Foundation and Fellowship Negotiation Committees Meet On Copyright & Trademark Use
On April 8 and 9, 2000, representatives of Urantia Foundation met with representatives of the Executive Committee of the Fellowship regarding the Fellowship's infringement of the copyright and marks held by Urantia Foundation. The following Executive Committee members represented the Fellowship: Steve Dreier, Marvin Gawryn, Marilyn Kulieke, and Dan Massey.
Urantia Foundation was represented by Tonia Baney, Executive Director of Urantia Foundation; Georges Michelson-Dupont, Trustee of Urantia Foundation; Steve Hill, Intellectual Properties Counsel for Urantia Foundation; Seppo Kanerva, Translation Manager and President of the Council of National Presidents of the IUA; and Nancy Shaffer, member of the Coordinating Committee and the Millennium Initiative The following correspondence has taken Committee. The Foundation's repreplace between the two groups as a result of sentatives feel the discussions were positive, the April meeting:
Report from the Fellowship Regarding Urantia Foundation Complaints
The following comments summarize the views of the four individuals who met with representatives of Urantia Foundation on 8 April 2000, to receive comments on the web site operated by The Urantia Book Fellowship, and related matters.
Our charter and authority from the Executive Committee and the General Council was to receive all Foundation comments and, insofar as they did not involve executive or policy matters, to act on them as we saw fit, through administrative channels only. Thus, where we felt errors in relation to ideals of unity, ethics, and license had occurred, we have been able to set in motion a process of administrative correction. Where we felt the Foundation has erred in its interpretation of the web site, we have tried to set forth our position clearly below.
In our opinion, the remaining issues surfaced by the Foundation cannot be resolved without further dialogue. In some cases this results from uncertainty in our understanding of the Foundation's complaint. Further communication may enable these matters to be resolved administratively. In other cases this results from a matter that touches on Executive Committee or General Council prerogatives, which we may not usurp, although we may have incidentally offered our own views of these matters. We emphasize that this does not mean these matters are unresolvable only that their resolution requires the engagement of higher authorities within our organization.
Another aspect of the matters resolved below is that they could be disposed of without the need for legal counsel. The Executive Committee or the General Council may require legal review of some of the other issues before taking further action. We are open to further communication with the Foundation on all unresolved points with a view towards simplification of the overall process and amicable resolution; however, matters requiring Executive Committee action may also require discussion with the Trustees, as requested and expected. We concur in the feeling that, to be fully productive, such discussion should only occur after easier issues have been disposed of and remaining significant issues identified.
1. English version of The Urantia Book text not as per Foundation's Web site license policy :
1a. The text is not kept "inviolate." (e.g., Uversa Press text; popup footnotes in text; commentary added to the index; first two papers not included in the index to Part IV Copyright notice states, "excerpts... on this website have been transformed by the addition of an internal reference system designed to facilitate study, scholarship, and cross-referencing.")
The text presented is a very accurate reproduction of the text originally published by Urantia Foundation in 1955. Every subsequent change approved by Urantia Foundation over the years is footnoted. We believe this is the most complete, authoritative, and inviolate text of The Urantia Book available from any source at this time.
We have reviewed the popup footnotes and do not understand why the Foundation feels these violate the integrity of the text. We will need to communicate further to better understand the nature of the Foundation's concern.
We assume by "index" the Foundation means the Table of Contents of the book. We were not aware that the Foundation, or anyone else, considered this to be part of the "inviolate text." The organization we use on our website is intended to optimize file size and thus facilitate quicker transmission and reduced Internet latency for users in distant regions of the world.
While not of importance to the casual reader, the internal reference system is essential for any serious scholarship where precision in locating a particular paragraph is required or where accurate attribution of a source is desired. It is also important in the electronic environment in which page numbers no longer have any relationship to the pages of text as they are displayed on a web browser.
lb. "Personal Browser Edition" download version is not current text. Claims copyright in the format for the Fellowship.
The downloadable text is an accurate reproduction of the original 1955 text of the book.
The download itself lacked an appropriate copyright notice for the Foundation. We apologize for this omission. We have removed the download from the web site pending correction of this oversight.
The Fellowship claims no rights in the text. We place no restrictions on others' use of the formatting, and freely permit its use by all.
lc. ASCII download version does not contain any copyright notice. No Italics in text.
