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I looked for search data about tools earlier this year and saw a search term that I thought was a general term, partly because the verb is almost the same in swedish.

Then today I saw this mail. I changed a little with extra "x-" in the text; ".

Dear ...... ,.

Snap-x-on Incorporated is the /img/avatar7.jpg of the well-known trademark and trade name Snap-x-on. As you are no doubt aware, Snap-x-on is the trademark used to identify products, services, activities and events related to Snap-x-on Incorporated.

In connection to Snap-x-on Incorporated proprietary rights over it's famous trademark we bring to your attention the following:.

1) You have registered, without Snap-x-on Incorporateds permission or authorization, the domain name '........ '. The Domain Name incorporates the famous Snap-x-on mark in it's entirety, and, by it's very composition, suggests Snap-x-on Incorporateds sponsorship or endorsement of your website and correspondingly, your activities.

Your use of a Domain Name that incorporates the famous Snap-x-on mark in it's entirety constitutes trademark infringement and dilution of Snap-x-on Incorporateds trademark rights and unfair competition. Your use of our mark in the Domain Name is diluting use because it weakens the ability of the Snap-x-on mark and domain name to identify a single source, namely Snap-x-on Incorporated. Further, your registration and use of the Domain Name misleads consumers into believing that some association exists between Snap-x-on Incorporated and you, which tarnishes the goodwill and reputation of Snap-x-on Incorporateds products, services, and trademarks.

In view of your infringement of our rights, we must demand that you provide written assurances within 7 days that you will:.

1. Immediately discontinue any and all use of the Domain Name;.

2. Take immediate steps to transfer the Domain Name Snap-x-on Incorporated;.

3. Identify and agree to transfer Snap-x-on Incorporated any other domain names registered by you that contain Snap-x-on or are confusingly similar to the Snap-x-on mark;.

4. Immediately and permanently refrain from any use of the term Snap-x-on or any variation thereof that is likely to cause confusion or dilution;.

We look forward to hearing back from you within the above-mentioned time frame.


...... ".

What annoyed was "As you are no doubt aware, Snap-x-on is the trademark used to identify products, services, activities and events related to Snap-x-on Incorporated.".

I have not been aware about it being a trademark, but maybe that was written in order to push me to action. And, do I have to transfer it to them, why not only ending the registration, if possible.

I have not earned anything from the domain, absolutely nothing, zero. It has been parked but I saw the registrar had ads on it. But the domain is completely unknown and not shown anywhere. Now I tried to redirect it to nowhere instead.

Anyway, any comments about this how I should write back? I already wrote a part but did not send it, just kept it until later...

Comments (43)

If you think it's generic, you may be right...

Comment #1

Well, make some research and find out whether some company like that exists. If you don't find anything, reply them with requesting them to prove that they own a trademark for the name. If they really do, they should be able to prove it.

Personally, I think it autogenerated spam email but you never know...

Comment #2

Snap on are HUGE!.

There world wide and very very well known, my advice to you is transfer it to them and chalk it down to experience,.

Without knowing the full domain name it's still the same ending snap on will get the domain.

Parking it doesnt help you either, it's a reg fee, send it to them right away and forget about it, failure to do so in this case will most likely be costly for you,.

Do a google for snap on, I'm sure you'll be surprised by the results, but the rest of us wont be,.

I struggle to believe you've not heard of them, there like fridges, everyone has one, some where you more than likely have one of there tools lol.

Give it to them, without delay, save yourself future troubles.


Over 10 million results! there real, harldy spam..

Comment #3

Some people thought that, only to find out the hard way they were wrong...

Comment #4 does everyone get away with miss spelt parked domains though?..theres millions out there.....

Comment #5

Just ebcause they havent been caught yet doesnt mean they wont in the future, it's best to aviod the risk imo, just think, you reg a domain, it's a tm, the company come after you and you lose the case, then you reg another domain, with possible tm, the company comes after you again, but this time you have a good fight on your hands, your already labbled a squatter, so it goes against you...

