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WIPO arbitrators have dealt with 25,000 domain disputes.

In 1999, ICANN, the International Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), which manages the Internet address space, adopted the UDRP (Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy) and UDRP rules. These documents created a system of out-of-court dispute resolution for consideration of cases of domain registration with known bad intentions.

Since the entry into force of these documents, several centers authorized to handle domain disputes have been accredited. Two of them account for more than 90% of reviews: The WIPO Arbitration Mediation Center (World Intellectual Property Organization) and the US National Arbitration Forum (National Arbitration Forum).

On average, the WIPO Arbitration Center receives three new disputes under the UDRP on a daily basis, suggesting that infringement of the rights of trademark and other intellectual property (IP) owners by domain owners continues. However, significant progress has been made since the initial introduction of UDRP, when the number of disputes filed per day reached five. 'This trend is encouraging and shows that an expedited online dispute resolution service is an effective way to prevent IP theft by pirates on the Internet,' said Mr. Francis Gurry, Deputy Director General responsible for overseeing WIPO's work in the domain area. 'This does not mean that our work is finished - we must continue our efforts to ensure that the Internet becomes a safe market for business people. Preventing the misuse of intellectual property rights in the digital environment, which is expanding on a daily basis, is a significant part of our work,' Mr. Gurry added.

Illustrating the significant public attention to this phenomenon, the Centre's website, which publishes all decisions and includes a legal index of all decisions, has registered more than 30 million appeals in total. The most visited solutions are those for the 'name' domains of Madonna, Sting, Julia Roberts. Recall that Madonna and Julia Roberts have won disputes about their domain names, while Sting has not been able to prove the three conditions necessary to return a domain name (see Under the terms of the UDRP, the plaintiff must prove that the disputed domain name is identical or confusingly similar to its own trademark or other IP object, that the defendant has no right or legitimate interest in the domain concerned, and that the defendant has registered and used the domain in bad faith.

Thus, 2005 was marked by major domain disputes around well-known branded domains such as,,, In addition, celebrities continue to be a tasty piece of cyber squatters. Such famous people as the author of 'Little Prince' Antoine de Saint-Exupery, Morgan Freeman, Larry King, Domiane Hirst and others have been involved in the proceedings. The fashion world has also been made public by scandals and high-profile domain cases. Hugo Boss, Armani, and Calvin Klein have been on trial.

The industries most frequently involved in WIPO domain disputes include food and alcohol production and sales, the restaurant business, the fashion and entertainment industry, the Internet and information technology, and the media.

In just 7 years of the WIPO Arbitration Mediation Center's existence, the Center's arbitrators have dealt with over 25,000 cases. The Center has received 9,567 claims under the UDRP procedure for both national domains (country code TLD or ccTLD) and public domains (generic TLD or gTLD). Of these applications, according to WIPO statistics, 79 per cent of all domain name dispute cases were filed under domain COM; 11 per cent under domain NET, 6 per cent under domain ORG, 2 per cent under domain INFO and 2 per cent under domains BIZ, TRAVEL, AERO and EDU combined.

More than 15 thousand domain disputes considered by the Center concerned domains registered in the course of priority registration in domains INFO, BIZ, MOBI, as well as cases based on the special procedure ERDRP developed at the opening of the domain NAME.

Of the 9,567 applications submitted up to August 2006, 97 per cent (8,936) were resolved. Of these, 418 involved domain names registered in national domains (47 ccTLDs under the UDRP process), of which 388 were resolved in favour of the plaintiff, 43 in favour of the defendant, 105 were resolved by the parties and another 30 are pending. A total of 17,912 domains from 136 countries have been processed.

В отчете Арбитражно-посреднического центра ВОИС приведена таблица с количеством рассмотренных доменных споров в разных доменных зонах по годам.

UDRP .info .biz STOP .name EDRP .mobi Sunrise Total
1999 1 - - -   1
2000 1,857 - - -   1,857
2001 1,557 1,579 53 -   3,189
2002 1,207 13,593 285 1   15,086
2003 1,100 - - -   1,100
2004 1,176 - - 3   1,179
2005 1,456 - - 1   1,457
Jan-August 2006 1,213 - - - 3 1,216
Total 9,567 15,172 338 5 3 25,085
The WIPO Arbitration Mediation Center is also involved in the resolution of disputes concerning so-called multilingual domain names (represented by symbols of national alphabets). Several dozen lawsuits have already been received for such domain names.

In analyzing the claims received, WIPO speaks of the multinational nature of the domain hijacking phenomenon. To date, the Center has received disputes in 12 languages. Chinese, English, French, German, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Italian and Dutch. The geographical distribution of parties involved in disputes handled by the WIPO Center under the UDRP covers 136 countries. It is clear that the number of such contentious cases will only increase over time.

Domain disputes resolved by the Center are indexed, a number of decisions on them published on the organization's website.