Econowire

Defend HeidiPowell.com against a Bullying Celebrity Thief!

Discussion in 'General Domain Discussion' started by Slanted, Jan 30, 2017.

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  1. Slanted

    Slanted Member Epik.com Staff ICA Member

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    Hi domainers,

    Please take a moment to help defend domain owner rights. The grandmother who owns HeidiPowell.com needs our help. You don't need to spend a penny. Just stand up and say, "This is unacceptable." It will take public pressure outside NamePros. But there are a lot of us; so hopefully we can join forces and spread the word.

    Scroll down. There are a few specific things we can do to help. It's urgent.

    Some of you know the story already. A grandmother has owned HeidiPowell.com for many years, but a minor TV celebrity has decided that she is the only Heidi Powell in the world who matters. And this arrogant celeb has dragged the original Mrs. Powell through a UDRP and even into bankruptcy court, attempting to take not just her domain but her own NAME from her by force. Truly, it's one of the most reprehensible cases I've ever come across. If we don't defend her, nobody will defend us when we ourselves are targeted.

    Background:

    Mrs. Powell has been Heidi Powell since her marriage in 1979. Back in 2005, 12 years ago, her husband presented her with the domain HeidiPowell.com as an anniversary gift. It's a developed website where she offers web design services. But it's more than just a site whose name can be changed. To this day, Heidi uses HeidiPowell.com for her email address, which is tied to all her online accounts. So if she loses this domain, it's akin to identity theft.

    Then along comes another Heidi Powell – a celebrity fitness trainer who had a short-lived TV show on ABC. ("Celebrity", so they say. I'd never heard of her.) She became Heidi Powell after a 2010 marriage – long after HeidiPowell.com was registered by the rightful owners, Mr. and Mrs. Powell.

    Greed and megalomania – it's the usual tale of a spoiled narcissistic brat who feels entitled to confiscate whatever she wants, no matter the damage to us "little people". First came the UDRP. Fortunately, David Weslow – a well respected attorney – stepped forward to defend Heidi pro bono (i.e. free of charge). I think there's a very good chance justice will prevail in the UDRP case, thanks to his efforts.

    But Mrs. Powell and her husband are still suffering, and her domain remains in jeopardy. You see, this fitness trainer "star", this usurper, this would-be thief and her lawyers have found another way to attack the rightful Heidi Powell – even while the UDRP case is still in progress. Years ago, Mrs. Powell and her husband experienced some misfortunes and had to file for bankruptcy. Life can be like that. Now, this covetous celeb is arguing that the domain HeidiPowell.com ought to have been declared as a valuable asset during their bankruptcy case years ago. It's absurd, of course. The market value of HeidiPowell.com is negligible except for 1 greedy celebrity who came along later on. I personally prepared a 5-10 page document for David Weslow, citing verifiable data that proves this.

    However, the celeb and her lawyers are bribing the trustee with a 5-figure sum to drag Mr. and Mrs. Powell back into bankruptcy court! And legal representation in this bankruptcy case is not provided by David Weslow; he's only handling the UDRP. Far from being free, this additional legal burden will cost Mr. and Mrs. Powell thousands – not to mention stress, time, and damage to their credit and reputation. Obviously, the celeb's strategy is to bleed this humble couple until they give up from exhaustion.

    Press Coverage:

    From time to time, we hear about domainers requesting financial help. Personally, I'm always very skeptical about those claims because it's easy to exploit people's sympathies. Heidi Powell is not a domainer. What she primarily needs our help with is public pressure. Giving that kind of help is 100% free.

    Heidi's case has been written about extensively:

    (1) USA Today

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/life/...andmother-heidi-powell-over-website/90916602/

    (2) The Register

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/09/27/narcissist_heidi_powell_wants_her_dotcom/

    (3) DomainNameWire.com

    http://domainnamewire.com/2016/09/13/reverse-domain-name-hijacking-alleged-heidipowell-com-lawsuit/

    and

    http://domainnamewire.com/2016/07/19/heidi-powell-lawsuit/

    (4) At NamesCon, David Weslow of Wiley Rein was given the first ever "Lonnie Borck Memorial Award" in recognition of his "exceptional efforts in championing the rights of domain name registrants". Those of us who are members of the ICA – the Internet Commerce Association, which advocates tirelessly for domain owner rights – voted for Mr. Weslow specifically because of this Heidi Powell case.

    http://www.dnjournal.com/archive/lowdown/2016/dailyposts/20161219.htm

    I was hoping that Heidi's case would get some publicity at NamesCon when David Weslow received the award. However, I understand he wasn't able to attend due to illness.

    TAKE ACTION!

    Alright, guys. This is where we can make a difference. Get angry! Imagine it's your grandma being dragged into bankruptcy court! Imagine it's your domain being taken away unjustly! Imagine it's costing you thousands and thousands to defend yourself against an arrogant narcissist with deep pockets!

    What we can do:

    (1) Visit HeidiPowell.com. There's a button on grandma's site, allowing you to tweet directly at this thieving celebrity. Tell her what you think of her. Please no threats. Please no profanity. Remember, we want domain owner rights to be respected and honored. Making threats or using profanity would only give people an excuse to dismiss us. Be professional. But be angry!

    (2) Visit the celeb's website:

    http://heidipowell.net/contact-me/

    Tell her what you think. Again, be polite but firm.

    (3) Grandma has a GoFundMe campaign:

    https://www.gofundme.com/grandma-bullied-sued-for-her-name

    Please leave a comment showing your support. I'm not asking anybody to contribute money. But if you can spare something small – even $1 – it might help show that Mrs. Powell is not alone ... that even total strangers are willing to back an underdog against a bully. If you don't want to donate, that's completely fine. Just leave a comment there. This thieving celeb needs to understand that her reputation is going to suffer if she persists in persecuting Mrs. Powell ... that she will be punching a cactus.

    (4) Let's put pressure on ABC, since they created this monster. Maybe if they encounter some bad publicity themselves, they will in turn put pressure on the celebrity usurper to cease and desist:

    https://twitter.com/ABCNetwork

    Tell ABC what you think. Tell them they ought to be ashamed of themselves for letting Heidi Powell bully a grandmother and steal her property. Be sure to reference Heidi Powell specifically; otherwise ABC won't have a clue what we're talking about.

    (5) We all have domainer acquaintances. Please send 3 people a link to this NamePros thread. There's strength in numbers.

    (6) Once you've helped out, brag about it! Let other domainers here know that you give a damn. Post a reply in this thread so we can keep it visible. Positive peer pressure, folks! Let's show the world that domainers aren't parasitic cybersquatters. We stand up for property rights.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2017
    The views expressed on this page by users and staff are their own, not those of NamePros.
  2. HotKey

    HotKey Genuine★Domains VIP

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    These bravados think they get domain rights just because of who they are? Give me break.

    Grama's got my vote.
     
  3. Slanted

    Slanted Member Epik.com Staff ICA Member

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    For instance:

    @ABCNetwork Please STOP @RealHeidiPowell from stealing http://HeidiPowell.com from grandma @HeidiPowell
     
  4. todaygold

    todaygold Established Member

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    Thanks for letting us know. I had not heard of this before you posted it.
     
  5. RJ

    RJ Top Member PRO VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Tweeted and shared the link. Good luck!
     
  6. Julio

    Julio @DominioNombres VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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  7. ison

    ison Established Member

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    Is there evidence of this? If yes, what is being done about it? If no, it'll be a moral advantage to the other Heidi (could even constitute libel) to repeat it.

    Tweeted.
     
  8. mwzd

    mwzd Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Tweeted.

    Hopefully the courts will see the issue in the correct perspective too.

    The UDRP should be an easy RDNH.
     
  9. Slanted

    Slanted Member Epik.com Staff ICA Member

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    Yes:

    "Powell the Trainer has offered $10,000 to buy the domain name from the bankruptcy trustee in Washington, who this month asked the court to reopen the closed case."

    That's a quote from the "USA Today" article from September. And I suspect the amount has increased since then. Note: This is what is being offered to the person dragging Grandma Powell into bankruptcy court. Meanwhile, Grandma Powell must pay thousands in legal fees to defend her own name.
     
  10. 168

    168 Active Member VIP

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    There is no way they can prove value "at that time" today.
    Contacting TMZ and other sites like it might help too.
    Press release blitz!
    I'm in.
    Thanks for the update.
    Cheers
     
  11. TopShelf Domains

    TopShelf Domains Established Member

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  12. Nat Cohen

    Nat Cohen Active Member ✔ ICA PRO ICA Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Joseph,

    Thanks for spreading the word and for the call to action!

    Nat
     
  13. ison

    ison Established Member

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    Sorry man, but that's not a bribe. You might want to give this some consideration.
     
  14. Gaptooth

    Gaptooth Established Member

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    Perhaps if the trustee had the domain up for sale you'd be right but in this case TOH (the other Heidi) called the trustee, telling him if he would open the case and take the domain away she would pay him $10,000. Some would consider this a bribe.

    1
    bribe
    play
    noun \ˈbrīb\
    Definition of bribe for English Language Learners
    • : something valuable (such as money) that is given in order to get someone to do something
     
  15. Kate

    Kate Thinking inside the Box™ VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Where is the UDRP ? Lawsuit yes, but UDRP ? Speaking of the lawsuit, here are a few quotes (emphasis is mine):
    At first glance, I don't see a lot of arguments to support bad faith.
     
  16. ison

    ison Established Member

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    The money is not for the trustee. The money is for the creditors. It's a trustee's responsibility to distribute any money recovered to the creditors. It's not a bribe. It is, however, an unfair accusation which could ruin someone's reputation.

    And btw, thank you for posting a definition of the word bribe. I thought it was a type of cheese.
     
  17. EmotiveDomains

    EmotiveDomains Established Member

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    Sounds like a real life version of the John Malkovich Squarespace commercial, only without the humour.
     
  18. Lee Latner

    Lee Latner Established Member

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    Happy to spread the word!
     
  19. Gaptooth

    Gaptooth Established Member

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    Really, it wasn't you...I had to look it up to make sure I knew the meaning. Word meaning morphs at times.
     
  20. TopShelf Domains

    TopShelf Domains Established Member

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    You can exempt a certain dollar value of property within a bankruptcy. It's not like you need to sell everything you own after you declare bankruptcy.

    "Exemptions allow you to keep a certain amount of your property so that you can make a fresh start after the bankruptcy. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, if you can exempt an asset, the bankruptcy trustee cannot sell it to pay your creditors." - nolo.com

    And basically her domain name had zero value at the time of her bankruptcy because any domain appraisal would give a zero dollar to her domain name.. it's not a liquid asset.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2017
  21. Ross Murray

    Ross Murray Account Auto-Closed

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    What do these so called "celebrities" think of themselves. Its almost as if there is no meaning to a commoner's life and choices.
     
  22. TDM

    TDM Established Member

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  23. Slanted

    Slanted Member Epik.com Staff ICA Member

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    Let's not get off course, please, debating whether I ought to use the word "bribe" or not. The spotlight here ought to be on Heidi Powell's right to keep her own name, HeidiPowell.com, and the injustice of these twin UDRP and bankruptcy cases – whose sole aim is to confiscate property some minor celebrity covets and to which she has no legal right.

    My word choice ought not to detract from Grandma Powell's difficult situation. Admittedly, I'm ignorant when it comes to lawyerly stuff. And I appreciate your concern, lest I expose myself to a charge of libel. From the context, I think most people will understand what I mean by "bribe" – not a criminal act but a monetary inducement to act unfairly. In the same sense, people often discuss large election campaign donations – which are legal – as a form of bribery.

    Here's the point: Would the trustee be dragging Heidi Powell into bankruptcy court again under normal circumstances? No. Why, then, are they doing it? Because the fitness trainer and her team are dangling a $xx,xxx carrot in front of their noses, provided they do succeed in confiscating HeidiPowell.com.

    Whether that's a bribe or not is not important. What's important is recognizing that such persecution is unjust. Honestly, I have no idea whether the trustee is at fault or not. Primarily I blame the people dangling the carrot – i.e. the fitness instructor and her coterie. They're behind the UDRP directly and indirectly behind the bankruptcy case.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2017
  24. zurc.net

    zurc.net The Real MVP Business Account ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Shared on Twitter and a bunch of tweets tagging her. #### elitists!
     
  25. Julio

    Julio @DominioNombres VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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