On Wenesday 11th June 2008, when this page was at www.bifidusactiregularis.com, this site was contacted by lawyers representing Danone. They demanded that the domain name bifidusdigestivum.com was given to them within eight days or they would pursue full legal action. Among their comments were that this site could be mistaken as being owned by or affiliated with Danone (very, very unlikely), and that this site is gaining a competitive advantage by using one of Danone’s Trademarks (untrue as it does not sell yoghurt and has no advertising on it – this site makes no money). Danone were offered a place to comment on what Bifidus Regularis, Actiregularis, Digestivum, Essensis etc. are, and also to comment on the language and imagery used in their advertising. No reply has been received, but this site will be updated as and when this happens.
Update : 29th July 2008
Danone chose not to make a comment on their products. After negotations with Danone’s lawyers it was agreed that the domains be given to Danone due to clear legal precedent in trademark law. The site has been moved to bifidobacteriumanimalis.com as this uses purely scientific taxonomy – therefore it is not, and cannot become, a trademark of Danone. The lawyers also asked this site to make a number of undertakings such as not talking about their products again. Because this site is not set up to denigrate Danone, explicitly states that it is not in any way affiliated with Danone, and does not gain any commercial advantage from association with Danone’s products, these undertakings were not given.
Update: 3rd January 2010
The site has been moved again, this time to whatisbifidusregularis.org – it was felt that because this is a question, and because there is a prominent disclaimer about the site not begin affiliated with Danone / Dannon, this could in no way lead to confusion that the site was benefitting in any way from the trademark.