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Internet Trademark Case Summaries

Golf Warehouse, L.L.C., v. Golfers' Warehouse, Inc.

142 F. Supp. 2d 1307 (D. Kan 2001)

Plaintiff operated a website at the domain name “thegolfwarehouse.com,” where it sold golf equipment and accessories under the name “The Golf Warehouse.”  Defendant operated golf-specialty stores under the federally registered mark GOLFER’S WAREHOUSE.  Although defendant did not conduct business online, it owned the domain name “golferswarehouse.com.”  Plaintiff sought a declaration that its actions did not violate any of defendant’s rights and that defendant’s mark GOLFER’S WAREHOUSE was generic.  Defendant asserted counterclaims of trademark infringement, false designation of origin, and cybersquatting.  Before the court was plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment and defendant’s motion for preliminary injunction.  The court focused its analysis on whether the mark GOLFER’S WAREHOUSE was generic.  In finding the term GOLFER’S WAREHOUSE to be generic, the court held that the primary significance of the term was “to denote the type of store defendant operates, not the defendant’s ownership thereof.”  Accordingly, the court granted summary judgment in favor of plaintiff on all of its claims, and denied plaintiff’s motion for preliminary injunction.