Guidelines for Holding a Urantia Conference
URANTIA FOUNDATION Intra-Office memorandum March 31, 1976
TO: Members of the Executive Committee of URANTIA Brotherhood Subject: Guidelines for Holding a URANTIA Conference
The attached guidelines have been developed with the advice of our legal counsel. When the registered marks of URANTIA Foundation, i.e. the word URANTIA and the Concentric-Circles Symbol, are used to identify a conference, seminar or other large meeting, the Trustees must exercise a certain amount of supervision of the meeting so that the marks are protected.
The Trustees believe that these guidelines hold our supervision to a minimum and yet provide the necessary protection for the marks.
We encourage you to review these guidelines carefully. We invite your comments.
Thomas A. Kendall, President
533 Diversey Parkway Chicago Illinois 60614
Guidelines for Holding a URANTIA conference
For many years, URANTIA Foundation has been concerned with the maintenance of the special meanings of the registered marks, the Concentric-Circles Symbol and URANTIA, which are representative of URANTIA Foundation and its affiliates, URANTIA Brotherhood and the chartered societies of the Brotherhood. The Trustees have been advised by legal counsel that if the unique identifying meanings are to be preserved for each of the registered marks, careful supervision must be exercised as to how and where these marks are used. However, it has been thought best --where possible -- to give the Brotherhood and each of its societies as much latitude in the conduct of its conference meetings as possible, so long as the Trustees can be assured that the conduct and content are in harmony with the minimal standards required by law.
In order that these marks will continue to serve, among other things, as the identifiers of groups and activities licensed by and/or affiliated with URANTIA Foundation, the chief purpose of which is the study of The URANTIA Book and its teachings, the Trustees as a matter of convenience for all concerned have formulated the following guidelines. These guidelines bring together those policies and practices which have developed over the years out of the conduct of area or regional conferences sanctioned by URANTIA Foundation and conducted by URANTIA Brotherhood and its various societies and representatives. The Trustees must ask that all conference sponsors abide fully by these guidelines.
Of course, the broad purpose of any Urantia Meeting -- and certainly a Urantia Conference -- and, therefore, the object of any talk, presentation, or activity which is a part of the conference, is to help in the comprehension and appreciation of the teachings of The URANTIA Book and to further fellowship and promote understanding and unity among students of The URANTIA Book. Both the "Declaration of Trust Creating URANTIA Foundation" and the "Constitution of the URANTIA Brotherhood" beautifully set out in their opening portions the Objects and Purpose of each organization.
Declaration of Trust Creating URANTIA Foundation
Article II Objects
"PRINCIPAL OBJECT: The object for which this Foundation is created is the promotion, improvement, and expansion among the peoples of the world of the comprehension and understanding of Cosmology and the relation of the planet on which we live to the Universe, of the genesis and destiny of Man and his relation to God, and of the true teachings of Jesus Christ; and for the inculcation and encouragement of the realization and appreciation of the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man -- in order to increase and enhance the comfort, happiness, and well being of Man, as an individual and as a member of society, through the fostering of a religion, a philosophy, and a cosmology which are commensurate with Man's intellectual and cultural development."
Constitution of the URANTIA Brotherhood
Article II Purpose
"The purpose of URANTIA Brotherhood are the study and dissemination of the teachings of The URANTIA Book; the promotion, improvement, and expansion among the peoples of the world of the comprehension and understanding of Cosmology and the relation of the planet on which we live to the Universe, of the genesis and destiny of Man and his relation to God, and of the teachings of Jesus Christ; and the inculcation and encouragement of the realization and appreciation of the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man -- in order to increase and enhance the comfort, happiness, and well-being of Man, as an individual and as a member of society, by fostering of a religion, a philosophy, and a cosmology which are commensurate with Man's intellectual and cultural development. through the medium of fraternal association, ever obedient and subservient to the laws of this country and of all countries wherein URANTIA Brotherhood may extend."
In view of the Objects of URANTIA Foundation and the Purpose of URANTIA Brotherhood, no talk or presentation should espouse any particular political, social, or economic cause per se, or any other private cause or practice which would not be in consonance with the Objects and Purpose of the respective organization. This is not to say that certain issues cannot be discussed, but it is to emphasize that any such discussion should be in the context of what The URANTIA Book has to say about those subjects and how it helps to illuminate our understanding of the issues.
As many are aware, the Trustees on prior occasions have given designated conference speakers advance permission to use in their talks unspecified quotations from The URANTIA Book, in an attempt to avoid the need for last-minute approvals and the confusion that can go with it. In continuing this practice, the Trustees ask that conference sponsors submit the names and addresses of all speakers participating in a conference, so that the Trustees can send these speakers appropriate permission forms. The Trustees ask that the conference sponsors follow up with the individual speakers to be certain that they have completed these forms and have received the necessary approvals prior to the conference.
In conformity to the copyright laws, the Trustees request that no conference presentations or other materials which include quotations from The URANTIA Book be reproduced or distributed prior to, during, or after a conference except upon written approval of URANTIA Foundation.
Because of the requirements of the trademark and service mark laws, the Trustees request that any and all materials which display one or both of the registered marks of URANTIA Foundation be submitted to the Foundation for review and approval prior to printing and distribution. In most cases, copies of the final product are desired for the Foundation's files. Exceptions are such things as banners and murals, of which the Trustees require photographs.
Over the years, it has become evident that it is advisable to permit only authorized audio or visual recordings of the conference, such as the official recordings for the Foundation's records and for possible reproduction and distribution. The Trustees rely on the conference sponsor to insure that no other recordings are made.
In that a Urantia Conference concerns fellowship and comprehension and appreciation of the Urantia teachings, advertising, solicitation, or any kind of commercial transaction seems especially inappropriate. Conference sponsors are asked to do their best to discourage this activity on the part of any individual or group. There are, of course, harmless exceptions to this rule; for example at the 1975 Urantia Conference, sign-up boards to receive regional newsletters were displayed. Many displays might be acceptable, but in all cases the Trustees ask that no approvals be made without first consulting with the URANTIA Foundation.
Attempts at publicity, reporting, filming, and so forth, of a conference by or for the news media should be discouraged. This guideline is in keeping with the wisdom of unhurried and dignified dissemination of the Urantia teachings and is in support of the current URANTIA Brotherhood policy on advertising.
It is especially important that conference sponsors make every effort to insure that all conference activities are in full accordance with federal and local laws and regulations, and to encourage the maintenance of these laws by individual participants whenever necessary.
The Trustees believe that these simple requirements are about all that are necessary in order to protect the marks, give guidance as to the objects and purpose of a Urantia Conference, and yet provide each conference sponsor with the broadest possible latitude in creating a unique and meaningful experience. These guidelines have been formulated gradually over many years as a result of increasing conference experience, suggestions from participants, and most particularly of further knowledge of the rules of copyright and trademark law.
In any case in which these guidelines fail to provide adequate direction, please consult with the Trustees.
March 23, 1976