OK TATA, Bye Bye MakeMyTrip

Last Updated: Wednesday, August 26, 2009 - 17:55

New Delhi: Tata Sons, the holding company of the Tata Group firms, has won a case at the World Intellectual Property Organisation against the travel portal, MakeMyTrip, which has been using the term `tata` in one of its website, `oktatabyebye.com`.

Gurgaon-based mmt admin (commonly known as MakeMyTrip)has been using the domain name `oktatabyebye.com`. Tata Sons
has contended that it is confusingly similar to its `Tata` brand and the travel portal runner has no rights or legitimate interests to use it.

In May, Tata Sons had moved the Geneva-based WIPO
Arbitration and Mediation Center demanding transfer of
disputed domain name. The company had argued that the site
infringed the right of its registered trademark/service mark
`Tata`.

The WIPO has now ordered the transfer of domain name to
Tata Sons.

"The impugned website incorporates the Tata`s orporate
name and registered trademark in full and it proves that it is
identical in part and confusingly similar to its well-known
brand in which the company has a statutory right," Tata Sons
had said in its complaint.

Replying to the charges, MakeMyTrip had said the usage of
the word "tata" as a gesture finds its mention in the origin
of a place called Ta Ta Creek as far back as in the year 1860
and denied that the domain in question is confusingly similar
to the trade mark `Tata` of the complainant.

The Gurgaon-based firm stated that "the impugned domain
name is derived from the common parlance "OK Ta Ta Bye Bye"
since it signifies travel, journey and related activities.

But in its argument at the WIPO, Tata Sons said, "it is
apparent that the sole purpose of registering the disputed
domain name is to misappropriate the reputation associated
with the complainant`s well-known and famous trademark Tata."

The Internet site owner has registered a separate domain
name (makemytrip.com). According to Tata Sons, both the sites
offer similar services.

However, MakeMyTrip says both cater to separate class of
persons. While makemytrip.com offers discounts and easy access
to travel plans, oktatabyebye.com lets these travelers make an
online records about their journey.

The WIPO is a specialised agency of the United Nations
for developing a balanced and accessible international system
in the field of intellectual property rights.

As per details available with the WIPO, Tata Sons during
the case had made an effort to settle the issue with the
MakeMyTrip, which refused to accept the just demands on the
grounds on "vague reasons."

Bureau Report



First Published: Wednesday, August 26, 2009 - 17:55

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