14 votes

Ron Paul loses both domain disputes over RonPaul.com and RonPaul.org

Ron Paul lost his bid to take control of the RonPaul.com and RonPaul.org domain names. In the case of RonPaul.com the panel ruled that Ron Paul did not prove the current owners lack rights or legitimate interest in the domain. In the case of RonPaul.org, the panel harshly rebuked Dr. Paul's claim, finding that he engaged in reverse domain hijacking.

Reverse domain hijacking occurs where a trademark owner attempts to secure a domain name by making false cybersquatting claims against a domain name’s rightful owner. UDRP rules define reverse domain name hijacking as the filing of a complaint in bad faith, resulting in the abuse of the UDRP administrative process.

The decision is worth reading.

According to the decision, the criteria that must be met for the Complainant to win the domain from the Respondent are:

1. the Domain Name registered by Respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights;

2. Respondent has no rights to or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name; and

3. Respondent has registered and is using the Domain Name in bad faith.

The panel decided that it would not rule one way or the other on (1).

All the Respondent needed to do is show *any* legitimate right or interest in respect of the domain name OR that the domain name was registered in good faith.

The panel accepted the argument that because the site was a legitimate fan site, the criteria of legitimate interest is met. The site has disclaimers on it clearly stating it isn't Ron Paul's official web site, and the panel concludes that the content of the site falls under Fair Use anyway. The fact that the Respondent offered to give Ron Paul the RonPaul.org domain was icing on the cake.

Personally, I hope RonPaul.org is still offered for free.

The decision:
http://domainnamewire.com/wp-content/paul-2.pdf

Some commentary:
http://domainnamewire.com/2013/05/23/ron-paul-loses-dispute-...
http://domainnamewire.com/2013/05/23/breaking-ron-paul-found...

Update:

Just so all of you are clear, ownership of a trademark, even if the trademark is registered and beyond dispute, does NOT give the trademark owner the right to "exact_trademark_match.COM". The gTLD registries operate on a first come, first served basis. UDRP was a massive shift of policy in favor of trademark owners as it provides reasonable grounds for breaking the first come, first served rule.

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The problem is Ron Paul's staff.

In fact, his staff has been a problem almost the whole time.

Ron Paul, the apostle, the prophet, is a great man, something awesome in our time.

But his staff, with some very important exceptions, can be among the most arrogant, high-handed, b itchy, and obnoxious people you ever encountered. The attitude of the paid staff toward the grassroots has be horrible at times. Let's see... Lew Moore... Debbie Hopper... John Tate... oh, and... Jessie Benton. Who could forget Jessie???...

The problems with the antagonistic relationship between the grassroots and the paid staff has caused some of us to question Ron's leadership and management abilities.

Ron Paul's grassroots tend to be anarcholibertarian types who are by nature difficult to control and dealing with them can be something like herding cats. But Paul's Cats are loyal to the principles of the old man.

What we are seeing here with the ronpaul.com/ronpaul.org fiasco is more of the arrogant stupidity of Ron's staff in dealing with the grassroots.

Although I don't like to say so, Ron is responsible and accountable for the behaviour of his staff no matter how busy he is. Ron is not responsible for the behaviour of the grass roots.

This matter was handled poorly by the Ron Paul staff.

check out this nasty

check out this nasty case...

http://www.digest.com/Big_Story.php

“Let it not be said that no one cared, that no one objected once it’s realized that our liberties and wealth are in jeopardy.”
― Ron Paul

Easy solution: anything besides ronpaul.com

.whateverworks

paulhakel.info
loveGodwithallyourheart.com

"The world has never known more oppressive governments or bigger governments than those which profess the cult of liberty." - Donald Sanborn

Michael Nystrom's picture

Damn straight

Glad to hear this.

And disappointed in all the brown-nosing, Ron Paul sycophants.

Justice was served, for once.

All art is only done by the individual. The individual is all you ever have, and all schools only serve to classify their members as failures. E.H.

When Ron Paul's got fans such

When Ron Paul's got fans such as the folks running the fan-site, ronpaul.com, then who needs enemies.

But that website will die out as Ron Paul is loosing relevance these days. Soon, it'll be ALL about Rand Paul.

The cult of Ron Paul

Me too. By the logic of many commenters, this web site would have required permission to display his photo. It's amazing how so many can be opposed to the concept of government picking winners and losers, of government interference with activities that harm no one, then turn around and demand Ron Paul receive special privilege.

Maybe there really is a sizable cult of personality following Dr. Paul rather than truly believing liberty can work.

Wow

"Ron Paul sycophants."

You have just fully insulted the base of the dailypaul.
What an eye opener.

three Panamanian corporations...aka Ron Paul "fans"

RonPaul.org should had just been given back in August 2012 when it expired.

