Operating Illegally, Suit Claims

LONGBOAT KEY, Fla. — A Florida company along with three executives have been slapped with a cybersquatting and trademark infringement suit by Corbin Fisher, which alleges the company is illegally operating

Seworks LLC, along with company execs James Burmeister, Todd Burmeister and Penny Burmeister, are named in the complaint amended Monday at U.S. District Court in Miami. Corbin Fisher claims the Longboat Key, Fla., company is diverting traffic and profits with the use of the similar domain name.

On the site, uses the tagline, "Where the legendary Corbin Fisher comes out to play."

When reached by XBIZ, Seworks exec Todd Burmeister claimed that the Wordpress site hasn't been active for some time.

"The domain came free on another deal we did, so I do not know if I have any insight," Burmeister said. "Maybe the moral is beware of what comes free. We never once touched the site and then got sued."

Corbin Fisher also has named to the suit a domain registration identity masking service and a Shanghai online adult operator that owns the site

Corbin Fisher General Counsel Marc Randazza said he couldn't comment on the pending case.

But Randazza told XBIZ that "cybersquatting is a big problem for the industry, and something that I wish more of the industry took seriously."

"People in this industry work very hard and put a lot of money and time into branding and traffic generation," he said. "When some parasitic cybersquatter takes advantage of that, they are stealing from the trademark owner just as much as the more-discussed copyright thief."

Randazza said online adult operators should frequently search for variations of their sites that might be operating illegally.

"If any adult entertainment company does a search, they will likely find dozens, if not hundreds, of cybersquatting sites ripping them off," he said.

"The problem is even worse for talent — as soon as anyone's star shines bright enough to see it, if she or he has not already registered his or her domain name, some cybersquatter will."