Think back to May 2004, when Motorola launched the first RAZR phone. Do you recall the company ever using the name or term MOTORAZR? I sure don’t, and that is because they hadn’t.
To make a long story short, Motorola is trying to use a legal tactic to take away what is rightfully ours – the mobile phone news site .
Motorazr.com was registered on July 28, 2004, after which it was immediately put into use as a news service and community website. Motorazr.com had already been providing news to the mobile community for two years, when without any prior notifications Motorola’s lawyers sent a Cease & Desist Order on August 31, 2006.
Motorola makes the following claims in their C&D Order: First, that is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark to which they have the rights. Second, that we don’t have the rights to, or a legitimate interest in the domain name. And third, that the domain name was registered in bad faith and is being used in bad faith.
In hope of explaining the legitimacy of the motorazr.com site, I had a brief discussion with Motorola’s lawyer, Julie P. Setren; unfortunately, we could not reach an understanding. Ms. Setren initially requested that I redirect the site to any domain name other than motorazr.com, and I said no, because I legitimately own and use the site. Then she offered money, asking “how about $1,500 (the cost of going through arbitration) for the domain?” I said “no thank you, the website isn’t for sale.” I ended the conversation by telling Ms. Setren that the motorazr.com site will stay up and running unless I’m ordered by law to take it down. That’s when Motorola brought in the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization) Arbitration and Mediation Center (the Center).
Let me sum up Motorola’s complaint and my response – in case you don’t want to read through all the legal mumble jumbo.
Motorola claims that we infringed upon their Trademark. This trademark did not exist until their initial filing date of June 28, 2005, and it was not awarded to them until November 11, 2006. With those dates in mind, and knowing that we created motorazr.com in July, 28, 2004, how could our site infringe upon a mark that was non-existent nearly 11 months before, when the site was first created?
Today, December 6, 2006 is the absolute last day for us to send in our response. In that response, I break down each of the points Motorola raised and defend our rights to the domain . I’ve sent in our response and I’ve also decided that today is the day I will make this story public.
I’ve heard numerous stories where large companies will bully smaller companies and get away with it, but I never expected to be in that position. All we can do now is wait for the arbitrator to come back with a verdict.
With that said, I’m very curious to read your thoughts on the matter.
Read Motorola’s Cease & Desist