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threatening letters


These are just a couple of letters that I have received about the site (or certain aspects of it). The first one I got didn't even warrant a response, but I guess he was determined to get SOMETHING out of me... I won't comment on them, but I'll let you come to your own conclusions.


My name is Jim Ray. While searching the internet for links to clowning-related pages, I was confonted with your page, and to say the least, I was extremely offended by your website... Now WAIT--before you go off and take this as a complete complaint, I want you to know that I KNOW you have (1) the right to expression, and (2) the right, frankly, to not like clowns. But literally thousands of children DO like clowns, and search for the word "Clowns" every day. While you do have the right to expression, you do not have the right slanderize the entire clowning industry, nor any particular "clown" therein.

I even agree with you on some of the things on your page--that picture of the clown on the tracks? I think that is an extremely poor use of judgement on their part. I would have complained about that myself.

However, what you are doing is EXTREMELY detrimental to the art of clowning. Thus, I would ask you to please remove all detrimental and/or destructive graphics and materials from your page. I don't think we have to elaborate on what is opinion and what is destructive--good common sense tells us both that.

I have contacted geocities on the content of your page, Yahoo! about the link to your site, as well as the companies from which you have received your awards, as well as the WGN Broadcasting company concerning your graphics. Please do not take this personally; but the content of your page is more than just an opinion--it is a complete display of hatred toward the art of clowning.

If you wish to contact me, you may do so at [email protected]
Thank you in advance for your understanding and cooperation.

Jim Ray
JRay Enterprieses

Now, here's one from Bozo's lawyers (I just love lawyers - I'll admit, I probably shouldn't have been using Bozo for a main page image, but hey - I guess I learned my lesson for today)

Jeremy *****
c/o http:\\www.geocities.com

Re: Objection to Use of BOZOS.COM Domain Name and Use of Clown Face on BozOS Corp. Web Page (Our Ref. HAR USA TC-96/9176)

Dear Mr. *****:

We represent Larry Harmon Pictures Corporation ("LHPC") in trademark matters. LHPC is the owner of all rights in the famous clown character "Bozo."

LHPC owns numerous U.S. and foreign federal trademark and copyright registrations for the famous trademark BOZO and for a clown face design. Our client's trademark registrations for the BOZO trademark cover a wide variety of goods and services, including U.S. Reg. No. 1,570,320 for the service mark BOZO for entertainment services in the nature of a children's television program and entertainment services in the nature of live performances by a clown character. The registration, which issued on December 5, 1989 and is incontestable, reflects that our client began using this mark for these goods at least as early as 1949.

The weekly BOZO THE CLOWN television show has been continuously broadcast for over 37 years in Chicago, and the current Chicago station that broadcasts it, WGN, is a cable superstation whose weekly BOZO THE CLOWN show is carried in numerous cable television markets around the country. In addition, the Bozo The Clown character has an active presence on the Internet. WGN's web page features the BOZO THE CLOWN character, including an audio message and a feature that enables fans to send e-mail to Bozo the Clown.

In sum, through many years of use and our client's extensive efforts, the BOZO trademark and Bozo The Clown character have become famous and represents substantial goodwill to our client.

It has come to our attention that you are operating a web site devoted to expressing your anti-clown sentiments which is located at http:\\www.geocities.com/Colosseum/2430/clown.html. You have copied an image depicting Bozo the Clown that appears on the WGN web site and are using this as part of the "logo" which appears at your web site. Please be advised that use of this photograph on your page violates the protected copyright in both the photograph and the character Bozo the Clown.

In addition, you have superimposed the international prohibition symbol over the BOZO photograph in your logo, to suggest a "NO BOZOS" idea. LHPC owns U.S. Copyright Registration No. VA 128-378 of a "NO BOZOS" image consisting of the BOZO character's head and shoulders in a circle with the international prohibition symbol superimposed across the character. Your depiction of this image on your site violates our client's copyright in this design.

Our client is the sole and exclusive owner of intellectual property rights in the BOZO THE CLOWN character. Your use of a photograph of BOZO THE CLOWN on your home page is likely to produce confusion. Internet browsers searching for BOZO THE CLOWN on the Web can easily locate your site using Internet search engines and think they have located our client's own web site. Further confusion would be produced by the content of your site. All of this constitutes unfair competition, trademark infringement, and trademark dilution in violation of federal and state laws.

Any right you may have to express your anti-clown views does not extend to violating the protected copyright and trademark rights of others, as the present configuration of your site does.

Accordingly, we demand that you immediately remove the photograph of BOZO THE CLOWN from your web page and agree not to use any photograph of BOZO THE CLOWN on the web page in the future.

If your response indicates that you will immediately undertake the above steps to cease your infringing activities, our client is prepared to waive monetary recovery for your infringing use of its intellectual property. This letter is without prejudice and all of our clients' rights to take action to protect its valuable trademarks and copyrights are expressly reserved.


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