Protecting Domain Names and Social Media Handles | Minute Law | Spear IP
Articles,  Blog

Protecting Domain Names and Social Media Handles | Minute Law | Spear IP


When you think of a domain name and trademark,
you hear about cybersquatting and that’s essentially trademark infringement, but with a domain name. So if someone snaps up a top level domain
name using your trademark after you have started using your trademark — that’s kind of key
— then that could be considered cybersquatting and, you know, a lot of times people will
… it’s like extortion. “Pay us $300,000 for this domain name and
we’ll let it go” well, you can’t do that. There are kind of two ways to protect a domain name. First is if you are actually using the entire
domain name as your brand name. An example would be Hotels.com. They use “Hotels.com” in their branding, right? They don’t just say “Hotels.” So if you are using your full domain name
in your branding then that’s one way to protect your domain name in terms of trademark protection. More common, though, is just having your domain
name mirror your brand and you register just the brand name. So, spear-ip.com — the brand name is “Spear IP.” Just using the domain name, though, is usually
not enough to show trademark use, in other words, it’s not enough to show use of that
trademark in connection with products or services. So, if I had “hellospearip.com” but all of my branding used “Spear IP,” just having “hellospearip.com” isn’t enough in terms of trying to protect
“hellospearip.” Make sense? Social media handles. So, again, if you have your trademark protected,
and you’re safeguarding your brand, more and more, social media platforms are requiring
that you show a serial number or registration number in order to take down or report another’s
use of your trademark. So that’s maybe one more reason to look into
pursuing trademark registration. But, it’s not a bad idea to not only pick
up the handle for your actual brand name but maybe your brand name +”official,” maybe your
brand name and, you know, some of those related words so that others can’t snap up your social
media handle and to kind of avoid having to send the takedown request and all of that
down the road. And of course, the other part of protecting
your social media handle is the privacy aspect and using a good password and using two-factor
authentication and changing your password periodically to protect the account and protect
the content in your account. So I hope that helps give you an idea of some
of the options for protecting a domain name, for protecting a social media handle, and
I’ll see you next time.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *