Orange County – The Pac-10 is no stranger to competition. The west coast college athletic conference has now expanded by two teams and could be facing its toughest competitor yet. It appears that a dedicated Tupac Shakur fan is already the owner of the trophy at stake: the domain name pac12.com.
The domain, which was registered in 2005, was initially created as a memoriam to the slain rapper who was gunned down in 1996. In a reactionary move to a recent domain name dispute complaint filed by the Pac-10 with the World Intellectual Property Forum, the domain started offering an Amazon-related widget that plays 2Pac albums. In addition to the widget, the domain owner also added a shopping cart feature where one can purchase 2Pac items such as boxer shorts, key chains, ice buckets, posters, shot glasses, t-shirts, mouse pads, ect. According to the website, all proceeds from the sales go to The Tupac Amaru Skakur Foundation, a nonprofit organization started in 1997 by the rapper’s mother.
The conference seeks ownership of the domain name for branding purposes. The suit could be the beginning of negotiations in a financial settlement between both sides, resulting in the athletic conference securing ownership of the domain – for a price of course.