Amazon Allegedly Picks Fight with Mom and Pop Porn Site

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RNewman

It doesn't boil down to when the domain is registered, that is false. I've seen companies taken domains that have been registered for years.

Amazon's Woot.com does not own a "woot" trademark to any "online" retail that specifically relates to the smaller site AdultWoot.com

In fact, Woot.com makes it imperative that when they try to protect their brand, it's always followed with a exclaimation point (!). If the "woot" brand was SO important to them, why didn't they trademark the domain "woot.com", every smart company does this, for online protection. It's standard just in case other companies want to buy something like mywoot.com, ihatewoot.com, etc.

A word mark search states that "woot" is a: Retail store for electrical items, not an Online store that generally sells everything, not just electronics. There is a big difference. We can't put our personal opinions in this, the law is specific, and so should the work mark description.

I have written to the owner of AdultWoot.com and she has sent me a copy of her letter to Amazon, and they had the nerve to offer her $100 for the domain when it's actually her livelihood. She has given me her permission to redistribute her plea to Amazon:
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To Mr. Struthers, (jim@richardlawgroup.com)

I am not sure if this is the correct person to write to, but was told it would be you. Nobody has contacted me, emailed me, mailed me, served me, nothing at this moment.

There is no reason why Amazon.com, aka Woot! should be bullying my small company. It pays for my family's existence of shelter and food. I should NOT be under such assault by your law firm to take me down by strong arming my web host before even contacting me first. You sneakingly try to shut down my income by bypassing me and forcing your hand on my hosting provider to take me down. No notice, no email, nothing from you. Cyber bullying is real and with large fines and I believe you have just did this.

There are many things to consider when you try and bully my honest living in which of course you did not. Even your word mark claim of 'woot' IS QUESTIONABLE to say the least.

You want to prove that I'm a threat to your business? Really? I would be lucky to have 100 visitors with 5-10 sales a day... I'm considered a THREAT TO YOU!?

I have spoken to some legal people that are friends who have told me what matters most when it comes to these type of things.

Does your website offer goods or services that compete with the goods or services being sold under my name? NO.

Does your website offer goods or services that typically are distributed in the same channels as the goods or services being sold under my name? NO.

Might have my website in some way divert business away from the Woot! mark because of of my name? NO.

People who are searching for adult merchandise know EXACTLY what my site is, they type in 'ADULT', there is no accident. Nobody types in more than they need too. No one mistakenly comes to my site looking for yours.

Every search engine states it clearly: Cheap Adult DVDs | Daily XXX Deals | Porn DVD Your client's site simply just says: Woot So where's the confusion?

Could you show that your domain name is so similar to mine that users might end up on my website by mistake? Definitely NOT.

Domain names of acronyms, whole categories of products, services, common expressions are ineligible for trademark protection.

Your claim 'mark' clearly does NOT state any online business and, it is not famous because its A RETAIL STORE like a Walmart. Your claimed mark is old, and it's incorrect. I am not a trademark lawyer, nor can I afford one... but common sense I do feel prevails here. When I acquired my domain, I did a search mark and was told that I would be OK, but a company as greedy as Amazon actually wants to take food off my family's table???

If your ego is that high to think that you're going to bully a small person like myself to abandon my family's income because of some stupid acronym, 'woot' = want one of those, a word that my daughter and her friends ALWAYS USE, you are sadly mistaken. 50 million web pages using this acronym and you think you can own it? I will take this public before I let my family's income die from your greediness, from Amazon.com's GREEDINESS.

I can prove to the court hundreds of other "woot" domain owners that operate just fine without your type of threats. Do you think 'adult' products companies are any different? How come Amazon has not gone after companies like www.iwoot.com, or others? Because they are NOT adult based, that's why. We are people too, that have lives and bills to pay for. We are completely LEGAL. If you're still thinking that you want to take me down, I will sue you for cyberbullying. Laugh as you might... I am a determined single mother of two.

You, representing a powerful company, are trying to force ME, a very, very small company, with no money, to give up a domain name that was legally acquired in good faith for my type of business.

Read my About page, "Adult" = being all things adult related and "Woot" = Want One Of Those, because I focus on low pricing. Which illegal free porn circulating the Internet that destroys legitimate businesses, who wouldn't want tangible adult DVDs for cheap? I barely make a dollar on each item. Amazon makes billions and feels that it has the time to go after a small business like me? I am disappointed, but more so, I am concerned for the livelihood for myself and 2 children.

Believing that you'll make a ton of money from Amazon.com, gain recognition and that you're in a powerful position to sue a smaller company like me.... I AM NO THREAT. You though, can clearly be liable for such an action. I will acquire a lawyer who will do it for free (GOD WILLING) just to make a point that big companies cannot own the Internet when nothing of the above that I've mentioned has infringed your business in any way.

Facebook tried suing the world for their marks, but small companies like faceporn.com fought showing that two different types of companies DO NOT mistaken people from what they are seeking online. Just LIKE YOU.

