Internet ads, intellectual property and copyrights…

Question by Jennifer Berry on LinkedIn Answers. My answer below

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Question about internet ads, intellectual property, and copyrights…

My husband and I operate a non-profit in the US and we had a website… we decided to let the website domain name go two years ago because it was more hassle than it was worth for us since we were having to code and update it ourselves…. last night I went on the internet and pulled up the old site.
I was SHOCKED to find out it is still up, with our non-profits name, our likenesses and images, our old contact information from two years ago, copywritten articles we published, the whole nine yards… and there are google banner ads all over the site.
Someone from estonia bought the domain from a US-based domain host and is using all of our old original content including our pictures and original writings.

This person is making money off us and our non-profit corp. through these banner ads. Do we have any recourse?

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My answer

Another thing to look into is to contact Google and explain to them your situation so they remove the site from their roster – they may be able to give you full contact info as well.

Yet another idea is to see if the domain is still available for sale. Some “speculators” tentatively buy domains but don’t keep them when someone actually pays for it. It’s a good idea for you to keep your domain to yourself whether you wish to operate a site or not to avoid such situations.

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Other great answers here

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