Forbes Gets $300,000 From Cybersquatter

The Russian edition of Forbes has won the use of the domain name and a record USD 300,000 in damages from a cybersquatter in a landmark court ruling, the magazine announced Friday. Forbes and its Russian publisher, Axel Springer Russia, sued Landmark VIP Services, which advertises travel packages on, for the unauthorized use of the magazine’s trademark in its web address. The travel site was still online Sunday evening. The Moscow Arbitration Court awarded Forbes USD 300,000 in damages, the largest compensation payout to date in a Russian case of this kind. Cybersquatting litigation in Russia has often resulted in the awarding of nominal sums, and the Forbes case could mark a departure from that precedent. In 1999, U.S. camera giant Eastman Kodak sued a Russian firm that was using in the first such high-profile case and won RUB 2,600 — about USD 100 at the time — in compensation after a two-year legal battle. Landmark VIP Services registered in 2002 and for several years visitors to the page were greeted by an announcement that Forbes would soon be launching a web site, along with a link to the Russian company’s holiday catalogue.


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