Someone wants to "brand" my domain name?

by 19 comments
Hi everyone...

I'm sure you knowledgeable fellow Warriors can help me with this.
I think I know the answer, but just in case, it never hurts to get someone else's input.

The other day, I received an email from a company in Asia claiming to have received a request from some Holdings company to register the name diamondhaven, which is my domain name. They wanted to know if I had any connection with the Holdings company or if they were my partner in Asia. At first, I hesitated to respond, thinking it was some sort of scam. On careful examination of the email, I decided it could be real, so I replied briefly that no, I have no link to that company.

Here's the content of the follow-up letter they sent me today.
"Thanks for your prompt reply.As far as we know, they want to apply for the following names:
And Internet Brand "diamondhaven".

We find your company have not protected these names,You know domain name takes open registration, this is international domain name registration principle. So Mollex International Holdings Ltd has right to register it.I think you must know some cases about the domain names grabbed by the third party,we also won’t want to see things happen like this.

If you think his registration will confuse your clients and harm your profits, we can send a dispute application document to you and help you register these domains within dispute period. This is the only way to prevent domain name grab. If you think his application will not affect your company, you can give up, we will finish his registration. Hope get your decision ASAP, so that we can handle the next step"
Now, I know that by registering, I have no claim over the name diamondhaven. Anyone can register with a different extension as they indicate in their email.

My suspicion is that they are phishing to get me to fork over some dough for them to register and secure diamondhaven as a brand name. This is an odd way to get business, if you ask me. However, I am concerned about the fallout from their "branding" of this name.

Clearly, they are implementing the old "scare tactics" to this message.
On the other hand, it IS straightforward. Anyone can take diamondhaven and "brand" it, whatever that means, if I don't do it myself first.

Suggestions? Advice? Recommendations?

Much appreciated, thanks.

#internet marketing #brand #domain
  • Profile picture of the author Click Cutter
    anybody can register such domain in their country unless you register your trade mark in those countries.
    • Profile picture of the author BeachCruzer
      Originally Posted by Click Cutter View Post

      anybody can register such domain in their country unless you register your trade mark in those countries.
      Click Cutter: That is not true, thanks to the Madrid Protocol, you can file for international protection here in the U.S. or another country that recognizes the MP.
  • Profile picture of the author radhika
    My suspicion is that they are phishing to get me to fork over some dough for them to register and secure diamondhaven as a brand name.
    There you go ... Catching the correct intention behind it ...

    If you don't want to register leave the other extentions. You'd be good with .com .

  • Profile picture of the author wilson765
    Yes your suspicions are correct. I get these all the while for my International clients domains. Unless you have an International brand that you wish to protect just ignore them. They are touting for business. If you really don't want anyone else to have any access to your domain name via another TDL you will need to buy up everyone going.

    Actually I wasted so much time trying to explain to my clients that they are not about to loose their domain name that I now simply send the to spam them and tell my clients to do the same.

    • Profile picture of the author sylviad
      Thanks Steve...

      I guess I'm more concerned that if the Holding company wants to make diamondhaven their brand, will I be forced to give up my domain name?

      It's not really a significant issue for me if Asia wants to use the name with different extensions, but if they brand the name over there, and want to push to trademark it there could be consequences at my end. Would there not? Or does trademark only relate to the specific country in which it's trademarked?

      Oh... yes. I suppose some companies do trademark universally, like McDonald's and Google, but I'm not sure how it relates to the internet. I mean, people set up domain names with Google in them all the time. I'm guessing that Google could tell them to stop if they really wanted to.

  • Profile picture of the author Gene Pimentel
    They are simply trying to get you to register all variations of the domain, so you have the best chance of 'branding' the name without others using the various versions.

    As far as "taking it away from you", they would have to prove they own the specific trademark. However, you automatically own the trademark if you used it before anyone else in the industry you're using it for. It does not have to be officially registered as a trademark. But registering a trademark does help prove your case and puts a specific time stamp on it. The same trademarked name can be used by many different companies if they are using it for different industries.
    • Profile picture of the author zephyrwriting
      I'm no expert on the issue, but this is taken from the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution process.

