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Canada Post Corporation v. Marco Ferro, British Columbia International Commercial Arbitration Centre, CIRA -Dispute No. 00042 - by Eric Macramalla

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Domain Name: candapost.ca
OutCome: Transfer Granted
Response Filed: No
Panellist: Hon. Roger P. Kerans FCIArb

In another typosquatting case, the Panel ordered the impugned domain name transferred to 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 Complainant was the owner of numerous marks containing, or comprised of, CANADA POST. The Registrant had registered the impugned domain name and pointed it to a customized Internet portal operated by DomainSponsor.com.

The Panel held that the domain name was confusingly similar with the Complainant's CANADA POST mark. Further, the Panel found that the Registrant had no legitimate interest in the domain name, as the domain name was registered primarily with the purpose of misdirecting Internet users, for commercial gain, to the DomainSponsor.com website. Such use could not be said to be in good faith or for a bona fide purpose.

In finding bad faith based upon the Registrant's diversion of Internet traffic to its own site for commercial gain, the Panel held that the Registrant was "guilty of at least one of the three tests for bad faith". This is a classic case of typosquatting.

While the specific bad faith prong is not indicated in the decision, other CDRP cases that have dealt with similar circumstances (i.e., DomainSponsor.com website and typosquatting), have found such activities to be contrary to subparagraph 3.7(c), namely, registering a domain name primarily with the intent of disrupting the Complainant, a competitor of the Registrant. The reasoning in such cases is that the customized portals provide a means for end users to access competitors of the Complainant, which is sufficient to qualify a Registrant's registration as abusive.

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