It is correct that the download lacks an appropriate copyright notice for the Foundation. We apologize for this omission. We have removed the download from the web site pending correction of this oversight.
Italics cannot be reproduced in straight ASCII text. The loss of italics here is similar to the loss of italics in Urantia Foundation's audio version—the loss is a function of the change in storage and reproduction media.
(For example, Urantia Foundation's audio version is unable to reproduce important formatting elements such as quote marks, exclamation points, parentheses, etc.)
2. Spanish version of UB text not as per Foundation's Web site license policy (e.g., index includes unauthorized translation listed together with UF text. There are 3 versions of the Foreword)
The comparative study of the Prologo to El Libro de Urantia has been moved out of the Indice and into a directory with other derivative works and study aids, separate from the text itself.
3. Unlicensed display of unauthorized translations in Korean, German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Croatian, and Russian.
The display of French and Spanish texts is covered by the license granted by Urantia Foundation in 1998.
The remaining texts are partial translations created by readers, secondary works designed to serve as study aids for individuals in various language groups. They are presented on the website as works in progress to support our mission of worldwide dissemination of The Urantia Book and its teachings. These early translation efforts are an essential tool for introducing new language groups to the book.
We have added a notice to these partial translations clarifying their origin and lack of official approval by Urantia Foundation. We anticipate their replacement by authorized translations as those become available and can be prepared for web presentation.
4. (Currently Removed) Unlicensed display of Dr. William S. Sadler works
Although this is not an official request, the Fellowship would like permission to reinstitute the presentation of these works on the web site.
5. Fellowship Herald magazine uses Urantia Book text but does not acknowledge copyright.
This was an editorial oversight, for which we apologize. The matter has been brought to the editor's attention. We intend to exert more vigilance in the future.
6. Urantia Book Illustrated on web site quotes over 20,000 words of The Urantia Book without attribution or permission.
The Illustrated Urantia Book now contains a note of attribution and copyright, which has been added to the introductory comments at the top of the page. Although we have added this notice, we did not think its omission was problematical because the usage in this material was also addressed by our general notice regarding the copyright of all quotations from The Urantia Book appearing on the website.
We also note that this is a collection of individual works of art, each of which uses small amounts of text from the book, always with appropriate references. While the artist did not identify the source of these quotations in the art itself, except by reference, it seems to us that the introductory attribution and notice should be sufficient. In any case, no one work contains more than 200 words. Most contain about 120 words.
7. McMullan's 21 Steps to a Spiritual Awakening quotes over 25,000 words of The Urantia Book without permission. Fellowship website publishes this in English, Spanish and Portuguese.
We have examined the contents of the "21 Steps" document and estimate that it contains approximately 15,000 words from The Urantia Book. The arrangement of these quotations is clearly original to the author and the text of the document adds significant value in the fonn of his own reflections on the passages quoted.
It is also our understanding that this work falls well within the Foundation's guidelines for "Labors of Love".
The portions of "21 Steps to a Spiritual Awakening" from The Urantia Book which have been translated into Spanish and Portuguese are original translations prepared by interested volunteers, and are not copies of Urantia Foundation translations. We will place a notice on the website to the effect that these are personal, and not official translations.
8. Fellowship is soliciting people to assist it in translating the complete Urantia Book into multiple languages in violation of international law.
It is vital to our mission that we have translations available for use in exposing individuals who speak many languages to The Urantia Book. We reiterate that, when an official translation becomes available from Urantia Foundation, it will be placed on the website.
9. Hyperlink to Michael Foundation, purveyor of the infringing work, Jesus: A New Revelation.
Michael Foundation is no longer distributing JANR. We have 'changed the description at http:// Urantiabook.org/ub_links.htm to reference the Index to The Urantia Book published by Michael Foundation. We believe this link constitutes an appropriate readership service.
10. Sample of anti-Foundation material.
A disclaimer has been added to the bottom of the Site Index page noting that the materials on the website were drawn from a broad spectrum of the readership and do not necessarily reflect the beliefs or opinions of The Urantia Book Fellowship or the website staff. In general the website publishes most essays it receives, regardless of political orientation.
In general, anything having to do with organizational matters in the readership is confined to the history timeline. While space is provided for archiving and accessing such documents, there is no specifically political section of the website and specifically political commentary is not included in the primary areas of the website.
