The Complainant is Skyscanner Limited, United Kingdom, represented by Keltie LLP, United Kingdom.
The Respondent is Milen Radumilo, Romania.
The disputed domain name <skysccanner.net> is registered with NamePal.com (the “Registrar”).
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on April 5, 2019. On April 5, 2019, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the Disputed Domain Name. On April 5, 2019, the Registrar transmitted by email to the Center its verification response disclosing registrant and contact information for the Disputed Domain Name which differed from the named Respondent and contact information in the Complaint. The Center sent an email communication to the Complainant on April 10, 2019 providing the registrant and contact information disclosed by the Registrar, and inviting the Complainant to submit an amendment to the Complaint. The Complainant filed an amended Complaint on April 10, 2019.
The Center verified that the Complaint together with the amended Complaint satisfied the formal requirements of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Policy” or “UDRP”), the Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Rules”), and the WIPO Supplemental Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Supplemental Rules”).
In accordance with the Rules, paragraphs 2 and 4, the Center formally notified the Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on April 11, 2019. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was May 1, 2019. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on May 2, 2019.
The Center appointed Pablo A. Palazzi as the sole panelist in this matter on May 23, 2019. The Panel finds that it was properly constituted. The Panel has submitted the Statement of Acceptance and Declaration of Impartiality and Independence, as required by the Center to ensure compliance with the Rules, paragraph 7.
The Complainant was founded in 2003 and it has offices in Barcelona, Beijing, Budapest, Edinburgh, Glasgow, London, Miami, Shenzhen, Singapore and Sofia. The Complainant offers a travel search website and provides its services through the website associated to the domain name < skyscanner.net>.
The Complainant is the owner of inter alia, the following trademark registrations for the term “skyscanner”,
- European Union (“EU”) designation of International Trade Mark Registration No. 900393 for SKYSCANNER, registered on March 3, 2006;
- EU designation of International Trade Mark Registration No. 1030086 for SKYSCANNER and;
- United States designation of International Trade Mark Registration No. 1133058 for SKYSCANNER & Cloud device.
The Disputed Domain Name <skysccanner.net > was registered on May 8, 2017.
The Disputed Domain Name redirects Internet users to the Complainant’s website “www.skyscanner.com”.
The Complainant’s contentions can be summarized as follows:
Identical or confusingly similar
The Complainant alleges that the Disputed Domain Name is virtually identical to the Complainant´s trademark.
Furthermore, the addition of another “C” is not sufficient to render the visual or phonetic characteristics of the Disputed Domain Name from the Complainant´s trademark.
Finally, the Complainant submits that the Disputed Domain Name is a deliberate misspelling of the Complainant´s trademark.
Rights or legitimate interests
The Complainant submits that the Respondent does not own any registered rights in any trademarks which comprise part or all of the Disputed Domain Name.
In addition, the term “Skyscanner” is not a descriptive word and does not have a dictionary meaning. Moreover, the Complainant has not given its consent to use an identical variation of the SKYSCANNER trademark in a domain name registration.
The Complainant further alleges that the Respondent is not commonly known as “Skyscanner” or “Skysccaner”.
Finally, the Complainant states that the Respondent has not made demonstrable preparation to use the Disputed Domain Name, in connection with a bona fide offering of goods and services.
Registration and use in bad faith
The Complainant alleges that the Respondent chose to register a domain name that is identical to the Complainant´s trademark. Moreover, the Respondent chose to trade off the Complainant’s reputation in its trademark rights by automatically redirecting Internet users accessing the Disputed Domain Name, to the Complainant’s website.
Moreover, the Complainant states that the Respondent registered the Disputed Domain Name for the purpose of selling it for a valuable consideration of money.
Finally, the Complainant submits that the Respondent is engaged in a pattern of bad faith conduct, having been named as Respondent in forty four (44) UDRP decisions since 2016.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
Paragraph 4(a) of the Policy lists the three elements, which the Complainant must satisfy with respect to the Disputed Domain Name at issue in this case:
(i) The Disputed Domain Name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights;
(ii) The Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Disputed Domain Name; and
(iii) The Disputed Domain Name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
Based on the evidence submitted, the Panel finds that the Disputed Domain Name <skysccanner.net> is confusingly similar to the Complaint’s trademark SKYSCANNER. The addition of another letter “C” in the term “skyscanner” represents a misspelling that does not prevent a finding of confusing similarity between the Disputed Domain Name and the Complainant's trademark.