Seems like Ron Paul had bad lawyers. Or maybe the WIPO is biased.

It's funny to state that Ron Paul has no common law protection to his name, and that he should had trademarked it, but it's this fame derived partially from book sales that allowed RonPaul.com to exist at all.

The decision downplays the revenue the site's made but they surely didn't spend $25,000 on the domain as "fans".

AND since it's Ron Paul vs three Panamanian corporations, it's hard to understand if they really paid $25,000 for it. Raul Garcia of WKF Corp (Panama) bought RonPaul.com on eBay from a legitimate source and then leased it to JNR Corp (Panama) who later bought it. During the lease-option, WKF Corp offered to sell it to Ron Paul for $800,000+. If WKF is connected to JNR, then it's clear they are guilty of cyber-squatting.

Another company in Panama, DN Capital Inc., owned RonPaul.org.

Ron should file a lawsuit in my opinion. There is nothing "non-commercial" or "fair use" about the domain like the decision claims.

Check out http://ronpaulforums.com for activism and news.

tasmlab's picture

Perverted little anti-morality play

Go to RonPaul.com and it says 'fan site!' and there's all this kind, pro-Ron Paul messages and the encouragement for a 2016 campaign.

And they don't hand over the domain and be like "OMG. Here you go! What ELSE can we do for you???"

And then Dr. libertarian has to use government largess to try and secure it.

It's all pretty trivial and minor in the grand scheme, but really quite yucky.

Currently consuming: Harry Browne, Free Domain Radio; JT Gatto and Holt; Wii U

Well nuanced decision, justice was served, countersuit coming?

It was ill advised to get Dr. Paul into this fight to begin with. Utter foolishness in fact. The fact is if you want "yourName.com" you should get it. NOW. If you are Rebecca "Becky" Robinson and you want that name you might find there's already a rebeccabeckyrobinson.com, a beckyrobinson.com and a rebeccarobinson.com because YOU DON'T EXCLUSIVELY OWN THAT NAME IN REALITY OR ONLINE. Plenty of other people were given that name at birth.

Plus, maybe I registered BeckyRobison.com because it's the brand for my new line of salad dressing? Becky Robison's Wisconsin Bleu Cheese Ranch. Or maybe you are an author I wish to blog about OR A POLITICIAN I WISH TO SUPPORT.

Now courts have found instances of "cybersquatting" but any such charge was negated by the domain owners extending an offer of transfer ALONG WITH their developed value in the site. The fact that Dr. Ron Paul the presidential candidate waited this long and allowed such development of value to continue BEFORE making a case PLUS the fact that he offered NOTHING IN RETURN FOR SAID DEVELOPED VALUE is what got him smacked with a reverse judgment. The panel sent a message: YOU DON'T GET TO WALK UP TO AN ESTABLISHED SITE AND TAKE THE URL BECAUSE YOU ARE A V.I.P.

This leaves the door wide open for a countersuit by the domain owners against Dr. Paul for legal expenses to start.

As far as the domain owners, they were real RP supporters but I doubt they feel the same way now. They repeatedly tried to find a solution and they worked with the community to find it.

There is nothing strange about having a bar of soap in your right pocket, it's just what's happening.

It is obvious

That they are no RP admirers. They just used an oportunity to make money on RP brand

Bingo!

You're right! They're not fans at all. They just wanna make some quick money off the back of the good doctor.

If it was my site, I'd give it to Ron Paul in a heartbeat because I know he could be more effective with it than I could in spreading the ideas of individual freedom and liberty. Hell, I'd take a bullet for Ron Paul. He's got such an amazing record of honesty and integrity.

devastating logical argument.

"It is obvious". Well then no disputing that eh? But the legal reality exists outside of the motive. If their sole and only motive was to lampoon and sattirize Dr. Paul I'd still support this finding.

As far as their making money on a brand we helped create, well, line up every person that sold something which indicated RP and you give them a good, stern talking to.

There is nothing strange about having a bar of soap in your right pocket, it's just what's happening.

From my...

...limited perspective, seems like Dr. Paul should have offered an amount for ronpaul.com -- maybe given them some gold and silver :) -- but what supporter of the Liberty movement in their right mind would not then turn around and reject any substantial payment, and just contribute the domain name to the cause?

I suspect greed has been a corrupting influence in this episode.

I'm willing to bet

this is Tate's arena and I imagine Ron was left to 'other things to worry about'.

New Ammunition Listing Starting July 24th 2014 - Components are Back In Stock! www.ammopit.com

ronpaul.org

Just take ronpaul.org if available and leave ronpaul.com in the ashes. A high % of the ones who go there will arrive by link, not by typing in the domain name. How do you get to dailypaul.com? What if it was dailypaul.org?

