I think you should be ok with a search box, because the user basically picks which kind of ads they would like to see,.
But Im no legal expert.....
Searchbox offers you no guarantees that someone won't come after you. However it will probably help in a defense...
What about the DNs that you really regret regging? If it points to a unloadable page is that better than a searchbox?.
PS When I asked my Sedopro rep about the TM infringements, in seeking to reassure me, he pointed me to: http://www.sedo.co.uk/about/policy.p...id=&language=e.
Not reassuring at all: The problem I have with this is that surely in depends on the ads. If your parking keyword is simply the domain name minus the TLD there is a good chance in my view that there could easily be TM infringement.
Rep added to advice so far. Thanks..
I have recently come to a similar conclusion. As discussed on another thread here it is almost getting to the point where domains are too valuable to park for risk of a WIPOut.
I think there are 3 issues for domainers - blatant TM , restricted and contentious.
1. If you hold obvious blanket TM names (microsoftdev.com, jpmorganchasejobs.com etc.) there is nothing you can do - you should not have them , and whether they are parked or not you will lose them if the owner wants them back. You do run the risk of paying the WIPO fee too I suspect ($2k?) so get rid asap.
2. Borderline TM - appleoffers.com , mywindows - these are nice names - but if you let the parking optimisers show the wrong ads you are 'passing off' - you are effectively pretending to be an approved reseller/agent when you are not. I don't think it matters if there are some Granny Smiths wholesalers mixed in with those Ipod ads.
3. Dubious. This is where the trouble may be coming. Say you own LLL.com or generic.com which so far have escaped TM infringments (CNN etc. aside) if your parked page is bringing up TM'd ads there is now a bigger incentive than ever for them to go after you. Why? Because your LLL.com could be worth $500,000..
I don't think there has been a test case yet - just a matter of time, you know those lawyers have big houses to pay for ..
So what to do?.
Look at how much you REALLY gain from parking - including your time and effort moving those names around , the DNS, the optimisation. If it is adding up to a significant chunk of the domains real value then carry on parking at your peril. BUt if no then my suggestion is pull out your top 10% valuable domains and simply point them to a 'this domain for sale' page.
Eg. I have a $xx,xxx LLL domain which nets $5 bucks a day. Each year it's value probably goes up 30% - $5000 say, while the parking brings in $900. I say kill the parking or just put some pictures of kittens on there.
Great thread. This could be BIG real soon ....
IIRC, afternic has a "No Ads" option you can choose which only shows the "For Sale" e.t.c.
However, that might constitute offering for sale which could still be bad faith?.
Maybe, a safer option would be to have a page like "Reserved for future development, click here to contact owner" ???..
Thanks also for those two really helpful comments - rep added. Well, at least I am not going mad thinking what I was. Sedo searchbox page is totally hideous but it's on about 2,500 sites that it wasnt on before!.
Example: healthscare dot com.
Yuk! Anyone familiar with Sedo aware of better options that avoid TMs Completely agree. What is the future for this slipshod style parking?..
Ahhh, it's a sedo search box - I never knew they did that I was hoping to be able to do something similar with my own graphics on it, is there a script of some sort I could use ?
Regarding TM names - I would imagine it would depend on how bad of an infringment the name was. Googlejobs.com would obviously make no difference how you used it.
It is possible for the same name to be Trade Marked by many different people, each one being able to have it for a different use. So use is an very important issue regarding TM's.
With the likes of domaintools new services now being available it's very easy to find out all the domains you own + it's very easy for a company to type in their name and get a list of every person who reg'd a typo of their name in seconds, http://www.domaintools.com/domain-ty...les%5B%5D=look.
From there all they have to do is send you a nasty letter from their Lawyers - you're nailed !.
I do my best to not get any TM names if I can but it is difficult to know or fully understand the situation sometimes.
Sums it up.
(note to noobs: don't think you can make $$ out of parking* - we all talk about it but you will be lucky to even cover your renewal fees - spend your time researching domains instead - and sell some quickly to free up cash).
*arbitrage excepted of course..