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    This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.
    I think you misspelled "MEAWGHTH" | Log in/Create an Account | Top | 5 comments | Search Discussion
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    Of Course He Knew What He Was Doing
    by jberryhill on Monday January 19 2004, @11:21AM (#12874)
    User #3013 Info

    Various articles quote Mr. Rowe as saying he thought it would be "funny". That what would be funny? Oh, you mean registering a domain name that sounds exactly like that of a well-known software company and using it for computer services.

    Sort of funny in the way that everyone got the joke in the movie _Coming to America_ involving a fast food restaurant named "MacDougal's".

    Well, okay, we've all gotten the joke. But the bottom line is that you don't get to start a fast food restaurant even if your name is McDonald, nor would you last long if you went to Alaska to start the Kodiak Camera Company. And if two guys named Hewitt and Packer wanted to start making printers, I could probably think of one name they shouldn't use.

    A joke is one thing, and this story counts as "cute". But you don't get a $10,000 check from the trademark fairy for having an interesting name.

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    Re:Of Course He Knew What He Was Doing
    by dmehus on Monday January 19 2004, @07:15PM (#12876)
    User #3626 Info | http://doug.mehus.info/
    Ordinarily, I'm inclined to agree with you on this John. Infringing on valid trademarks is not acceptable.

    However, Mike Rowe clearly has an established software development and Web design site using the domain name. In short, he is not "squatting" it and is not pointing it to . Therefore, I believe he should be allowed to keep it. If his legal name is indeed Mike Rowe, he has a valid entitlement to it. Don't legal, personal names trump trademarks? I'm sure even the WIPO would side with him and label Microsoft a reverse cyber-squatter.

    Granted, you couldn't go and change your name to Mike Rowe and then register mikerowesoft.com and claim you have a right to it. But if you're born with the name Mike Rowe, why should you not be able to include "soft" (as in software) in your domain name? Every other small time software programmer with a website does.

    Let's use your Hewitt and Packer example. If two guys wanted to sell computers and started up the Hewitt & Packer Electronics retail store, and branded their own computers, they should be entitled to the name "hewitt-packer.com" for the simple fact that is their name. Of course, they shouldn't be allowed to call themselves "HP," but they definitely have a right to the above domain name.

    Doug Mehus http://doug.mehus.info/ [mehus.info]
    [ Reply to This | Parent ]

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