The China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) plans to amend its existing rules surrounding domain name dispute resolutions, leaving trademark owners without claim over some domain names.

The revised rules will feature three major changes with emphases on the protection of a domain name applicant's rights and interests. The rules will go into effect in the next month.

First, the new rules define the effective period for domain name disputes. If a disputed name has already existed for more than two years, the domain name registration institution will not accept an application for a resolution.

Second, the rules redefine "vicious registration", saying that ordinary domain name selling or leasing is not "vicious" unless the domain name holder wants to sell the domain name to a competitor for profit.

Finally, the rules specify the rights of the domain name holders, saying that trademark owners are not necessarily the owner of the concerned domain names.

These new rules will be good for domain name investors and domain squatters, but not so good for companies who own specific trademarks.


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