Fighting for freerecyling

You will NOT use the word freecycle, really!

It is official, TFN do not want, nay will not allow anyone to use the word freecycle, whether it is capitalised or not. This is at least the case reported by The Guardian, UK.

I mean are TFN stupid or are they stupid? What happened was that a moderator member [ed correction, see comment] of the Slough freecycle group wanted to run an event that was around saving items from landfill – and they wanted to run it as a Freecycle event. So they asked for permission – and true to form TFN threatened them with the lawyers. I kid you not, “you have until midnight.”

Of course, that does not stop Deron Beal doing anything he wants. He certainly does NOT practice what he preaches. Deron Beal runs “Freecycle” events in Tucson with a big smile on his face. Of course he has the lawyers on his side, so that is why he is smiling. If you don’t believe this then check out this link. There are loads of others, and Deron is right there every time.

I am sorry, but how two faced can you get?

If you want it from the horses mouth check out the Tucson Weekly where Deron states explicitly that he is good for running “local” events. Of course, when he says local – he means local to Tucson. Now if we just lifted Slough out of Berkshire and dropped it next to Tucson, AZ everyone would be happy.

November 8, 2007 - Posted by | freecycle | , , , ,


  1. Hi there,

    just a quick note on your piece about the Slough Freecycle event – it wasn’t being run by the Slough moderators, but by a few people who’ve been freecycling through the local list … they contacted the moderator in advance to ask about it, they didn’t know and said they would pass it on …

    we never heard anything back until the morning of the event …


    ———- Forwarded message ———-
    From: Freecycle UK
    Date: Nov 1, 2007 11:53 PM
    Subject: Fennerfest and Freecycle
    Cc: South East

    Dear Fennerfest organisers

    Your festival, and the Freecycle event at it, have come to our
    attention. It looks a really great festival. We unfortunately have some
    concerns about the Freecycle event you are holding. We have no record of
    permission being granted for this to be an official Freecycle event and
    therefore you are not allowed to use our name or our logo for the event.
    As you will see below, Freecycle and the Freecycle logo are trademarks
    of The Freecycle Network and thus any use of the terms and logos for
    events such as what you are advertising needs to be licensed. Perhaps
    you could re-title the event a give and take event.

    Sorry for being the bearer of bad news about this!!

    Do you have any contact with the local Freecycle groups? If you were to
    work with them there may be ways around this.

    I’d hate to have to ask our lawyers to intervene therefore it would be
    appreciated if you can sort this matter as soon as possible. If I don’t
    hear from you by midnight on Friday, I will be forced to report this to
    our lawyers for action.

    Many thanks

    Neil Morris
    Freecycle UK

    Freecycle UK is a Registered Charity (No. 1118148) and is a Company Limited by Guarantee (No. 05945013)
    Copyright © 2003-2007 The Freecycle Network ( All rights reserved.
    Freecycle and the Freecycle logo are trademarks of The Freecycle Network, CTM Reg. No. 4287553


    without doubt the single most bizarre, passive-aggressive email we’ve ever had to deal with in the history of the festival. We told them that we were unable to change any of the publicity or website at such short notice, but could send an email to our supporters & contacts in the environmental media/movement saying we were calling it “not the Freecycle event”, and attaching the above email as an explanation of why

    they then sent this email … which doesn’t make sense, as we did contact them in advance …


    ———- Forwarded message ———-
    From: Freecycle UK
    Date: Nov 5, 2007 12:23 AM
    Subject: Re: Fennerfest and Freecycle
    To: Slough4Peace
    Cc: South East ,,

    Hey I like your sentiment as well. However, if we had of managed to talk
    earlier it would have been a simple case of working with the local
    moderators and ensuring it was officially approved. I think it could
    have been a really neat partnership. One of the real big issues for us
    is the issue of public liability insurance for such an event. If it is
    advertised, as a Freecycle event, it is conveying that we are organising
    it and there is a strong possibility if something goes wrong the
    organisation could get taken to court. I had sent my email in an
    informal way in the hope that we could come to some arrangement quickly,
    to get the appropriate licence to use the logo and make it into an
    official Freecycle event in partnership knowing that appropriate public
    liability insurance was in place and that the event met our criteria. I
    would much prefer to enable things to happen rather than limit them.

    Hope you understand.



    Comment by FennerFest | November 8, 2007 | Reply

  2. Sounds like six of one and half a dozen of the other to me.

    Fennerfest were out of order in misappropriating the freecycle name and logo without prior approval, but the response from freecycle was never going to do anything but fan the flames.

    In the grand scheme of things, it’s a storm in a teacup, but it’s still a shame.

    Oh well.

    Comment by Martin Pike | November 9, 2007 | Reply

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