Comment #6

In my country this brand is not known generally. Not at all. Here there are other brands that are standard, not this one.

The words sn.. op, snap it on etc, sound very generic to me, also with the word in swedish, snppa, is used in a way that sounds generic.

If anyone would say no matter what you say, you certainly knew it was a brand, how could I ever prove no I did not. I just thought it was a generic pair of words. I used to look for tool related searches, so I got it.

I will transfer it to them, but they must have an account to get it. I write to the registrar and tell about it, shouldnt I.

"Further, your registration and use of the Domain Name", I have not used it at all. Why am I told I have used it when I have not. Why didnt they register it before?.

"Take immediate steps to transfer the Domain Name Snap-x-on Incorporated".

I dont have the word "incorporated" in the domain name. Maybe they copied a text that was sent elsewhere.

So, of course I will answer that I did not know about it being a brand, because I didnt. How would I know about a brand that is not at all.

Commonly known here, of course knot, though I know a lot else about usa, but americans dont know close to anything about my country or even europe.

No. the page has not been indexed anywhere, not at all known and their standard text mail talks about misleading customers etc.

Should I include something like "As I transfer it to you, this matter is cleared out" etc? Has it happened that people who had, knowing or without knowing it was a tm-domain name they had, get into trouble even after immediately transfering the name?.

The domain has not been written about, is not in any search engine index, not known anywhere, and was parked at the registrar (one of the biggest registrars.) itself, with the registrars ads like all domains become automatically unless the owner redirects it somewhere or nowhere.

Therefore I redirected it to nowhere so there is a blank page coming up.


There are no sites with the brand/names in my country's domain extension..

However I found a domain with their two generic word trademark but used for something else.

When I made a search in my country's yellow directory for companies related to the brand, there was 4 different offices in all. There are thousands of places selling tools in my country, but I only found 4 having this brand, in the most used directory...

Comment #7

What are you using the domain for? whats the site content going to be? what are you development plans for it?..

Comment #8

Unless you have a vested interest in this domain and lots of money to protect it. I would cease and desist all activities with this domain. Since you had it parked with no website and thay could probably prove cybersquatting, you will lose and it's going to cost you a ton of $$$$.

Did they send it certified mail?..

Comment #9

Snap On are very rich, my dad owns some of their tools and even a very small round thingy (hehe) was over 100!! So if this is real then give them what they want...

Comment #10

I wouldn't fight it either, it won't be worth the time and hassle...

Comment #11

Read better. I wrote earlier that I have not used the domain in any way. Just parked, now it leads to a blank page.

When I searched for "tools" on it showed the very generic sounding search phrase snapXonXtools. I though that was a common term in english just like "power tools", thats why I regged it. I thought well tools is what people may look for. I have never worked with tools sales or anything, just hobby thinking. I have no sites in that field. That company is practically unmarketed in this country, how would I know about it, never heard of.

Of course I dont mind about this domain. Not at all. Ill be more than happy to transfer it. I wonder though why they didnt reg it themselves earlier.

I can see that some other domain extensions (like .org) are available in some forms, again I wonder why dont they reg it themselves.

I saw a small company who uses the same two word term in a domain but in another area but I will contact them to inform...

Comment #12

They dont need to reg every extention to protect there TM play nice, hes offering you advice...

Comment #13

Searching on Google.SE showing only Swedish results still shows a lot of matches for Snap On tool products.

With that said, you may have a valid point based on some of the results I saw...

Ie. there's an established hairextension brand called SnapOn.

And also see some "snap on" references that appear totally unrelated to Snap On tool products; generic like in usage. How much is the domain worth to you - that's what it comes down to - are you willing to potentially spend many thousands of dollars to defend your domain name? ...

