We don't often get a chance to report on an intellectual property issue quite so local as this one: a Gateshead takeaway has been involved in a dispute with the owners of Paris nightclub Moulin Rouge ("the Club") for the use of the same name on its website.
The Gateshead business which sells kebabs and pizzas is also called 'Moulin Rouge' ("the Takeaway") and is owned by Kemal Oz who has been running it since 2016. The Club's owner owns various trade marks relating to the Club's cabaret show and claim that the name of the Takeaway is "abusive".
The Club bought its dispute using the Nominet disputes procedure, which governs and regulates UK domain names. It has held that the Takeaway aimed to associate itself with the iconic Parisian Club through the design of its advertising, which included physical posters.
Tony Willoughby, an independent expert sitting as the Nominet panelist, was convinced that Mr Oz was unaware he had infringed any rights with the name Moulin Rough. He went on to say that the Takeaway's online menus do not recreate any of the of Club's prominent features. Willoughby found, however, that the use of the name constituted trade mark infringement and that using the name was 'reckless'.
He stated that just because the Takeaway's owner may have been unaware of the Club's trade mark rights, he would not rule in favour of the Takeaway. He concluded that the domain name must be transferred to the Club's owners.
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Posted by: in: Digital/Tech, News, Trade Marks