Re: [Wikimedia-l] About Facebook Linked in some of Wikimedia projects
I believe that unofficial groups are fairly common. There were unofficial
meetups for years in the City of Seattle.
Similar to how computer games, movies, and television shows may have
unofficial fan clubs and meetup groups, I believe that the same should be
true for Wikimedia.
I can understand how problems would arise if unofficial groups tried to use
Wikimedia trademarks, such as the name "Wikipedia", to sell merchandise, to
do political advocacy, or to request donations. For those types of
situations there are affiliation agreements, trademark agreements, and
other legal processes that happen between local organizations and WMF.
So long as a group is not misusing the trademarks, I think that people who
would like to meet or communicate with others who are interested in
Wikimedia should be free to do so.
Besides the benefits from allowing people to make informal connections,
another reason for being somewhat generous with allowing use of the
trademarks is that I think that most of us would not want the WMF Board to
use the trademarks to try to suppress dissent with WMF decisions from
Wikimedia affiliate organizations, online communities, and individuals.
Some of us have memories of WMF's use of Superprotect against the German
If you are interested in discussing this topic further or have concerns
about a specific group's use of trademarks, then I suggest that you contact
WMF Legal and/or the Affiliations Committee.
I hope that this information is helpful. Thank you for wanting to protect
the Wikipedia brand.