On Thursday, April 4, Rick will be moderating a panel on top-level domain names at the upcoming ABA IP Spring Meeting, titled “Is that Domain .Yours or .Mine?: Coping with the New Top Level Domain Names.” You may have heard that (maybe, we’ll see) the “dot-com” era is over, because from now on, we’ll be able to choose from hundreds, maybe even thousands of new generic top-level domain names (“gTLDs”). But there will be teething pains. Oh, will there be teething pains. Like, what happens if the new gTLD happens to be confusingly similar to your mark? (Um, not very “generic”!) And what if more than one application for a new gTLD? (There can only be ONE!).

Here’s the summary of what we’ll be covering:

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) published  a list of over 1,900 applications for new top level domains. Some large brand owners applied for domain names, which mirror their trademarks, but many have not. In addition, there were domain names, such as .app and .inc that received multiple applicants. Given these results, the dispute resolution procedure during evaluation is of  vital importance to brand owners. This program will review the status of the ICANN gTLD program, while providing an in-depth look at how the procedures work, what has happened to date, and how the procedures can be used to a rights holder’s advantage.

Exciting stuff, we’re sure you’ll agree! Rick hopes to see some of you there!

Rick Sanders

Rick is the litigation half of Aaron & Sanders, PLLC; and, from 2012 to 2014, an adjunct professor at Vanderbilt University Law School, where he was teaching Copyright Law. Vandy also happens to be where he got his law degree in 2000. After graduation, he practiced at a major intellectual-property law firm in Silicon Valley for a few years. He returned to Nashville in 2004, where he worked for a large Nashville firm, practicing as much intellectual-property law as he could, but also a lot of commercial law. He left that firm in 2011 to start Aaron & Sanders with Tara Aaron, so he could practice intellectual-property law full time and work with start-ups and other non-institutional clients.