The Domains Blog gives a report on how GoDaddy is not only selling domain names that clearly infringe on trademark rights, but selling certified appraisals of those domains. The Domains Blog, a domainer-industry source is deeply disturbed at this turn of events and proposes a domain parking code of conduct:
A. Parking companies must refuse to park any domain that infringes on a trademark. If parking companies need to hire a full time person to police this, then that’s the cost of doing business. If trademark domain holders (I will not call these people domainers) can’t make money on parking trademarked domains, the incentive for registering and holding them is gone.
B. Google and Yahoo have to block trademark domains from their system. Not all domains go through parking companies. Many go to Google directly through ad sense pages. Neither Google nor Yahoo can make money on trademark domains anymore. Game over.
C. Auction companies must not allow trademark domains to be sold on their platform. If a trademark domain holder cannot sell their domains on any of the auction platforms, then their incentive to register and hold such domains is greatly diminished.
D. Domain registrars have to peel off domains that violate trademarks and not allow them to be dropped and auctioned off. Registrars now regularly peel off the best expired domains for their own benefit, so they can remove the trademark domains at the same time for the benefit of the industry.
E. Registries upon releasing a new extension must allow all trademark holders to apply for their trademark domains for free (see out post of last week) and in any event not allow trademarked domains to be auctioned off. We all see what an embarrassment the industry suffered that the highest selling .me domain was a trademark infringing domain. This cannot be allowed to continue or be repeated when new extensions are released.