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The NETWORK Network has successfully defended its domain name against CBS and The Nashville Network.  Taking on a media giant like CBS was a daunting task, but with the help of our attorney, Mr. Thomas E. Shardlow, we were able to survive the 2 year legal battle.  Our attorney has taken the position in court that CBS's position in this litigation was "groundless and unreasonable" (see Motion for Attorney's Fees below).  United States District Judge Nora M. Manella agreed, and handed CBS a stinging defeat with comments like:

"Unlikely indeed is the hapless Internet searcher who, unable to find information on the schedule of upcoming NASCAR broadcasts or “Dukes of Hazzard” reruns, decides to give up and purchase a computer network maintenance seminar instead."

CBS in their filings with the court claimed that the domain name was rightfully theirs given that the television industry relies on call letters to identify themselves and that the call letters should apply to television and now with the medium now spilling over to the Internet, the same should apply.  They also claim that there is a matter of trademark dilution at stake because without the domain name they are “completely eliminated” from identifying their goods and services on the Internet and puts them at a “critical disadvantage” in the “highly competitive television industry.”

 United States District Judge, Nora M. Manella completely disagreed with CBS, and concluded:

“Nashville’s (The Nashville Network) claim may be reduced to the argument that because its three initial registered mark is now famous, and would be the most convenient website name for The Nashville Network, it should be entitled to enjoin The Network Network from using the same three initials as part of the domain name it registered nearly half a dozen years ago and has been using continuously ever since—a domain name based on Network’s prior use in commerce of the same three initials since 1989.  The fact that Nashville missed its opportunity to select the domain name it would now like to have is not sufficient to state a claim of infringement under the federal trademark law, particularly were, as here there can be no genuine risk of confusion—initial or otherwise—by any consumer of reasonable prudence, and no argument that Network has sought or is now seeking to trade on Nashville’s good name.”

Available on this website are the following documents relevant to the court case:

Name of Document Date Adobe Acrobat (PDF)
CBS' First Cease and Desist Letter Dec 16, 1997 View now (29K)
TNN Response to CBS' First Letter Dec 24, 1997 View now (6K)
CBS' Second Cease and Desist Letter Dec 30, 1997 View now (27K)
TNN's Initial Complaint against CBS Feb 5, 1998 View now (797K)
TNN's Motion for Summary Judgment Jun 14, 1999 View now (260K)
TNN's Response to CBS's Motion for
Summary Judgment
Jul 19, 1999 View now (259K)
TNN's Response to CBS's Opposition
to Motion for Summary Judgment 
Aug 1, 1999 View now (180K)
Court Order as filed on January 19, 2000 Jan 19, 2000

View now (78 K)

TNN's Motion for Attorney Fees and Costs Feb 2, 2000 View now (25K)

We, at The NETWORK Network, are pleased that we can finally put this long running litigation to bed, and get on with business as normal again.  Expect to see our new, improved, 2000 Seminar Schedule posted to this site shortly.  As most of you know, we have been holding off on printing any new promotional material until we knew for certain which domain name we would be using.  Now that we know, we will resume our marketing with a vengeance.  

We wish to express our sincerest thanks to our loyal customers for their unfaltering support during this harrowing ordeal.  We would also like to express our extreme gratitude to the law firm of Shardlow & Vick, especially our attorney, Thomas E. Shardlow, for his outstanding persistence and judicious advice that has enabled us to successfully defend our domain name against CBS and The Nashville Network.