IF yes, then the next thing you should do is consult with an experienced TM attorney immediately to determine your next move. Not necessarily. Simply change the Whois to their company information, and reply back to the Snap On folks that you've "transferred ownership" to them, while making clear to them (unlock the domain and send them the authcode) that they need to transfer it into their registrar or otherwise it will eventually expire. Because registering every TM variation would cost a fortune. The number of combinations one can come up with which includes their mark is astronomical. It appears they left a word out or something - they mean transfer it (change the registrant field) to Snap-on Incorporated Many TM holders use third-party services to scan domain name registrations, SE listings, etc for their TMs - much of this is done by computer programs with little to no human intervention.

So if you choose to transfer it (in my view, it's likely the best option unless you're up for an expensive fight)...

At your registrar, based on the info you're provided, you should update the Whois registrant, Admin contact, etc fields to:.

Snap-on Incorporated.

C/o IT Business Services 2801 80th Street, PO Box 1410 Kenosha WI 53141-1410 US Email:.

Then reply back to their email indicating you've transferred ownership (changed the Whois), as I explained earlier...

Don't admit anything, don't explain why you registered it, etc... likely the less you say the better.

All they care about is protecting their TM - once they see you've responded to their email and updated the Whois and DNS to their information, that will likely be the end of the matter.


Comment #14

I agree with Domagon. It is best not to fight it...

Comment #15

Many thanks Ron for the work you did, and telling me just to transfer it on my own, I didnt think about that before. I checked it to be correct and I made the transfer per registrant, technical etc but it is still in my account so it has to be transferred into another account later.

Anyway, you wrote I have nothing to admit, the search term was provided by the mentioned keyword search tool and I didnt know anything about it being trademarked, those two so generic/common words, not marketed at all in this country. Shouldnt I even tell that, otherwise they will, no doubt think I knew what it was and acted in bad faith, which I indeed did not. And, that I have not used it in any way. I have heard the words snap on else where in english, and it surprises me that such two old words can be trademarked..

If I am just silent I thought it could be viewed wrongly as a silent confess.

No other last comments before I sent the reply?..

Comment #16

Per the registrars TOS that you agree to with every registration, it is your responsibility to not register TMed domains. (that is the arguement) And I bet those ads had tool related ads on them. It was your choice to park the domain, you should have been aware they would place ads on it. So no deflecting responsibility to the parking page company. You did use it, you had it parked, that is usage regardless (or irregardless??) of what you may think. And they don't have to register every single variation and typo to protect themselves.


Snap-on Tools.

International, LLC..

European Division.

Office - North.

E-mail: European Division North..

Comment #17

I cannot see the point in your accusing comments.

It is practically impossible to check 100% if anything can be a trademark. If any words can be a trademark, regging domains can not be possible at all.

If you have a domain that shows up to be a trademark, would you say that you have acted in bad faith?.

Why mind ads on a parked page with so common words that I did not.

Know was a trademark? If I knew that I would never ever reg it.

So why do registrars put ads on pages that are parked on their behalf without checking themselves. No I did not use ads for any own purpose. They dont pay anything to the domain owner, I have not received or earnt anything for it. The page was not known, it cannot have had any visitors, therefore, not used.

When saying "use it", it should refer to any active business, marketing etc to exploit someone's name and to actively cause confusion, I have not, nor has it been indexed or written about, what do you mean, that I should be punished??!!.

Your reply sounded very accusing and did not help at all, it seems as if you think I deserve to be punished. If so you could say to all people to give upp all about domains since it is practically impossible to know 100% for sure whether anything is or can become a trademark.

Yes there is a small office you found in Sweden and far from here. How would I know about that office among all thousands of tool shops in this country?.

I just know about those tool brands that are common here, I cannot know about a little office far away.


They have actually regged almost all domain extensions...

Comment #18

Tough luck about the trade mark. It does mean that you have no rights to the domain name. However you are not obliged to actually transfer the name to them. However You don't have to do a thing..

For them to get it they must either obtain a court order - or your agreement..

Yes you can just let it lapse..

But alternatively if you don't like their attitude then you can do something to create havoc for them..

