Director Monica Riva Talley and Associate Dan Bernard were quoted in the article “The Rise in Blockchain Domains Presents Risks, Opportunities for Brands,” published by The Fashion Law. The author quotes Talley and Bernard’s article “Blockchain-Based Names: New Frontier for Brands (and Squatters),” published in the June 2019 issue of Sterne Kessler’s MarkIt to Market® newsletter.

From The Fashion Law:

“There are, however, some distinctions between DNS and crypto domains – from where the addresses point (typically to crypto wallets for crypto domains, but also websites that reside on a decentralized internet) to how governance is handled. Unlike DNS domains, for instance, blockchain-based web domains are not governed by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (‘ICANN’) and thus, are not subject to its procedures, such as the Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy and the Uniform Rapid Suspension System.

This means that while blockchain-based domains provide users with benefits, such as an easy-to-use alternative to a long, alphanumeric crypto wallet address (think: 0xb15166d10aebc6bb4868668eff1b3acd95da920c) and heightened security since they are created with blockchain-hosted smart contracts, there are some potential drawbacks. For one thing, trademark holders are not able to utilize ICANN proceedings when it comes to the bad-faith registrations or otherwise infringing uses of these domain names. At the same time, ‘Blockchain-based naming systems often have no central authority that can provide a remedy to aggrieved brand owners,’ according to Sterne Kessler’s Dan Bernard and Monica Riva Talley, and ‘the anonymity that blockchains provide typically means that squatters cannot be identified in order to take legal action in any forum.'”

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