from the i-loves-a-legal-battle dept
In the past, we’ve written numerous posts about the saga of so-called “sucks sites,” which are websites on domain names that take a well-known brand and append the word “sucks” to the end (or something similarly denigrating) in an act of anger or protest. Many companies have tried to force such sites down using trademark law, but courts have pretty routinely held that sucks sites are perfectly legal.
But what about a “loves site”? What if someone loved your brand so much they set up a site with your brand and the word “love” before it? One of our readers alerts us to just such a scenario that happened a few months back, when Jack Daniel’s threatened the owner of the website ILoveJackDaniels.com, suggesting that it was a trademark violation. The owner of the site gave in and handed over the domain name, but I wonder if such a claim would have stood up in court. It’s difficult to see how the argument would be any different than with the “sucks sites” which are okay.
Perhaps, the only thing is that sucks sites may be protected because no one would confuse a sucks site with the real product site, because the sucks site is obviously trashing the product. With a “loves” site, you could argue that there might be a higher likelihood of confusion. Either way, how long will it be until we also have to explore this issue when it comes to “I-am-ambivalent-to- sites”? Well, okay, that one might not be any time soon.