[Foundation-l] Board statement on Wikimedia trademarks

Michael Snow wikipedia at verizon.net
Wed Apr 22 06:27:49 UTC 2009

This is the statement on trademarks mentioned earlier. It both states 
the approach we want the Wikimedia Foundation to take and directs the 
staff to carry it out. It basically sums up what our understanding has 
been for a long time, but hadn't really been formally stated anywhere. 
The board also voted unanimously to approve this. The statement follows:

The Wikimedia Foundation is committed to enabling our mission through a 
wide network of chapters, community members, and organizational partners 
who are all able to better achieve their goals by identifying themselves 
with the Wikimedia community. Because of these efforts, there is a large 
amount of value and goodwill associated with the name and marks. 
Trademark law in the United States and internationally requires that the 
holder of a mark take affirmative steps to protect the integrity of the 
mark. However, because of our commitment to openness and community 
empowerment, we wish to do this in a way that allows chapters and 
community members to be able to continue to identify themselves with 
Wikimedia marks without being unnecessarily restrictive.

Because of this, we ask the Wikimedia staff to take appropriate steps to 
register and protect the Wikimedia marks, develop a set of policies and 
practices, and develop a strategy to allow uses by the chapters and 
community for activities in line with the Wikimedia mission.

--Michael Snow

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