CBGnetwork on Wed, 18 Jul 2001 19:27:35 +0200 (CEST)

[Date Prev] [Date Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]


Dear friends,

Bayer Corporation forced us to stop our homepage www.bayerwatch.org (see 
attached article). Please change your link to our new site: www.CBGnetwork.org

Our group will not be allowed to bear the name Bayerwatch. We have to use our
German name CBG (Coordination gegen BAYER-Gefahren / Coordination against
BAYER-dangers). Please change our name in your publications because we will be
fined for using "Bayerwatch" and please spread the following article. Thanks
for your cooperation!

Economic superiority puts a stop to homepage

Bayer AG has forced the German group Coordination against BAYER-Dangers 
(CBG) to remove their homepage from the Internet by threatening them 
with heavy court costs. CBG had registered a domain and had oriented the 
name to be similar to other group names such as Germanwatch, AOLwatch, 
and Human Rights Watch. Bayer has taken legal action to apparently avoid 
confusion - despite the homepage's unequivocally critical orientation.

The company also forced the group to cancel the related trademark by 
threatening them with a second court case. The CBG had already 
successfully registered the aforementioned name with the Munich Patent 
Office. Bayer has assessed the amount of the controversies to be 250,000 
DM (115.000 US$) each, which would have led to the CBG having to pay 
over 100,000 DM in court costs. The honorary association therefore had 
no other choice but to concede by canceling the trademark and homepage.

The Patent Office's copyright investigation had reviewed whether there 
was any danger of confusion as a result of the copyrighted trademark and 
had determined that there was none. Bayer's arguments are also ignoring 
a recent court decision that declared that a domain name cannot be 
viewed separately from the contents of a homepage.

Axel Koehler-Schnura had the following to say about the issue: "Bayer's 
behavior in this issue, which is clearly directed towards the network's 
economic ruin is clearly an attack on democratic principles and freedom 
of opinion. The company is obviously afraid of a public discussion and 
has instead chosen repression and the devastating power of money". 
According to Koehler-Schnura, the association does not want to waste its 
energy on legal hair-splitting on letters, but instead chooses to 
continue to publicize the company's role in causing environmental 
damage, maintaining worker exploitation and endangering human health 
throughout the world.

The Bayer Group's attempts to prohibit the CBG from criticizing the 
company on the Internet have failed. You can now find all of the 
network's information and publications (including English newsletter 
Keycode Bayer) at www.cbgnetwork.org. However, the proceedings have 
already used up an exorbitant amount of money, which could threaten the 
group's existence. The CBG is therefore urgently asking for financial 
backing against the expensive legal attacks. Please show your support 
and transfer money to the following German bank account:
Oekobank, account number 17 96 12, bank routing number (BLZ) 500 901 00
In addition, the CBG is asking associated groups to stage protests 
against this attack at the Bayer headquarters. An initial attempt by 
Bayer to silence the group was rejected by the Bundesverfassungsgericht 
(German Federal Constitutional Court) in 1992. The CBG has been 
campaigning against the questionable practices of Bayer's international 
operations for over 20 years.

CBG/Coordination against BAYER-dangers collects information about BAYER 
and coordinates activities against violations of human and environmental 
rights caused by this company. Anyone who has information on possibly 
illicit activities of BAYER - please let us know. Anyone who needs 
photos or information concerning BAYER is invited to contact us:

CBG/Coordination against BAYER-dangers, Postfach 15 04 18, 40081 
Duesseldorf, Germany
E-mail: CBGnetwork@aol.com
website: www.CBGnetwork.org
Fax: +49 211 333 940 Tel: +49 211 333 911

#  distributed via <nettime>: no commercial use without permission
#  <nettime> is a moderated mailing list for net criticism,
#  collaborative text filtering and cultural politics of the nets
#  more info: majordomo@bbs.thing.net and "info nettime-l" in the msg body
#  archive: http://www.nettime.org contact: nettime@bbs.thing.net