We have been energized and honored by your kind words and support for our actions in initiating www.GOP2012Tampa.com and for supporting the GOP2012Tampa Facebook page. It is motivating and refreshing to know that there are so many of us that have similar thoughts and a genuine sense of commitment to the better good, especially relating to the future of our planet.
You may have noticed that the Facebook page has been removed. This was done by Facebook without prior notice or communication with us. We were very careful and diligent in our creation of this page. We made sure that we did not misrepresent or lay claim to anything that we did not have the right to represent. We also consciously decided to express our views in a civil manner. Too much of today’s political and social discourse degenerates into name calling and ill-mannered posturing.
Our intent in creating a dynamic website was to inspire and bring attention to the horrific situation in the Gulf of Mexico that affects all of us. Over the course of the last week we have received numerous emails, telephone calls, stories in the press, and mentions in a variety of posts worldwide. We also received the attention of the Republican National Committee general counsel demanding us to cease and desist from using the letters GOP. Legal precedence shows that while GOP is trademarked, any attachment you add is not. So, adding words or numbers changes things up regarding the trademark issue.
There have been past cases regarding trademark issues of the letters GOP, RNC, and the elephant logo. One such case is that of CafePress.com and their vendor’s use of “GOP” and the elephant logo. The lawyer for CafePress, Paul Alan Levy, called the RNC demand an “abuse of trademark law to suppress discussion of topics of substantial public interest.” Following substantial publicity, the RNC dropped their claims, “the RNC admits that it has no claim against anybody who combines either an elephant or the acronym GOP with expressive words or design elements (whether positive or negative) toward the Republicans.” (Consumer Law & Policy Blog)
We believe we presented a great opportunity for the RNC to highlight a platform for policy and plans relevant to the oil spill crisis and to Tampa.
We will stay straight out that we encourage discussion of topics of substantial public interest and even more boldly we will say that we support an effort for those discussions to result in positive change!
Now we have much more work to do. We are truly dedicated to making a substantial difference and in doing so have no desire to get bogged down in a legal squabble. We will redirect all web traffic to www.ChangeSurvive.com, a ChangeSurvive Twitter account and have set up a Facebook page to replace the one that was eliminated.
We hope that you will continue to support our efforts and become very involved in ChangeSurvive. The name very clearly and concisely communicates our philosophy: we must change our approach if we are to survive as a society and a species.