Please don't force me to protect myself and my family. My children come first. I am the American Dream, someone who is down and out who thought up of a way to produce income from home, to find a resource where I am able to get my product for cheap enough to provide for my children. I am not rich, I am not any threat to ANYONE and my company has NO similarity to Amazon.

I will SUE you for CYBER BULLYING, your previous actions against me before contacting me FIRST was NOT right.

Sincerely,
May
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I personally agree with her, her site does NOT confuse people who buy from Amazon. I KNOW it's an adult site, and THAT unfortunately is probably why they decided to trounce on her and NOT other "woot" sites.

My 2 cents. RNewman

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Ghost XFX

Amazon is being hypocritical to say the least. What I really think this is about, Adultwoot appears to be undercutting Amazon's main distribution by a huge margin. No need to buy from Amazon, when you can get it from Adultwoot for nearly free. I mean, imagine Amazon trying to sell porn for 15-30 bucks, and here they have a sister domain where you can get it for 1-2 bucks....

Hahahahaha!

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comoncents

Justice or the date you registered the site has little to do with it. If you are a "mom and pop" and Amazon, WalMart, etc. takes a disliking to you for whatever reasons, their lawyers are going to wear you out. That's the system.

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jgrimoldy

You're correct about the system being what it is. Regardless when when the site was registered, Amazon, et. al. will bury them in legal fees if they see fit.

However *when* the site was registered has *everything* to do with whether or not I feel sorry for this woman and whether or not I feel Amazon is in the right or wrong. And ultimately, whether or not I countinue to buy from Amazon.

Not that my stance matters one iota. However, since it's up for discussion, that's my $0.02. I think she registered the site to leverage the Woot brand. Amazon may not have owned the brand when she did this, but they do now. It was a good ride, toots. Rename your site AdultBuy.com... I understand that Buy.Com recently became somewhat "avaialble". Don't name your site "AdultRakuten". That might be a bad move...

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vrmlbasic

Crushing other businesses for bogus reasons, via underhanded means, was bad when Rockefeller did it but it's fine for Amazon to do?

This whole mess is rather ridiculous as I can't see how Amazon could find itself honestly justified in deciding how the word "woot" is used. Are they becoming the new Apple, with "woot" as their "rounded corners"? Which reminds me, could Ford also sue Samsung over their "Galaxy" brand, seeing as how Ford has been associated with it for much longer?

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jwjknorr

This is a little upsetting but normal in the business world. Its a shame that its a porn dealer, if it was say Childrensbookswoot.com or something like that the public out cry would be worse, and people would be supporting and answering them. They own a legitimate business but not in a area much of us support, but it is still legal and should be protected. Probably will be a easy win for amazon, and a giant blow because it will lead to more leeway for amazon to do this to business that are in better fields, where people will care, but since there is already a precedence ruling, they will win them to. Smart for amazon, fail for small business everywhere.

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jwjknorr

By the way, where do you stand MaximumPC, i see a lot if puns in this article, are you for or against these actions. Would you take me to court if i had a site preregistered MACIMUMPE****.com just curious if your against amazons decision i have just that much more respect for you!

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Mayhemm

As jgrimoldy mentioned, it really comes down to when the AdultWoot domain was registered. If they purposely chose the name to take advantage of Amazon's Woot property, I have little sympathy for them.

However, if the domain was registered already, and the similarity is mere coincidence (Woot is a popular term, apparently), then is this kind of heavy-handed behavior acceptable just because we're talking about a porn site? No. Bullying is bullying, regardless of the subject matter.

P.S. I hate moral crusaders.

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jgrimoldy

Quite a number of years ago, the domain, Frys.com was registered to a guy that was selling french fry vending machines. He called the company something like Frenchy Fryers or something or other.

Fry's Electronics decided they wanted the domain name and they buried the guy in legal headaches.

Now, this guy had registered the domain first. He was, in no way, trying to leverage the Fry's brand. Still he had headaches.

I don't think this woman's story is quite the same.

Similar to this, why hasn't Cisco put the heat on Apple for IOS?

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firefox91

I'm with Amazon on this one. When I hear "woot" I think of Woot.com and all of their associated sites. I would automatically think they might be related.

But let's get serious... who actually PAYS for porn anymore?

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Electrik

Laid, blow, backdoor, your innuendo kills me. But then, we’ve just scratched the “surface”, haven’t we?

I predict Amazon wins this round, and I don’t have much sympathy for porn sites.

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Blaze589

"Grab a tissue for this one."

Double entendre much Paul (lol)?

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jgrimoldy

This all really boils down to when Ms. May registered the domain name.

Though the site doesn't appear to look anything like bargain e-tailer site, Woot, it seems pretty apparent that she's trying to leverage the abstract idea of what Woot represents.

No, there's little pity for her here.

She can change the name of her company and web site to something else and get the Amazon gorilla off her back...

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mattman059

could you throw in "sexually explicit" one more time lol...

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yackman01

What are you talking about meow.

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