WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Riello S.p.A v. Web Advertising, Corp.
Case No. D2007-0314
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Riello S.p.A. of Verona, Italy, represented by Dr. Modiano & Associati S.p.A., Italy.
The Respondent is Web Advertising, Corp. of Nassau, Bahamas.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <rielo.org> is registered with BelgiumDomains, LLC.
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on March2,2007. On March5,2007, the Center transmitted by email to BelgiumDomains, LLC a request for registrar verification in connection with the domain name at issue. On the same day, BelgiumDomains, LLC transmitted by email to the Center its verification response confirming that the Respondent is listed as the registrant and providing the Respondent’s contact details. The Center verified that the Complaint satisfied the formal requirements of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Policy”), the Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Rules”), and the WIPO Supplemental Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Supplemental Rules”).
In accordance with the Rules, paragraphs 2(a) and 4(a), the Center formally notified the Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on March7,2007. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5(a), the due date for Response was March27,2007. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on March28,2007.
The Center appointed Tobias Zuberbhler as the sole panelist in this matter on April13,2007. The Panel finds that it was properly constituted. The Panel has submitted the Statement of Acceptance and Declaration of Impartiality and Independence, as required by the Center to ensure compliance with the Rules, paragraph7.
4. Factual Background
The Complainant claims to be a leading worldwide supplier for heating and cooling applications and services in the residential market and has been operating under the RIELLO name since 1920. The RIELLO trademark was first filed in Italy in 1953 and was registered in the United States of America in 1982. The Complainant also markets its products under various domain names incorporating the RIELLO trademark.
The Respondent registered the domain name at issue on October31,2006. The website to which the domain name resolves contains sponsored links with a presentation of, and links to, different products, some of them competing with those of the Complainant.
5. Parties’ Contentions
The Complainant objects to the use of the disputed domain name by the Respondent and bases its Complaint on the following grounds:
1. The Domain Name is confusingly similar to the Complainant’s trademark.
2. The Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name as there is no relationship between the Respondent and the Complainant. The Respondent makes no legitimate non-commercial or fair use of the domain name and is not commonly known by the domain name.
3. The disputed domain name was registered and is being used in bad faith. The Respondent must have been aware of the Complainant’s name and trademarks, since the Complainant’s trademarks are renowned and have been published through the Internet for many years under various domain names. Potential customers of the Complainant could be attracted to the Respondent’s website for commercial gain. This is evidenced by the fact that some of the sponsored links published on the website <rielo.org> refer to the Complainant’s competitors.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
Paragraph4(a) of the Policy provides that the Complainant must prove each of the following in order to succeed in an administrative proceeding:
(i) that the Respondent’s domain name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the Complainant has rights; and
(ii) that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and
(iii) that the domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
Paragraph4(c) of the Policy sets out circumstances which, in particular but without limitation, if found by the Panel to be proved, shall demonstrate the Respondent’s rights or legitimate interests in the domain names at issue.
Paragraph4(b) of the Policy sets out circumstances which, again in particular but without limitation, if found by the Panel to be present, shall be evidence of the registration and use of a domain name in bad faith.
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The only difference between the disputed domain name and the Complainant’s trademark is that the domain name has a single instead of a double letter “l”. Such difference does not prevent the domain name from being considered confusingly similar to the Complainant’s trademark (cf. the reverse situation - addition of a letter “l” - in connection with the domain name <dillbert.com>, United Feature Syndicate, Inc. v. Mr. John Zuccarini, WIPO Case No. D2000-1449). In addition, the words “Rielo” and “Riello” appear phonetically comparable. Considering further that the Respondent is seemingly aware of the Complainant and its products (section C below), the Respondent’s conduct amounts to so-called “typosquatting”.
The Complainant meets the requirements of paragraph4(a)(i) of the Policy.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
The available record indicates that Respondent is not an affiliate of the Complainant nor was it given any right to use the Complainant’s trademark. Upon information and belief of the Complainant, the Respondent has not been commonly known by the disputed domain name nor has it made any bona fide use of the domain name.
The website to which the domain name resolves contains sponsored links with a presentation of, and links to, different products, some of them apparently competing with those of the Complainant. None of the sponsored links and results given indicate or redirect to any of the official websites of the Complainant, nor provide any information on how to contact the Complainant.
The Panel finds that the Complainant has made a prima facie showing of Respondent’s lack of rights or legitimate interests, and by defaulting, the Respondent has failed to demonstrate any right or legitimate interest in the disputed domain name. Therefore, the Complainant has fulfilled the requirements of paragraph 4(a)(ii) of the Policy.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
There are reasons to believe that the Respondent knew of the Complainant’s activities and trademarks when registering the disputed domain name. This belief is supported by the following facts: 1) the RIELLO trademarks appear to be well-known (cf. also Riello S.p.A. v. Domain Name Clearing Company, LLC, WIPO Case No. D2001-1046); 2)some of the sponsored links published on the website under <rielo.org> apparently refer to the Complainant’s competitors; and 3) the Complainant has published company information via the Internet since 1996 through various websites.
By using the disputed domain name, potential customers of the trademark owner are likely to be diverted to the Respondent’s website for commercial gain. This is again evidenced by the fact that some of the sponsored links published on the website <rielo.org> refer to the Complainant’s competitors. The Complainant’s trademarks could be tarnished by such conduct as the Complainant might not wish to be brought into connection with the products and services offered on the corresponding website.
Furthermore, the Respondent appears to have registered and used at least seven other domain names in bad faith, as evidenced by the WIPO Cases listed in Annex 11 to the Complaint.
In summary, the Complainant has fulfilled the requirements of paragraph 4(a)(iii) of the Policy.
For all the foregoing reasons, in accordance with paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the domain name <rielo.org> be transferred to the Complainant.
Dated: April 27, 2007