Me and a friend have been on the lookout for a good domain name recently to start an online shop. The topic of trademarking came up because we found so many domains for sale which were using copyrighted names (this was particuarly bad with gambling related names).
I recalled the story to my friend of the domain name dispute Armani.com had a few years ago. Basically, A man of Finnish heritage called A. R. Mani registered Armani.com in 1995. Armani contacted Mr Mani and around 1997 Mr Mani offered the domain to them for $1,935 USD. Nothing was settled and in 2001 Armani launched a complaint with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center saying that the domain name was a trademark was a violation of their trademark. Long story short, Armani lost the dispute. The domain name now directs to their product line so something between the two parties has obviously been arranged since then however at the time it caused a big shock.
I searched the web and found the WIPO’s full report on the matter. If you have ever worried about someone taking your name then it proves an interesting read. Enjoy 🙂