eResolution announced today that it is getting out of the business of arbitrating disputes under the UDRP. In a press release issued today (Nov. 30), the company notes that the ICANN dispute resolution system was "tilted from the outset" by giving complainants the privilege to choose the dispute resolution service provider.
"The ICANN system," the press release continues, was "originally meant to allow for fair competition between accredited dispute resolution providers. But the accreditation as provider of the World Intellectual Property Organization, a United Nations agency which contributed the draft of the UDRP and whose purpose is to enhance the protection of intellectual property, tilted the balance from the outset. [Because] complainants tended to win significantly more often with some providers, notably WIPO, than with others, notably eResolution, [this created] a perception of bias from which the system never recovered."
As a result: "the market share of eResolution kept on shrinking to a point where the proceeds no longer covered the costs of maintaining the service."
Full disclosure department: I served (as did some of the other ICANNWatch editors) as an eResolution panelist, and I also helped, early on, to convince them to enter the UDRP scene -- largely because some of us were, and continue to be, concerned about the prospect of any single dispute resolution service provider obtaining a monopoly over these services.
It's too bad this didn't work out
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