MONTY WINS WIPO CASE TO TAKE CONTROL OF TWO DOMAIN NAMES: ANOTHER CASE WHERE MONTY’S BIG MONEY RULES THE DAY
by John Dolan
In the year 2000, certain individuals registered two domain names (montyroberts.org and montyroberts.net) that were freely available to them, as they would have been available to Monty Roberts himself, had he had the wherewithal to have registered them first.
The registrants bought the domain names so that they could legally and legitimately build websites at these URLS in order to disseminate newsworthy stories about Monty Roberts, horse trainer, who, at the time, was engaged in several lawsuits related to horse abuse, neglect and fraud and had an unflattering book written about him by his own family members.
Monty Roberts discovered the sites and went screaming to the WIPO, an internet organization, and made a case for having the two domain names stolen away from the registrants on the basis that he had a trademark to his name. It should be noted that at that time, he clearly did NOT have a properly registered mark.
The case was decided by a single arbiter associated with WIPO by the name of Frederick M. Abbott (Sole Panelist) who charged that the domain names had been “abusive registrations”. Abbott totally ignored the fact that Monty Roberts is a public figure and the registrants had legitimate uses for the domains to disseminate news and information related to his deceits, fraudulent business practices, horse abuse and the dispute with his family members.
What is particularly interesting about the decision, is that of all the people in the entire world who could have decided the case (after all, WIPO is a worldwide organization based in Europe), Frederick Abbott lived virtually in Monty’s backyard. Was Frederick Abbott bought by Monty Roberts, just as the judge was who had prejudiced the jury in a lawsuit against Monty back in 1997? We think so. So do the registrants.
Freedom of the press was quashed. There was no justice in this case. It only proves that Monty’s wealth reaches far and wide.