Wednesday, April 8, 1998

Wed Apr 08, 1998 08:54:20 PM moderator_betsy_r:Hi! I'm Betsy, and I'll be "moderating" this evening's seminar. Tonight we'll be discussing the issues raised by the "domain names" module. Feel free to just jump into the discussion! (standard chat etiquette applies).

Wed Apr 08, 1998 08:58:01 PM niels_j:Hello

Wed Apr 08, 1998 08:58:03 PM moderator_betsy_r:Hi Niels! Looks like we're the only ones here for now.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 08:58:21 PM moderator_betsy_r:Have you had a chance to look at the materials?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 08:59:14 PM niels_j:Yes, but it was a bit of a rush as the web page link for the second week did not appear to be active (well, for me) until yesterday.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 08:59:54 PM moderator_betsy_r:Things were slow this week, due to technical difficulties -- the page came up on Monday morning instead of Sunday as planned. This coming week's will come up earlier.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:01:22 PM niels_j:Understood. I gathered from the other participants and the email from William Fisher that there had been some problems.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:01:38 PM niels_j:Hi Kate

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:02:05 PM kate_t:Hi! Have we got a seminar now? (or are my international time-line calculations WAY out???

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:02:18 PM moderator_betsy_r:Hi Kate. you're right on.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:02:41 PM moderator_betsy_r:I thought it might be good to start with a hypothetical . . .

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:03:02 PM kate_t:OK

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:03:41 PM moderator_betsy_r:I will try to reconstruct the one from the threaded conference from memory.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:04:37 PM moderator_betsy_r:A fan of a show, which we'll call primrose place," sets up a site devoted to the show. later, the network comes along and wants to set up a site with the name "" and finds it's already taken. What do you think should happen?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:04:49 PM kate_t:Great\\

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:05:06 PM kate_t:Oops (didn't mean to send that- sorry

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:05:48 PM kate_t:If names are given on a first come first served basis, what recourse does the network have?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:06:51 PM kate_t:Is it just their bad luck or because they are rich and powerful the owner of the name should step aside for them?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:07:13 PM kate_t:This is NOT an option i would support

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:07:16 PM niels_j:Kate: The TV network could contact NSI (Network Solutions Inc) to contest the allocation to the fan for starters

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:07:17 PM moderator_betsy_r:Well, names are given out on that babis, but Network Solutions, (NSI) which governs Doman Names, can ask the original user to stop if the user has "taken" a trademark

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:07:45 PM moderator_betsy_r:Then the user would have to sue NSI to get the name back from the corporation.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:08:20 PM kate_t:But is the name of a tv show a trademark?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:08:36 PM niels_j:In this situation,as the original site is an fan of the show, wouldn't it be simpler and more subtle to contact the site owner and ask for the domain name?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:09:09 PM moderator_betsy_r: . . . especially if the owner of the site might be willing to link to the network homepage.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:10:01 PM kate_t:But doesn't this depend on good will from everyone? Something that we can't assume will happen

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:10:40 PM moderator_betsy_r:Even in this example, the fan may be dissatisfied with the Network's handling of the show.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:10:49 PM niels_j:Kate: Yes, it does. It is a good place to start from, but I agree that it can't be assumed to be the case.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:11:06 PM moderator_betsy_r:Should the Network be stuck with an alternative name? maybe

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:12:10 PM kate_t:Do you reckon they're going to put up with that though? if they handle it right, they should go to the owner of the site and work on setting them up with an alternative name...

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:12:34 PM kate_t:Hi robert

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:12:55 PM niels_j:One point that was raised regarding the Pokey web site, is that .com what intend for commercial sites and .org for non-profit, so they (TV network) could use

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:14:04 PM moderator_betsy_r:Usually those "org. names are reserved for non-profit foundations of the philanthropic sort. I'd guess that the network wants to sell show-memorabilia, anyway, through the site.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:14:22 PM robert_m:let the network use another form of media if it feels that it cannot do what it wants to on the www

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:14:58 PM kate_t:Since when were TV networks non-profit? (Well the networks that broadcasts Primrose Place) So i don't think they'd be allowed to use .org would they?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:15:27 PM moderator_betsy_r:That raises an interesting issue, though, Niesl -- should there be more suffixes available, in addition to the national ones and the commercial, educational, and non-profit ones available now?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:16:43 PM niels_j:Betsy: I doubt that is going to solve anything. It just means companies have to buy more domain names so the TV network has to get the domain names...

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:17:18 PM kate_t:Betsy: you may be right... especially with the blurring of lines between educational institutions and private money, etc

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:17:21 PM etc..