The volume of materials which contain specifically political commentary is between 3% and 5% of the total document collection. This means that, on the Fellowship website, between 95% and 97% of the documents available deal directly with matters related to study of The Urantia Book.
Nevertheless, since we are desirous of maintaining friendly and cooperative relations with Urantia Foundation, in that spirit we would be happy to review any specific items the Foundation brings to our attention which the Foundation believes are objectionable.
11. Urantianet being used in some places without the agreed disclaimer (per agreement reached in 1997).
We believe this claim was made in error. To the best of our knowledge, every page which contains a reference to "Urantianet" also contains a note to the effect that The Urantia Book Fellowship is unaffiliated with Urantia Foundation. This has been the case ever since the "agreement reached in 1997."
It is impossible for anyone to sign up for this service without first encountering such a statement. Should Urantia Foundation know of a page containing information about Urantianet services upon which such a disclaimer is not provided, we should be informed so that we may correct the situation. All pages in the exhibit collection presented to us were found, on examination, to contain the appropriate disclaimer.
12. Infringement of trademarks" Urantia," "Urantian" (e.g., <www.urantiabook.org/index _studygroup _ database.htm >
We have removed the generic adjective "Urantian" from the heading of this page to avoid any possibility of confusion with official and authorized services of Urantia Foundation, which have also been identified by this term.
The graphic rendering of the word "Urantia" on this page is clearly marked as the name of our planet. We do not see any possibility of confusion between this animated, artistic rendering of the name of our planet and the stylized marks used by Urantia Foundation. However, in the spirit of goodwill and cooperative relations, we will remove this graphic rendering of the name of our planet pending further discussion and clarification of the Foundation's concerns about this and similar matters.
13. <www.urantiabook.org/bookshop/urantiabooks.html> entitled "Best Prices on the Web for Urantia Books" says "Buy The Urantia Book!" and contains price list.
Very confusing; it appears they are the source for The Urantia Book. Individuals may purchase The Urantia Book from sources accessible through our website, sources with whom we have various agreements and whose services we promote. The website is designed to provide supplementary materials for readers and to stimulate new discoverers to purchase books. The texts on the website are not provided to compete with the printed text but rather to stimulate sales.
The price list, and accompanying referral to Good Cheer Press in no way makes it "appear" that we "are the source for The Urantia Book." We are merely directing interested parties to a retail source for the book. Price lists are commonly used by booksellers to promote their retail services, which compete with other retail sources of the same material. If the Foundation believes that Good Cheer Press is engaged in unfair retail trade practices, they may wish to take the matter up with Good Cheer Press.
14. Registered Internet domain names violate Urantia Foundation trademarks:
These terms used in our domain names relate to the book and to activities planned and engaged in by readers of the book, and to the legitimate content of the website. The website clearly indicates that it is not affiliated with Urantia Foundation. No confusion is intended and we do not believe these usages are confusing.
We also note that <www.urantiabook.org>, <www.librourantia.org>, and <www.librourantia.cl> contain no Foundation trademark, but rather contain the title of the book, which is not registered as a trademark.
15. Fellowship has registered with Real Names as the owner of the name "Urantia," "Urantia Book" and "Libro de Urantia."This means several of the search engines list this link first as "Urantia RN" (similar in appearance to TM), causing confusion with Foundation's trademarks
We reject the notion that the suppressed designation "RN" for a "real name" is similar to or could possibly cause confusion with "TM".
The Real Names system is a key word registration service. "Urantia," "Urantia Book," and "Libro de Urantia" are key words related to the content of our website. This link descriptor directs inquirers to the largest archive of materials on the Internet relevant to study of The Urantia Book. At the same time, our early registration of this name assured that it would not be exploited by individuals who may be hostile to the revelation. We have maintained these Real Names registrations for more than two years. It is unclear why Urantia Foundation delayed a complaint about this until the present time.
16. Fellowship is meta-tagging the words "Urantia," "Foundation," "International Association," "Urantia Book," "Libro de Urantia."
We reject the idea that these tags are in any way infringing or unethical. To the best of our knowledge, the only pages on our website which have the words" Urantia," "Foundation," "International Association," "Urantia Book," and "Libro de Urantia," are documents which are related to these topics. It is the purpose of meta tags to help people locate information for which they may be searching. Our meta tags serve that purpose. If the word "Urantia Foundation" appears in one of our meta tags, it is because the related document either contains information about Urantia Foundation or links to Urantia Foundation's website.