You have heard of chain letters? Well maybe you just give it to someone else with instructions to pass it on. If it is constantly at sea then the ship may never come in. It would serve them right as there is no reason for there rudeness to you..

Best of luck..

Comment #19

Yeah, dont do this, althought it's "constantly at sea" you are the responsable party, anyone you transfer it to can COME AFTER YOU! as well as snap on getting you.

Doing the quoted above, will serverly hurt you.

You know what you need to do..

Comment #20

Glad to help.

The domain will probably stay in your account until it expires (be sure to off auto-renew). There's a good chance they won't request a registrar transfer for it.

Often TM holders, unless the offending domain gets much traffic / and or presents a high-risk of causing much lost business (ie. common typo names), will not want the domain; prefer to just let it expire and disappear. "Silence" in and of itself is not an admission of guilt. I understand your sentiments, but when it comes to legal matters, less is often better.

The company already has formed an opinion of your actions - you're not going to change their mind...

Replying back with lots of detail will likely make no difference, and worse could lead to them to scrutinize your activities more closely; it's better they don't "remember" you.


Comment #21

Actually, just pointing out the reality of the situation. As a domainer, that is part of the "job". You have to make sure you don't infringe on TMs. Then you have to make sure the usage doesn't create bad faith. So if you park a domain, you have to be mindful of what comes up since you are the one that parked it. A simple search in Google or Yahoo would have easilty shown you thier presence...

You are driving in a new area and did not see any speed limit signs, so you do 55mph and a cop pulls you over and he says you were speeding because the limit was 40mph. You explain that you did not know the speed limit. Now, did you willfully break the law? No.. did you actually break the law? yes. Should have have done better to know the speed limit? yes.

You are th domain owner, you are responsible on how it is used. They do it to make money, it is not thier job to research the domain, it is yours (a theme is forming). Someone is earning money, and the domain owner takes the blame. ??? I don't understand this comment, lets take a look...

I pointed out the registrars terms of service and the responsibility of one takes when registereing a domain. I think that is helpful.

I pointed out what happens when you park a domain. That is usefull knowledge for future dealings with domains.

I showed how you used the domain, parking IS usage. I even showed the responsibility the parking company has. So I show the rights of you and the parking company.

I then researched and found there is a Swedish resence of the TM in question. This helps with any questions about this particular domain. I think that should help too.

Funny thing is, all I did was point out reality and help clear up any minconceptions you may have. I think that helps a lot (and otehrs too who are new to this game). I hope at this point, you reread what I wrote and laugh to yourself and realize I helped a ton and say "Sorry, I was just being defensive because I thought you were being personal to me. I guess you have valid points that I did not realize. thanx for the help" Ummmm.. no, just showing where you went wrong in hopes that in the future you have a better understanding of how domaining works.

Trust me, I take nothing here personally, not do I mean it to be personal (I will admit, there are a couple exceptions.. is he still banned?? lol)..

Comment #22

What I meant earlier, was that your earlier reply sounded as I had acted in bad faith. That was, what I meant the "accuse" though I already had declared, that I had not known about the thing.

For me, I could never, relating to my linguistic knowledges etc etc, imagine that it would be even possible to trademark two old simple words that are used in the language for so many different things. I thought it was a general term.

Not all trademarks are found through a simple google search, you have to look in a trademark data base, what all who use domains should do.

Again, that company is not actively present here though there is at least one little office somewhere. There might be a lot of other small brands who all have a little local distributor, active or not active, in different countries but people do not know about it. I have never seen their products here, they are not in any tool catalogues or anywhere where I have seen in the last time.

Anyway, I replied in a short way and there has not been any reply to it...

Comment #23

So is the domain name TMed in your country? I'd ask an attorney to explain the laws in your country.....

Comment #24

Actually, you will find more TMs doing a Google search then you would in a TM database. They will only show the registered marks (or applicaitoin for registered marks). a TM does not have to be registered to be afforded protection under TM laws. Additionally, many countries will ackowledge other countries TMs and copyrights. Since the internet is world reaching, all a TM holder has to do is prove greater rights, regardless at times where the TM is established. The domain was parked and had ads on it, your chances of prevailing is very small...

