WIPO is Chewbacca

WIPO makes no sense. The vast majority of their decisions come down on the side of the complainant (generally also the trademark holder) — by vast majority I mean like 6000 cases decided in favor of and only 1000ish against. Yet, every now and then, they deny a complaint that is (a) pretty clearly a trademark infringement if you go by their past decisions and (b) already been ruled an infringement by another body that governs a specific ccTLD.

Ryanair loses domain name battle. — BusinessWeek

Don’t get me wrong, here. Yay for the registrant. Seriously. As someone who has a domain or two in her collection that might fall into the questionable category, I’m tickled this guy is getting to keep his domain. It gives me hope 🙂

What puzzles and concerns me is that WIPO doesn’t seem to have definitive rules for how they make decisions, and even in their Overview of WIPO Panel Views they have more contradictory statements than Heinz has pickles.

For example, Section 2.4 deals discusses “Does a respondent using the domain name for a criticism site generate rights and legitimate interests?” and then goes on to give two completely opposing panel views and cites decisions made that support BOTH of the completely opposite views. How on earth are you supposed to know where you stand until you’re actually involved in a UDRP case and you’re shelling out a nice chunk of change to a lawyer?

The whole thing hurts my head and I think I’m going to try not worry too much until I get slapped with a UDRP notice.