Law School Case Brief
Cybersell, Inc. v. Cybersell, Inc. - 130 F.3d 414 (9th Cir. 1997)
The common thread regarding personal jurisdiction over Internet sites is that the likelihood that personal jurisdiction can be constitutionally exercised is directly proportionate to the nature and quality of commercial activity that an entity conducts over the Internet.
Cybersell, Inc. (“Cybersell FL”), an Internet service provider and Florida corporation, used the same Internet Web page name as the Web page name that Cybersell, Inc. (“Cybersell AZ”), an Internet service provider and Arizona corporation, was using in its business. Appellant brought an action against appellees for trademark infringement based on the use of appellant's service mark. The district court granted appellees' motion to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.
Did the district court have jurisdiction over Cybersell FL?
The court held that because Cybersell FL’s use of the Internet Web page name was passive and Cybersell FL had conducted no commercial activity in Arizona, Cybersell FL’s contacts with Arizona were insufficient to constitute purposeful availment of Arizona. The first prong of the test for specific jurisdiction of the district court over Cybersell FL was not met. Therefore, the district court lacked personal jurisdiction over Cybersell FL.
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