Saturday, May 24, 2014

FACEBOOK SIEGE! US Golden Dawn Trademark Down's HOGD Europe Facebook Group

Join Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn®'s discussion here.
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Help us rebuild our BESIEGED Facebook presence.

by Vittorja d'Aquino
Press Secretary
Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn®
(EU Trademark Registration 000063925)

Our order, the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn® (OHIM reg. 000063925) has fought a long and expensive legal campaign to protect diversity in the Golden Dawn community. This is the why today there still exists a plethora of free and independent Golden Dawn orders. We fought for freedom, we fought for diversity, and in the end we prevailed. Our victory has not come without sacrifice, however, and there have been casualties.

The long dormant Golden Dawn trademark conflict raised its ugly head again this month when it became public knowledge that our Praemonstrator and Pro Bono attorney, GH Praemonstrator Jorge Hevia, had passed away. Immediately thereafter, our order's Facebook Page and Group was attacked and downed on May 5, 2104.

Despite that our order remains the sole and exclusive owner of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn® trademark in all 33 countries of the European Union (OHIM reg. 000063925), a complaint to Facebook by persons unknown invoked the American Golden Dawn trademark falsely claiming our European Facebook Page and Group was infringing the US Golden Dawn trademark. This resulted in the disabling of our 3,542 member Facebook group and Facebook Page. The US trademark owner quickly asserted that the complaint was a forgery, even publishing a "consent" letter other than what Facebook requires to restore our page and group:

Facebook Notice Number: 736149206406882
Facebook Page: Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn - Alpha Omega
Facebook Group: Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn - Rosicrucian Order of Alpha Omega 

Despite smoke and mirrors from the US trademark owner, the fact is that over a month has come and gone and our order has not received the simple "letter of consent" requested by Facebook to restore our Facebook presence.

Although the American trademark owner denies responsibility for the takedown request invoking the US GD trademark, the denial does not relieve them of culpability, because they have failed to provide the letter of consent required by Facebook to set the matter right in compliance with the 2007 Trademark Settlement Agreement you can read here.

Our order does not at all wish to see another Golden Dawn trademark conflict. We encourage peace and harmony in the Golden Dawn community. Considering that our order has been under constant defamation and legal attack, however, since news broke of the death of our GH Praemonstrator Jorge Hevia broke, it appears that a vigorous defense of our order's rights has become quite important again. Can we just stand by while our order and its leaders are repeatedly defamed on the Internet by parties attempting to foment schism, and while ruse and deception are employed in legal attacks our order's Facebook presence?

We certainly do want peace, but in the face of naked legal and defamation aggression ,what choice do we have but to defend ourselves?

Here is the reply from our imperator to denials of authenticity of the Facebook complaint alleging American trademark infringement that downed our Facebook presence. Denials would seem more credible, had our Imperator's reply (reproduced below) not been censored in that venue.
To whom it may concern, 
My name is David Griffin. I am Imperator of The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, the outer order of the Rosicrucian Order of Alpha et Omega. 
We are the sole and exclusive owners of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn® trademark in the European Union (reg. 000063925) and additionally own the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn International® trademark in Canada (CIPO Reg. TMA510387). In the United States, we operate by legal agreement adopted by the United States District Court as the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, outer order of the Rosicrucian Order of Alpha et Omega.® We additionally own the R.R. et A.C. trademark of our Second Order, Ordo Rosae Rubeae et Aureae Crucis® (CIPO Reg. TMA506051) and the Alpha et Omega trademark of our three order superstructure founded by S.L. Macgregor Mathers in 1906, Ordo Rosae Crucis, Alpha et Omega® (CIPO Reg. TMA508937) 
As many people in the esoteric community are already aware, on May 5, 2014 our order's Facebook presence was legally attacked and disabled as follows: 
Facebook Notice Number: 736149206406882
Facebook Page: Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn - Alpha Omega
Facebook Group: Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn - Rosicrucian Order of Alpha Omega 
Whether properly or improperly as alleged by the other party, infringement of the American Golden Dawn trademark was invoked as the reason for the request that these groups be disabled. Despite denials of authenticity, until this matter is rectified and both our Facebook Page and Facebook Group fully restoerd, we are holding the other party responsible. Here is an EXACT QUOTE of what Facebook requires for the restoration of the above referenced groups: 
"If an agreement is reached to restore the reported content, please have the complaining party email us with their consent and include the original reference number. We will not be able to restore this content to Facebook unless we receive explicit NOTICE OF CONSENT from the complaining party. Please note that the complaining party is not required to respond to your request." 
Please note that this, despite denials, is not at all a complicated matter to resolve - it is a SIMPLE matter  - one that does not hinge on Facebook 's lack of responsiveness as has been misleadingly alleged. The "notice of consent" required by Facebook for the restauration of the above groups merely needs to be filed with Facebook by any relevant attorney.
The legal representatives of our order would be happy to properly file the required notice of consent with Facebook - assuming that there is indeed good faith and that we promptly receive it. The notice of consent may be sent to our order as a scanned document to 
FOR THE RECORD: Despite high public awareness of this matter and numerous excuses and other postings by relevant parties on identical venues, after 21 days our order still has not received the notice of consent required to restore the above referenced groups. 
We are still waiting. 
David J. Griffin
Imperator, Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn
outer order of the Rosicrucian Order of Alpha Omega

1 comment:

  1. Facebook is notorious for not having very good support. I had an account shut down two years ago, asking me to prove my identity through a text message to the phone registered to my account. I didn't have my phone toed to my account but because my picture was a symbol they thought I was a fake person. The automated system said a scan of my ID would suffice. Two years later the account is still shut down and no response.