Washington, DC – October 19, 2010: The international law firm Crowell & Moring LLP today announced the launch of its new TLD (Top-Level Domain) and Domain Name practice. As the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) prepares for the 2011 introduction of what may be the most significant extension of the domain name system since the introduction of .com, the TLD and Domain Name practice will counsel brand owners as to the best strategy to protect and enhance their brands and prevent infringement in this new and uncertain online environment, including whether and how to seek registration of new generic top-level domains (gTLDs). The practice, which offers a comprehensive team of intellectual property, Internet law, and dispute resolution lawyers, is co-led by Brussels-based partner Flip Petillion and Washington, DC-based partner John I. Stewart, Jr.
“The introduction of generic top-level domains offers a wealth of opportunities, but it also presents great challenges, as companies and operators around the world seek to use the new regime to their advantage,” said Stewart. “Our practice leverages the firm’s extensive experience to counsel our clients through all phases of the gTLD process, from initial assessment to application to launch. We are uniquely placed to help clients as they make strategic decisions, structure agreements, and resolve any disputes as they negotiate their way through the process.”
To further bolster the practice, Crowell & Moring has brought on new Brussels-based counsel Bart Lieben, who offers extensive experience in international commercial law, with a particular focus on intellectual property, telecommunications, media, and technology law. Lieben advises clients in the organization, implementation, and launch of new top-level domains, having assisted more than 20 current and future domain name registries. In addition to Lieben, the Brussels office also gained two new associates, Sarah van den Brande and Christian Dekoninck, who will practice in the Intellectual Property Group and the TLD and Domain Name practice.
“As one of the few firms that represents both domain name registrars and domain name registries, we are uniquely placed to advise clients throughout all phases of a generic top-level domain application, from feasibility assessments to launch and implementation assistance,” said Petillion. “Major companies, states, and other organizations must consider a wide range of risks and benefits that will come about as a result of the new gTLDs.”
Crowell & Moring’s international team of lawyers are engaged in counseling, transactional, and contracting work on intellectual property, policy, strategy and liability issues as clients develop and evolve their Internet brand presence, and can handle all aspects of litigation related to new gTLD applications.
The firm invites all brand owners to attend a live webinar, “ICANN’s New gTLD Program: Considerations for Brand Owners,” on October 27, 2010 at 12:00 pm EDT. The webinar will feature Crowell & Moring Intellectual Property and Dispute Resolution lawyers who will highlight the new ICANN process and offer insight on the opportunities and challenges involved in securing a generic top-level domain name. For further information on this event and the TLD and Domain Names practice, please visit: www.crowell.com/TLDs.
Crowell & Moring LLP is an international law firm with more than 500 lawyers representing clients in litigation and arbitration, regulatory, and transactional matters. The firm is internationally recognized for its representation of Fortune 500 companies in high-stakes litigation, as well as its ongoing commitment to pro bono service and diversity. The firm has offices in Washington, DC, New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Orange County, Anchorage, London, and Brussels.