Comment #25

My advice: consult a lawyer. Don't reply again. Sit down and formulate a response that puts the ball firmly back in the accuser's court.

You are not a US national and this congolmerate (of which I too have never heard) is not a meber of the Holy Roman Empire. Different laws to copyright 'theft' apply in differnt lands, fortunately.

Of course you didn't steal anyone's trademark you merely created your own out of the generic words available in your own language. (That's called sovereignty talent.).

Copyyright is not vested in a single idea, but the form and how that single idea is then expressed. VirginAirlines does not own the word "virgin" per say, just the form and meaning when applied to it's product, or 'trademark'.

McDonalds tried the same thing on with a restaurant in Scotland, also with the same 'trademark'. It transpired that the McDonalds of Scotland were the real McKoy - and had every right to call themselves "McDonalds Restaurant".

Many years back Monopoly also tried to muscle it's trademark to several new makers of the same (or similar) game. It transpired that the trademark was not even owned by the sellers of Monopoly (how embarrassing).

These are strong arm tactics meant to scare the cybersquatter (and to take advantage of the weak, or confused), of which you are neither.

Anyway, how about your registrant? They sold you the mark and should be jointly and severally liable. They took a cut, as did ICANN. Added to which, the persons currently threatening you could be said to be complacent in the extreme. (I cannot believe that it is difficult to register a name in which you feel you have a vested or trademark or copyright interest.) This is a reversal Cybersquatting, it's 'Cyberlording' - and they should at least for shame's sake offer to pay you the registration fee. (In addition to a letter thanking you for bringing it's availabilty to their attention.)...

Comment #26

Im sorry, but ROFLMFAO!!.

This is blantant infringment, just because he is in another country doesnt escape that, you really REALLY need to step back and re-think the advise you just offered.

ROFL! no, these are the rules which they can use to stop people infringing on there TM, your right, virgin dont own the word "virgin" as a description for someone who's never had sex, but you apply that word with ANY product, and there prolly going to come for you due to confusingly similar..

Comment #27

Trade marks are only relevant to the particular industry in which the firm operates - so it is possible to have use of the name for an unrelated product - provided you do not pass off as being the other firm - and provided there is no confusion in the minds of the public...

Comment #28

Well, I'm not at all certain if "ROFLMFAO" and other terms are domains in your portfolio or an opinion. And you are welcome to it. [As indeed I am to mine...].

"Trademark owners do not acquire the exclusive ownership of words. They only obtain the right to use the mark in commerce and to prevent competitors in the same line of goods or services from using a confusingly similar mark. The same word can therefore be trademarked by different producers to label different kinds of goods. Examples are Delta Airlines and Delta Faucets.".

And extra 'virgin' oil too for that matter. (No, not owned by Richard Branson but a seperate brand.).

However, that you state "this is blatant infringement" merely shows an immediate bias in favour of the claimant - and without he adducement of evidence. Naturally I am not condoning infringement of anyone's brand... merely suggesting to this gentleman - in Sweden! - that he should check 'their' facts.

In my country one is usually asked to adduce evidence in relation to outrageous claim, but this right is under threat.

As for the domain registrars being jointly and severely liable this met with a "ROFL". Perhapsa four-letter domain this time. But whether it's .com or .net you do not say and I cannot comment. Save to say that there are provisions (thankfully) in various Copyright and Trademark acts that makes 'passing on' an offence too. A person selling a dodgy CD is every bit as liable as the person buying it.

"no, these are the rules which they can use to stop people infringing on there TM...".

Back to strong arm tactics, which are quite the norm amongst the legal profession in these matters. For instance an owner of a trademark (for want of a better word) is naturally concerned about 'dilution'. The use of the term "Virgin" when applied to similar products for instance may dilute. However, Mr Branson could not put forward such a claim. does not infringe - because Branso doesn not (to my knowledge) hawk a similar produce and it's usage is in advance of Virgin Airlines etc. (This actually happned in the Monopoly game case, where it was displayed that, the gamD (or a version of it) and the actual name predated the game manufacturer's trademark.


