by Ken Irving
Over the years since Jim Lewis left us, the world of locality mapping has changed, with new mapping and interpretation products, some licensed by Astro*Carto*Graphy, some competing with it. Competition is a good thing, but we would like to ask astrologers, lecturers, conference planners and mapmakers to keep in mind the following.
Terms such as Astro*Carto*Graphy, and Astrocartography (when used to refer to maps that show the rising and setting and culmination of planets at a given time) are protected by a registered trademark. The following explanations and guidelines will clarify what are acceptable uses of the term.
TRADEMARK: A device (as a word) pointing distinctly to the origin or ownership of merchandise to which it is applied and legally reserved to exclusive use of the owner as maker or seller.
TRADE NAME: An arbitrarily adopted name that is given by a manufacturer or merchant to an article or service to distinguish it as produced or sold by him and that may be used and protected as a trademark.
GENERIC: Being or having a non-proprietary name.
ASTRO*CARTO*GRAPHY: A trade name protected by a trademark and owned by the Astro*Carto*Graphy Trust. (The trademarked terms are " Astro*Carto*Graphy", "Astrocartography", etc. The generic terms are astro-locality maps, astro-maps or locality maps.)
Astro*Carto*Graphy was created by the late Jim Lewis and that name is currently licensed for use by several vendors, from North America to Japan, who either sell the original maps and interpretations or derivative products, such as software. Astro*Carto*Graphy, "Astrocartography", "astrocartography" and similar terms with varying spellings may legally be used only to refer to these products or others that might be licensed through the Astro*Carto*Graphy Living Trust (Jim Lewis' successor) at a later date.
Many people who would never think of offering Jim Lewis' interpretive text as their own, nevertheless unintentionally, use Astro*Carto*Graphy in a similar way. They either apply it to competing products (e.g., maps produced by software unrelated to Astro*Carto*Graphy, or, by computer services not associated with Astro*Carto*Graphy) or use it generically for any kind of maps or mapping of birth charts. However, please remember that Astro*Carto*Graphy is protected by a trademark, and it is not a generic term!
Moreover, and this is important, Jim Lewis's will directed that all royalties due him from Astro*Carto*Graphy should go into a fund for the astrological community. Fewer sales for A*C*G, due to abuse of the trademark, mean less money for worthy astrological causes.
In order to provide some guidelines for proper use of the term "Astro*Carto*Graphy", we've put together the following frequently asked questions:
My publishing house is coming out with a book on Astro*Carto*Graphy next year. Is this all right?
Go through the title and manuscript and consider whether that term is being used to describe Jim Lewis's techniques and maps, or whether it really is being applied to competing products. Are the maps from a licensed vendor such as AstroNumerics in the U.S or Equinox in the U.K? Is contact information given for A*C*G, or just for competing products? If the book makes substantial use of the trademark in order to sell competing products, there could be a problem. We'd be happy to review the manuscript and suggest changes or additions.
How should I define Astro*Carto*Graphy in the encyclopedia or glossary I am publishing?
It's best to include the information that the term refers to a set of techniques for mapping and interpreting the rising, setting and culminating lines of planets developed by Jim Lewis and trademarked by him under that name.
I am holding a conference and several of my lectures will be speaking on "Astro*Carto*Graphy." Is it all right to mention this in lecture titles and conference literature such as programs and advertising?
Certainly, if that is what they are speaking on. One guide to whether your lecturers are actually speaking on Astro*Carto*Graphy (Jim Lewis' creation and associated products) or just locality mapping (the generic technique) is to consider whether they or someone at the conference trade show will be selling A*C*G products. Also, in a lecture that has "Astro*Carto*Graphy" or "Astrocartography" in the title, a good percentage of the graphics should be original A*C*G maps and the audience should be informed about where they can obtain such maps and interpretations.
Before you list the title or lecture content in your conference literature as "Astro*Carto*Graphy," you should ask the lecturer to think over the guidelines in this answer. Please be especially careful about this if a particular track, or even conference itself, deals with locality mapping themes. If you are drawing registrants to your conference with the "Astro*Carto*Graphy" trademark, you become directly (and legally) responsible for making sure that the conference and track content are mainly Astro*Carto*Graphy and that the owner of the trademark will benefit in some way. (As we've defined in this FAQ sheet.)
