In 1994, when the Internet was only a confidential platform, Jean-Noël Frydman, a Franco-American businessman, registered the domain name France.com. Twenty-six years later, Monday, December 13, thehe Supreme Court of the United States has put a definitive end to the lawsuits it has brought in the United States against France, in the hope of recovering the domain name.
The highest American court refused to take up the appeal of Jean-Noël Frydman, who accused France of having it “expropriated” in violation of US property law. The high court’s refusal validates the decision of a federal court of appeal which, in March, ruled that Paris could not be prosecuted on American soil in this case because of its “sovereign immunity”.
Today, France.com is automatically redirected to France.fr, the official portal for tourism in France.
French expatriate in the United States, Jean-Noël Frydman had made France.com an information site for Francophones and Francophiles living in the United States, in 1994, before making it in 1997 in an online travel agency. intended for the American public. In an interview with AFP, he claims to have sent “between 100,000 and 150,000” tourists in France in nearly 20 years, before the French state asked it, in 2015, to recover the name France.com.
Seized by France, a Parisian court ordered 2016 the transfer to the State of the domain name, decision confirmed on appeal in September 2017. Jean-Noël Frydman then appealed in cassation.
Without waiting for the outcome of this appeal, the company Web.com, which managed the IP address, transferred the name to the French State. “To right the wrongs inflicted on his business”, the businessman then turned to American justice, in vain.