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RE: [wg-b] Reality checks [the grateful dead(hits)]

At 10:11 AM -0500 12/14/99, Hartman, Steve wrote:
>The truth is that the communicative domain names ala whyihateoreo.com are
>not problematic as long as Internet users are not confused or misled. At
>bottom, Nabisco's products and conduct as a corporation speaks with far more
>authority than a website or a non-misleading domain name.

Thank you for a very enlightened viewpoint.  This is indeed the point 
that many have been trying to make; namely that consumer confusion is 
the important issue.  The only difference I believe we have is the 
real point at which the consumers are confused.

It is my contention that the mere domain name pointer is not the 
place where the consumers are confused.  After all, there are many 
different "delta.com" and "continental.com" and the like.  The 
Internet consumer has learned to look at the website where she thinks 
the company she is looking for is located.  If that site could 
confuse the consumer as to the source of a product or service, then I 
feel it is infringement and should be covered under existing 
trademark infringement laws.  The grey areas come when you have 
coined names like "kodak" and "oreo" and "xerox" that are NOT common 
words that are registered solely to "sell" to the trademark holder. 
Personally, I don't feel even this is confusing to the consumer. 
Internet consumers already understand that their "guess" may not be 
the appropriate "hit" and I doubt they will be confused.

Now, I feel that some compromise should be discussed.  We have been 
throwing these issues around for almost 5 years now.  We have many 
well written papers that are available to us, with many diverse 
viewpoints.  Is that not the point of this exercise?  Your posting, 
Steve, was excellent in that it put across a point of view that 
leaves room for compromise and does not namecall.  I truly hope that 
others follow suit and we get down to something everyone can at least 
try to live with.