PlayboyVR.com Domain Name Ordered Transferred to Playboy

PlayboyVR.com Domain Name Ordered Transferred to Playboy
Rhett Pardon

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — Now that Playboy Enterprises Inc. has reclaimed the domain name PlayboyVR.com in a recent cybersquatting case, the big question is whether the legendary adult brand will exploit it?

WIPO arbitrator Nathalie Dreyfus recently ordered PlayboyVR.com transferred to the 64-year-old men’s lifestyle and entertainment publisher, ruling that James H. Park of GimHae-Shi, S. Korea, registered the domain in bad faith.

Park, who did not challenge the case, registered the disputed domain name in May. The disputed domain name directed to a parked page containing various commercial links related to online dating and offering the disputed domain name for sale.

For Playboy, which holds 50 trademarks alone in the U.S., the case was a slam dunk. Despite that Playboy has sparingly dabbled in virtual reality, the case involved the complete title of “Playboy” used in the domain name.

In her decision, Dreyfus found that PlayboyVR.com was nearly identical to the “Playboy” trademark, that Park did not have any legitimate rights or interests in the domain name, and that he registered and used the site in bad faith.

So far, Playboy has remained mum about any initiatives using the “PlayboyVR” domain.

Calls to Cooper Hefner, Playboy’s chief creative officer, went unreturned to XBIZ over the question about any future plans to bring an immersive category to its lineup, as well as why it never registered the domain name in the first place.

Playboy still offers adult content online, and earlier this year relaunched the Playboy Webmasters affiliate program, which offers PlayboyPlus.com, PlayboyTV.com and Playboy.mobi.

An immersive category, however, is surprisingly missing. Playboy’s only link to VR was in April, when it released a 360-degree video on YouTube, titled “Playboy’s VR Mansion Experience,” that poked around the Playboy Mansion. The video, however, wasn’t in conventional VR for headset viewing.

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