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:18:17 PM niels_j:Kate: To answer you question, I doubt the TV network be prevented from using .org

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:18:24 PM moderator_betsy_r:I agree, Niels, it might make the www more expensive. And now, it is seen as one of th great equalizers between the monied and the non-. Bul litigation is expensive too.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:18:53 PM kate_t:Niels: Why wouldn't they be prevented?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:19:34 PM niels_j: (sorry about the typos, an incompatibility between English fingers and an American keyboard)

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:21:29 PM niels_j:Kate: To my knowledge there is nothing stopping the TV network from buying the .org domain name. If there was, how can a single company buy up domain names in the thousands and then sell the of to the public ?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:24:23 PM niels_j:Hi Robert. Where is everyone?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:25:00 PM niels_j:Did you logout or where you logged out by the system ?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:25:19 PM robert_m:question--where is the best place to go to mediate a disputed domain name

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:25:54 PM kate_t:I'm back! i logged out because it suddently went all strange at my end when robert logged out... but now he's back as well. gremlins i suspect

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:26:45 PM niels_j:All: I missed you guys. It can get lonely in a chat room when you are by yourself ;-)

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:26:52 PM moderator_betsy_r:Right now people tend to the courts. Other options include: a specialized NSI arbitration system?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:28:06 PM kate_t:Niels: i always like to talk to my other personalities when i'm on my own!!!! :-o //haha

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:28:19 PM moderator_betsy_r: . . . or -- accomodate everyone by indexing _within_ domain names

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:28:43 PM kate_t:Betsy: who organises such an index?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:29:06 PM moderator_betsy_r:Well, I guess that comes back to good will. Or NSI can do it --

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:29:42 PM kate_t:Betsy: NSI may do it in the US but what about the rest of the world?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:30:05 PM robert_m:why not appoint have a certificate program and award real certificates to very qualified persons------real judges really do not understand that the www belongs to every country on the globe

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:30:46 PM kate_t:Robert: i'm not sure what you mean...?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:30:50 PM moderator_betsy_r:Good question. What do people think about the issues raised by the global-ness? trademarks are not international after all.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:31:42 PM kate_t:but isn't it up to the corporation / institution to register the trademark in the country where they are trading, therefore making them international?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:32:19 PM moderator_betsy_r: -- So companies should register in every company on the globe if they want to ensure their domain name?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:32:19 PM niels_j:Betsy: More trademark disputes, becasue geography is irrelevant on the WWW

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:33:24 PM niels_j:Betsy: If a company wants to trade via the Net and protect their trademark, then yes.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:34:04 PM moderator_betsy_r:Or, should companies be forced (via U.S. litigation) to stick to their home domain (e.g.,

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:34:41 PM niels_j:Betsy: But what about international companies?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:35:30 PM kate_t:Niels: int co.s would have a home country / tax haven somewhere, so i guess they register there

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:35:52 PM moderator_betsy_r:Niels: Perhaps that's where comes in. Of course, this would mean changing everyone's name retroactively.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:36:37 PM kate_t:Betsy: and it raises the need for a central register of names

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:37:32 PM niels_j:Kate: In what sense? I thought the NSI was doing this task.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:37:46 PM moderator_betsy_r:What do people think about the need for such a central register, already? would it simplify or complicate? perhaps governed by experts like the ones Robert suggested?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:38:39 PM robert_m:if my telephone number ====a type of media--spells out the word fortune---doesthat mean time inc demand me never to use that numberune----does that give

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:39:22 PM robert_m:youe-eshare is not a good chat program

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:40:08 PM niels_j:Betsy: Having a central register, but would this solve all trademark disputes? The same trademark can appear in different countries so there are still going to be disputes if a central register is created

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:40:22 PM kate_t:BETSY: could work. But you have the problem of the limitations of language. That is, one word in germany may look the same as another in Holland but mean different things. for eg, one may be offensive in one language and the name of a car in another

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:42:37 PM moderator_betsy_r:or perhaps the language barrier actually creates more viable names.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:43:43 PM kate_t:Betsy: viable in what sense?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:44:26 PM moderator_betsy_r:Kate: not too many people will fight for a name they find offensive or unintelligible.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:45:42 PM robert_m:if you sail a ship and discovered an island that no one else had laid claim to-----why shouldnt you claim it and name it after youself

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:46:13 PM moderator_betsy_r:A good argument for the "first come first served" argument.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:46:55 PM moderator_betsy_r: . . . are you bothered by people who will buy names and "stockpile" them to sell to companies, or od you think this is just entrepreneurship?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:47:40 PM kate_t:Robert / Betsy: because there is usually someone else there who has a name for their island. The only reason Australia, Nth and Sth America were setteled was because explorers chose to ignore those original names / cultures

