Academy of Motion Picture Arts Initiates Action Against Oscar Extortionists.

ALEXANDRIA, April 29, 2009 -- The Academy of Motion Picture Arts has filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia to sieze the domain name www.oscars100.com.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts filed an in rem proceeding in federal court in an effort to obtain the domain name www.oscars100.com from an Indian entity calling itself 007 Promotions and Martin & Adam McCann. Jurisdiction in this lawsuit is argued to lie in the Eastern District of Virginia because the official registry of all .com domains is VeriSign Global Registry which is located in Dulles, VA.

The Academy was founded in 1927 by thirty-six film industry leaders for the purposes of promoting and advancing the motion picture arts and sciences by fostering cooperation among the industry's leaders. The Award of Merit commonly known as an Oscar was created to motivate and recognize individuals for their contributions tp the industry. The Academy possesses federal registrations for the marks OSCAR, OSCARS and OSCAR NIGHT and owns the domains www.oscars.com and www.oscars.org.

The complaint accuses 007 Promotions of offering the domian name www.oscars100.com for sale on an internet auction site for the sum of $25 million. The pleadings further states that the Academy received an email message on March 26, 2009 offering the aforementioned domain for sale for the sum of $25 million.

In response to the first offer of sale, the Academy sent a cease and desist letter to 007 Promotions on April 8, 2009. 007 Promotions responded by email saying "We remain confident in our actions and shall not withdraw, deregister nor desist from marketing our Domain Name, www.oscars100.com. India is globally renowned for manufacturing quality copies, likenesses and imitations of the Worlds leading Brands that may look similar but are not identical."

Cybersquatting has been defined as registering, trafficking in, or using a domain name with bad faith intent to profit from the goodwill of a trademark belonging to someone else. Cybersquatting is prohibited under U.S. law.

007 Promotions and the McCanns sent another email to the Academy on April 8, 2009 urging them to make an offer for the domain" in order to obviate the necessity of any 'cross-continent' litigation and protracted proceedings in India." When no offer was received, another email was received by the Academy on April 12 stating other buyers will be pursued and "we cannot be responsible for the alternative uses that it may be acquired for, Gambling, ADULT INDUSTRY or otherwise."

On April 14, Martin McCann sent an email to the Academy stating "Times up! 007 Promotions reserve the right to continue with our own agenda...And the Winner is..........PORN OSCARS. Mr, Cann contacted the Academy again on April 28 claiming that the oscars100.com site would be posting content soon and would act as a "porn funnel."

The Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act allows the owner of the trademark is bring a lawsuit to seek ownership of a domain name that has been registered by a foreigner with a bad intent to capitalize of the good will of the trademark.

Disclaimer & Terms of Use | Privacy Policy
© 2007 Brandwise Law Firm, P.C.