Gutenberg Orchestra: Withdraw your trademark request for "Esperanto Culture Magazine"!


Gutenberg Orchestra: Withdraw your trademark request for "Esperanto Culture Magazine"!

発信者:La Esperanto-Biblioteko en Ŝimonoseki エスペラント図書館 宛先:Masanobu Sugatsuke(President of Gutenberg Orchestra)

Gutenberg Orchestra: Withdraw your request to register as a trademark your English-language magazine "Esperanto Culture Magazine”!

Français, French, la franca, フランス語
日本語, Japonais, Japanese, la japana
Esperanto, エスペラント語

Since I learned about Esperanto while I was in junior high school, I have kept on learning it as my second language and using it. Through it, I have been able to host Esperantists from over 16 countries and have been able to exchange with many more people. Nothing could replace Esperanto in my heart.

However, on this last December 15th, the very day on which Esperantists celebrate their common culture with which they exchange throughout the world, appeared an all-English magazine that called itself “Esperanto”. Yet, its content bares little relation to Esperanto. As soon as I checked with the Japanese Patent Office, I learned that a company located in the Chuo Ward of Tokyo, Gutenberg Orchestra Inc., had submitted a request to register a trademark for magazine and electronic publication. For their English-language magazine, they are currently attempting to register “ESPERANTO CULTURE MAGAZINE”, as per request no. 2020-136377.  

Esperanto is its own language. Acquiring a trademark for an All-English magazine that calls itself “ESPERANTO CULTURE MAGAZINE” is nothing less than cultural appropriation.

The creator of Esperanto, L. L. Zamenhof, over a century ago, renounced his rights to Esperanto, declaring that he bestowed them to all humanity. (Declaration of Boulogne, 1905)

Zamenhof’s decision made Esperanto open to everyone, and for the last 133 years, countless individuals throughout the world have used the language fruitfully.

Currently, the Universal Esperanto Association (UEA, Universala Esperanto-Asocio) publishes a magazine with the same name, “Esperanto”, all in Esperanto, first published in 1905 (115 years ago), still distributed and read by many throughout the world.

Now, there is a distinct possibility that the deadline to oppose the registration of Gutenberg Orchestra’s trademark is January 25th, 2021.

According to many law professionals, this trademark registration could have a wide impact on the Esperanto movement, both locally in many countries and internationally.

This is why we launch this campaign in order to protect Esperanto and its culture, our culture.

First, we ask that Gutenberg Orchestra withdraw its trademark registration application, that is, for both “ESPERANTO” and “ESPERANTO CULTURE MAGAZINE”, in order to respect Zamenhof’s will to make Esperanto “a language owned by none, but open to everyone”.

In addition, we ask that both the Universal Esperanto Association (UEA) and the Japanese Esperanto Institute (JEI) act in order to protect the Esperanto Movement’s tradition and dedication to the spirit of the Declaration of Boulogne, making Esperanto “the language owned by none but given to all humanity” that Zamenhof wished for.