Bodog.com Domain Fight – The Switch to BodogLife.com
September 18, 2007

Bodog recently had a sudden change of domain. The Bodog domain name is now BodogLife.com. The adoption of this new domain is due to a default judgment on a patent case brought against Bodog by 1st Tech. Bodog put up a fight but ultimately changed their domain name. Calvin Ayre swore to fight against what he considers an unfair ruling. The ruling included $49 million in favor of 1st Tech and Bodog had to abandon their domain name. But Bodog's legal team was rewarded a partial victory. 1st Tech was not allowed to seize or stop Bodog's domains since they "failed to satisfy the requirements for permanent injunctive relief and in the Court's view, [1st Tech] is requesting relief beyond this Court's power to grant." Hence, Bodog might have lost their original domain name but they can still use bodoglife.com. According to Calvin Ayre on his blog, "Is Bodog going to appeal the default judgment? Hell yeah." Ayre claims that the Costa Rican company, Bodog Entertainment Group SA never provided online services itself and never operated or owned any websites. In addition, he claims that this company was shut down operationally over a year before the ruling. Only time will tell if this argument will win an appeal.

If Ayre is correct, this whole ordeal is in fact a dirty way to force a monetary settlement on Bodog. In Ayre's words, "thought 1st Technology and their lawyer bosses are classic patent trolls, this has never been a patent case; it has always just been a legal system "stick up" where the objective was always to grab the domains and try to force a monetary settlement, the legal equivalent of a back alley mugging."

Ayre hopes that his appeal will succeed not only for his personal benefit but also in order to set a precedent for international law and how it applies to off-shore internet businesses. This case regardless of the appeal sets a historic precedent. According to Ayre, "this is the first time in history that a non-US company, with zero operations or assets in the US has had its domain names seized with no prior notice simply because it was using a US-based domain name registrar." Ayre believes that domain names should not be defined as assets to be seized in order to collect on a judicial ruling.

In short, although the domain dispute caused some drama for Bodog, a dedicated staff of over 1000 people rallied together and maintained the billion dollar business on a strong growth curve throughout one of the busiest seasons. Since the ruling, Bodog bovada debuted its new domain, launched a Football Fantasy site, announced the winner of the Bodog Battle of the Bands contest on fuse TV, launched multilingual customer service, produced a Bodog qualifier at the final table of the WSOP (World Series of Poker) Europe and put a new season of Bodog Fight into post-production.

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