BOSTON — OLB Media today said it will fight an attempt by MindGeek to trademark the term “Men.com” after receiving a copyright infringement claim from the adult entertainment conglomerate.
In May, after submitting a trademark application for the term “Men.com,” MindGeek sent a letter demanding that OLB Media, owner of StraightMen.com, cease and desist using the word “men” in its own website domain name.
MindGeek, in the letter, claimed that the site now infringed on its mark. The company also demanded that OLB Media surrender the domain StraightMen.com to Mindgeek.
“This is a shocking claim with wide-ranging implications for the adult businesses,” said Adam Segel, CEO of OLB Media. “We cannot allow a single corporation to trademark a word used in thousands of adult websites.
“If MindGeek is successful, this could allow them to demand the handover of any adult site that uses the term, positioning them to take over a large swath of the gay adult industry.”
The word “men” is one of the most commonly used words used in gay adult domains.
MindGeek registered “Men.com” for trademark protection in three classes for video-on-demand services and broadcasting.
OLB Media said it originally reached out to MindGeek via email in early June, assuming the cease-and-desist letter over the use of the word “men” was merely a misunderstanding.
But MindGeek has refused to respond to the company or pull its application for Men.com.
As a result, OLB Media has formally opposed the trademark application.
Industry attorney Karen Tynan, attorney for OLB Media, said that, “We have to stand up to MindGeek. We don’t know how many other sites they have contacted with similar threats, or how many will follow if the mark is granted.”
Catherine Dunn, a spokeswoman for MindGeek, told XBIZ that the company was not aware of any administrative proceedings against the company.