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Old 02-24-2003, 11:10 AM   #26
Dojo: West End Aikikai
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 45
Ross Lewandowski (ross_l) wrote:
Looks like someone got the message at


I don't see your logo on their site anymore.
Since you brought them up again, who ar ethese guys, anyway? I dind't realize I wasn't training in REAL aikido!?!

I always get PO'd when someone claims to know whats real and whats not.

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Old 02-24-2003, 11:59 AM   #27
Dojo: Aikido of Cincinnati/Huron Valley Aikikai
Location: Somerset Michigan
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 794
thanks for saying something I wanted to David; I was being to PC to say anything. Does anyone know these folks or train with them? What are they like?
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Old 02-24-2003, 12:44 PM   #28
Dojo: Eagle Rock Aikido, Ammon, ID
Location: Ammon, ID
Join Date: Oct 2001
Posts: 120
First of all, your attitude is definitely all wrong. Don't take their having your picture up there as a personal insult. It seems to me that you've taken this very personally. Stuff like this happens on the internet all the time. Now, if you think about how most Aikido web sites are created/run, you'd realize that there probably isn't anyone actually maintaining the darn thing. So just sending an email most probably wont get you a response. You best and cheapest bet is old fashioned snail mail. Also, once you realize that most likely, they thought that the image was free, then it's hard to blame them.

However, if they are unresponsive, then still.. DO NOT TAKE IT PERSONALLY. Just take whatever measure is appropriate to get them to remove it. You must prove that you have notified them of your request and a reasonable date that it is to be removed by. (certified mail)

Here is how I would do it.

1. Call them. (will probably be resolved right then and there)

or if you don't want to fork over the price of a phone call...

2. Write them.

If you can't fork over the price of a stamp then you don't really care anyways.

3. Write them by certified mail.

4. Take legal action. Court costs can be recovered I believe..

Anywho, I'm just restating what's already been stated. Just don't be a baby about it. Be a man.

When I did my dojo's web site, I asked permission to use the pic of O'Sensei from Jun, and I still have the reply with his assent, in case someone says, "Hey!! That's mine take it down!!", I can say, "Ok, and here's where I got it from and here's all the correspondence. Have a coke and a smile."

%us = map { $_ => q{belong} } @your_base;
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Old 02-24-2003, 01:00 PM   #29
Dojo: Kenshinkai Yoshinkan Aikido
Location: Portsmouth
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 450
Ross Lewandowski (ross_l) wrote:
Looks like someone got the message at


I don't see your logo on their site anymore.

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Old 02-24-2003, 01:40 PM   #30
Dojo: Baltimore Aikido
Location: Maryland
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 123
I would just like to formally request permission to use this phrase:
Kevin Wilbanks wrote:
...dastardly moustache-twirling villain....
as it cracks me up.

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Old 02-24-2003, 03:57 PM   #31
Kevin Wilbanks
Location: Seattle/Southern Wisconsin
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 788
I'm afraid I hold the copyright to that phrase. You'll have to check with my lawyers and agent regarding pricing.
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Old 02-24-2003, 11:24 PM   #32
Location: Bay Area
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 1,200
So far, no lawyers, which means I fit right in on this one since I'm not a lawyer either.

Taking the word Aikido and putting the the kanji in it is a pretty gray area to me. It's not exactly original and I really doubt this is copyrightable. It may be, but I don't think it is. Perhaps if it said something distinct, other than Aikido and the kanji, it would be. For instance, if it said, NY Aikido Center in some way, or Aikido magazine, for instance.



Question: Does copyright protect words or short phrases?

Answer: No. Names, titles, and short phrases are not subject to copyright protection. These are not deemed to be "original works of authorship" under the Copyright Act. Names may be protected by trademark, in some instances. See the Trademark FAQ for more information.

So, while works of art are protected by default with a copyright I don't think it flies on this one. Neither the word Aikido, nor the kanji are distinct, nor, even your property. What you are attempting to copyright is a use of font, color, kanji, their spacing and a word all of which are in common use.

Short statement: I don't think this is original enough to qualify.

I have no idea if this would qualify as a trademark, I really doubt it, but then you have to register those so it's not a trademark.

Secondly, there is an issue of damages. What is there to collect? How are you being harmed? Ask yourself if it is worth the psychic effort of trying to effect change on this one? Ask yourself if it's even worth the psychic effort of cranking out the posts and aggravation you've obviously been feeling.

Third, I can't imagine those other guys would care. Just using the word Aikido would look better for their site.

Finally, and to repeat myself, is it really worth the aggravation? You think it's bad now, wait until you drag in guys at $125/hr+?

Anyways, good luck with it, and as I said, I'm not a lawyer and have never even thought of playing one on tv.

I do recommend the following site for those with questions on copyrights:

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Old 02-25-2003, 10:36 AM   #33
Dojo: Baltimore Aikido
Location: Maryland
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 123
Kevin Wilbanks wrote:
I'm afraid I hold the copyright to that phrase. You'll have to check with my lawyers and agent regarding pricing.

last night I had a rousing tickle session with my 2 year old whilst shouting The Phrase over and over in my best Snidely Wiplash-esque voice. Now I'll owe royalties I suspect.
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Old 02-25-2003, 02:34 PM   #34
Dojo: Genyokan
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 37
I thought you might be interested in this. I heard this once before but wasn't positive.

Quoting from the "10 big myths about copyright explained" webpage which you can find here:


"1) "If it doesn't have a copyright notice, it's not copyrighted."

This was true in the past, but today almost all major nations follow the Berne copyright convention. For example, in the USA, almost everything created privately and originally after April 1, 1989 is copyrighted and protected whether it has a notice or not. The default you should assume for other people's works is that they are copyrighted and may not be copied unless you know otherwise. There are some old works that lost protection without notice, but frankly you should not risk it unless you know for sure.

It is true that a notice strengthens the protection, by warning people, and by allowing one to get more and different damages, but it is not necessary. If it looks copyrighted, you should assume it is. This applies to pictures, too. You may not scan pictures from magazines and post them to the net, and if you come upon something unknown, you shouldn't post that either."
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Old 02-26-2003, 04:51 AM   #35
Kelly Allen
Dojo: Friends Dojo
Location: Winnipeg
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 190
Copyright or TM that is the question

I have to say after following this thread I have learned alot about copyright and trade mark laws. I've said it before you do have a nice Logo, and what you designed should be yours. I also thought that copy righting our logo has protected you but from what I have read it might not be the case. Trade marking sounds more like what you should have done to protect your logo.

However, even if you did try to protect your logo, what would be the consequences of that? Well the obvious is multiple lawyers bills for every site you try to make right their wrong. Even if you did win there are no assurances that the institution would pay, or be able to pay, for the use of same. In fact it would quite probable just shut down the dojo. This is assumeing after paying a lawyer lots of money that you even win the suit.

I say pick your fights carefully. I'm sure you will find many more sites using your logo. If you have to, fight the ones you deem to be useing your logo inappropriately. The other dojos will probably be happy to comply with a formal letter from you. On the other hand if it is a reputable dojo, Leave that fight be.

Fighting any of these might be more aggravation than it's worth. You might find the fight never ends. I hope you find a good solution to your dilema.
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