I am an Astro*Carto*Graphy Certified Interpreter, and therefore what I lecture on is, by definition, Astro*Carto*Graphy.
Sorry, no. You are due a great deal of respect because you took Jim Lewis' rigorous seminar and passed one of Jim's tough examinations, but please be very careful about using your status as a certified interpreter to sell competing products. Jim's sole intention for offering the licensing program was to deal with requests from the great number of buyers of his maps, who wanted personal interpretation and analysis.
You may mention that you are a "Certified Astrocartography Interpreter" in a conference bio, resume or other general description of your education and ualifications. But, if you choose to use lecture maps from a competing vendor or produced software not currently under an Astrocartography license, or, if you sell such maps (and accompanying non-ACG interpretive text) you should not refer to any of these as "Astrocartography". You should be very careful about using Astro*Carto*Graphy in your lecture title. Again, the trademarked terms are " Astro*Carto*Graphy", "Astrocartography", etc. The generic terms are astro-locality maps, astro-maps or locality maps. Please note the difference and keep them separate.
I have made some improvements on Jim Lewis' work and am going to sell my own maps and interpretations under the name Astro*Carto*Graphy. Is this okay?
Absolutely not. People are free to compete with Astro*Carto*Graphy only so long as they do not use the A*C*G trade name to do it. Or, (a whole other question that we don't get to here) as long as long as they don't use any of the elements of an A*C*G map covered by the A*C*G patent. Most people who use the term in this way are unaware that they are, in fact, actually violating the law, not to mention devaluing a trademark which took many years to develop and to promote.
I have made improvements on Lewis' work and am going to sell my own maps under the name World*Carto*Graphy, (or, Geo*Carto*Graphy, or Astro*Geo*Graphy, or Geo*Astro*Mapping, or Bill's*Carto*Graphy). Is this okay?
No. Since all of these examples use various elements of the Astro*Carto*Graphy trademark. If you want to compete, you must use a name which does not, in any way, suggest a relation to Astro*Carto*Graphy. Simple suggested guidelines: don't use asterisks or any variation on "cartography" or "astro*graphy." You can't call your new cola drink "coke" or "Coca Cola" or "Cola Coca" or even "Coke-o-Rama," for reasons that we hope will be obvious; and the same goes for promoting another kind of locality map under a name that looks or feels like Astro*Carto*Graphy.
The maps, software and interpretations which I created and sell myself, use all of Jim's techniques, so shouldn't I be entitled to say this in my advertising, promotional literature and other materials?
Not necessarily. Comparisons are one thing, but trading on someone else's name and work is another. Be very careful that noting any presumed similarity between your products and those created by Jim Lewis you make it very clear to the reader that you are neither licensed nor endorsed by Astro*Carto*Graphy. Furthermore, though you may have tried to implement some techniques used by Jim Lewis, you may have omitted others or disagreed on others (orbs, for example), so be careful about making blanket statements such as "uses Astro*Carto*Graphy techniques." Such statements may imply endorsement from the owners of the trademark.
NOTE: Though closely connected with The Jim Lewis Slaydon Trust, Continuum cannot advise you on trademark questions. If questions have arisen in the course of reading this explanation, contact Gregg Howe at Astronumerics. by calling 541-627 7464, writing to AstroNumerics at P.O. Box 336, Ashland, Oregon 97520, or sending e-mail.
ABOUT KEN IRVING: An editor of American Astrology since 1974, Ken's special interest lies in scientific findings and how they apply to astrology. This led him to study the Gauquelin findings and ultimately to co-author The Tenacious Mars Effect, a book about the unsuccessful attempts by the scientific community first to suppress and then to discredit these important and statistically correct results.
His scientific bent also led him to the study of Astro*Carto*Graphy, where with loving attention to detail and maintaining the integrity of the work, he ultimately did us all the great service of helping to preserve Jim Lewis's vast store of knowledge in their joint book, The Psychology of Astro*Carto*Graphy, published after Jim's death. For more about the book and also about Ken's own work, visit Ken's website or send send e-mail
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