You know… instead of the G…

May 7, 2012

Virgin Group chairman wins battle for .xxx domain

March 8, 2012

The man known for using sexually suggestive advertising to sell his products and owner of a company dubbed Virgin recently won a legal battle to gain control over richardbranson.xxx. Source.

Virgin Group Chairman Richard Branson filed a UDRP complaint against Sean Truman, who, according to the decision, is not in the adult entertainment industry, but instead says he registered the domain name as a “souvenir” of his “admiration” for Branson. Truman also said he had no intention to host a website at the domain. Indeed, the webpage was blank when the complaint was filed, with the exception of ads placed by GoDaddy.com.

The National Arbitration Forum concluded that the domain was registered in bad faith and transferred the domain name to Branson. Once transferred, the site apparently will no longer display a web page. Looks like the Virgin name will remain, like most other self-proclaimed virgins, outwardly pristine.


Leaping Lohan! Lindsay’s a Bunny.

December 9, 2011

By Tatiana von Tauber

Lindsay Lohan has posed for Playboy for a whopping $1 million. Ah. Bravo. Not only is this a smart financial move for someone of her failure, it’s also a good career move because these days, being naked and/or sexual is the ticket to increased sales and stardom, temporarily at worst. A rather typical female critique of Lohan’s Playboy spread due out on newsstands Dec. 15th sits on Yahoo’s OMG titled “Lindsay Lohan Playboy cover leaked online”. The author expresses a sarcastic and sickened tone for Lohan’s actions. Sadly, it’s what I’d expect from a female who clearly doesn’t seem to understand and/or respect the distinct difference between Playboy and Penthouse past their covers.

The author referenced that if things don’t work out for Lohan from Playboy she can always go to Penthouse. They are not the same representation of pussy and the assumption that any woman would naturally go from Playboy to Penthouse is pure ignorance and insult. Perhaps the point was to throw Lohan under the bus but by doing so, the author also threw eroticism under there too and that’s just a mean girl thing to do.

I could understand and agree with a derogatory tone for Lohan considering her history but it was for Lohan via posing nude so in essence, the author so elegantly tore up the beauty of eroticism itself and used Lohan as her example only to compare her to other actresses who used their bodies to get ahead: Drew Barrymore, Joan Collins,Charlize Theron, Sharon Stone and Marylin Monroe.

The small list of women here are women who have, however, truly come out on top* so how has their nudity actually diminished their feminine and human value as suggested by many anti-sexually free women to justify an attitude that Playboy and of course eroticism and porn (because mistake number one is placing them in the same category) is basically what desperate actresses and wannabes do to get ahead?

The above video introduces Dominika, a Czech Playboy and Maxim model. I photographed her naked a couple weeks ago. She’s a petite, demure young girl, self-conscious in between shootings but extremely professional and very good at knowing her body to help produce some very sexy photos. I’m pleased. She’s pleased. Client pleased. Everyone comes out satisfied.

This was a job, something she chose to do for whatever reason and it involved her perfect nude body but the moment the lights turned off or the camera was put down, she put on her robe and protected her personal naked self. You see, when you’re on camera, you’re an actress. You have to be to do this kind of work. I’ve photographed many Playboy models and many real women and the common theme for the nudity, the desire for it whether it be for personal reasons, for a man or for money, these women like and/or want to feel sexy and show it. They want to express it.

I’ve watched some of these unfairly judged nude models begin their own companies in once eastern block countries with money they’ve made while traveling the world, an opportunity only their body was able to offer. These young women have made a better life for themselves by using the one thing people want and that’s nudity, sex or some form of either. Really, what people want is eroticism because that is the pulse of life. I don’t understand what is so wrong, bad or dirty about Playboy posing. I think it’s celebratory. It’s a give and take, as life should be and I find too many women just don’t get the point about sex and eroticism and objectivity. There’s too much fear, religious underpinning and/or insecurity looming in feminism, still.

The female body is beautiful and while Lohan is a lost soul and I hope she gets on the right track, and I deeply hate Hollywood ruins beautiful faces, she just made a million bucks. I don’t know about you but I’d gladly take my clothes off for a million dollars. In fact, I’ll take indecent proposals too! Sexual morality and judgment are a waste of time and potential pleasure in a life that is so damn short it takes death for us to remember it.

