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Volume19
Year2010
TitleThe Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy: An Uphill Fight for Domain Name Registrants
Author(s)Kimberly J. Miller
First Page520
AbstractTo keep in touch, my family decided to start a website. So we registered our domain name <millertime.com> with Network Solutions, a well-known ICANN-accredited United States domain-name registrar. Our registration agreement incorporated ICANN's Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) by reference, and required us to submit to any UDRP proceedings brought against our domain name.

Somehow the Miller Brewing Company, owner of the MILLER TIME mark, learned about our website and filed a complaint against us with the National Arbitration Forum, one of ICANN's small handful of approved "dispute resolution service providers." The complaint demanded the transfer of our domain name to the complainant, alleging that (1) our domain name is identical or confusingly similar to complainant's trademark, (2) my family has no rights or legitimate interests in the domain name, and (3) we registered and are using our domain name in bad faith.

ICANN, its dispute-resolution service providers, and the UDRP itself all promise to provide "impartial and independent" resolutions of domain-name disputes like the one Miller Brewing Company has initiated against our family. In reality, however, the UDRP framework is decidedly biased in favor of the trademark holder.