It is a noisy matter of "cyber squatting" ended a few days ago and it is very rich on teaching : When Spanish Nic gives the last hand to the flexibility on its register rules, it is very ironic to see Barcelona wrapped in one of the most serious "failures" of UDRP procedure.
When in 1996 Mr. Joan Nogueras Cobo registered "Barcelona.com" dominion name it was, for sure, like a simple honor to his native city while he lived in California. And, for sure, he did this more freely in that time since .com was already managed under an approved criterion of" the first that arrives, the first in attention" and because yesterday like today .com didn’t ask for a particular qualification on a name or mark if you wanted to register it like Dominion Name. It is only three years later, when Mr : Cobo and his associates decided the using of www.barcelona.com like the Url of a site dedicated to tourism in this city when the municipality of Barcelona disquiets and begins actions for taking this dominion name that belonged to it by right.
In that time, the Uniform Procedure of Lawsuit Resolution in relation of dominion names (UDRP) was established recently by ICANN. It is then, in the presence of the World-wide Organization on Copyright (OMPI), when the municipality begins the procedure. The OMPI arbiter agreed with the Barcelonan Municipal Government which, on its way, had "more rights or more legitimate interest" in the using of this name, by taking a decision that could even put into interdiction the criterion mentioned above and consequently the basement of several Registers ! It is then, in the presence of American Justice ( the country where VeriSign social address manages .com) where Mr. Cobo went to complain about this full of dregs decision. It was well done because the Court of Appeal has just to recognize that the OMPI decision wasn’t valid and Mr. Cobo doesn’t use the dominion name with the purpose of damage the city. The end of this lawsuit is, for sure, a good teaching since it emphasizes the validity of the present performance of .com. It pointed out that UDRP isn’t the panacea "for recovering" rights you think that belong to you legitimately. Then, more than ever, you have to register on time !
JCV & SB