17. Trademark violations of concentric circles symbol.
We do not think the example provided by the Foundation constitutes any sort of infringement or generates any confusion of identity. The page in question is a reproduction of an historic early newsletter. This reproduced document happens to contain the concentric circles symbol as used prior to its registration as a trademark by Urantia Foundation.
While we do not understand why such presentation of the concentric-circle symbol in the context of authentic historical document would be objectionable to the Foundation, in the spirit of cooperation, we are willing to block out the image in question.
18. Violation of court's confidentiality order re: Maaherra documents (e. g., Jacques Weiss page).
We are quite confused by this matter and certainly invite further communication. Not being parties to the Maaherra case, we did not receive any documents from the Foundation, nor did we receive the court's confidentiality order. As far as we know, none of the documents displayed on our website originated from Maaherra's discovery proceedings.
The example to which this item refers is an index of historic documents related to the first French translation of The Urantia Book. These documents have been contributed from a variety of readers in addition to those credited. If Urantia Foundation can be specific about which document is covered by the confidentiality order, we will remove from the website any documents contributed by anyone whose private collection is sealed by the confidentiality order.
19. Violation of Sadler copyright in Mind at Mischief in English and Spanish.
We do not understand the Foundation's objection or standing in this matter. Does the Foundation claim a copyright in this work? Our understanding is that this work is not currently protected by copyright.
20. Violation of Urantia Foundation's confidential business records (translator's agreement.)
We do not believe the display of this document constitutes an abrogation of any confidentiality agreement between the Foundation and the Fellowship, or between the Foundation and the person from whom the document was received. Nevertheless, in the spirit of maintaining friendly and cooperative relations with Urantia Foundation, and since the Foundation appears feel strongly about the display of this document, we will remove it from the site.
21. Use of the name "The Urantia Book Fellowship"
Our organization has used the name "The Urantia Book Fellowship" continuously and publicly since June 1998. We have established an identity in this name and have made major investments of time, energy, funds, and goodwill in this name. This is the first time the Foundation has mentioned any possible disagreement over the use of this name. Since the name of our organization is determined by the General Council, any action with regard to the name lies beyond the administrative charter of our team. We note that we were informally advised of Urantia Foundation's intent to seek Federal trademark registration for the title of The Urantia Book. We do not understand how this would be possible since it is the name of a copyrighted book and not an identifier of any source of a product or service.
Urantia Foundation Response to The Fellowship
June 28, 2000
Steve Dreier, Marvin Gawyrn, Marilyn Kulieke, Dan Massey
529 West Wrightwood Avenue
Chicago, IL 60614
Dear Steve, Marvin, Marilyn and Dan:
Thank you for the copy of your "Report on Urantia Foundation complaints regarding The Urantia Book Fellowship web site," which appears to be an internal Fellowship document. We reviewed the report, and we have visited your Web site several times to review the status of those areas of concern identified in the materials we provided to you in April.
Before discussing the details of your report and recommendations, we want you to know that we appreciate the changes you made in your Web site in response to the concerns we expressed. Thank you. And we thank you for suggesting compromises in several instances where you apparently felt unable to accommodate our requests.
At the time of our most recent review of your Web site, not all of the recommendations in your report had been implemented. It has become apparent, during our visits to your site, that changes in the content of your Web site are made frequently. For that reason, coupled with the need for review and approval of this letter, it is possible that additional changes recommended in your report may have been implemented after our most recent visit to your site. Any failure on our part to acknowledge a change you made at our request, has not been intentional. We realize there also may be other infringements that we have failed to note. We hope that is not the case. We would like to receive clarification from you as to the status of the recommendations in your report that have not yet been implemented. As we explain below, we are requesting a response to this letter and certain actions by the Fellowship by July 7, 2000.
At our meeting in Chicago, we provided you with a summary of our concerns about your Web site. Items 1 through 8 and items 19 and 20 on the summary dealt with copyright issues. Items 11 through 17 addressed trademark infringements. Items 10 and 18 involved separate issues (anti-Foundation materials, documents subject to the confidentiality order in the Maaherra case). Items 9 (your former hyperlink to Michael Foundation) and 21 (your use of the name "The Urantia Book Fellowship"), potentially involve both copyright and trademark issues. We address the issues here in three groups: copyright, trademark, and other.
