I don't know about you but I am not sure I have seen a single UDRP or WIPO win with a .CO name involved. Each decision I personally have seen has gone against the .CO domain owner. Even with generic names. This could be a problem and a precedent is being set whether we like it or not. It may be hard to defend even a generic .CO as we have seen with the PokerStrategy.co decision.
I have only received 1 C&D on a .CO. But when I think about this I try and see how a jury of my peers would see it. With a dot com most folks on the street think you did nothing wrong when it came to registering a bunch of domain names and doing well. They almost always say, 'Why didn't I think of that?' But I think the reaction would and will be different with any .co that a .com BUSINESS already exists. I think the average Joe would think you are taking advantage. A cybersquatter. And so far that is exactly what we have seen and that gives others a clear path to take your domain away.
If this becomes the common thinking, you may see .co have more challenges than any other domain extension out there. And percentage wise could be a mind blower. Cost of doing business can end up a lot more than $25.
Now I do have 2350 .CO domains. Many are the .co versions of my .com. Many are not. 80 of them are NNN.co. Many are geo type domains followed by a keyword. I focused on sectors in which my .com portfolio was either weak or non existent. I know I mined veins that I realized friends of mine own the .com. I feel a bit guilty. I did not have a lot of geo real estate domains but I am heavily focused on real estate in my .com's. I came to realize that one of those keywords were ones Rob Grant owns the .com version of. I knew when I got Rumcakes.co that Franky has the .com version. I just figured he would rather see my name on it than somebody he does not know. I have no idea how many others fall into this category. But when I got Rumcake.co, somebody else has the .com.
At the same time I do not have the .CO version of my highest profile keyword .COM domains. I hope they are in friendly hands.;-)
So I am very interested in how all this plays out and like I said, I have yet to see a .CO challenge that has failed. Have you? It's hard to defend on one hand but it is the nature of what we do on the other. I am torn sometimes and so I decided to come out and share these thoughts.
What we learn in the next weeks will have a huge implication on all other extensions whether they/we like it or not. It does not matter if you are pro .CO or against .CO, there will be much to learn and watch for and those that don't think so are missing a HUGE opportunity to gather new data, new information and watch human nature. Has nothing to do with .CO has everything to do with reactions and other things that are not even visible yet. The one thing that may be different is that I don't see the trademark conflict as that big a problem on the other extensions.....but who knows. ICANN has one agenda and reality may just throw them and everyone else a curve ball.
Have a GREAT Day!