Red Dawn II

All Your Domains Belong to This Chinese Man

And Pinterest has had enough.
 All Your Domains Belong to This Chinese Man

From China, with love. (Photo: flickr.com/shawxx)

Don’t be alarmed, but at this very moment, a Chinese man might be registering the Italian domain for your ultra-hot startup.

GigaOm reports that one dude is buying up “dozens” of URLs suspiciously like those of up-and-coming U.S. startups. Nor is Nanjing resident Qian Jin merely registering domains like Pinterests.com, Pinterest.it, and Pilnterest.com. (We assume that last one is part of a plan to launch a Pinterest clone devoted to the appreciation of pilsners.) He’s also applied for trademarks that might sound awfully familiar–think Foursquare and Instagram.

Both of those things could create major headaches for a company eyeing eventual global expansion.

Well, Pinterest, for one, has had enough. GigaOm says the company filed suit last week:

Qian’s activities are described in a lawsuit filed by Pinterest last week in San Francisco. In its complaint, the popular image site says the defendant is a “serial cyber-squatter who has registered and owns hundreds of infringing domain names.” The company points to Qian’s “Pinterests.com“, a site that uses red-lettering similar to Pinterest but that appears to be just a dumping ground for advertisements.

The complaint angrily accuses the man of attempting to “take unlawful advantage of Pinterest’s extraordinary popularity.”

So when are they going after all those clones?

Follow Kelly Faircloth on Twitter or via RSS. kfaircloth@observer.com