Our comments on your report assume that your specific recommendations were within the administrative authority of your team, and that we can expect all of them to be implemented. If that assumption is correct, then with the exception of the unauthorized translations, pop-up commentary, and your editorial changes to The Urantia Book, our overall reaction on the copyright issues is that you have either accommodated our requests or proposed compromises that we are willing either to accept or discuss. It appears that no meaningful progress has been made on the trademark issues. Because we identified the translations and the trademark infringements as being of paramount importance to us, we are concerned by your responses, or lack of response, on these key issues. We would appreciate prompt clarification of your position on these issues, as explained below.
A. Copyright Issues
Translations of The Urantia Book (items 2, 3, and 8). Urantia Foundation has published translations in French, Spanish, Finnish, Russian, Dutch, and Korean. As far as Urantia Foundation is concerned, you are not licensed to display any foreign language translations on your Web site. In large part due to the many difficulties associated with attempting to manage the Fellowship's use of the copyrighted material on its Web site, the Foundation clarified its licensing policy to make it clear that translations were not included. (As an aside on this issue, your report indicates that you are willing to post additional translations as they become available. However, as of May 28, 2000, you were not displaying Urantia Foundation's Finnish, Dutch, Russian, or Korean translations, all of which have long been available.) The purpose of our discussions has been to achieve a nonjudicial solution to the infringements, if possible. It is the Foundation's intent to make the English text and all of the official translations available by hyperlinking to the Foundation's Web sites. The English text and the official translations would be readily available to anyone wishing to view them online, and the Foundation would be able to ensure that only the inviolate text in English and authorized translations were displayed. This solution would not interfere with the Fellowship'S outreach in any way, and it would avoid many of the problems that appear on the list of infringements we gave you. We believe this is the best solution for the long term.
We appreciate your compromise gesture in moving two of the Spanish translations of the Foreword to another page on your Web site. All of these translations are, however, a direct infringement of the copyright. We therefore reiterate our request that you remove all of the Spanish translations from your site. We also note that you are displaying a modified Table of Contents in Spanish, which is also an infringement. We are willing to discuss display of translated excerpts for the purpose of comparative analysis if we are able to reach an agreement with the Fellowship that resolves the outstanding copyright and trademark infringements.
In addition, you are displaying extensive portions of the book in an unauthorized, infringing translation in Portuguese, which is of inferior quality. We ask you to remove all of the Portuguese translation from your Web site.
You are displaying an unauthorized, partial German translation, in which the title to Paper 196 has been changed from "The Faith of Jesus" to "The Trusting Faith of Jesus." You are also displaying an unauthorized, partial Croat translation, without a copyright notice. Please remove these translations.
The Russian translation displayed on your Web site is incomplete, contains no copyright notice, and, although the Urantia Foundation published the Kniga Urantii some three years ago, the text posted on your site is not taken from the official Russian translation. Please remove this translation.
We note that the translations are now accessed from your site index, rather than from your home page. We ask that you remove all translations from your Web site by July 7, 2000.
In your response to item number 8 on our list of infringements (solicitation of translators for The Urantia Book), you stated: "It is vital to our mission that we have translations available for use in exposing individuals who speak many languages to The Urantia Book. " Urantia Foundation fully understands and agrees with the importance of translating The Urantia Book into the languages of the world. Indeed, translating the book is one of the Foundation's top priorities. We do not understand why the Fellowship feels compelled to either duplicate or compete with the efforts of Urantia Foundation to translate The Urantia Book. Creating competitive translations is a direct infringement of the copyright and it is completely at odds with developing and maintaining a cooperative working relationship between Urantia Foundation and the Fellowship. Urantia Foundation insists on high quality translations that are as faithful as possible to the original English text. The work of translating The Urantia Book into the languages of the world is progressing steadily. Urantia Foundation, as the copyright holder, has the right to control all translations. As we have discussed, Urantia Foundation believes the protections provided by the copyright are especially critical during the initial translation phase.
Urantia Foundation has offered to work with your translators and continues to be willing to do this, ifthe translators are capable of producing high quality translations. Naturally, the nature and extent of their participation would depend upon the quality of the translator's work and whether there is an existing translation in his or her language. We request that you remove your solicitation for translators from your Web site by July 7, 2000, and that you desist from recruiting translators. If you learn of anyone who is interested in translating The Urantia Book, please give his or her name to Seppo Kanerva.
