Pizza shop says web designer held URL for ‘ransom’

A Brookline, Massachusetts pizzeria has filed a lawsuit against a Web site design firm for “hijacking” its domain name.

Village Pizza House alleges that EIC, a New York-based web design company, refused to hand over control of the pizzeria’s domain unless the shop paid the web firm $500. The Massachusetts pizza has paid the fee — but disputed the charge, detailing the pizza company had been paying the web firm the $500 yearly fee since the agreement began in 2004.

According to the Brookline TAB, the web agency allegedly advertised the pizzeria’s competitors on the Village Pizza House Web site and changed the physical address on the site to one of an area competitor. The pizza shop seeks to recover up to $100,000 in damages.

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