Citation Edit

Argos v. Orthotec, LLC, 304 F.Supp.2d 591 (D. Del. 2004) (full-text).

Factual Background Edit

Plaintiff, a French nonprofit corporation that promotes and facilitates research in spinal surgery, has used the ARGOS name since 1996. Plaintiff owns and uses the domain name "" to provide information about spinal surgery to the medical community. Defendant, whose managing member and largest shareholder was formerly a member of plaintiff, markets and sells spinal-surgery products and registered the domain name "" Plaintiff sued defendant for cybersquatting.

Trial Court Proceedings Edit

The court denied defendant's motion to dismiss for lack of standing and failure to state a claim. Regarding standing, the court rejected defendant's argument that plaintiff could not show that it used the ARGOS mark in "continuous and substantial commerce" prior to 1999 when defendant registered "" Relying on Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc. v. Bucci, the court held that plaintiff satisfied the "use in commerce" requirement by operating its website "" to provide information about spinal surgery to people around the world.

Turning to defendant's motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim, the court rejected defendant's argument that plaintiff had not sufficiently alleged that defendant had a bad-faith intent to profit from the ARGOS trademark because plaintiff did not allege or suggest that defendant offered or intended to sell the "" domain name to plaintiff or a third party. The court held that bad-faith intent can be proven by ways other than offering or intending to sell a domain name. Specifically, the court noted that plaintiff alleged that defendant "attempted to trade upon the goodwill that [plaintiff] established and to generate confusion among the relevant medical community as to the affiliation and sponsorship of [defendant's] activities." Accepting this allegation as true, as the court must do for a motion to dismiss, the court held that plaintiff's complaint sufficiently alleged a bad-faith intent to profit from plaintiff's mark.

Source Edit

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