CAMPAIGN.I: EasyGroup hits at rival domain name owners

EasyGroup, the company that owns the string of EasyEverything internet cafes and the EasyJet portal, is targeting small online businesses who are using the word ’easy’ as part of their business brand.

EasyGroup, the company that owns the string of EasyEverything

internet cafes and the EasyJet portal, is targeting small online

businesses who are using the word ’easy’ as part of their business

brand.



The company is looking into 60 different cases of web companies that

have used the word ’easy’ as part of their registered domain name.



The online recruitment portal easypeople.co.uk received a letter from

EasyGroup last week demanding that the company hand over its ’easy’

domain name, as well as cease and destroy all commercial material using

the domain name easypeople.co.uk.



EasyGroup also asked that the company pay a fee of pounds 500 for the

EasyGroup’s legal costs in pursuing the matter.



Easypeople launched earlier this year and is the online branch of the

bricks and mortar recruitment business People Serve.



The director of corporate affairs at EasyGroup, James Rothnie, said: ’We

are targeting people who are trying to pass themselves off as our own

brand.’



According to Rothnie, EasyGroup has already bought the URL

easy-rentacar.com from an online car rental company.



’The previous registrants declined to go to court and signed over the

domain name to us,’ Rothnie said.



Easypeople’s founder, Tony Finn, who approached EasyGroup with

investment and funding proposals earlier this year, has no intention of

being bullied by EasyGroup, however. ’We’re going to stand our ground

for as long as we can afford it,’ Finn said.



’There was nothing un-toward about our purchase of the domain name, and

we have every right to maintain it.’



Finn also denied that his company was attempting to pass itself off as

part of the Easy brand: ’They are trying to monopolise a brand name

which uses an adjective that has a very common use in the English

language. There are some 7,000 registered domain names that also use

’easy’.’



According to Rothnie, the company has set up an intellectual property

department for such issues. He said of the 60 cases pending: ’The law

will have to decide but we have a strong chance.’



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