Sally M. Abel


Cyberspace raises a variety of thought-provoking trademark and trademark-related issues. While many of the issues and problems that arise may be analyzed and resolved from the vantage point of traditional notions of trademark law, others present thornier questions requiring greater sensitivity to the practical effect of cyberspace on the commercial marketplace. The cyberspace trademark issue that continues to get the most press is the domain name controversy. Is a domain a trademark? When does use of a domain infringe trademark rights? If someone else registers a company's name or trademark as their domain, what can the company do? Beyond domains lie the vast array of trademark issues that ultimately are likely to be more important than domain disputes. Questions of what constitutes use, and abuse, of trademarks in cyberspace are exploding along with the web. In addition to garden variety trademark enhancement and policing concerns that take new shapes on the Internet, companies must be vigilant in avoiding trademark dilution and think twice before linking to other sites or permitting others to link to the company's site using company logos. Attempting to police trademark rights in cyberspace can be a daunting, but infinitely interesting, task.