Despite being an internationally renowned recording artist and performer who has sold millions of albums globally, as well as a fashion icon as claimed in her complaint, Ms. Stefani Germanotta, better known as “Lady Gaga” was denied rights to the domain name LadyGaga.org after filing a dispute with the National Arbitration Forum on August 17, 2011.
The respondent in the case was “oranges arecool XD”, who owns well over 2,000 domain names, many of which are celebrity domains like faith-hill.us, keyshiacole.org, audrina-patridge.org, and even blakelively.com (which I’ve written about in the past).
In order to have the domain name transferred, Lady Gaga had to prove all of the following:
(1) the domain name registered by “oranges arecool XD” was identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Lady Gaga had rights; and
(2) ”oranges arecool XD” (the respondent) had no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and
(3) the domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
On point #1, Lady Gaga proved that ladygaga.org was identical to her LADY GAGA mark, as follows.
1. LADY GAGA (Reg. No. 3,695,038 registered October 13, 2009);
2. LADY GAGA (Reg. No. 3,695,129 registered October 13, 2009);and
3. LADY GAGA (Reg. No. 3,960,468 registered May 17, 2011).
However, on point #2 “Rights or Legitimate Interests”, Lady Gaga lost.
The three-member panel found that Lady Gaga had not established a prima facie case in support of her arguments that “oranges arecool XD” lacked rights and legitimate interests.
Because point #2 was not proven, point #3 was considered moot.
As a result, Lady Gaga’s complaint was denied and “oranges arecool XD” (the registrant/respondent) kept the domain name.
You can read the details of the decision here: Claim Number: FA1108001403808
Discussion: 106.1 KISS FM