention the site name?

What's "Urgent" about the question?

Thanks John for pointing that out...it was perhaps because I was just a bit more anxious to know the answer...still I have edited the title to reflect "less urgent" situation...:).
 
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