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Football rules squatting cases


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Geneva - Complaints about football-related website addresses made up a key part of the cyber squatting disputes in 2009, said the UN intellectual property agency on Tuesday.

"Football featured strongly in the Wipo Centre's 2009 caseload, including the upcoming World Cup," World Intellectual Property Organisation said in its annual report on cyber squatting.

Among the cases was a decision in favour of FIFA for the web address www.fifaworldcup2010.com after a complaint was filed by world football's governing body. The South African football federation also filed a challenge over cyber squatting, Wipo said.

In all, the agency received 2 107 complaints on 4 688 domain names in 2009. This marked a drop of 9.5% in 2008, when a record number of cases was put forward, said Wipo head Francis Gurry.

Gurry noted that this fall reflected reductions in companies' budgets for litigations amid the economic crisis.

About a quarter of the cases in 2009 were resolved by the parties ahead of a panel decision. Of the remainder, some 87% found in favour of the complainant.


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