The Market for Private Dispute Resolution Services -- An Empirical Re-Assessment of ICANN-UDRP Performance


This paper presents the first, thorough empirical study of the performance of UDRP providers. We analyze the decisions of the complainants in deciding to send their claim to a particular provider and showing that the duration of the dispute resolution services is at least as important as bias in determining the initial selection of providers. Our results show that the emphasis of theoretical and empirical work, which has been exclusively concentrated around the effects of pro-complainant bias, is incomplete. We then use the duration of these cases as the main variable to measure the general efficiency of each provider. Among our main findings, we claim that the various UDRP providers have different duration functions, implying the existence of forum shopping. Second, we demonstrate that there is bias for specific countries. Third, some panelists have completely different duration characteristics. Fourth, the performance of the providers is affected by the proofs presented by the complainants and respondents. Finally, we find that three member panels are just as efficient as single member panels. Our analysis has significant implications for the design of private dispute resolution regimes in general.


Intellectual Property Law

Date of this Version

March 2005