all.in - INDRP decision

Ceres

New Member
*Note* this decision is currently removed from the INRegistry website. I don't know why. However, you can view the attached copy which I happen to make.

The complainant, Pantaloon Retail (India) Ltd, was successful in their INDRP case involving the domain all.in.

Pantaloon owns many brand stores in India, one of which is called aLL (offering plus size clothing). It also owns a trademark for "aLL" - I assume the trademark is used in association with clothing (this information is not provided).

According to the Whois, the domain was registered on 16 February 2005. I don't know when Pantaloon obtained their aLL trademark (this information is not provided).

The first thing you'll notice is that the term "all" is a generic term. The Arbitrator stated:

The generic nature of the word, 'aLL does not affect the specific secondary meaning acquired by the disputed mark through extensive use, promotional activities and advertising by the Complainant [Eurobet UK Ltd. v. Intergate, WIPO Case No. D2001-1270]
The respondent stated it was intending to set up a shopping portal that would assist Indian netizens and regular shoppers to make more informed decisions, by discovering and reviewing various aspects of products prior to purchase. It's not clear to me if the website had already been set up or not (this information is not provided).

In my opinion, not enough details were provided in this decision. I find it hard to ascertain the full facts of the case.

What does everyone else think? Do you agree that the case details are too vague?

Coincidently, today I came across the Arbitrator's website, which you can find here.
 

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Ceres

New Member
As the all.in decision touched on this subject, I did a bit of research on "secondary meanings" for common words.

In the US (not 100% sure about India), it's possible for a party to receive limited trademark protection for a common word that has attained a secondary meaning.

Question: What does "Secondary Meaning" refer to?

Answer: Many words are commonly used in ordinary language. Can they become trademarks? They can if they acquire special significance in reference to particular goods. For example, "apple" is a common word, but also a trademark for computers and for recordings. The word has acquired "secondary meaning" in each product category because consumers associate it with a particular brand of product.
Source: FAQ about Trademark

In summary, you can have a trademark for Apple used in association for computers, but you can't have a trademark for Apple used in association with apples.

Also, it will take a lot of branding and marketing to attain that "secondary meaning" status in the eyes of the public.
 

skyshipper

Active Member
Country flag
i think the decision is according to the policy of the moment.as market liberation and free market is being embaraced, more then usuall helping hand is being lent to the parties!. assuming an individual with no business interest is holding something which will hamper the business oppurtunities of the complainant ,the judiciary will gladly side with the complainant.!.
However if it was a dispute between two equally responsive organisations,then the decision would have been more deliberate and fair!
For that i suppose marketing ones assets ,in this case ,domain, by actively developing would have assisted a bit in defence.!.
As such any words ,generic or specific nouns will be of no use unless the defendant puts it to use!
So i guess the judgement is fair from a layman or judicial point of view.
Not so from domainers view!
 

newyorkdude

New Member
There was a laundry detergent in the US named All. It was a major brand, perhaps by Proctior & Gamble or Unilever. I don't know if it's still on the market [I use Tide ;)]
 

Ceres

New Member
There was a laundry detergent in the US named All. It was a major brand, perhaps by Proctior & Gamble or Unilever. I don't know if it's still on the market [I use Tide ;)]
That's interesting. Unilever must have succeeded in obtaining a "secondary meaning" for ALL in the United States. I just checked the USPTO website, which confirms that there's a trademark for ALL used in association with laundry bleach.
 

Jeff

Administrator
Staff member
Country flag
I think that it's also important to note that it doesn't look like the respondent was represented by a lawyer. That can make a big difference.
 

Ceres

New Member
No, I can't see any changes either. I had hoped more info would be included in the decision. I guess we'll never know all the relevant facts that pertains to this case. :(
 
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