If you ever read some articles about choosing domain name for web, you will find it simple. If it is memorable, pronounceable, short, clever, easily spelled and suggests the nature of the commerce on your website, you’ve got yourself a winner.
But even if your choice is brilliant from a marketing standpoint, it may be worse than foolish from a legal perspective. Your name is at risk if it legally conflicts with any one of the millions of commercial names that already exist. It’s a big risk. If you put money and sweat into your website under one domain name and then are forced to give the name up, your Web-based business is likely to suffer a damaging, if not fatal, blow.
The rules for understanding whether a legal conflict exists comes from trademark law. Here are the basics you need to understand:
• Names that identify products or services in the marketplace are trademarks.
• Distinctive (clever, memorable) trademarks are protected under federal and state law.
• Distinctive business and domain names usually qualify as trademarks.
• The first commercial user of a trademark owns it in case of a legal conflict with a later user.
• One trademark legally conflicts with another when the use of both is likely to confuse customers about the products or services, or their origin.
• If a legal conflict, called an infringement, is found to exist, the later user will have to stop using the mark and may even be held liable to the trademark owner for damages.
So, be wise to choose the domain name for your website.