“There are just no cybersquatters left. We have finished them off for good,” declared Francis Gurry, the commander of UN peacekeeping forces stationed in the Afilias registry.
Reaction was less enthusiastic at the NAF, where Arbitrary Director Tim Cole stated, “When we saw eResolution go down the tubes, we thought it was mainly because they did not have quality staff such as Judge Carolyn Marks-R-Us Johnson, who really knew how to generate repeat business."
“Our problem now,” Mr. Cole continued, “is that we are having a hard time writing snappy press release headlines when there is nothing to report. No news is certainly bad news for us.”
In response to a looming financial crisis, the NAF is considering launching an outreach program to encourage people to register more trademarks in domain names. “We’re trying to find out what happened to John Zuccarini, but we’ve had about as much luck finding him as a process server,” Mr. Cole stated.
Meanwhile WIPO is negotiating an affiliate partnership deal with Verisign under which WIPO will offer free public domain name registration through Verisign in exchange for a percentage of UDRP proceeds for names registered under the partnership. WIPO’s strategy is to lower the entry barrier to cybersquatters who may not have credit cards or who may have large court judgments against them. Under a separate deal with SnapNames.com, WIPO is said to be encouraging more panelists to “cancel” domain names, rather than to transfer them, in exchange for a referral fee paid by SnapNames to WIPO when the parties attempt to re-register the cancelled name.
Mr. Gurry was optimistic that the stalled WIPO Second Domain Name Process will eventually be resuscitated to pick up some of the slack in domain resolution business. “It’s simple mathematics.” Mr. Gurry explained, “There are some five thousand International Non-Propriety Names (INN’s) for pharmaceuticals, which each have five official language designations. That’s twenty five thousand domain names out there in each top-level domain - that’s several times more domain names than there have been UDRP proceedings.”
Added Mr. Cole, “Yes, the INN’s are key. These are everyday words like methadone, to mention just one example. These words are being exploited by, for example, a so-called ‘addiction recovery institute’ which operates www.methadone.com. We can’t just sit by and let this kind of abuse continue.”
“Absolutely,” agreed Mr. Gurry, “we certainly need to get our hands on methadone.com, and as many names like it as we can.”
“A lot of them, and soon,” said Mr. Cole, beginning to tremble. “This is a terrible situation in need of a an immediate fix. We need a fix and we need it soon.”
“Yes, just another fix. That’s all we need. We’ll get methadone.net too. They have an awesome background image that looks like it came from a Pink Floyd album,” Mr Gurry continued.
“No, it was Aerosmith,” disagreed Mr. Cole.
“Oh you Americans with your Aerosmith. They so totally sucked. Floyd rules!” affirmed Mr. Gurry.
“As if anything worth listening to ever came out of your country, kangaroo boy. Besides, you can’t say ‘Aerosmith sucks’ because that’s confusingly similar to ‘Aerosmith.’”
“What about Ozzie Osbourne?”
“No, dude, that was just his name.”
“Well, Tim, that’s exactly what we’re talking about here. It’s confusingly similar to ‘Aussie’, and I always thought that’s what it meant.”
“That’s okay, we’ll get his name too. You’re going after the geographic ones too, right?”