I'm sure legally they could. But I doubt they would since if your site ever got any volume it would be making them a lot of money... Who shuts down a site making them money?..
Somebody who wants more of the money..
It's not impossible, but very improbable...
Yes. They can and will regardless if you are doing volume or not, especially if you are trying to brand your website. But if you are just sending traffic to it in non-branding types of ways, then you may be okay. PPC and emailing are the two quickest way to get a C&D from them...
My site was and is under the same type of dillema. I just made the site within days of getting the email, so it did not bother me towant to mess with them back..
Take A Look..
Sure can.. it's happened to me and my site wasnt making a penny..
Granted it was a MUCH bigger company than netflix. Its definitely possible though....
This brings up a question I have about a domain I bought yesterday, KentuckyFriedCar.com. I want to use it as a blog for alternate fuels, with an emphasis on people using recycled fast food fryer oils for their cars, hence the name.
Will Kentucky Fried Chicken have a problem with my KFC?..
Registering trademarks is always a risk. I always ask the company before I register mine. Otherwise, plan for your site to be short term, therefore, blackhat the fuck out of it and turn it over when they ask...
In Short ... YES 100%. You are using their Registered trademark. If they want the name and they come after it ...they will get it in the end. No question about it. I think the only way they would not get the name is if you had the name prior to their existence or it was a similar situation to Nissan.com.
Great example with nissan.com! Did you notice that it began in 1999 and is still in the non-nissan motor company's hands, though? Interesting!..
I simply wouldn't develop it into something important..
If you use it as a PPC landing site, who cares if they take it. Just don't grow attached to it, and if they want it, let them have it. And ask them for a boost in CPA while they are at it...
Netflix are especially anal about trademarks and domains. If you were doing more volume they're actually more likely to want to take it..
The guy being sued is one tough guy. I'll have to send him a donation as it can happen to ALL of US!.
About the nissan.com thing Sure, it's scary. But the guy at Nissan Computer Guy might have had a stronger case had he not been promoting Nissan Car Dealers and their websites on his "computer service" site.
As far as WIPO Arbitration is concerned, it is the intent with which the name was used. =)..
I have been thinking about these issues for a while. I own a couple of very unique names that could/would catch the original companies' interest. I'm considering now to instead of developing a site on these names - to try to sell them in a marketplace such as SP or eBay. Maybe some ignorant schmuck will pick them up for a chunk of change, not realizing the copyright-infringement risks, lol....
For one of my other domains, I once received a written letter in the mail from a lawyer firm in England representing the Botox brand. The name contains the word "botox", and I was basically threatened to let go of the domain or face 'serious charges'. That was over 1 year ago and I never heard from them again.
Time to sell it and move on...
I can understand how this could be an issue with product name and companies like Netflix, etc. but what about things like: movie titles, book titles, and actor's/model's names? Are domain names with those things any safer?..
I have also been wondering this, but I think it's a grey area - even in legal terms. I would imagine that each case would be evaluated differently based on popularity of the artist/actor/title, chance of competition (taking away "their" traffic), how you use the domain, and so forth..
Just last night I bought a domain for a certain model of a music instrument. The brand is well known, but their model description (which also happens to be a common word) I don't think they can touch me for. I plan on using it for promoting the instrument - hence increasing the brand's sales...
The reality is that the answer to your question is not nearly as cut & dry as everyone in this thread is making it out to be. If that were the case, we wouldn't have millions of dollars being poured into trademark lawyer's hands every year..
Here is the exact text out of the UDRP Applicable Disputes section:.
(i) your domain name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the complainant has rights; and (ii) you have no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and.
(iii) your domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith..
So what does this mean for you? Basically, you need to be using someone else's trademark in bad faith for them to win the UDRP. Registering a domain containing the string "netflix" isn't enough, but using their trademark for profit is. So if you used the domain netflixsucks.com to rant about how shitty netflix customer service has treated you, you're fine. However, if you registerd netflex.com, hoping to garner netflix.com traffic, and put up adsense ads for netflix, you would be using their mark in bad faith and thus lose the UDRP..
I'm not sure how much of this matters to you because it doesn't sound like you're willing to defend the name if it they issue a rinky dinky C&D. On the same token though, netflix probably isn't going to be willing to pay $1500 to fight for this domain. We could discuss the anti-cybersquatting protection act but... I've been typing enough..