Regulation Of Domain Names

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Regulation of Domain Names

Regulation of Domain Names


Every brand has a legal right to register itself under the stated trademark and patents laws or acts. The internet is the best source to commercialize the brand to expand its scope and circle of its consumer. Moreover, the internet can be used effectively in order to expand the operations of a company due to which it is considered the best way to advertise, and promote the business. However, the internet is still at the development stage and lacks proper laws and regulations. This often leads to trademark related problems. The case of Marks and Spencer v One in a Million was decided by the English court in which the case of using the name of a reputed brand by another party in order to gain an advantage.

In this case, the Deputy Judge of the High Court, Jonathan Sumption Q.C. made a comment that “There is no central authority regulating the internet, which is almost entirely governed by convention”. This paper aims to determine the purpose behind this comment and the extent to which it is true.


One in a Million is the name of a company that acts as an agent between the organizations that offers internet domain names and the customers. Since a variety of names are available, organizations such as One in a Million take domain names that are similar to the names of established brands. These names are then offered at a high price to the organization whose name they copied. In order to persuade them to purchase the domain name, the organizations are told that the names would be offered to other parties if not purchased.

Parties who have an aim to trick internet users make a lot of effort to get such domain names since it makes it easier to trick people. People often fail to distinguish between the real domain name and a site with a similar domain name due to which they get lured into visiting websites that are of no use to them.


The verdict which was passed by the court portrays the true lawful and legal solutions to the issuance of domain names that resemble that or established brands. The activities of the defendant's history show they had an intention of using the Marks and Spencer brand name to deceive customers and hence earn profits. This is a major issue and can be considered tort because of the outcomes of such an act. Even if the party did not have an intention of deceiving customers, the fact that they used the brand name of another organization means that they would be getting some sort of advantage. The violation and threatening to pass off trademark and similarities which borne or creates some confusion by arising the mark infringement, is declared beyond argument. The judge emphasised that's it is not a simple registration of just a name, in itself, but passing in fact, the brand value was also being passed on the party.

This verdict clearly states the limitations of ...
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