Judge Hoeveler Shows Mercy on Belly Dancing CyberSquatter.


Hey, I think the headline’s accurate.

The Judge awarded a default judgment to Taverna Opa, which suffered the misfortune of having a former belly dancer leave the restaurant, register its domain, and then post information on the site for another Greek restaurant.

Instead of the maximum award of $100,000, the Court reduced the amount to $10,000:

Taverna Opa seeks $100,000, which is the maximum amount available, and submits that this amount is justified because of the duration of the infringement, the defendant’s bad faith, and the level of harm and confusion caused. The Court notes, however, that infringing website has apparently been discontinued for sometime and that in previously seeking default judgment in this case (which was denied due to a defect in the service of process) the plaintiff requested a statutory award of $10,000. The Court concludes that this lesser amount is much more realistic and consistent with the nature of the infringement. Because Ms. Ismail has engaged in cybersquatting on a single domain name, the Court finds an award of $10,000 in statutory damages to be appropriate.

You can read the order here.

Call me old-fashioned, but $10k is still an awful lot of hummus.