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Company Wants Trademark for .Secure

August 17, 2010Domaining, Domainnamewire, new tlds, Policy & Law, trademarks, usptoComments Off on Company Wants Trademark for .Secure

Will we see a .secure?

A Wisconsin company has filed an application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to get the service mark “.secure”.

The application from Asif LLC says it will be used for “Domain name registration services”, which likely means the company is eying new top level domain names. It could also be used as branding for a domain name registrar.

The USPTO won’t let you trademark a top level domain name, although companies have tried to slip them past previously. Some new top level domain name applicants have trademarked their “dot-term” in an attempt to get a leg up on the application process. It might scare away competitors in the case more than one company is interested in the same top level domain name. One proponent of .music has stated that he will use his non-U.S. trademarks for .music if necessary.


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Name Administration Reaches Settlement over Cheat Code Mark

June 21, 2010Domaining, Domainnamewire, Frank Schilling, name administration, Policy & Law, trademarks, usptoComments Off on Name Administration Reaches Settlement over Cheat Code Mark

Company settles trademark dispute.

Frank Schilling’s company Name Administration has reached a settlement with the holder of a trademark for Cheat Code, according to documents at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Late last year CheatCodes.com LLC started going after people who had “cheat code” in their domain names, thanks to somehow slipping the generic term “Cheat Code” past a USPTO examiner. It went after small webmasters, but also sent a demand to Name Administration for its CheatCode.com domain name. That was a mistake.

Name Administration filed for cancellation of the Cheat Code mark in November. On June 10 Name Administration’s lawyers informed the USPTO that a settlement was reached and dismissed the case.

Details of the settlement have not been made public. However, the withdrawal of the Petition for Cancellation means the trademark stands for now, which is not good news to smaller players who have been threatened by CheatCodes.com. Unless, of course, CheatCodes.com LLC is a bit more gun shy now.


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Name Administration Challenges “Cheat Code” Trademark

December 2, 2009Domaining, Domainnamewire, name administration, Policy & Law, trademarks, usptoComments Off on Name Administration Challenges “Cheat Code” Trademark

Frank Schilling’s company files petition for cancellation after trademark owner threatens it.

If you’ve ever filed for a trademark, you know that it can be a challenging process to get approval. Just ask hotels.com and mattress.com, which have failed in their attempts.

But trademarks are inevitably improperly approved by the Unites States Patent and Trademark Office every day. Such is the case with “Cheat Code”, a generic term referring to codes in video games that unlock secret levels, provide players with new powers, etc.

Somehow, CheatCodes.com LLC managed to slip this through and got a trademark for the term “Cheat Code”. The company operates at CheatCodes.com. So who owns CheatCode.com? Frank Schilling’s Name Administration.

According to Name Administration’s publicly available filing with USPTO (pdf), CheatCodes.com, LLC threatened owners of domains similar to “Cheat Code”. But then the company messed with the wrong guy: it threatened Name Administration over its CheatCode.com domain name, which it has owned since 2000.

The petition for cancellation claims Cheat Code is generic and descriptive, and should not have been issued as a trademark. By aggressively pursuing a weak trademark, CheatCodes.com has landed itself hot water.

The petition for cancellation might not be decided until early 2011.


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