Press release

Partial success in the co.no case

(Trondheim, 29 June 2012:) Sør-Trøndelag District Court has found partially in favour of Norid in the co.no lawsuit. The judgement sustains Norid’s decision to put co.no on the list of forbidden domain names.

The label “co” is used as an official second-level category domain within some other top-level domains, e.g. co.uk. This is not so in Norway. Co.no was registered by a private party in 2001. As the use of co-domains increased in other countries, Norid was concerned that confusion might arise regarding co.no. We therefore chose to put co.no on the list of Norwegian domain names that cannot be registered. The decision did not take away the holder’s right to use the domain, but when the it is on the list of forbidden names, they cannot transfer it to another holder.

In 2010 the private company CoDNS launched and marketed co.no in such a way that the usage could, in our opinion, cause regular Internet users to confuse co.no with an official second-level category domain. We contacted the holder, Elineweb AS, to learn if the domain had been transferred in conflict with the .no domain name policy. Elineweb AS responded by taking Norid to court.

The judgement, passed on 28 June 2012, finds in favour of Norid on several counts, and delivers clarification on some important issues.

The Court states that Norid’s decision to put co.no on the list of forbidden names was justified and within the requirements of the domain regulation. The Court thus finds the decision valid. Further, the Court states that Norid is not liable to pay damages to Elineweb AS.

The Court does, however, state that the contract between Elineweb AS and CoDNS is not in conflict with the current system of agreements, and that Norid cannot revoke the domain on that basis.

– We are satisfied that important issues for Norwegian Internet users have been considered through this case, says Managing Director of UNINETT Norid AS, Hilde M. Thunem. The judgement is not yet enforceable, and Norid has not decided on whether to appeal it or not.

Contacts:
Managing Director Hilde M. Thunem, hilde.thunem@uninett.no, phone +47 414 49 885
Head Legal and Policy Annebeth B. Lange, annebeth.lange@uninett.no, phone +47 959 11 559

The judgement from Sør-Trøndelag District Court of 28 June 2012

UNINETT Norid AS - Norid for short - runs the registry for Norwegian domain names. All domains directly under .no are registered with us. In addition to processing applications we develop the domain name policy according to the needs of society. We are also responsible for the technical operation and development of associated services. In addition we handle other national tasks related to our core activities.

In order to develop and adapt the rules for allocating domain names, we co-operate with various stakeholders. We also take social responsibility by working to keep the domain name system reliable and robust, and to ensure that it is governed in an open and democratic way.

The service is regulated by the Domain Name Regulations and is supervised by the Norwegian Communications Authority (the former Norwegian Post and Telecommunications Authority). Norid is not a public administrative agency, and the allocation of domain names is based on private law. We are a neutral party, and the business is run non-profit. Norid is a subsidiary in the UNINETT Group.

About Norid:

UNINETT Norid AS - Norid for short - runs the registry for Norwegian domain names. All domains directly under .no are registered with us. In addition to processing applications we develop the domain name policy according to the needs of society. We are also responsible for the technical operation and development of associated services. In addition we handle other national tasks related to our core activities.

In order to develop and adapt the rules for allocating domain names, we co-operate with various stakeholders. We also take social responsibility by working to keep the domain name system reliable and robust, and to ensure that it is governed in an open and democratic way.

The service is regulated by the Domain Name Regulations and is supervised by the Norwegian Communications Authority (the former Norwegian Post and Telecommunications Authority). Norid is not a public administrative agency, and the allocation of domain names is based on private law. We are a neutral party, and the business is run non-profit. Norid is a subsidiary in the UNINETT Group.

Last updated 2015 or before