[Wikimedia-l] It's time to reclaim the community logo

John Vandenberg jayvdb at gmail.com
Thu Sep 26 14:23:51 UTC 2013


Further to our announcement on September 21, the opposition has been
formally filed before the European Union’s Office of Harmonization for
the Internal Market (OHIM) on September 25. You can read the
opposition filing in the documents section of the EU trademark

Additionally, an opposition observation has been filed but it is not
yet available to the public at the URL mentioned above; our limited
understanding is that it will be published there in the coming days.
We’ll keep everyone informed on this aspect.

So what is next?

The OHIM will now review the Notice of Opposition to determine that
the opposition is admissible.  This takes a few weeks. If the notice
of opposition is found to be admissible, the 'cooling-off period'

The 'cooling-off period' allows the parties can either negotiate an
agreement, and either party may withdraw their claim to the mark
without incurring additional costs. This period lasts between two
months and two years. It is important that everyone understands that
there is no need to act hastily. If the WMF and community need time to
find the right solution, we will have two years.

The WMF set the timetable by applying for this trademark, and they
have not withdrawn that application or responded appropriately to
community calls for this to be re-evaluated. The WMF was informed in
March that we viewed the trademark registration as unacceptable. Even
after our announcement on September 21, the WMF has not addressed the
heart of the issue; they have chosen to focus the community attention
on a new approach, a collective trademark, rather than consider the
erosion of the Commons by their trademarking of a public domain logo
against the intentions of the author of the logo.

Contrary to the WMF’s claims on their ‘Request for consultation’[3],
we have never said that the opposition needed to be filed on September
23. We are aware that we could have delayed the opposition until
December. As the opposition process is able to proceed through the
non-adversarial phase for two years, we believe it is appropriate that
a properly focused formal process should commence now.

During the first two months of the cooling-off period, we request that
the WMF provides a brief to the community explaining why they believe
they have a legal claim to the community logo, given that the board
knew it was selected in order that the community did not need to
request authorisation.[4]

We also encourage the WMF to publish their research on collective
trademarks, so that the community can make an informed decision about
the utility of this approach. It is our understanding that, in the EU
at least, the WMF will need to abandon their current trademark
registration if they are to apply for a collective trademark.

John Vandenberg

== References ==
* [1] http://oami.europa.eu/CTMOnline/RequestManager/en_Detail_NoReg?deno=&idappli=1152038&transition=ResultsDetailed
* [2] http://oami.europa.eu/ows/rw/pages/CTM/regProcess/opposition.en.do
* [3] https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Community_Logo/Request_for_consultation#Notes
* [4] https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/foundation-l/2008-September/045702.html

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