The acronym auDRP means .au Dispute Resolution Policy. It’s purpose of the auDRP is to provide a cheap and speedy resolution to disputes between the registrant of an .au domain name, & a party with competing rights in the same domain.
I wrote about this dispute back on the 7th May when it was a pending decision.
HRA.com.au – the complainant in this case is Harness Racing Australia. Respondent is a friend and fellow domain investor. In fact, I actually sold him this domain about 18 months ago! In my opinion, there is absolutely no way that he should lose this domain, however, he perhaps hasn’t done himself any favours with the landing page he currently has. I wish him well.
The reason I am shocked is that the sole panelist decided in his wisdom to rule in favour of the complainant. And I’m even more distressed at some of the reasoning given:
“the Panel draws the inference that, for the purpose of paragraph 4(b)(i) of the Policy, the disputed domain name was most likely registered by the Respondent primarily for the purpose of selling, renting, or otherwise transferring the disputed domain name registration to another person for valuable consideration in excess of out-of-pocket costs directly related to the disputed domain name or to otherwise profit at the expense of the Complainant and others who have name and trademark rights in respect of HRA.“
What Lessons Can Be Learned?
- If you have acronym domains that are simply parked pages, make sure that the links are always relevant. Yes, you will have to use your imagination – but it’s not hard!
- If you get a threatening letter about handing over the domain, you must respond. However, make sure you get some professional advice before doing so. This could save you a whole lot of heartache, grief and money.
- If you get hit with an auDRP proceeding, do not ignore it! You must get a response in. Ditto the advice above.
Some Success Stories
Many auDRP’s have been successfully defended by domain investors. So do not be intimidated.
As an example, here a couple of acronym domain disputes that were successfully defended in the past 12 months by Erhan Karabardak of Cooper Mills:
As always, I’m interested in your thoughts.