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:48:20 PM niels_j:Betsy: I think it would depend on how much they are charging for a specific domain name and if they intend to add service

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:48:58 PM kate_t:Betsy: ummm, i guess it's just being entreprenurial but it depends what they do with it (ie what Niels is saying)

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:49:28 PM moderator_betsy_r: -- what if they use the site, call it "" and then put porn up on it? (to use an extreme example)

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:49:53 PM niels_j:Betsy: ...add service, in the sense of web page space, filtering out spam email and other useful things.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:51:03 PM robert_m:the most important part of the internic rfgistratiob form is----what is your purpose of registering this name-----if you intend to use it --it should belong to you

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:51:57 PM moderator_betsy_r:Niels: does that bring us back to good will? or is there a way to formulate a rule allowing such value-added domain mname purchasers and preventing others?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:52:42 PM kate_t:robert: So where are you at if you intend to buy the name only to then sell it??

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:52:52 PM moderator_betsy_r:Robert: you're not concerned with the "consumer confusion" of people using trade-names for unrelated-purpose sites?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:52:55 PM niels_j:Betsy: Wouldn't the be a situation of libel ?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:53:15 PM robert_m:if that is your only purpose---it is wrong

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:53:24 PM kate_t:Niels: why what does '' signify? it means nothing to me

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:54:12 PM moderator_betsy_r:Niels: interesting. I hadn't thought about that. Defamation law wouldn't protect a fictional character (Barney the Dinasuar) but with another example, a libel suit might go forward.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:54:31 PM moderator_betsy_r:sorry about the spelling, guys. I know how to, really. just typing fast.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:55:04 PM kate_t:Betsy: i woodn't wury about that 2 much //winking

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:55:48 PM niels_j:Betsy: But wouldn't there be a case by showing how this affect TV ratings, reduced sales of associated merchandise?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:56:27 PM kate_t:Barney the Dinasour ( never heard of it..) would be protected by copyright so they'd get you that way

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:57:10 PM robert_m:think again as seeing the name as nothing more than a telephone number that may spell out a word

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:58:22 PM moderator_betsy_r:Niels: Perhaps unfair competition would be best, if it has an effect on ratings. but there are mors subtle hypotheticals -- like the case where a guy used "" to show pictures of Pana, Illinois -- and made Zenith, which made televisions with the brand-name Panavision, very upset.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 09:59:14 PM niels_j:Betsy: My question would be is this guy using the site for commercial gain?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:00:29 PM moderator_betsy_r:Maybe, or maybe just to make Zenith upset. Do you think that makes a legal difference?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:01:22 PM niels_j:Betsy: From what I have read in the class material for Trademark law. Yes.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:01:36 PM kate_t:All: what i have trouble with in all of these examples is how all users must placate corporations so they're profit margins aren't ruffled too much. Mmmm cyberspace is beginning to look a little too much like the real world for my liking.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:02:06 PM kate_t:Niels: how does it make a difference?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:02:12 PM robert_m:my intent is to play a football game----if i win and make a n observer upset---so what

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:02:30 PM niels_j:Kate: I think it is more a case that real world attitudes and thinking are being imposed on to the Net

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:03:15 PM kate_t:Robert: so are we talking about human nature here?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:03:24 PM moderator_betsy_r:Robert: your phone number example is an interesting analogy. if you got an "800" number using a trade name (say, 1-800 PEPSICO) should _that_ be illegal?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:03:30 PM niels_j:Robert: What if the observer is a sponsor of your team?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:04:05 PM moderator_betsy_r: . . . illegal meaning you can be successfully sued for it.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:04:42 PM kate_t:Betsy: PEPSICO would be trademarked wouldn't it? Therefore wouldn't be able to use it in such an unrestricted fashion

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:05:19 PM niels_j:Betsy: Wouldn't there be a distinction between the actual phone be advertised and the phone no. as a label?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:06:32 PM moderator_betsy_r: . . . so back to square one. If we analogize domain names to phone numbers, then is off limits.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:07:02 PM moderator_betsy_r: . . . And our television show fan-site has to stop?

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:09:11 PM niels_j:Betsy: As the WWW enters more into the public (buying) conciousness, there is more possibility of confusion in the marketplace so the trademark disputes continue to arise.

Wed Apr 08, 1998 10:09:38 PM moderator_betsy_r:Hey all -- I just looked at my watch and noticed that our hour has actually been over for a little while. I have to leave, unfortunately, as much as I'd like to stay. This has been a really intersting discussion and has given me (I hope you too) a lot to think about. You are all welcome to stay and chat longer!