It is not correct that the English text displayed on your Web site is "a very accurate reproduction of the text originally pub lished by the Foundation in 1955." In addition to the pop-up notes, a number of editorial changes have been made to the text itself, that are not part of any printing of the book ever published by Urantia Foundation. Also, the Table of Contents, which is covered by the copyright, has been substantially modified in the English version displayed on your Web site. The pop-up notes, which are embedded in the text and are, therefore, part of the text, contain commentary. Your report indicates that you do not understand our concerns about the pop-up notes and need more information. During our meeting, we gave you several examples of commentary in these notes. You do not refer to any of those examples in your report. We are unclear whether you need further explanation of the examples we gave you or whether you misplaced the examples we gave you. The pop-up notes do more than identify the changes made from the 1955 First Printing. Virtually all of the pop-up notes pertaining to changes in the text contain commentary on those changes, in addition to noting the changes. Also, a number of the pop-up notes contain commentary in the form of opinions about substantive material in the text. For example, the comment at 397:11 contains a characterization of "current scientific opinion" regarding chromosomes, and the one at 674:4 contains a characterization of "current scientific opinion" regarding decapods.
As indicated above, Urantia Foundation strongly believes the best solution for the long term is to make the English text and translations available by hyperlinking to Urantia Foundation's Web site. Urantia Foundation is willing to continue a dialog with you on this point, provided that the pop-up notes are removed from the text displayed on your Web site by July 7, 2000, and that you display either the original 1955 First Printing or one of the other Foundation printings.
Concerning the omission of the first two papers in Part IV from the Table of Contents for the Biography of Jesus section, when we viewed your Web site, we noted that the index page for this section had been revised to say "Excerpts from Part IV of The Urantia Book: The Biography of Jesus." If this change is permanent, it is acceptable to Urantia Foundation.
The Personal Browser Edition is not currently displayed on your Web site. We understand it has been removed in order to add a copyright notice. Thank you for agreeing to do this. We would, however, appreciate an explanation of the purpose of the copyright notice to which we objected: "Format for personal browser edition ©1999, The Urantia Book Fellowship." The statement in your report that: "The Fellowship claims no rights in the text. We place no restrictions on others' use of the formatting, and freely permit its use by all" avoids the issue of whether the Fellowship claims a copyright in the format of the Personal Browser Edition. Please advise us of the Fellowship'S position on this issue by July 7, 2000. In the same vein, your "Online Study Reference Text" indicates it is "derived from the 1955 print media edition" (emphasis added) and refers to "this edition" and "the current editors" (emphasis added). Please also inform us by July 7, 2000 whether the Fellowship claims a copyright in its Online Study Text or any other version or edition of The Urantia Book.
We know italics cannot be graphically displayed in ASCII text. We ask that you use an alternate means of designating the italics. We are willing to work with you on this. We feel that it is valuable and important for readers to be aware of emphases in the original text.
We understand from your remarks about the Sadler works that you do not wish to discuss this issue, at this time.
Thank you for agreeing to include the copyright notice in the Fellowship Herald Magazine.
It seems to us that it makes sense to defer discussion of whether Harry McMullan's 21 Steps to a Spiritual Awakening falls within Urantia Foundation's Permission to Quote Policies, and to work first on resolving the issues directly involving Urantia Foundation and the Fellowship.
Urantia Foundation does not object to a link to Harry McMullan's Michael Foundation Web site, referring to Mr. McMullan's index.
Thank you for adding the copyright notice to "The Urantia Book Illustrated." Our concern arises, not so much from the individual excerpts that appear in this section, as from the title and presentation, which create the impression it is an illustrated version of the entire text. Copyright attribution for each work is necessary. These excerpts may, if regarded individually, fall within the Foundation's Permission to Quote Policies. Collectively, however, they clearly do not. A change in the name of this page, that made it clear these excerpts were presented as individual works, would be an acceptable compromise.
We have several concerns about your papersection-paragraph reference system. First, we do not believe it is wise to have two reference systems. We agree that it is important to have a reference system; we have one. Urantia Foundation has invested considerable time and energy to ensure that all the translations have the same page breaks and paragraphs as the English text, in order to make its page and paragraph reference system universal. Page and paragraph references are also used in the Folio version. We believe it is unnecessary and needlessly confusing to maintain two different reference systems. Our other concern about your reference system arises from the fact that the arrangement of the text is an important component of the copyright.
