Am I ALLOWED To Use This Name?

24 replies
Got a question for you guys.

I want to start a business in Australia called (just an example) "Money On The Web".

There are no businesses here in Australia called "Money On The Web".

But I found out in Norway there is a business called "Money On The Web"

Am I allowed to use the name "Money On The Web" and register www.moneyontheweb.com.au?

I would only be selling to Australian people.
#business #legality #names
  • Profile picture of the author Ernie Lo
    Anybody know?
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
    Originally Posted by Ernie Lonardo View Post

    Got a question for you guys.

    I want to start a business in Australia called (just an example) "Money On The Web".

    There are no businesses here in Australia called "Money On The Web".

    But I found out in Norway there is a business called "Money On The Web"

    Am I allowed to use the name "Money On The Web" and register www.moneyontheweb.com.au?

    I would only be selling to Australian people.
    Hi Ernie,

    Your best bet is to talk to an attorney to be on the safe side.

    However, I had a thought...

    Just because YOU would only be selling to people in Australia, doesn't mean the site from Norway WOULDN'T be selling in Australia, too.

    In other words, you may not be competing with them anywhere else, but if THEY sell to people in Australia that would still be competition.

    But only a qualified attorney can tell you for sure. There is a chance that the Norwegian site doesn't have the name protected, but maybe they do and protect it vehemently.

    Anyway, hope that helps in some way.

    All the best,
    Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author RHPatel
    In other words, get some professional help locally.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ernie Lo
    Yeah its very hard to get a straight answer online about this...I really wouldnt know who to talk to, or if it'll cost a lot of $ to find out.
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  • Profile picture of the author Money on the Side
    Sounds a bit too generic to me to prevent you from using it....
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    • Profile picture of the author tiger325
      I dont see why you couldnt use the name however just to be safe I would get some legal advice on that one ...sorry im not much help ...try a legal forum
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  • Profile picture of the author rondo
    It depends what you want to do. Are you starting a company or are you a sole trader? You don't need to register a new business name if you're just going to be a sole trader, ie you can register an ABN under your own name. Then you can register the domain names you want.


    Andrew
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
    Again, look at the premise.

    Just because Ernie wouldn't be competing outside of Australia, doesn't mean the Norwegian site won't be compoeting in Australia already.

    ~Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author Ernie Lo
    Thanks for the info guys

    The Norway site is basically 1 page, with no links or information and no terms page or anything. It just has their name, logo and address??
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  • Profile picture of the author DougBarger
    Hey Ernie, with your skills, you'll do well with any name.

    Is kind of catchy though.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kym Robinson
      Hi Ernie

      here's the deal!

      when you try to register any domain that has .com.AU on the end -
      you must have an abn or acn and preferably a business registration certificate in the same name

      i found this out when trying to get a .com.AU
      also the name you are trying to register must be the same, similar to or comparable to the product service you are promoting

      aussie domain law is very different - "to protect our good name" they told me!
      I have a legitimate registered offline business and so am entitled to have an au domain of the same name - it got tricky when I wanted to register another name that had nothing to do with my offline biz - so I just got a dot com in the end!

      search australian domain registration board ( Ithink) and there is a whole pile of info

      and the way I see it - if they will do it - you are good to go!
      good luck
      Kym
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    • Profile picture of the author Ernie Lo
      Thanks Doug, yeah I hope I can use the name.



      Originally Posted by DougBarger View Post

      Hey Ernie, with your skills, you'll do well with any name.

      Is kind of catchy though.
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  • Profile picture of the author mikecowles
    Hey Ernie,

    I would incorporate whatever name you choose. If it's not available, you're not 100% safe from someone suing you for the name. You can do a google for incorporating services and get it done for around $100.

    If you talk to your accountant, you'll find out it really is a must to be incorporated. It's a great way to protect yourself and keep more of your hard earned money.

    I own Chicago Web Design and found out to my surprise that Chicago Web Design, Inc. was available, so don't lose hope!

    Good luck!

    ~Mike Cowles. <><
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  • Profile picture of the author jwessa1
    Incorporating you name would be the way to go but you will need to get an international incorporation to make it legit world wide.
    If they have not incorporated or protected the name in the international community it is not valid outside of the existing registered country.
    Also you will want to check for any international trademarks to avoid any problems.

    Just because you register a corporation in the US or AU it does not protect your name world wide. Coca Cola (TM) has a worldwide protection because it is an international corporate registered trademark.
    See the TM at the back that is a Registered Trademark symbol you see them all over the place for Sony, Honda,Coke,Pepsi and lots of others because they are all Internationally recognized and Registered Trademarks.

