Re: [ga] Advice sought
My thanks to over a dozen people who have mailed me privately or on this
list, about the case of www.BritishNationalParty.com
For those following the case and advising me, the continuing correspondence
is posted beneath (and my apologies to those who are not interested in this
particular case of an individual user trying to protect his domain)
Dear Mr xxxxxxx,
Thank you for the courtesy of keeping me informed.
Please understand that I mean your party no harm, and am simply operating a
distinct website which publicly and prominently disassociates itself from
BNP. There is no question of trying to "pass" as your party : nothing could
be further from my intention. I am acting in good faith and I chose
www.BritishNationalParty.com because (a) that is exactly what my website is
about; (b) the name was available and, although you could have registered
it, you did not; (c) I was aware that you already had a website for your
organisation at www.bnp.org.uk
You suggest in your mail today that by having 'British National Party' in my
domain name, this is "misleading to the voting public". I would welcome your
advice about how members of the public could be misled, if displayed
prominently below the domain name - immediately below it, the first thing
you read - are the words "This website has no association with the British
National Party". If a visitor to my site is literate, they cannot
misunderstand this clear statement in large print. If it would set you at
your ease, I would be happy to consider further wording which you feel would
prevent any confusion. I'm trying to be as reasonable and helpful as I can.
I respectfully request that, before expecting me to take down my website,
you communicate to me the precise legal grounds which you feel justify such
a demand. I cannot be expected to accede to your requests until I have a
reasonable opportunity to explore the legal basis for your claims. Also -
and with all due respect to your concerns - I will not be held accountable
for any costs incurred by you (for example in seeking advice) prior to a
defined request based on legal arguments, and a reasonable passage of time
to allow me to investigate any such legal arguments. Nor do I anticipate
being accountable whatsoever, as all I am doing is operating a
legally-registered website, and it will be your own choice if you elect to
explore its status (although I will abide by any court decisions on the
status of my domain). My accountability to you would commence at the
hypothesised point where I defied a court order, or if a court found that
you had suffered financial loss as a result of my website - a decision which
I find unlikely in the extreme.
I would prefer to co-exist with you and your party's own website, as I
believe neither website is harmful to the other. I am also happy to place a
direct link in a prominent place or places to your own long-term homepage at
With regard to challenges to domain name ownership, I refer you to ICANN's
established UDRP procedure, operated through WIPO, which is designed to
provide a low-cost method of establishing rights to domain names. The UDRP
procedure is the world standard for challenging domain name ownership, and
will help you avoid undue expenses (if you judge that you have a case in the
first case, which at this present time I do not personally believe that you
For your assistance and clarification (if needed) I refer you to the
following webpage which offers a FAQ on UDRP:
You write that you "see no alternative" and yet I only received your first
notice to desist 24 hours ago. I advise you to allow time for a little
research of your own and perhaps you would care to consider my suggestion of
an agreed wording and link to your own established site, as a sensible way
of co-existing without hostility or any unnecessary expense.
I will continue to forward this correspondence as it unfolds to lawyers and
others who are advising me over this concern of yours. I assure you of my
good faith and good intentions.
With kind regards,
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Wednesday, June 25, 2003 8:24 PM
Subject: RE: (Fwd) Re: Website
> Dear Sir,
> We do not dispute your right to discuss any political party on a
> web-site owned by yourself.
> However the name of your web-site in dispute currently uses the
> registered name of the British National Party. Though we do not claim
> that this was done with any harmful intent, it clearly is misleading
> to the voting public.
> Will feel that we have no alternative to pass this matter on to our
> legal department for possible breaches of the PPERA and the RPA.
> Unlike a company holding a name on the web,political parties do not
> come under the same UK/EU regulations.By placing .com after the name
> is in no way any different than placing .org.
> We regret these actions,but see no other alternative.
> National Treasurer.
> British National Party.
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