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Selling corporate twitter handles

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by grahgrah, Dec 6, 2014.

  1. grahgrah

    grahgrah Newbie

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    I was just wondering how lucrative "ransoming" twitter handles could be and if its actually plausible to do so. Can the company alert twitter to have the account suspended before the transaction has taken place? Are misspellings all that valuable?

    I reckon the vast majority of corporate-name-similar handles have already been gobbled up, but I was curious.
     
  2. kypso

    kypso Junior Member

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    Corporate names are almost all the time protected by trademark and / or copyright regulations - and yes they can ask Twitter to hand over the account or to suspend it.

    K.
     
  3. LostConnection

    LostConnection Senior Member

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    Copyright and trademark protected names, you'll get your handle changed by Twitter after the company asks to get their handle from you.
     
  4. blackhat-dudette

    blackhat-dudette Regular Member

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    Yup, as explained above a lot of trading names are protected and the company can simply request them from Twitter. Even worse, if you have posted anything on the accounts they can also sue you for defamation of brand etc!

    However, this being said............ catchphrases are not protected.

    For example, in the 90s Adidas used "Impossible Is Nothing" as a catchphrase. You could easily grab this as a Social Media handle and even a domain name and they couldnt do anything about it.

    Bearing in mind that I am not a lawyer, I do believe that if the catchphrase is an intentional misspelling, such as " I'm Lovin' It" then it is protected just like a trademark would be!
     
  5. grahgrah

    grahgrah Newbie

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    More specifically, I own the handles for CherokeeInc and CherokeeApparel. Cherokee can't be trademarked because it is the name of a tribe, but this is still the name of Cherokee Global Brands. Does the Inc part of it render it invalid to ransom?
     
  6. FireSoftLimited

    FireSoftLimited Junior Member

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    Yeap, first check if names you've used are trademarked. If yes, and you registered those names (incl. mispelled) with purpose of selling back to the owner you may face legal actions. It's up to the owner of the trademark.