NZ Aerial Mapping Limited v Terralink International Limited [2007] NZDNC 172

[2007] - NZDNC - 172
Transferred ; Complainant's Rights ; Degree of Name Similarity ; Unfair Registration ; CMD / - Transferred

The history of the company NZ Aerial Mapping Limited (NZAM) was provided by the complainant, who purchased the business in 2003, and changed its name to match. NZAM was responsible for a New Zealand wide business in mapping landscapes from an aerial perspective. The respondent is also in the same business and claimed to have an extended history of operation as well.

The complainant does not have a registered trade mark and it claims it had gained reputation through its longstanding operation. It challenges that the respondent is using the domain names in a way that would confuse customers.
The respondent argues that there is heavy use of the phrase NZ AERIAL MAPPING and there is no reason why anyone else should not use the name.

NZ AERIAL MAPPING LTD is not a registered trade mark but the expert found that it has unregistered trade mark rights. The only domain name that is similar to the name that the complainant has rights in is <>. The other domain name is generic.

The expert held that there is unfair registration. The respondent ought to have known about the complainant and that the name is strongly associated with the complainant's reputation and the use of the domain name would likely confuse, mislead or deceive users into thinking that the domain names were connected to the complainant.

Link to NZLII Decision

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