    I still suggest you consult an attorney but you will need one versed in international trademark, internet and corporate law, also you might want to seek an international copyright attorney to protect yourself that way too.
    If you can find one that does all of them your better off.

    You might want to be aware of the fact some countries do not recognize any type of copyrights, patents, trademarks or corporations such as India, China, and a few others in Asia and the Balkans as well.

    Consult your local Solicitor! LOL
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  • Profile picture of the author Ernie Lo
    LOL I appreciate the advice, but I think I'm even more confused now
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    • Profile picture of the author jwessa1
      Originally Posted by Ernie Lonardo View Post

      LOL I appreciate the advice, but I think I'm even more confused now
      I understand your confusion completely! that is why we have almost all told you to consult a Solicitor/Lawyer/Attorney.

      I do extensive research before I do anything, to aid in preventing this type of problem.
      But according to several of the other posts down below your confusion post there is solid advice.
      If they do not have your business name in the .AS .UK. .US or dot whatever then you are free to register it and use it.
      That is the international law.

      The worst thing they could do is require you to sell it for a sizable sum of money.AWWWW - too bad right?

      To give you an idea: The domain FACEBOOK.com brought in over $100,000,000 when Zukerburg bought it from the guy that owned it. When Facebook first started up it was called thefacebook.org and .com. When they changed it a large chunk of money changed hands to get it.

      What a retirement plan right?
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  • Profile picture of the author MisterMunch
    I did a search in the official norwegian business directory Brønnøysundregistrene - registeretat og datakilde

    There were 2 results: Brønnøysundregistrene - Nøkkelopplysninger fra Enhetsregisteret

    None of those was called "Money on The web".

    Hence there is no registered company in Norway with that name.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ernie Lo
      Hey

      "money on the web" was just an example I used, not the name I had in mind.

      I did search the name using one of the sites you mentioned.

      It came up with the name I used and after the name it had the words "AS". For example, the name was "Money for web AS"

      Anyone know what AS means, and if thats part of the name it may be considered a different name?




      Originally Posted by MisterMunch View Post

      I did a search in the official norwegian business directory Brønnøysundregistrene - registeretat og datakilde

      There were 2 results: Brønnøysundregistrene - Nøkkelopplysninger fra Enhetsregisteret

      None of those was called "Money on The web".

      Hence there is no registered company in Norway with that name.
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      • Profile picture of the author davezan
        Ernie, I'll go out on a limb and say it looks like you're fine to do what you have
        asked here. If that party in question indeed has not done any kind of business
        in your area, especially using whatever the actual words are, then you might..
        might be fine.

        Don't take this non-lawyer's word for it, of course. Be ready to talk to such in
        your area as others suggested, but lawyers I know who do this tell me it boils
        down to users possibly confusing your site or business with the other party, if
        ever.

        Then again, people dispute other people's rights every other day. Expect that,
        and be ready to deal with it if need be.

        Good luck with your potential venture.
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        David

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      • Profile picture of the author JazzOscar
        Originally Posted by Ernie Lonardo View Post

        -----
        Anyone know what AS means, and if thats part of the name it may be considered a different name?
        It's an abbreviation for "aksjeselskap", directly translated; "share company".

        So it should mean roughly the same as Inc., Ltd. or GmbH.

        Norwegian incorporations are, as far as I can remember, required to use the AS abbreviation as an ending to their business name.
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        Oscar Toft

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  • Profile picture of the author PeterLepacus
    You really should get professional advice. It can get very complicated and you could get yourself into some serious legal issues.

    I will tell you a little about my last situation.

    Created a product for the online financial services industry. Let's call it:
    W1 W2 W3 W4 (Four Words) the company was incorporated (same name), domain name (same name) was secured and the trademark (same name) was registered (which by the way took a year).

    About a month after the trademark was received we get hit with a cease and desist. Basically a very very large company who shall remane nameless had a trademark on "W1 W2" and felt we were infringing.

    So to make a long story short we did everything by the books and in the end it all came down to who had the deepest pockets.

    In the end we could have won but 4+ years of litigation plus appeals e.t.c.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ernie Lo
    Hmm I found another site with the same name but it contains hypens (unrelated to the Norway business).

    the norway company hasnt bought the ".com" they have "abreviation".com

    May be easier to look for another name. But I dont see how they would be selling to Australian customers when their from norway, ad there site has nothing, absolutely no information but their number and address on there (not even any terms or copyright notice)
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