Fellowship Mediation

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In March, representatives of Urantia Foundation, The Urantia Book Fellowship, and International Urantia Association met, with the aid of professional mediators, and signed a Memorandum of Understanding, a copy of which is attached. In keeping with the agreement that a joint announcement would be made, Urantia Foundation refrained from making a public announcement However, after the Fellowship issued an independent announcement, we feel at liberty to let our supporters know the specifics of the agreement that was reached. A copy of Urantia Foundation's draft of the joint announcement proposed in April is attached for your information.

Unless the Fellowship decides to abide by the terms of the recently mediated agreement, it is likely that the organizations will need to submit to mediation and/or arbitration as called for in the Memorandum of Understanding signed at the mediation.

Draft Announcement

[Note: This is Urantia Foundation's draft that was proposed to The Fellowship in April, 2001 as a joint announcement of the mediation agreement. No joint announcement was ever agreed upon.)

On March 17, 2001 representatives of The Urantia Book Fellowship, International Urantia Association, and Urantia Foundation, aided by their counsel and an independent team of mediators, reached an agreement concerning the copyright and trademark issues that have long been a source of friction among these organizations, which otherwise share many common goals. We hope you share our joy in achieving this step forward in the unity efforts among those interested in fostering the dissemination of The Urantia Book.

Urantia Foundation has agreed that The Urantia Book Fellowship may continue to use its current organizational name, the domain name www.urantiabook.org, and metatags making use of Urantia Foundation's trademarks. The Fellowship will transfer the domain name www.librourantia.org to Urantia Foundation following a transition period.

The Fellowship will place Urantia Foundation's English text of The Urantia Book on its website with no changes, annotations, or commentary. This will be the text that visitors to their site will encounter. However, Urantia Foundation has agreed the Fellowship may include a link whereby visitors could log in to a private area to view a study aid consisting of The Urantia Book English text, and annotations and commentary about the text, with a disclaimer to clearly identify the material that is not a part of The Urantia Book.

Because independently produced partial translations provide only an incomplete presentation of the revelation, they necessarily give a limited and, in some instances, even a distorted view of the Urantia Papers. If the translations are not of the highest quality, confusion is inevitable. For these reasons, Urantia Foundation does not sanction public display of independent or partial translations of The Urantia Book, apart from short and limited quotations in articles, speeches, and the like.

The Fellowship has agreed to immediately remove all unauthorized translations of The Urantia Book from its website as well as any links to unauthorized translations on other websites. They will also remove Urantia Foundation's French translation from their website. For languages in which Urantia Foundation has not yet published a translation, The Fellowship may display speeches and articles that incorporate up to 1,500 words of independently translated quotations from The Urantia Book. In addition, The Fellowship has agreed to use frames to display the official translations of The Urantia Book maintained on Urantia Foundation's website. When this new frames-based system is in place, The Fellowship will remove the Spanish text from its server.

Urantia Foundation's translation teams are constantly working to improve the quality of the translated versions of the text. The modifications are incorporated in successive printings, and for the public to have access to the latest wording of any translation, the website version of each translation must be updated as changes and improvements are made. A multiplicity of websites displaying the translations would render it practically impossible to keep the translations updated, and it would become progressively more difficult as more translations are completed and·more websites ask to display the translations. For this reason, Urantia Foundation does not grant licenses for other websites to maintain translations of The Urantia Book on their servers.

Perhaps one of the most positive outcomes of these negotiations is the new Internet “Unity Portal” that we have agreed to develop for use in conjunction with the RealNames service. RealNames is a network of keywords used by several major Internet search engines and by certain Internet Explorer browsers. When users of this system type in the keywords “TheUrantiaBook” or “LibroUrantia,” a page will display with links to Urantia Foundation, International Urantia Association, and The Urantia Book Fellowship. We are pleased that by means of the Unity Portal the principal groups committed to dissemination of the teachings of The Urantia Book will present a united presence to the world.

We hope this positive step will lead to greater unity among these organizations and an increased potential for further cooperative efforts by Urantia Book readers worldwide. We want to thank everyone who participated in the discussions over the past few years that culminated in this agreement. We have witnessed enormous strength of character among the participants who worked so hard to achieve this peaceful resolution. We also thank all of you whose prayers and encouragement sustained us.

