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priceline.com Incorporated v. Supriyo Malaker , British Columbia International Commercial Arbitration Centre Case No. 00045 - by Eric Macramalla

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Domain Name: priceline.ca
OutCome: Transfer Granted
Response Filed: Yes
Panellist: Patrick Flaherty, John Lee, David Wotherspoon

The Complainant was the owner of trade-mark registrations for marks containing, or comprised of, PRICELINE. The domain name was made to resolve to a customized Internet portal displaying links to competitors of the Complainant.

The Registrant did not file a Response to the Complaint, and accordingly the Complainant elected as per Rule 6(5) of the CIRA Domain Name Dispute Resolution Rules to reduce the three member Panel to a single member Panel.

Under the CIRA Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy ("CDRP"), a successful Complainant must establish that the disputed domain name is confusingly similar with a mark in which it had rights, that the name was registered in bad faith and that the Registrant does not have a legitimate interest in the domain name.

The Panel held that the PRICELINE mark and the priceline.ca domain name were confusing for the purpose of the CDRP. The Panel confirmed that the confusion of analysis entails comparing the domain name to the mark, and not comparing the respective content of the websites.

The Panel held that the Registrant merely indicating that it would agree to sell the domain name when approached by the Complainant does not itself establish bad faith registration. However, the Panel held that resolving the domain name to a customized portal displaying links to competitors of the Complainant was sufficient to establish bad faith and defeat any claim of legitimacy on the part of the Registrant.

Factors found to support a finding of bad faith were the Registrant's actual or constructive knowledge of the Complainant's rights, the ten month inactivity of the domain name and the strength of the PRICELINE mark.

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