BAA.com domain battle settled out of court

The sheep-loving former owner couldn't afford the legal fees


The legal battle over the ownership of www.baa.com has been settled out of court after its owner, Tom Bourke, was no longer able to afford the heavy legal fees.

Software consultant Tom decided to make a stand against corporate bullying by refusing to give into the British Airports Authority - better known as BAA - which is the world's biggest commercial operator of airports. Not that he didn't have discussions with it to reach some kind of agreement, but they broke down and a writ arrived soon after.

BAA claimed Tom was "passing off" himself as BAA - which is franking ludicrous as the site features little more than sheep and details of the battle - and that it was losing revenue because it didn't have the domain.

And so to court. But after months and months of legal shenanigans, Tom's legal costs had hit £50,000 and he was advised it would cost another £50,000 before it was over (lawyers' letter writing skills don't come cheap). Unsurprisingly, he decided enough was enough and settled.

We called Tom up to get the details but he's been gagged by one of those bloomin' confidentiality agreements and so couldn't discuss the details. In all though, he is "relieved" the whole thing's over - and before Christmas. He can't discuss the size of the agreement but it's fair to assume that it covered his legal costs. The details aren't completely decided but Tom admitted that is was "more or less a done deal". BAA confirmed the deal but won't discuss matters any further. No surprise there then.

Tom also confirmed that he will retain control of www.baa.net. Asked whether he was worried that BAA would turn around and demand control of that one once the .com site is sorted, he informed us he couldn't discuss it under the terms of the confidentiality agreement. So it looks like there was some kinda trade-off deal.

BAA costs, incidentally, are expected to be around two to three times Tom's, so the company could be looking at a £200,000 bill for control of the domain. It is this that made Tom's stance worthwhile - maybe companies will be a little less heavy-handed and a touch more reasonable when it comes to disputes in the future.

Also, we believe we're right in saying BAA got a court order which it issued to Network Solutions to block any signing over of the domain to anyone else. It will now have to go and get another court order to rescind that court order. Funny old world. ®

Related Story

BAA attempts to shaft sheep site


Other stories you might like

  • Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise adds Wi-Fi 6E to 'premium' access points
    Company claims standard will improve performance in dense environments

    Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise is the latest networking outfit to add Wi-Fi 6E capability to its hardware, opening up access to the less congested 6GHz spectrum for business users.

    The France-based company just revealed the OmniAccess Stellar 14xx series of wireless access points, which are set for availability from this September. Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise said its first Wi-Fi 6E device will be a high-end "premium" Access Point and will be followed by a mid-range product by the end of the year.

    Wi-Fi 6E is compatible with the Wi-Fi 6 standard, but adds the ability to use channels in the 6GHz portion of the spectrum, a feature that will be built into the upcoming Wi-Fi 7 standard from the start. This enables users to reduce network contention, or so the argument goes, as the 6GHz portion of the spectrum is less congested with other traffic than the existing 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies used for Wi-Fi access.

    Continue reading
  • Will Lenovo ever think beyond hardware?
    Then again, why develop your own software à la HPE GreenLake when you can use someone else's?

    Analysis Lenovo fancies its TruScale anything-as-a-service (XaaS) platform as a more flexible competitor to HPE GreenLake or Dell Apex. Unlike its rivals, Lenovo doesn't believe it needs to mimic all aspects of the cloud to be successful.

    While subscription services are nothing new for Lenovo, the company only recently consolidated its offerings into a unified XaaS service called TruScale.

    On the surface TruScale ticks most of the XaaS boxes — cloud-like consumption model, subscription pricing — and it works just like you'd expect. Sign up for a certain amount of compute capacity and a short time later a rack full of pre-plumbed compute, storage, and network boxes are delivered to your place of choosing, whether that's a private datacenter, colo, or edge location.

    Continue reading
  • Intel is running rings around AMD and Arm at the edge
    What will it take to loosen the x86 giant's edge stranglehold?

    Analysis Supermicro launched a wave of edge appliances using Intel's newly refreshed Xeon-D processors last week. The launch itself was nothing to write home about, but a thought occurred: with all the hype surrounding the outer reaches of computing that we call the edge, you'd think there would be more competition from chipmakers in this arena.

    So where are all the AMD and Arm-based edge appliances?

    A glance through the catalogs of the major OEMs – Dell, HPE, Lenovo, Inspur, Supermicro – returned plenty of results for AMD servers, but few, if any, validated for edge deployments. In fact, Supermicro was the only one of the five vendors that even offered an AMD-based edge appliance – which used an ageing Epyc processor. Hardly a great showing from AMD. Meanwhile, just one appliance from Inspur used an Arm-based chip from Nvidia.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022