MSN.in Awarded to Microsoft

Ceres

New Member
Microsoft wins INDRP proceeding involving the domain MSN.in.

In its complaint, Microsoft stated that it owns the registered trademark in India for "MSN" and that this mark has become distinctive and is a well-known trademark (TMR India website shows an application date of September 2003). Microsoft also claimed common law rights for the term MSN.

According to Whois, the disputed domain was registered in May 2007. The respondent's argument:

It is the case of the respondent that he registered the domain <MSN.in> solely for an upcoming online project named "Ms.N" and "Ms." is an English honorific used with the last name or full name of a woman, while the "N" stands for people. The disputed domain name <MSN.in> includes the word msn, but in fact the word msn is referring to "Ms.N". Since the respondent unable to register the domain <Ms.N.in> due to the inherent limitation of a domain structure, the respondent therefore omitted the "dot" between Ms and N, and hence registered <MSN.in>.
The respondent further stated that he had delayed this project due to financial crisis. No evidence was provided to support the respondent's plans.

The Tribunal stated that the respondent's reason for omitting the "dot" between the "Ms and N" was neither plausible nor permissible in law. A party cannot be allowed to infringe on another party's trademark due to a limitation in the domain name structure.

The Tribunal found that the disputed domain was identical and confusingly similar to Microsoft's registered and well-known mark MSN.

I expected Microsoft to win this case as the MSN mark is a very famous one. In my opinion, it was foreseeable that Microsoft would bring a case for trademark infringement and go after this domain. Also, the disputed domain was registered many years after the MSN brand had become famous.

What are your views?
 
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Jeff

Administrator
Staff member
Country flag
No brainer case!

The Tribunal stated that the respondent's reason for omitting the "dot" between the "Ms and N" was neither plausible nor permissible in law. A party cannot be allowed to infringe on another party's trademark due to a limitation in the domain name structure.
I think that technically, there shouldn't be a dot after Ms, because Ms isn't an abbreviation for anything.
 

-MM-

Banned
As already posted we do use Ms in the uk as another title.. I.E Mrs, Miss, Ms. Ive a feeling we will read more and more of these cases.
 
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