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Cease and Desist Letter...

Discussion in 'Domain Names & Parking' started by Seariz, Jan 25, 2010.

  1. Seariz

    Seariz Junior Member

    Aug 29, 2009
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    I entered into a verbal contract about a year ago with a winery to do their marketing, website design, etc for a percentage of profits. Our deal went south and we agreed to terminate the deal. Their domain name is hvcellars.com - they own the copyright to the letters "HV", so they call themselves "HV cellars, HV winery, etc because their name "Hawks View" is already copyrighted.

    I, on my own accord and with my own money, purchased hvcellars.org/.net at the time of our agreement, and they never paid for them so I was going to use them for whatever effing purpose i deemed worthy later on (I'm not about to gift these to people who screwed with me). Well, i made the mistake of blabulating to the wrong person that I owned those domains, it got back to them, so they sent me a cease and desist letter stating that since they own the trademark and the name that I must give them those domains.

    Is this true? And if so, wouldn't that mean that any website created with HV in the main title would belong to them if they so choose? Not really sure how copyrighting/trademarking works with online sites.

    Any help would be appreciated,
    Thanks guys,
  2. oliver_winston

    oliver_winston Junior Member

    Dec 1, 2008
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    Unless you have it in writing that you have licensed their trademark for use in that domain, you would likely be forced to give them the domain if it got into a legal situation.

    Of course, if you have a bigger checkbook than they do you could fight it and let the attorneys work it out.

    I'm sure you know this but a verbal contract was a big mistake on your part.

    I would guess the domain name isn't worth more than the attorney would cost to fight it and besides, their are better ways you can get even with them.
  3. Kid Shaleen

    Kid Shaleen Regular Member

    Oct 29, 2009
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    It's true that in a nasty fight the bigger checkbook usually wins.

    OTOH, they have to consider how much their lawyers would cost them to even write another letter vs how much they might pay you for the site.

    If you're not putting up a winery it doesn't seem like they have much of a case for trademark violation. Technically you might be creating a new "Hamburg Vampire's Cellar" to blog your favorite horror films.

    You might tell them this and suggest it would be easier and cheaper to throw you a few dollars for the site than fight you.
  4. h8machine

    h8machine Newbie

    Feb 20, 2009
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    I agree with Kid Saleen. The cost for them to work through their lawyer and proceed further than a C&D letter is probably not even close to what those domains are worth, to you or them. Most people piss their pants when they get anything that looks official from a lawyer and will comply.

    You should suggest that you will be happy to part with the domains for a couple hundred bucks. That's not bad profit for a little bit of foresight on your part. :)