Letters for the week of January 15-21, 2003 

Stop blaming Proposition 13. Stop misusing the word "Technicolor." And stop whining about Antioch when BART also is screwing SF.

Prop. 13 is the solution, not the problem
In Chris Thompson's story ("It's the End of the World ...," December 25) he mentions Proposition 13 and how, until it was OVERWHELMINGLY passed by us voters, the California Legislature had a surefire vehicle to constantly use for taxes for schools and "SOCIAL PROJECTS." The old saw of continually blaming us voters for Proposition 13 and the "mess" we are in today. Balderdash!!! It is the fault of the present and previous governors and legislatures of overspending like drunken sailors and funding "special programs" and paying for illegals who are not citizens, etc. that has the money pit in trouble. And, of course, that stupid "deregulation" of the energy system that never should have taken place. Get off that "blame everything on Proposition 13" kick!!!!!!
R. Jerome, San Francisco

The last word on trademark law in, uh, black and white
We represent Technicolor Videocassettes B.V. ("Technicolor"). As you no doubt know, Technicolor is the owner of numerous United States trademark registrations for TECHNICOLOR, the oldest, No. 267,288, being dated February 18, 1930. TECHNICOLOR is one of the most famous trademarks in the world, let alone in the United States.

To correctly reflect such trademark registrations, TECHNICOLOR should only be used: 1) in the corporate sense to refer to our client; 2) in its correct trademark sense, e.g. TECHNICOLOR film processing; or 3) in reference to films made with the TECHNICOLOR film process. This is evidenced by the fact that the Associated Press Stylebook, recognized throughout the news business as the standard arbiter of style and the exclusive reference on matters governing usage of words, phrases, and punctuation, references "Technicolor" on page 201 solely as "A trademark for a process of making color motion pictures."

Given the appropriate use for our client's trademark, TECHNICOLOR is not to be used as a descriptive adjective and/or synonym for "multicolored," "vividly colored," or the like. Further, simply capitalizing the first letter of our client's (i.e. Technicolor) trademark to recognize its registration status while using it as such a synonym or adjective does not avoid its misuse.

We are contacting you regarding your publication's improper use of the TECHNICOLOR trademark in connection with two articles: 1) appearing in the dining reviews section of the October 23, 2002, edition entitled, "Rudy's Don't Fail: Emeryville Diner Proves That Punk-Rock Ethos and Good Eats Needn't Clash," by Jonathan Kauffman; and 2) appearing in the Culture section of the October 30, 2002, edition entitled, "Going Bump in the Night: This Month's East Bay Book Reviews," by Anneli Rufus. Copies of the articles are enclosed for your convenience.

Please appreciate that although we assume your intentions are good, your failure to comply with the requests set forth in this letter may result in damage to the integrity of our client's TECHNICOLOR trademark. Please help us preserve our client's trademark by using it properly.

Our client would be most appreciative if you would please notify your editors, writers, and all other appropriate staff members and freelance contractors regarding the proper uses of our client's trademark. Thank you for your attention to this matter.
Jennifer V. Whiting; Crosby, Heafey, Roach & May, Century City

DIY, VKTMS, 'N' I
Thanks to Toby Bielawski and the Express for writing about some of us who haven't forgotten what we learned in the early days of punk ("Punk Prophets," January 1). I found an interesting thread in the article, in that three of us have found expression in teaching. (I got a BA in music from Cal and a master's in composition at Davis in the middle of VKTMS' life span and have taught at a few local colleges.)

To me there is something special about showing people that there are resources that they can find in music theory, history, and especially in themselves that they can use to create something unique to them. Punk rock freed me to go down many paths, including continuing work on VKTMS projects, and all of them come from the same places -- not allowing others to stifle you by saying that you cannot do something and speaking the truth. Hopefully we have been able to pass that on.
John Binkov (VKTMS), Richmond

San Francisco also got the shaft from BART
Before anyone starts feeling too sorry for the Antioch taxpayers who still have no direct BART service (City of Warts, December 18), it should be pointed out that there are three counties in the BART district, and all of them have uncompleted Phase I projects on the books. Only one of them -- San Francisco -- has the population density to even begin to justify building a billion-dollar rail line.

Mr. Thompson (and indeed the BART board itself) seems to have forgotten that the Geary Boulevard corridor in San Francisco is also a BART Phase I project. The ridership of the Geary 38 bus line is one of the highest in the Bay Area (if not the nation) and dwarfs the number of trips that could possibly be generated by an Antioch extension.

Given the limited amount of transit funding available, rail projects in the exurbs come at the expense of more deserving inner-city projects. They also drain an obscene amount of subsidies to compensate for their low ridership.
Eric McCaughrin, Berkeley

Seeking a scribe fa shiggady
The Express is looking for a hip-hop columnist, who must be well-versed (pun intended) in the form and its history, especially in its long and glorious history in the East Bay. We are seeking an opinionated person who is creative, who knows that there is more than one way to approach a story, and who isn't afraid to take an unpopular stand on an issue if it's warranted. You also must be a good writer, but that doesn't mean that you must have tons of experience. We are interested in the right person, period. Please send some samples of your work and three local column ideas, preferably via e-mail, to katy.stclair@eastbayexpress.com or by regular mail to Katy St. Clair, Music Editor, East Bay Express, 1335 Stanford Avenue, Emeryville, CA 94608.

Correction
The subhead that accompanied our January 1 dining review of the Ephesus Kebab Lounge was written for another story and made no sense whatsoever. Of course, if you read it, you probably already know that.

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