Cancel Urban Homesteading Trademark

To All Urban Homesteaders of the United States

Status of the legal case to cancel the trademark "urban homesteading" is at bottom of this page.

Petition to Cancel "urban homesteading" trademark is filed today (click to see it)

ANSWER TO PETITION TO CANCEL (click here to see it)

Motion for Summary Judgment filed October 6, 2012 (click to see it)

Letter to Facebook Legal Department with request to enable Denver Urban Homesteading fan page

(Anyone who has had a Facebook page disabled by the Dervaes Institute is welcome to copy and adapt this letter for his or her own use.)

Letter of protest and demand from the farmers of Denver Urban Homesteading to the Dervaes Institute

Denver Urban Homesteading demand letter to Dervaes Institute. 

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To Answer Your Questions

"Urban homesteading", the phrase we use to describe our lifestyle and a symbol of our movement has been trademarked.  The Dervaes Institute from California has ordered all urban homesteaders in the United States to use this generic phrase only in connection with the Dervaes products or services.  Otherwise, we are instructed to use alternative wording. Some of us have received letters from them, some have lost their Facebook pages because of Dervaes' actions (see email from Facebook as a proof). The attempt of a private organization to eliminated a commonly used phrase from our language doesn't make urban homesteaders happy. After the first published article about the Dervaes family action against organizations and blogs, urban homesteaders started to discuss on the internet what to do with this abnormal situation regarding this common phrase and the rights of anyone to trademark it. Without repeating all of the information available online we simply try to provide information and access to relevant documents.  This will help to answer many questions that urban homesteaders have regarding this unwanted trademark and about the possibility to cancel it. Yes, our goal is to cancel the "urban homesteading" trademark! All new documents, links and legal information will be published on this website. You can monitor the trademark cancellation process. We believe in our rights to use words without permission of the Dervaes Institute. We believe that society can resist this corporation's actions. Thank you in advance for your support.


James&Irina Bertini.

Denver Urban Homesteading - Indoor Farmers Market, Denver, Colorado


Status of legal case

In April 2011 two cases were filed in the US Patent and Trademark Office.  Case 1 was filed by Erik Knutzen/Kelly Coyne & Process Media, authors and publisher of the book "The Urban Homestead".  Case 2 was filed by Denver Urban Homesteading.    Both of these parties lost their Facebook pages due to complaints filed to Facebook by the Dervaes Institute, which had obtained trademarks to "urban homestead" and "urban homesteading."  The cases were filed to cancel these two trademarks.


Knutzen/Coyne/Process Media obtained representation from the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which is assisted pro bono by an intellectual property law firm in San Francisco, Winston & Strawn.  Denver Urban Homesteading was not able to obtain representation and so it is represented by its owner, James Bertini.


The Dervaes Institute hired first one, and then another intellectual property law firm to represent it.  A trademark case in the USPTO is very similar to a federal court case albeit with trademark rules.  The case has been in litigation now since it began, consuming hundreds and possibly thousands of lawyer-hours.


As of the date below, the discovery period is over but discovery is still being produced by the Dervaes Institute.  The trial period is scheduled to begin in the ensuing months.  Unlike a regular court, in trademark court almost everything is done by mail, even the trial.


More regular updates are posted on this Facebook page:!/pages/Denver-Urban-Home-steading-Trademark-Issue/148774315190090


September 17, 2012

Support our legal challenge in federal trademark court to cancel the Dervaes Institute trademark of URBAN HOMESTEADING.

Buy our 2013 calendar that promotes

urban homesteading

To answer some questions that people have regarding cancellation of the trademark

General Information


Urban Homesteading trademark


Trademark Law


Principal Register or Supplemental Register

What is special about Urban Homesteading trademark? It is registered in Supplemental Register.

According to 15USC 1094 applications for and registrations on the supplemental register shall not be subject to or receive the advantages of sections 1051(b), 1052(e), 1052(f), 1057(b), 1057(c), 1062(a), 1063 to 1068, inclusive, 1072, 1115 and 1124 of this title.


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Last updated: 04/11/13.