February 28, 2024
Brian Winterfeldt and Terri Doud
Client Alert
Client Alert
Client Alert

2023 Marks Another Record Year in Domain Name Dispute Cases

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Record surge in WIPO domain name cases highlights the growth and success of the UDRP.

Another record increase in WIPO domain name dispute filings in 2023 confirms the importance of the UDRP as a critical tool for brand owners in their brand and domain name protection strategy. With almost 6,200 complaints filed by year end, this rise capped ten years of continuous growth since the establishment of the UDRP.  The WIPO noted the following statistics of interest from 2023:

1. gTLDs and ccTLDS: Even though 80% of cases related to .com domains, there were increases in filings for ccTLDs.

2. Tool for Every Industry:  A variety of industries relied on the UDRP in 2023, with banking and finance, biotechnology, fashion, and retail leading.

3. Global Reach: While the United States, France, and the United Kingdom represented the top filing countries, filers came from around the world.

4. Multi-lingual. Procedures were conducted in 17 languages, but English remained the most common.

5. Transfer Dominates. The majority of proceedings resulted in transfer of disputed domain names; only 14% of cases were settled with the filing party receiving a $1,000 refund.

The WIPO noted that factors driving this increase include an overall growth in domain name registrations, broader awareness of the UDRP, and evolving cybersquatting activities.  In addition to desired relief from cybersquatting, complainants sought resolution for fraud, malware, phishing, counterfeits, and unlicensed pharmaceuticals. With the proliferation of use of AI to fuel cybersquatting and other fraudulent or malicious activities, we predict that the use of the UDRP will continue to grow. Brand owners must be ready to turn to the UDRP as an effective and efficient alternative to lawsuit.

If you have yet to explore solutions to the threats mentioned above, or you feel that you have implemented strategies that could use improvement, please contact us to assist with protecting your brand! The Winterfeldt IP Group’s team of seasoned practitioners have deep knowledge and expertise in UDRP jurisprudence, having maintained a front row seat to the nearly 25 years of the UDRP’s history. Acting as both advocates and adjudicators, Brian Winterfeldt and his team have handled hundreds of UDRP domain name disputes, impacting thousands of domain names worldwide. Our understanding of the UDRP and the corresponding body of case law and key consensus positions allows us to craft customized business practical strategies to protect and enforce our client’s trademark and brand portfolios all while accounting for the unique needs of each client.  

For further information regarding the content of this article, or to discuss this or other intellectual property matters, please contact the Winterfeldt IP Group:

Brian Winterfeldt, brian@winterfeldt.law, +1 202 903 4422

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