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Your Trademark Could Soon Be X-Rated

Posted on : 20-09-2011 | By : Sarah | In : Uncategorized

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The newest generic top-level domain, .XXX, is entirely geared towards the adult entertainment industry, and companies within that industry have already begun reserving domain names in anticipation of the domain debut in 2012. Any trademark owners who do NOT wish to be associated with pornographic sites and content have just a brief window this fall in which to file an application to “opt out” their specific trademark from the available domain names ending with .XXX. Of course, there is a fee for filing such an application. But that’s not all. Should a company in the adult entertainment industry (i.e. a porn site) apply for the domain name of an “opted out” trademark, and subsequently refuse to withdraw said application when made aware of the trademark owner’s paid attempt to “opt out,” the porn site will get priority over the trademark owner! The trademark owner must then initiate proceedings to block registration of the domain name to the porn site. All this, and only if the trademark owner is successful in submitting an application before October 28, 2011, to protect their mark from being associated with the .XXX domain.

Of course, if you are a celebrity, never fear. Your name has been banned from the .XXX domain preemptively, because “it is very difficult for [celebrities] to trademark their names.” So, let’s see, if it is difficult to trademark, it is protected from being associated with porn. But if it is easily trademarked, as evidenced by a registered trademark, you have to pay to protect your mark. Nice.

For more, see also: CNET article and CBS News article

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