Moreover, the misspelling is also hardly noticeable and results in a very minor modification of the Complainant’s trademark.
This is classic example of typo-squatting. As section 1.9 of the WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Third Edition (“WIPO Overview 3.0”) states:
“A domain name which consists of a common, obvious, or intentional misspelling of a trademark is considered by panels to be confusingly similar to the relevant mark for purposes of the first element.
(…) Examples of such typos include (i) adjacent keyboard letters, (ii) substitution of similar-appearing characters (e.g., upper vs lower-case letters or numbers used to look like letters), (iii) the use of different letters that appear similar in different fonts, (iv) the use of non-Latin internationalized or accented characters, (v) the inversion of letters and numbers, or (vi) the addition or interspersion of other terms or numbers.”
Therefore, the Panel concludes that the Complainant has satisfied the first requirement of paragraph 4(a) of the Policy.
Paragraph 4(c) of the Policy provides a list of circumstances any of which is sufficient to demonstrate that the Respondent has rights or legitimate interests in the Disputed Domain Name:
(i) before any notice to you of the dispute, your use of, or demonstrable preparations to use, the domain name or a name corresponding to the domain name in connection with a bona fide offering of goods or services; or
(ii) you (as an individual, business, or other organization) have been commonly known by the domain name, even if you have acquired no trademark or service mark rights; or
(iii) you are making a legitimate noncommercial or fair use of the domain name, without intent for commercial gain to misleadingly divert consumers or to tarnish the trademark or service at issue.
There is no evidence of the existence of any of those rights or legitimate interests. The Complainant has not authorized, licensed, or permitted the Respondent to register or use the Disputed Domain Name or to use the trademark in the Disputed Domain Name. The Complainant has prior rights in the trademark, which precede the Respondent’s registration of the Disputed Domain Name. In addition, the Respondent is not known by the Disputed Domain Name.
The Respondent has failed to show that it has acquired any rights with respect to the Disputed Domain Name. Moreover, he had the opportunity to demonstrate his rights or legitimate interests, but it did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
As such, the Panel finds that the Complainant has satisfied the second requirement of paragraph 4(a) of the Policy.
Paragraph 4(a)(iii) of the Policy provides that the Complainant must establish that the Respondent registered and subsequently used the Disputed Domain Name in bad faith.
The Disputed Domain Name was registered on May 8, 2017, while the Complainant SKYSCANNER Trademark Registration No. 900393 was registered on March 3, 2006.
The Panel is of the view that Respondent registered the Disputed Domain Name in bad faith since it is a typographical misspelling of and is confusingly similar to Complainant’s well-known SKYSCANNER trademark (see, Skyscanner Limited v. Ali Karatas, Fast Line (UK) Ltd, WIPO Case No. D2016-0176, Skyscanner Limited v. Basit Ali,WIPO Case No. D2012-1983 and Rodeler Ltd. v. Fxlotos Services Limited,WIPO Case No. D2016-0148). Therefore, the Panel concludes that Respondent was aware of the Complainant’s rights when he registered the Disputed Domain Name. Moreover, the fact that the Disputed Domain Name redirects to the Complainant’s website evidences that the Respondent perfectly knew the Complainant trademark.
Furthermore, the Complainant has also produced evidence that the Disputed Domain Name is offered for sale at the amount of USD 688.
Accordingly, the Panel finds that the Respondent has registered or acquired the Disputed Domain Name primarily for the purpose of selling, renting, or otherwise transferring the Disputed Domain Name to the Complainant, who is the owner of the trademark SKYSCANNER, or to a competitor of the Complainant for valuable consideration in excess of his documented out-of-pocket costs directly related to the domain name, according the paragraph 4 (b)(i) of the Policy.
Therefore, taking all the circumstances into account and for all the above reasons, the Panel concludes that the Respondent has registered and is using the Disputed Domain Name in bad faith.
For the foregoing reasons, in accordance with paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the disputed domain name, <skysccanner.net> be transferred to the Complainant.
Pablo A. Palazzi
Date: June 6, 2019
Stay updated! Get new cases and decisions by daily email.