Monday, March 18, 2013

Pope.com

In 2010, a Chicago attorney purchased the domain name www.popefrancis.com "since it gave the then-nonexistent pope the name of one of his favorite saints." Only recently, the Catholic Church appointed a new pope who took the name Francis, and the attorney is hoping to donate the domain name to the Church.

My first thought: what's the state of trademark rights and domain names? I studied it in law school, but that was a few years back. Enter the American Law Reports (ALR), a handy secondary source that provides extensive detail on unique subjects. While not entirely comprehensive, if your subject is in the ALR, you'll find everything you need. We have the ALR in the library, and it's also available on Westlaw and Lexis. If you're curious about trademark law and domain names, check out Lanham Act Infringement Actions in Internet and Website Context.