Nissan Motor Co. v. Nissan Computer Corp.

378 F.3d 1002 (2004)

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Nissan Motor Co. v. Nissan Computer Corp.

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
378 F.3d 1002 (2004)

Facts

Uzi Nissan (Uzi) was an individual who had used his surname in several businesses since 1980, including Nissan Computer Corporation (Nissan Computer) (defendant). In 1994 and 1996, respectively, Uzi registered the domain names nissan.com and nissan.net. In 1999, Japanese auto manufacturer Nissan Motor Company (Nissan Motors) (plaintiff), which had registered its first United States trademark in 1959, objected to Nissan Computer’s domain-name registrations. The parties negotiated unsuccessfully, and Nissan Motors sued Nissan Computer under the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act. The district court entered injunctive relief requiring Nissan Computer to put a disclaimer on its websites to prevent dilution of Nissan Motors’ trademarks. The court also restrained Nissan Computer from placing links on nissan.com and nissan.net to other websites containing disparaging or negative commentary about Nissan Motors, including information about the litigation. Nissan Computer appealed, arguing that the bar against placing links to other sites containing negative commentary about Nissan Motors violated Nissan Computer’s First Amendment rights.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Rymer, J.)

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