Twitter Going After Domain Squatter

Ryan Whitwam

Everyone’s favorite short messaging service, Twitter has decided to squash a particularly bothersome cyber-squatter . The site in question is at Twiter.com. It’s not just the name that looks suspiciously similar. The site at that domain leverages Twitter’s UI aesthetic to essentially scam users out of cold hard cash.

The real Twitter has filed a complaint with the World Intellectual Property Organization for trademark infringement. The complaint, which costs $1500 to file, allows the owners of notable brands the opportunity to claim domain names that infringe on their trademarks.The sticking point being that Twitter needs to prove that the other domain was registered in bad faith. Twiter.com was purchased in 2004, two years before Twitter existed.

However, Twitter’s case might be easier to prove than one would expect. The domain has changed hands several times, and now hosts something of a scam. Visitors to Twiter.com see a page done up in Twitter’s characteristic light blue. They are invited to participate in a survey for the chance to win a variety of prizes. But users are asked to pay to participate in the survey. Shady, absolutely, but should Twitter be allowed to take over the domain?

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