Apple Threatens Owner of iTunes Domain

By Ian Betteridge  |  Posted 2004-12-08
Apple has taken steps to take ownership of the domain name from its current owner, with the company formally complaining to Nominet, the UK domain name registrar, that it is entitled to the domain.

According to a report on The Register, Apple has been attempting to claim the domain from its current owner, Benjamin Cohen, since November, when its solicitors began sending Cohen letters requesting that he turn over the domain to them. The site currently forwards to a music search engine at Cohens CyberBritain site.

However, it appears that Apple may have little chance of gaining ownership of the domain without buying it from Cohen, as it was registered on 7 November 2000 – over a month before Apple applied for the trade mark on iTunes. Cohen claimed that he had no idea that Apple was intending to build an iTunes service at the time of his registration.

Although ownership of a trademark is not essential to being granted ownership of a web site, the fact that Cohen has been trading using the site since long before Apples plans became clear means he is likely to win an appeal.

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