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DON'T STEAL MY NAME.

California, hoping to protect people against Internet fraud, recently passed legislation preventing "cybersquatting." The term refers to registering, in bad faith, ".com" and other domain names that are identical or confusingly similar to famous or trademarked real names of other people, living or dead. Offenders either sell the name to the highest bidder or use it for fraudulent purposes. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers last year developed its uniform dispute resolution policy that trademark owners worldwide can use to reclaim domain names from cybersquatters. And Congress recently passed its own cybersquatting prohibition. The California legislation differs in one significant way from both the federal law and the uniform policy. While those two policies focus on trademarked names, the California law applies to individual names. Although celebrities may trademark their names, trademark and intellectual property law typically does not protect individuals' given names.
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Publication:State Legislatures
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1U9CA
Date:Jan 1, 2001
Words:145
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