The site, which is modeled after the popular Swedish buy-and-sell site blocket.se, has been operating for about a month.
Ikea has now asked the Internet Infrastructure Foundation (Stiftelsen för internetinfrastruktur), the body responsible for registering domain names ending in ‘.se’, to help resolve the dispute over iloveikea.se, claiming the site infringes on the Ikea brand.
“It’s obvious that a visitor to a homepage with the description iloveikea as the impression that it is the applicant (Ikea) which lies behind the website to which the domain name leads,” write Ikea’s representative, attorney Jonas Gulliksson.
He also asserts that the impression of there being a relationship between the discount furniture retailer and the website is strengthened by the fact that the site only exists to sell used Ikea furniture.
“It’s very important to us that customers know that they are buying from Ikea so that there isn’t any confusion,” said Ikea spokesperson Ylva Magnusson to the TT news agency.
But according to the founder of iloveikea.se, Klas-Göran Karlsson, there’s little risk of a mix-up.
“We are exceptionally clear on the site that we are not in any way associated with Ikea,” he said.
He thinks instead Ikea is trying to thwart the development of a well-functioning second hand market in its products.
“There are also a number of other sites which have Ikea in their domain name,” he said.
Ikea’s lawyer states in his submission that Ikea doesn’t have the ability to check the condition or features of used furniture sold on the site and that Ikea has a legitimate interest in ensuring that the Ikea brand isn’t watered down.
Karlsson, however, is convinced that he’ll be found to be in the right. But just in case he’s also registered the domain name billyandfriends.se.