Just set up a good site and move on (not .org)! Get the message out. People will come.

Author of Buy Gold and Silver Safely
Next book: Illusions of Wealth - due out soon
Also writing book We the Serfs!

I would say the problem is

I would say the problem is not as simple as people are assuming.

What if slanderous or offensive material is posted on the site?

What if it becomes a new stormfront of some sort...Can Ron Paul then sue simply on the basis that his name is on the website even if the materials are not explicitly connected to him?

I would love it if some IP lawyers would weigh in.

not under UDRP

He might be able to get relief from some other court but he would not get the domain name.

The current owners are obviously NOT Ron Paul fans. The obvious

solution then is for someone with the means, to buy the domain names from them and then donate them to Ron Paul.

Problem solved.

It seems like #2 would be almost impossible to prove on a site

that sells anything, or collects email addresses.

I'm not sure that is a really valid test.

Perhaps I'm not seeing cases at the moment where such a rule would be needed to protect current holders over those filing the complaint.

This was contentious in the 90s

Many thought even these rules are too biased in favor of the complaintant. Prior to the UDRP system registraion was on a purely first come first served basis. Many, many household name brands had to pay 7 figure amounts for their .com names. Cases started going to US court and the internet community chose the WIPO route with strict rules because of fear that US courts let companies seize domains from little guys whenever big companies decided it suited them.

I Would Be Concerned WtihThe Potential of Slander or Defamation

A mans name can carry his reputation.

Remember the newsletters? They went out under his name but without his oversight. Personally, I would not want to give anyone the opportunity to do that again.

Gene Louis
http://www.survivaloftheslickest.com/
Supporting a Needed Tool for Government Feedback:
A Citizen-Operated Legal System.

Good win for private

Good win for private property.
I think Ron has enough websites already. If he wants another one he can make it with his name in the url.

Southern Agrarian

It pains me to be critical of Dr. Paul

It's hard to be critical of Dr. Paul, but I think this is a case of celebrity (or exaggerated sense of personal sovereignty) going to his head and making him act in an anti-capitalist manner.

Clearly it was personal for him since this outcome was predictable. Given that it was predictable, logic would have dictated that he should pay for the domains when the price was right rather than try to hijack the domains by initiating force against the holders of the domains.

Dr. Paul's unwise choice to challenge the current holders' rights to keep the domains in turn cemented their rights. It would have served him better to simply settle and pay for the domains at the market rate.

Take back the GOP and Restore America Now.

Ron Paul is old what do you expect.

Sometimes old people are stubborn

:)

a fair result really

Canada, thanks for letting us know the results of this suit. This is the result I expected really. A hard way to learn the rules of the road perhaps but that is how it goes sometimes.

I have great respect for those at ronpaul.com and I have great respect for Ron Paul. Hopefully they can both accept this decision and put all of the bad vibes from it behind them. Move on.

One thing i dont like about Dr. Paul...

I have heard him allude to the domains before, along with the selling of Ron Paul memorabilia and the like. His references have been vague and fleeting, but the doctor clearly doesn't like people making money of his name or likeness.

It rarely comes up in interviews, but more recently, Dr. Paul spoke with Kurt Wallace:

http://www.opencurrency.com/ron-paul-i-think-its-fantastic-c...

At the end of the interview, Wallace makes reference to a silver coin being produced by the Mulligan Mint with Dr. Paul's likeness on it, to which the Congressman has an interesting response, when considered in light of the domain dispute.

I think we'd all be peeved by people profiting off of our names, particularly without permission or fair compensation. But it's still strikes me as somewhat hypocritical to demand market solutions for everything else besides intellectual property. If a customer is truly buying a product from you, and intends to support your business, isn't it in their interest to from your store or authorized vendor? Perhaps this is why Dr. Paul made the point that he IS NOT AN ANARCHO-CAPITALIST at Oberlin College. The question is, why draw the line at intellectual property, and not say, anti-trust measures? It comes off as a legal system slanted towards business rather than the consumer

Visit https://soundcloud.com/politics-of-freedom for all recent Ron Paul interviews, speeches, debates, forums, panels, press conferences, news coverage, and Texas Straight Talk updates!

"Terrorism is the war of the poor, while war is the terrorism of

Peeved is a good way to put it

Why should a celebrity have sole ownership of his likeness and name? It's not a purely invented and registered trademark. Calling one's name and likeness "intellectual property" is stretching the definition.

Take back the GOP and Restore America Now.

RMS is dead on with respect

RMS is dead on with respect to the term "intellectual property". It's a vague and meaningless phrase.

what was so horrible with

what was so horrible with RONPAULFORHOMESCHOOLS.COM ?

lawrence