This week, we've been covering the Easy Group's attempts to take over domain names beginning with "easy" because it feels they are all businesses piggy-backing on its success.
It would seem that you the readers are not in complete agreement with that position. Can't think why. Still if you can't beat them, join em, we say. Therefore, thanks to a reader's experience, we can turn a bad experience into a positive one by getting Easy Group to donate large sums to charity.
The young Giles Toman registered www.easyeverythingelse.com as a gag a couple of months ago. Needless to say the letter from Denton Wilde Sapte arrived soon after threatening all sorts of nasty things.
The old "passing off" claim was duly delivered - which was a little odd because the site contained very little but the disclaimer: "This web page has absolutely no connection with Easygroup plc. We are not in the business of providing discount air travel, car rental or Internet cafes. We are not using any orange colouring on this web page. We are not using anybody else's logo on this web page."
But the Easy Group lawyers were not satisfied. Eventually, Giles came to an agreement with Easy Group. They would send him a cheque for £1,000 made out to a charity of his choice. He donated it to Shelter. They also paid for the site's registering and transferring.
See, Easy Group aren't such bad guys after all.
Of course, Giles has made mention of the fact that he may register another "easy" domain and do his bit for charity by following the same route. It seems that this will work for absolutely any "easy" domain thanks to Easy Group's approach. Sounds like a win-win to us.
Other readers have suggested that Easy Group may wish to threaten other sites, including Easysex.com, Easyspace.com, easyporn, easyorgasms or perhaps Easynet.com.
Some have suggested we register www.easyitnews or easyregister or somesuch. Tempting, tempting. Or perhaps the Easy Group should just get around to registering easyplane, easyflight and easyvan before someone else does and it has to threaten to sue them. Incidentally, it has offered the owner of Easyjetsuck.com £250 for his domain.
Then there were two readers who had some serious points to raise. One, if Easy Group is so angry about people passing if off, why does it have the slogan "The Web's favourite airline" for EasyJet when it is patently a rip-off of British Airways' "The world's favourite airline". One rule for them?
Another suggested a defence for future domain name owners approached by Easy Group. Agree immediately to allow an independent third party specialised in this sort of business to decide the issue. Sadly, this is WIPO.
The fact is it would form a fairly good defence in a law court if Easy Group decided to ignore the recognised arbitration body. Mind you, by then, you'd probably have spent a small fortune in lawyers' fees already. Life's never easy. ®
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