Mattel Inc. has filed a trademark infringement suit in U.S. District Court
in Los Angeles, against Internet Host, a Portland, Oregon Internet service
The big toy company accuses Internet Host of registering domains with the
intent to trade on the goodwill that Mattel has earned in its Barbie doll
products. Internet Host owns 10 domains that include the word barbie,
“I disagree that they have the right to the name,” said Brett Van Buskirk,
who, along with his wife, operates Internet Host. Van Buskirk says none of
his barbie domains currently have Web sites or are registered with search
“We were going to use it for our girls to showcase their barbie
collectibles with their friends, but not to sell anything,” he said.
Van Buskirk also strongly denies Mattel’s charges that he tried to extort
money from the company. Instead, he claims that Mattel has no interest in
settling the case. “I told them I’d transfer the domains and eat my legal
fees. All I wanted was $70 per domain, which is what it cost us to
register them. But [Mattel] refused,” he said.
Internet Host has 10 days left to respond to Mattel’s suit, and will
likely be forced to turn over the domains without a fight, according to Van
Buskirk, since the company can not afford legal representation.
Mattel representatives were not available to comment on the suit.
A check of Internic records showed that more than 180 domains include the
term “barbie,” and most of which are not owned by Mattel.
Earlier this week, Mattel and Intel announced they will co-developed
computerized toys, including a speaking Barbie doll that can be plugged
into a PC.