      "A complainant in a UDRP proceeding must establish three elements to succeed:
      • The domain name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the complainant has rights;
      • The registrant does not have any rights or legitimate interests in the domain name; and
      • The registrant registered the domain name and is using it in "bad faith."

      Seeing as you had a pre-established site, although not registered as a trademark, it would seem like the second two in particular will hold no water.

      Read more here, if you like, just to set your mind at ease: Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

  • Profile picture of the author rmholla
    If someone was really wanting to brand "diamondhaven" I would think they would approach you about buying the .com -- they'd have to be crazy to brand something without having control of the .com domain.

    • Profile picture of the author Gene Pimentel
      Rhonda... they don't want the brand -- they are trying to get Sylvia to buy the other variations from them. They do this with all .com owners.
    • Profile picture of the author Barbara Eyre
      It probably wouldn't hurt for you to buy the .org, .net, .biz, etc extensions just so you have some "elbow room" sort of speak.

      Since they are wanting to do .cn extensions, I don't think there is any kind of "threat" to you ... especially if your original .com domain has a good "age" to it.

      Perhaps, it wouldn't hurt to do a little blurb on your "about us" type page that explains the origination of your 'diamondhaven' company name/brand ... give dates, etc ... I've seen that done often.
  • Profile picture of the author Thomas Wilkinson
    In a few cases I have gone ahead and bought the .cn name
    when I have registered the .com. I still get these phishing
    letters all the time. The name of this "company" sounds
    familier and I'm sure I've heard from them before. I never
    respond to these. Its mostly from my sites aimed at Asia.

    • Profile picture of the author sylviad
      Lots of great advice... thanks!

      I wasn't aware that Canadians can buy .cn extensions - not sure why Canadian would be different from American. It depends which country I try to register .cn, I think. Seems to me I've seen notes stating that you can't buy them... but

      I've been wrong before.

      I know I can't buy a .ca name in America - at least, not on any of the domain registration pages I've seen.

      Regardless, I'm not really interesting in buying any .cn names. If the product other people are selling does not compete with mind, it's irrelevant. Except, if they trademark the name, in which case they would have more leverage to force me to shut my domain. It's not something I'm going to be fretting over, that's for sure.

      It really isn't worth the price for me to trademark a DN.

  • Profile picture of the author Click Cutter
    I had a case when some company tried to take my domain because they registered similar trademark in their country. They failed because my domain was registered before they registered their trademark.

    So if you in the same position and your domain is not currently "for sale" then you should be fine.

    My advise.
    Do a trademark search at least in US or Canada before you register an important domain name.
  • Profile picture of the author KirkMcD
    It's a scam. They just want you to register the domains through them.
  • Profile picture of the author DeenaEsq

    Don't worry. Assuming that this were a legitimate request (and I'm guessing that you're right on the money when you think that it's not), if you can show that you've been using the name before they register a trademark, they've got no cause of action against you and would lose if they tried to take you before WIPO.

    Besides, they just proved from their letter that they knew before "branding" the name that you own the domain.

    You've got no problems. I'd just ignore them...

    Just my $.02...

    __________________________________________________ ________

    Any opinions are offered without knowledge of the specific law of your jurisdiction and with only the limited information provided in your post. No advice given here should be reasonably relied upon by you or any third party without consulting an attorney who is aware of all of the facts and law surrounding your situation. Any advice given here is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship in any way.
  • Profile picture of the author Chris Lockwood
    This isn't phishing, which is an attempt to trick you into giving them sensitive info such as passwords.

    It just looks like an attempt to sell you some domain names. The only question is whether the part about someone else trying to register those names is true. Like their note says, the names are there for the taking.
    • Profile picture of the author Dixiebelle
      Don't click on anything in that email. You have no idea what you could be agreeing to. I would also make a copy of all correspondence for future reference.
  • Profile picture of the author CocoBali

    I just received the same message from exactly the same company concerning my company in Indonesia. I did an internet search and ended up on this site.

    It is obviously a mass mailed spam scam !

    I will be doing nothing as I own .com for my organisation.

    Good advice here.

    Cheers !
  • Profile picture of the author sylviad
    Thanks everyone who replied. I'm comfortable in the belief this is just an attempt to get me to buy domains through them, even though I don't need them, and especially since I don't need their help in buying any domains I want.

    Silly people.


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