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The Bear Truth

The Bear Truth

During the early part of April 2007, I was searching the expired domain name list and came across the name baylorbears.net. Baylor University had owned this domain name but through Baylor University's own negligence or disinterestedness allowed the name to expire. Had Baylor University wanted to reclaim the name, they could have renewed the expired name within the reclamation period of 80 days after the expiration date. I purchased BaylorBears.net, BaylorBears.biz, BaylorBears.name, BaylorBears.tv and BaylorBearssuck.com for about $9 each.

Being an Alumnus of Baylor University, a Baylor Bear, I thought I could one day create a social networking website for other Baylor Bears. Realizing that I lacked the funds to create such a site, I listed the domain names on a for sale page at a reasonable price.

Eight months later, in December 2007, Baylor University's lawyers sent me a cease-and-desist email stating that I was violating Baylor's trademark and to turn over the names to them. This was the only communication that I received from Baylor University - only an email.

On February 1st, 2008, Baylor's lawyers presented a check for $1,450 to the ICAAN organization to take the names from me through arbitration. Forum Case Number FA0801001141911. On that particular day, I redirected all the Baylor Bear websites to the Texas Aggies Athletics to get the media attention concerning this case. Part of the story was published in the Baylor Lariat and the Texas Aggies Battalion on February 27th.

On March 3, 2008, the Baylor lawyers felt the need to submit an additional $400 to counter argue my response for keeping the domain names.

On March 10, 2008, in my Response to the Additional Submission by Baylor University, I argued in keeping the BaylorBearsSuck.com, in addition to the other names. It is interesting to note that although I own the BaylorBearsSuck.com that the other extensions are available for registration, which I pointed out in my argument.

On March 16, 2008, The Baylor lawyers prevailed in taking the all domain names from me.

On March 29, 2008, I purchased BaylorBearsSuck.net, BaylorBearsSuck.org, BaylorBearsSuck.us, BaylorBearsSuck.info, and BaylorBearsSuck.biz. I purchased these domain names to expose the tactics Baylor University used in order to take the expired domain names from me. Please note that Baylor University was well aware that these names were available for registration, but dropped the ball much like they fumbled in renewing the expired domain names that they once had.

I lost the BaylorBearsSuck.Com to Baylor because I was not actually using the domain name as a form of criticism. In my argument, I pointed out that Baylor University acquires these websites so that no criticism of Baylor could exist. According to the WHOIS, Baylor University owns BaylorSucks.com, BaylorSucks.net, BaylorSucks.org, BaylorSucks.info, Baylor2012Sucks.com, Baylor2012Sucks.net, and Baylor2012Sucks.org.

The BaylorBearsSuck.net, BaylorBearsSuck.org, BaylorBearsSuck.us, BaylorBearsSuck.info, and BaylorBearsSuck.biz are good faith websites and my vehicle to criticize Baylor University, which is, granted protection through free speech. I want the truth about this case to be known.

Baylor University spent $1,850 plus legal fees to a trademark attorney firm in Austin, Texas to take the domain names that I purchased on the open market for $9 each. The lawyer's case was about 110 pages of response and exhibits. Imagine the legal fees involved in this case! When asked if Baylor University offered me any money for these internet names, the answer is no. I guess Baylor University would rather spend the money to the high priced attorneys.

I question why Baylor University chose to take my websites from me, but allow others to have theirs. BaylorBears.org was registered on Jan 29, 2001 and is owned by a person in New York. BaylorBears.mobi was registered on Oct 7, 2006 and is owned by a person in South Carolina. And while Baylor University was fighting me for my names, on Feb 29, 2008, a person in Germany purchased BaylorBears.info. Or how about SicEmBears.org that was registered on Jul 25, 2007 to someone in California? As of March 20, 2008, anyone want to register SicEmBears.net, .mobi, .info, .biz, or .tv?

I would also like to point out, which goes unanswered by Baylor University officials, why is BaylorFans.com allowed to exist for the last 9 years? Baylor owns BaylorFans.org, but does NOT own BaylorFans.com or BaylorFans.net. Further, Baylor does not own InsideBaylorSports.com which has existed since 2003, but Baylor owns BaylorSports.com and BaylorSports.net.

It is interesting that the Baylor lawyers were arguing trademark violations in order to take my names from me when it is quite obvious they pick and chose who they want to go after. It is going to be interesting to see what Baylor University does with the names they took from me without compensation. We already know what Baylor University will do with the BaylorBearsSuck.com, but the truth can be told in BaylorBearsSuck.net, BaylorBearsSuck.org, BaylorBearsSuck.us, BaylorBearsSuck.info, and BaylorBearsSuck.biz.

John Stipe

Legal Disclaimer: This website is a criticism of Baylor University and was not produced by Baylor University and may not necessarily express the views of the Baylor University. This website is not endorsed by Baylor University and does not represent a publication of Baylor University. Other than being an Alumnus of Baylor University, I do not represent Baylor University nor am I affiliated with Baylor University.