World IP Day 2019

Written by Nick Wood, Executive Chairman & Co-Founder

It’s World IP day today and as the World Intellectual Property Organization focuses on how IP enables sport, we’ve been reflecting on the connections and differences between life and sport.  After all, people often say that sport imitates life. Whilst that might be true, we don’t think it applies to the online world. In sport there are universal rules, impartial referees, equal competition and a code of fair play.

Online there is little of this, certainly in the domain name system where bad actors continue to flourish exploiting the trust that internet users put in a domain name as a signpost to authentic goods and services. According to WIPO’s own figures, trademark owners filed a record 3,447 cases under the UDRP in 2018 – 12% up on 2017 – as businesses reacted to the proliferation of websites used for counterfeit sales, fraud, phishing, and other forms of online trademark abuse.

In cyberspace, anything goes so it is the rights owner who picks up a hefty bill for monitoring and enforcement. You need a strategic defensive strategy if you are going to outperform aggressive offense. And in case you’re wondering, complaints from sports organisations made up just 2% of the UDRP filings in 2018. Banking, pharma and IT were the most infringed industries.

Find out more about World IP Day here

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