Isaac Eiland-Hall won the domain-dispute case last week at WIPO, and as soon as he won he offered the domain name to Beck for free. Beck, at post time, has not responded to the offer.
Marc J. Randazza, an attorney who handles legal matters for numerous adult entertainment operators, represented Eiland-Hall in the case at WIPO.
In a letter to Beck, the outspoken media darling of populist conservatism who has bashed the adult entertainment business on a steady basis, Eiland-Hall explained that he has met his objectives with the domain name and website.
“It bears observing that by bringing the WIPO complaint, you took what was merely one small critique meme, in a sea of Internet memes, and turned it into a super-meme,” Eiland-Hall wrote. “Then, in pressing forward (by not withdrawing the complaint and instead filing additional briefs), you turned the super-meme into an object lesson in 1st Amendment principles.
“But [I] want to demonstrate to you that I had my lawyer fight this battle only to help preserve the 1st Amendment. Now that it is safe, at least from you (for the time being), I have no more use for the actual scrap of digital real estate you sought.”
At WIPO, one of the key elements to the case was Eiland-Hall’s U.S. Supreme Court reference to Hustler Magazine Inc. vs. Falwell, which provided arbitrators some guidance on the issue.
Beck complained that the parody site violated his trademark, but the panel ruled that it was “very reluctant to reject respondent’s claim of legitimate noncommercial and fair use.”
“Were we to hold otherwise, there can be little doubt that political cartoonists and satirists would be subjected to damages awards without any showing that their work falsely defamed its subject,” the panel wrote.
“This panel considers that if Internet users view the disputed domain name in combination with a visit to respondent’s website, the ‘total effect’ is that of political commentary by respondent, capable of protection as political speech by the 1st Amendment under the Hustler Magazine standard.”