Comment #29

Your missing the point, snap on is a TM - the OP had the site PARKED - no developement, so what has he got to defend? no usage at all.

You can argue all you like about virgin, were not saying he cant have the domain if he makes it none tool related,.

Whats happened here is the OP parked the domain, more than likely had SNAP ON tools ads there (or confusingly similar) he got the letter, if he took this all the way, my opinion is he would lose the proof is in the above posts, so yeah there is evidence, dont advise someone to defend a name just because you think there using strong arm tatics, this is pretty simple, no development, no plan to develop and the page parked, if you were the panelist, what conclusion would you draw?..

Comment #30

Depends on how bad you want it. they are counting on you getting scared and giving it up without a fight. I had a similiar letter froma comapany larger than that one, and I fought it and won. consult an attourney if you really want it. it's not that hard to defend.

And DONT you reply at will put yourself in a hole...the wording of that letter is paramount, and MUST be done by a person versed in the law....

Comment #31

Now that's sound advice.

Evertonian7uk, I owe you a huge apology. And this is reason why:

Comment #32

What about the rest of us?? we out the time in too lol..

Comment #33

And the rest of you too. Ironically, and coincidentally, Snap-on also produced Monopoly. Coincidence or what?..

Comment #34

No need for opoligies, this is a forum and these are just our opinions, in this instance the op was infringing imo, thats all I tried to get across, it wasnt imo sound advice to fight it...

Comment #35

Interesting territory. How can anyone be sure that they are not infringing a trademark if they don't have to be registered?.

And more....

What's to stop someone with a trademark deciding to not buy domains with their 'mark' because they want saps like us to buy 'em in order that they can then sieze them - for free?.

This may be laughable for a major corporation/conglomerate but there must now be an industry in someone claiming ownership for something they have not purchased, the domain name, that they then get buckshee!.

There is more of course....

How much does it cost to register a Trademark, say loanaiduk, then argue that any similar mark is infringing yours? Surely it would be better to register or grow a trademark? (In fact, the best way to do this may be by a one-page website that acts as a copyright or trademark date.).

A lot of these companies who are in a position to enforce their 'rights' are most fortunate, which leaves the rest of us hung out to ""..

What do you think?..

Comment #36

Just for the record, I've never heard of that company. So it's probably "huge" is some countries, and not known in others.

I personally believe "snap on" is relatively generic (just because this company's SEO is pretty efficient, doesn't mean "snap on" isn't used in the English language).

I guess where competentdomains went wrong is leaving the page parked (probably showing tools-related ads)...

Comment #37

Research before you registrer, like it says in the TOS...

Comment #38

Snap-on is huge when it comes to automobile tools..

Comment #39

They can't be that big, only did 2.9 billion in sales in 2007... wait, sorry, using commn sense now..

Comment #40

Ahh only 2.9 billion, then gezz, anything less than 3 billion is fair game lol,.

This is an interesting topic, but good for future reference, just because you dont know of the TM doesnt mean it doesnt exsist, that said, if your not operating in there tm field you might get away with it, it's not always open and shut like that, but look at some descions and you'll see a pattern...

Comment #41

Relatively? Just like truth?.

Snap on is maybe generic to snap on a thing. But to sell something?..

Comment #42

Crud, what was I thinking, yeah, they are under the 3bil threashold, next time, I will read things closer... boy do I feel like an idiot.

But seriously, it is true, just because you didn't hear of a TM does not mean it does not exsist. In this matter, spending 10 seconds on a simple Google(tm) search would have shown you they do indeed exsist and that you should have maintained the domain correctly. With the argument "I register so many domain I can't research all of them", expect to receive a C&D or 2 then...

Comment #43

This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.


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