Monday , August 15 2022

Gorgonzola.wtf: Cheesy #UDRP decision fails to enforce trademark claims

Gorgonzola.wtf: Cheesy #UDRP decision fails to enforce trademark claims

The UDRP filed against the domain Gorgonzola.wtf did not have the outcome the Complainant anticipated.

Consorzio per la Tutela del Formaggio Gorgonzola, Italy, filed the UDRP to protect its GORGONZOLA mark that identifies a type of cheese made in Italy. According to the Complaint:

The Complainant was created in 1968 in the form of two entities which merged in 1970 to protect the GORGONZOLA trademark, having the sole authority according to an Italian Government Decree to authorize the use of the name and trademark GORGONZOLA, which functions as a collective trademark, certifying which products may bear the denomination on the basis not only of the territorial origin but also of specific qualities of the products.

The sole panelist at the UDRP did not find the Respondent to be in breach of any key points when deciding on a case. Instead, he cut the Respondent some major slack with regards to the unique qualities of the Gorgonzola cheese and its mark:

The evidence in the Complaint does not show that the Complainant and the denomination of origin ‘gorgonzola’ has such a strong reputation in the United States that any person who sought to register a domain name featuring the word ‘gorgonzola’ must have been aiming to take advantage of the confusion between the Domain Name and any rights the Complainant has in words or marks corresponding to the Domain Name, as opposed to registering the Domain Name for its descriptive qualities. It is not implausible that a party unaware of the Complainant, or a party aware of the Complainant but cognizant that the protection of the denomination of origin ‘Gorgonzola’ does not extend to the United States, would seek to register a Domain Name consisting of the word ‘gorgonzola’ to take advantage of the descriptive meaning of the word in the United States, namely as a particular type of cheese.

Final (WTF) decision: Deny transfer of the domain Gorgonzola.wtf to the Complainant.

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