Verwechslungsfähigkeit – federalrepublicofgermany.biz

7. Oktober 2004 | Kategorien: UDRP

Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy

WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
Bundesrepublik Deutschland (Federal Republic of Germany) v. RJG Engineering, Inc.
Case No. D2004-0676

Ein Schiedrichter hatte im obigem Verfahren zu entscheiden, ob die Bundesrepublik Deutschland einen Anspruch auf Übertragung des Domainnamens federalrepublicofgermany.biz hat. Die Beschwerdegegnerin erwiderte der Beschwerdeschrift im laufenden Verfahren nicht.
Knackpunkt dieser Entscheidung war die Frage, ob zwischen der offiziellen Bezeichnung Bundesrepublik Deutschland und der Second Level Domain federalrepublicofgermany Verwechslungsfähigkeit besteht oder ob originäre Rechte an dem Begriff federalrepublicofgermany seitens des Beschwerdeführers bestehen. Der Schiedsrichter nahm hierfür eine Beurteilung nach deutscher Rechtslage vor und kam zu dem Ergebnis, dass die Bezeichnung federalrepublicofgermany an sich Schutz nach deutschem Markenrecht genießt. Er kam zu dem Ergebnis, dass die Bundesrepublik Deutschland Markenschutz für federalrepublicofgermany gemäß § 4 Abs. 2 MarkenG in Anspruch nehmen kann:

The domain name at issue is federalrepublicofgermany.biz.

The first issue which the Panel has to consider is whether „federalrepublicofgermany“ would enjoy protection under German trademark law.

In this respect the Panel notes that Article 4, Paragraph 2 of the German Trademark Act prescribes that trademark protection shall accrue: „through the use of a sign in the course of trade insofar as the sign has acquired a secondary meaning as a trademark within the affected trade circles.“

In its considerations concerning this issue the Panel notes that obviously the name Federal Republic of Germany is well known in Germany as indicating the „Bundesrepublik Deutschland“ and that the name has a particularly distinctive character and thus is a sign to which trademark protection may apply. Such protection presupposes that the sign at issue has acquired a secondary meaning as a trademark in the course of trade. In this respect Complainant contends that the Federal Republic renders a variety of services, inter alia public information, under this name on, for instance, the Internet and that websites related to the Federal Government offer comprehensive information in several areas related to the activities of the Government.

In considering these aspects, the Panel comes to the conclusion that those activities are a form of trade of services directed to the German people and others who seek information about, inter alia, various government services. The Panel finds that the circumstances present in the case indicate that „federalrepublicofgermany“ has acquired a secondary meaning as a service mark.

The Panel consequently finds it to be established, for the purposes of this dispute, that „federalrepublicofgermany“ enjoys trademark protection under Article 4, Paragraph 2, of the German Trademark Act.

As established in earlier WIPO decisions, a trademark or a service mark does not need to be registered in order for the Policy to apply.

The domain name at issue contains the service mark „federalrepublicofgermany“ with the addition „biz“. This is an insignificant distinction, which does not remove the likelihood of confusion.

Diese Hürde geschafft, war die Frage der berechtigten Interessen am Domainnamen und der bösgläubigen Domainregistrierung und -nutzung klar gegen den Beschwerdegegner zu entscheiden.

Tags:

Antworten

Abmahnung Domain | Abmahnung wegen Markenrechtsverletzung | Domainpfändung | Domainrecht | Domains / Domainnamen | eCommerce | Markenanmeldung | Markenrecht | Traffic Protection | Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) | usTLD Dispute Resolution Policy (usDRP)