The Complainant is a maker and seller of party supplies that operates the websites partycity.com and partycity.ca. The disputed domain names are party-city.ca and partycitycanada.ca. Both Domain Names redirected to web sites operated by the Registrant that sell party supplies and stationery. The Complainant registered its trade-mark PARTY CITY in Canada in 1995. The Registrant argued that the Complaint`s Trade-mark was a “commonly used generic expression available to everyone”.
The Panel found that the Domain Names were likely to be confusing because they consisted of the entire mark PARTY CITY with either a hyphen or the term Canada added which did not dispel any confusion. The Panel found the Registrant had no legitimate interest in the Domain Names and rejected the argument that the Domain Names were generic because the Trade-mark was registrable and therefore not clearly descriptive.
Regarding bad faith, the Complaint pointed out that the Registrant advertised that the Domain Names were for “sale, business expansion, partnerships, hosting and networking within the industry.” The panel found that a desire to sell these Domain Names for profit is an indicium of bad faith. Furthermore the Panel found that the Registrant presumably had registered the domain name "party-city.ca" because the more obvious version "partycity.ca" was already registered meaning the Registrant must have known of the Complainant at the time of registering the domain.
You can read the decision here.
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