On further investigation, we agree that Dr. Sadler's Mind at Mischief is in the public domain.
Thank you for agreeing to remove Urantia Foundation's Translator's Agreement. We note that, as of May 25, 2000, this agreement was still displayed at < www.urantiabook.org/archive/history/uf_trans_contract.htm>
B. Trademark Issues
We have not been able to determine whether you have included trademark notices with all uses of Urantianet because we have not been able to gain access to all of the relevant pages on your Web site. We request that you carry out the recommendation in your report to add these notices.
Your report indicates that the graphic of the trademark" Urantia" will be removed. It has not. You are also continuing to display the Concentric Circles symbol on your Web site. Your site is plainly "commercial," as that term is used in federal trademark law.
You need to remove all occurrences of this symbol from your Web site.
Regarding online book sales, we would be satisfied with a notice that either specifically indicated that the Fellowship is neither a publisher or distributor of The Urantia Book, or that the book prices shown on the Web site were from vendors other than the Fellowship. For example, instead of saying: "Buy The Urantia Book:' you could say: "Best Sources for The Urantia Book." Other headings might accomplish the same purpose.
There are three important and related trademark infringement issues on which no progress has been made: I) Internet domain name registration, 2) real names, and 3) metatagging. The current law is that use of registered trademarks as metatags constitutes a trademark infringement. (See, Brookfield Communications v. West Coast Entertainment, 174F.3d 1036, 1064). Accordingly, we reiterate our request that you drop the Internei domain name registrations and real name registrations for registered trademarks of Urantia Foundation, and that you drop the metatags for" Urantia" "Foundation," "International," and "Association."
You are correct, Urantia Foundation claims trademark rights in The Urantia Book based on long-standing use in commerce in connection with its sales and advertising activities. The name of your organization and your domain name both infringe on this mark. This issue needs to be resolved. We understand that your team does not have authority to act on this issue. Please refer this matter to the appropriate group within your organization, and in your July 7 response, please inform us to whom we may direct communications concerning the use of The Urantia Book in the name of your organization and of the domain name: "Urantiabook.org." We acknowledge the concerns you expressed during our meeting, regarding metatags. It is important to us that you change the name of your organization and your domain name. We are willing to work with you to find a fair and reasonable solution to the problems with your other metatags.
C. Other Issues
Thank you for adding the disclaimer with respect to the anti-Foundation material displayed on your site. We appreciate your willingness to discuss individual documents. For the present, we feel we have adequately conveyed our feelings about the display of this material. Although we find the material to be objectionable, it is neither a copyright infringement nor a trademark infringement. We will defer discussion of these documents to another time.
Regarding your display of material subject to the protective order in the Maaherra case, we do not know how you acquired this material and therefore cannot assess your assertion that it came from parties not bound by the order. A copy of the protective order will be provided to you. Please provide us with a list of the people who provided you with the material so we can resolve this issue.
In order to facilitate your review, we have listed the key issues raised in this letter. This is not a complete summary.
1. Display of translations and sponsorship of competing translations.
2. Pop-up commentary and other Fellowship changes to the 1955 First Printing.
3. Use of Urantia Foundation trademarks, including use in domain names, real names, and metatags.
4. The name "The Urantia Book Fellowship."
We hope we can resolve all of these issues.
We need to find a way to move forward more expeditiously. We ask that you provide the requested responses and complete the requested actions by July 7, 2000.
Your report again mentions a meeting with the Trustees. As we have explained on a number of occasions, this group cannot respond to that request. Please contact Richard Keeler about meeting with the Trustees.
While we believe it is possible to resolve all of these issues, Urantia Foundation is not interested in a short-term solution. It is essential to the gradually improving relations between Urantia Foundation and the Fellowship that the Foundation can rely on the Fellowship to perform any agreements we reach. We believe that licensing agreements, entered into with goodwill, are like "good fences" in the saying "good fences make good neighbors."
Aside from the concerns discussed here, our team believes the Fellowship has done a good job with its Web site. As Tonia said during our meeting, when we were told some of your members believed the Foundation wanted to take away your Web site, we want to bring your Web site into compliance, to make you "legal," so you can carry on your loving service and leave us free to carry on ours.
Very truly yours,
Urantia Foundation Copyright/Trademark Team
Audio Urantia Book
Board Meeting Decisions
Urantia Foundation History