Memorandum of Understanding


  1. Non-exclusive, royalty-free (“NE-RF”) license to display official English Urantia Foundation (UF) version of The Urantia Book (TUB) (“Official Text” or “OT”).
    • Copyright notice
    • After encountering OT, a “link button” appears providing a “Study Aid(s)” option.
    • “Study Aid(s)” will have following features:
      1. Disclaimer;
      2. Copyright notice;
      3. No changes to OT.
    • “Study Aid(s)” must take place in Virtual Private Network (“VPN”) or other environment that cannot be entered from external search engine but only through encountering OT with “link button.”
    • “Study Aid(s)” license includes:
      1. Paper, section, paragraph(&) reference system;
      2. Commentary, footnotes, and annotations;
      3. file structure/ formatting (NOT textual) changes to facilitate faster uploading to user.
  2. NE-RF license to link and frame to Official UF translations of TUB (“TRANSL”) on UF website, but shall not directly link to any unauthorized translation(s).
    • Must include English and TRANSL language copyright notice in frame.
    • With regard to situations where UF has not published a translation, The Urantia Book Fellowship (“TUBF”) is free to reprint speeches, articles, etc. that use the English language equivalent of up to 1,500 words of unauthorized translation of TUB if for every translated word there are at least two (2) original words within the speech, article, etc.
  3. UF and TUBF agree TUBF shall have and enjoy a non-exclusive right to continue to use:
    1. “The Urantia Book Fellowship” as an organizational name;
    2. Metatags incorporating any of Urantia Foundation's trademarked words;
    3. www.urantiabook.org;
    4. www.librourantia.org (until www.librourantia.org is transferred to UF);

    Subject to the terms and conditions herein, including reasonable rights of UF to inspect quality control from time to time, to ensure that TUBF is:

    • an organization that is in good legal standing;
    • TUBF does not engage in criminal acts of moral turpitude;
    • TUBF does not use the name and metatags described above in a manner that is offensive to objective good taste or so objectively injurious as to substantially damage UF or TUBF.
    • The Fellowship recognizes the three concentric circles as a symbol having religious significance to The Urantia Book Fellowship and will not use it as a designation of origin for its products and/or services.
    • Within nine (9) months of this Memorandum of Understanding (3/17/01), TUBF will transition away from www.librourantia.org, and will transfer this domain name to UF by no later than 12/17/01.
  4. The term of this agreement is perpetual, except as to 3.d. (www.librourantia.org), which license shall expire upon 12/17/01.
  5. Use mediation and arbitration, if necessary, to resolve disputes arising out of or relating to this agreement.
  6. Reasonable notice and opportunity to cure (60 day standstill to negotiate and resolve differences).
  7. Duty of good faith and fair dealing applies.
  8. A mutually acceptable, formal agreement memorializing this term sheet will be executed by the parties, however, the terms of this Memorandum of Understanding shall be binding.
  9. Signatories have the authority to bind their respective organizations.
  10. Mutual agreements not to disparage each organization.
  11. Share Real Names “The Urantia Book” and “libroUrantia” for portal with links to UF, TUBF, IUA and an additional affiliate of TUBF to be named later.

    K. Richard Keeler
    Urantia Foundation

    Avi Dogim
    The Urantia Book Fellowship

  12. To the extent that the law does not or no longer protects the trademarks or copyrights, then TUBF is in no worse position than if TUBF had not entered into this agreement.

    Addendum to Memorandum of Understanding

    • In one (1) year, the parties shall discuss UF providing one or more translations to TUBF for its website.
    • TUBF shall immediately provide its format for its formatted Spanish translation, and provide transitional assistance, including working with an independent, mutually agreeable third party technician, in order to ensure that the speed of text delivery on average is reasonably similar (to the objective satisfaction of said third party technician) to the current speed of delivery on TUBF's website presently, as follows:
      1. within thirty (30) days, TUBF will provide current speed specifications as verified by third party;
      2. if, after ninety (90) days from the agreement, if the third party says speeds are reasonably similar, then TUBF shall frame the Spanish translation on UF's website and remove is formatted Spanish translation;
      3. if after ninety (90) days from the agreement, if the third party says speeds are not reasonably similar, then another ninety (90) day period shall commence to obtain reasonably similar speed to the satisfaction of the third party;
      4. if after second ninety (90) days, the parties have not achieved reasonable speed to the satisfaction of the third party, then parties agree to mediate a resolution.

Foundation Info

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