Xplor Granted Injunctive Relief to Protect Homegrown Name

Gretchen Gallen
LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Xplor Media Group Inc., owner of the Homegrown Video trademark, was granted injunctive relief on Nov. 1 by Judge Consuelo Marshall of the United States District Court for the Central District of California to prevent defendants Voice Media Inc., Trade News NV and Internet Business Services from using the Homegrown trademark in their business practices.

According to the judge's ruling, the defendants will be prohibited from using the trademark “Homegrown Video” in connection with the homegrownvideo.com website.

The judge issued her ruling on the heels of a similar ruling handed down by Judge Richard C. Neal in August at a pre-arbitration hearing between co-plaintiff New Destiny Internet Group and the defendants, during which New Destiny, the parent company of Homegrown Video, was awarded injunctive relief in preventing the defendants from using the copyrighted online tour page for the Homegrown site.

Defense attorney Ira Rothkin argued that those references were removed months ago at the request of the plaintiffs.

"Basically what happened was abolsutely nothing," Rothkin told XBiz. "We had already stipulated many months ago before any requests for any type of interim or preliminary injunctive relief were heard, that during the pendency of the case, Trade News was not going to be advertising a site that didn't want to be advertised. It appears that Xplor and New Destiny are trying to manufacture news where no news exists."

Both New Destiny and Xplor filed a lawsuit in federal court against Voice Media, Trade News and Internet Business Services in February alleging that Voice Media's website Cybererotica.com/CECash contributed to infringement by making a copy of the “Homegrown Video Website Tour” available online without permission from New Destiny Internet Group, and that Voice Media overbilled and repeat-billed numerous Homegrown video end users in an "egregious" manner.

The court ordered only New Destiny to arbitration, which will commence on April 8. Xplor will have an opportunity to present its claims in federal court at a future, undetermined date.

Xplor’s attorney, David S. Olson of Kulik, Gottesman, Mouton & Siegel, was pleased with the ruling.

“We have now had two highly respected judges conclude that New Destiny and Xplor have established a reasonable probability of success on the merits sufficient to award far-reaching injunctive relief," Olson said. "This bodes extremely well for the ultimate outcome of the case."