I love the “leaked” cover of Lohan on Playboy. It’s very, very sexy and shows her as elegant and I will be purchasing the issue. Lohan needed the makeover and I hope her inner self makes a similar jump. The thing about Playboy is that it’s still got style and elegance and class and eroticism in its pages. Some spreads are cheesy ( I still don’t know why you guys like that cheesy shit) but when celebrities come in, the work is usually different and stunning. Cindy Crawford, the iconic supermodel photographed by the late fashion photographer Herb Ritts and Aussie supermodel Elle MacPherson’s spreads were quite beautiful in recollection of past issue’s I’ve seen from the top of my head.

These weren’t desperate women. These were intelligent women using their sexuality and bodies to better their lives and those of their children. If women can’t deal with their own bodily and sexual beauty, then I suggest becoming a nun.

Playboy has helped create stardom for many kinds of women but more importantly, Playboy through Hefner, has managed to give the world the erotic elegance so missing from the dirty sex the Internet brings. I like that. It would be good if American philosophy on beauty, sexuality and eroticism had a little makeover in the elegance department as well.

* OMG author noted Marylin Monroe died of a drug overdose and implies MM wasn’t really “on top” but her eroticism is stronger each decade so the author fails in her point. Isn’t the jury still out on murder vs. overdose?


With .xxx imminent, people finally notice it

September 8, 2011

By J. DeVoy

At Likelihood of Confusion, guest blogger Matthew David Brozik provides an overview of the .xxx roll-out, which is happening in phases beginning now.  For those unfamiliar with the domain name, there are two types of initial availability: Sunrise A, where existing adult companies can get .xxx domains to correspond with their .com domains, and Sunrise B, where non-adult companies can permanently de-reigster their hypothetical .xxx domain names (e.g., ToysRUs.xxx), and ensure they will never exist.  After that, there will be a “landrush” period for adult companies to get new .xxx domains to develop new brands and services, and then a perpetual period of general availability so that adult companies can get new domain names on a first-come, first-serve basis; trademarks outside of adult can also be de-registered during this time.  To understand the importance of this open registration period, bear in mind that 10 years ago the acronym CFNM was meaningless, whereas now it’s a popular porn genre, and “twitter” was similarly a nearly meaningless (and antiquated) intransitive verb. Or noun. Anyway…

Some groups, such as the Free Speech Coalition, are against the .xxx sTLD.  Others are agnostic, or open-minded regarding the extension.  Informal research reveals that many companies are indeed buying the domains, optimistic that they will generate more traffic and search engine recognition, and at a minimum protect the brands they have created.  Still, others eschew it.

Some non-adult entities are embracing .xxx to make a splash for themselves.  PETA, for example, is getting a .xxx domain name.  But, this likely is more of a publicity stunt than a lasting foray into adult.  After all, this is the same PETA that had some sycophant legally change his name to KentuckyFriedCruelty.com.

Brozik’s post is informative, but I do have one bone to pick with it.  Brozik contends:

So we’re almost certainly not going to see lawsuits over the likes of pepsi.xxx, kleenex.xxx, or xerox.xxx.

Don’t be so sure.  Perhaps there won’t be disputes over those domains and peer brands, but there is an interesting question brewing as to whether paying for de-registration of a .xxx domain name is essential to keeping it from being registered.  Within the adult space, Manwin Licensing International – owner of many prominent brands and valuable domain names, including Brazzers.com and YouPorn.com – has demanded that the .xxx registry’s operators prevent “exploitation” of those domains (or those that are confusingly similar) even without paid de-registration, or turn them over to Manwin, free of charge.  Making matters more interesting, the .xxx registry has preemptively de-registered domain names that constitute famous names, for both celebrities and politicians.  This step was apparently taken free of charge.  There may not be lawsuits brought by Pepsi and Xerox against cyber-squatters, but there may be more attempts by owners of established brands to get something for nothing.

If the .xxx registry’s operators commit trademark infringement for failure to provide de-registration where no registration has yet occurred, it would be a novel theory of liability.  Can one be liable for potential infringements that have not yet occurred?  If nobody registers the domain names, there seems to be a problem of standing, (and a lack of imminent harm, if the registry’s procedures prevent the domain names from being registered).  Other countries, however, may have different standing requirements.  Also, some infringement of the trademarks has to occur (or be sufficiently imminent for standing to exist) for there to be a cause of action for infringement.  Ron Coleman’s interest in secondary trademark infringement notwithstanding, infringement has to occur for primary or secondary liability to attach – just as with copyright infringement.

Given the novelty of the .xxx space and the brands at stake, it is unlikely that this issue is dead, or that it will be for some time to come.


.XXX becomes a reality

June 25, 2010

By J. DeVoy

After six years of teasing, ICANN finally delivers on a .xxx top-level domain for sites displaying adult content.

The domains, which will be available by 2011, already have 110,000 pre-registrations through ICM Registry.


Immoral or Scandalous Matter?

October 14, 2009

by Jason Fischer

One of the "peculiarities" of U.S. trademark law is that the government has a stick up its collective ass about recognizing trademarks that may be suggestive of dick-and-fart humor.  Section 2 of the Lanham Act (the federal statute that creates trademark rights) provides:

No trademark by which the goods of the applicant may be distinguished from the goods of others shall be refused registration on the principal register on account of its nature unless it –

  • (a) Consists of or comprises immoral, deceptive, or scandalous matter . . . .

15 U.S.C. § 1052 (2008).

epic-name-fail

Presumably, you can decide for yourself whether the above image is offensive or (as I did) worthy of a snicker or three.  It looks like, from the license plate and unfamiliar make/model of the van, this company is doing business overseas, but rest assured this mark would never appear on the principal register of trademarks in this country.  Now, don’t misunderstand me; if this business opened up an office on this side of pond, they could likely prevent others from using the same mark, based on any common law rights that could be established, but our federal government would never give them the benefits of a federal registration for the mark.

Now, you may be asking yourself, "Wait; isn’t that the whole point of trademark law — preventing others from using your mark?"  That is true, but the game gets much, MUCH easier when you have a federal registration.  Establishing common law rights is generally an extremely lengthy and expensive evidentiary process, which involves paying your attorney to prepare and file a phone-book-sized amount of paperwork in any infringement suit.  Compare that with the single sheet that must be presented by the owner of a federally registered trademark, and you begin to see some of the benefits of registration.

Lots of hardcore civil libertarians that I know pound the table and froth at the mouth while denouncing the puritanical nature of our trademark regime.  Even though I don’t get as worked up, personally, I do happen to agree.  What difference does it make that someone wants to call their business "Butt Drilling"?  Do we really need the federal government to discourage that guy from doing what he wants with his entrepreneurial humor?  Should we be shielded from this "attack of immorality" at the expense of his freedom?  Trust me, plenty has already been written on whether there is even a rational basis for Section 2(a), by people way smarter than I — enough that I won’t bore you with any more.  Suffice it to say, it is something that must be given careful consideration when choosing your brand.


This story has also been published on The Tactical IP Blog.


Tiffany Shepherd, From Bikini-Claid Bait Girl to Porn to Cybersquatting Victim

September 2, 2009
First the victim of Flori-duh's social conservatives, now the victim of a cybersquatter.

First the victim of Flori-duh's social conservatives, now the victim of a cybersquatter.

Tiffany Shepherd, the Port Saint Lucie schoolteacher who was fired from her job because she worked on a fishing charter boat in a bikini has decided to make the jump into adult entertainment.

Unfortunately, after being the victim of puritanical flori-duh social conservatives, she is now the victim of scumbag cybersquatters. It looks like one person registered TiffanyShepherd.com, and is using the site to refer traffic to a UK dating site. A domain name corresponding to Tiffany’s stage name, Leah Lust, has also been registered by what seems to be another opportunist. Although the site is not currently displaying any content, it is registered to a privacy service. I bet you a dozen donuts that Ms. Shepherd isn’t the one behind that privacy wall.

Shepherd told the Miami Examiner that she is entering the adult movie market because that is the only way she can make a living now that she lost her teaching job. Unfortunately, she won’t get too far when she isn’t managing her publicity rights effectively, and some sleaze is profiting from them instead.


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