Panda Smackdown!

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You won’t find “Stone Cold” Steve Austin breaking a folding chair over the head of “Endangered Panda” Ling-Ling anytime soon — unless a courtroom can be considered a ring.

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That’s because the World Wrestling Federation and the World Wildlife Fund share the same initials, but only one can own the Internet domain name WWF.com. Unfortunately for Ling-Ling, that address currently points to the wrestling site, while WWF.org points to the non-profit wildlife advocates. (On most browsers, if a user simply types WWF into the address field without a top-level domain designation — such as .org or .edu — the browser automatically tacks .com at the end. That means a lot of folks looking for fuzzy cuddly critters are likely finding burly guys in makeup instead.)

According to the SOUTH AFRICA INDEPENDENT, the World Wildlife Fund has sued the wrestling group for trademark infringement and violation of a 1994 agreeement which set out rules for sharing the initials. They hope a court will force the wrestlers to hand over the domain.

The wildlife group argues that changing WWF.com to point to their site could give millions of wrestling fans seeking mind-numbing entertainment a well-needed, if accidental, education.

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FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2020 demands.

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