Printable Version of Topic

Click here to view this topic in its original format

Wikipedia Review _ Articles _ Biograph, Wikipedia and the FBI

Posted by: biographco Sun 29th April 2007, 10:41pm

As you all have been following the Wikipedia slam of our company "American_Mutoscope_and_Biograph_Company". Since that time, more activity is going on which I will share with you. The activity however, has coincided with attempted malicious changes to our listings, including IMDB.com. These other websites have been informed and are very supportive.

The most recent activity in the article is the malicious Wikipedian editors attempting to "Split" the article to "New Company" vs "Old Company" but there is no way they can try and prove we are NOT the same company, intimating unless we "Show" these "Editors" our confidential paperwork that shows we are the same company. Pretty slick? Show us what you have or we will defame you.

I will give you this Wikipedia example from the article "Discussion"....

"I agree. This situation seems similar to the history of PanAm airlines. It went out of business then was revived a couple of times. We have separate articles for each incarnation: Pan American World Airways, Pan American Airways (1996-1998), Pan American Airways (1998-2004). In this instance the original company is more notable so we could leave it at the present name and the new company could be at "American Mutoscope and Biograph Company (1991)". -Will Beback · † · 01:01, 23 April 2007 (UTC)

Seconded, though I haven't seen any evidence that the new company is notable enough for an article. —tregoweth (talk) 14:48, 28 April 2007 (UTC)


Splitting it into two articles won't end the squabbling by the new company that it is really the same as the old company, will it? I don't know if the new company really has enough substance for its own article. In 16 years it has released one commercial product: a DVD containing an interview with Tommy Bond and a silent Our Gang comedy in the public domain. — Walloon 15:18, 28 April 2007 (UTC)

The point isn't to end squabbling, which would probably continue no matter what. The immediate problem we're facing is the use of categories. These two sets are in conflict.

Category:Companies established in 1895

Category:Defunct media companies of the United States

Category:Companies established in 1991

Category:Re-established companies

Splitting the article would allow more logical categorizattion. I think we can make a case for the notability of the new company based on several profiles they've received. -Will Beback · † · 19:52, 28 April 2007 (UTC)
Retrieved from "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:American_Mutoscope_and_Biograph_Company
"


First, the Little Rascals my Dad "Hosted" and there is only one 12 minute silent Rascals film included in the whole hour long DVD. The majority of it is my Dad's stories, viniettes, and talking to his older star friends.

Second - They got caught on calling our company "Defunct". Too late! Already downloaded and reported! Again, all this is funny. They can block, change and scramble all they want on Wikipedia, this does them no good now. Truth and honesty does win out, and always will. And to the others, when this hammer falls, it will change, and hopefully clean up Wikipedia, forever.

Posted by: Anonymouse Mon 30th April 2007, 12:47am

Well, one would think the burden of proof would be on you to prove you are the same company. If I open a store, and call it "Gimbel's", then you don't automatically assume that it is the same as the old one. ~~~~

Posted by: Somey Mon 30th April 2007, 2:48am

Perhaps, but it does seem to have gone beyond that at this point... I'd say that if you're gonna go after somebody for something they did on the internet, it's best to just sue 'em and get it out there, rather than engage in a lot of sabre-rattling. Most people respond to the sabre-rattling by doing absolutely nothing, because to do something in response to it looks like an admission of guilt... And since the would-be defendant has already done whatever he's been accused of doing, such an admission doesn't even necessarily help. (Or, at least, there's no guarantee it will.)

Posted by: dtobias Mon 30th April 2007, 2:00pm

The thing is, nobody on Wikipedia is engaging in defamation. All they're doing is saying that the burden of proof is on him to show some sort of continuity between a company that demonstrably went out of business 70-some years ago, and one that was incorporated 60-some years later. Wikipedia has strict policies requiring claims to be backed by verifiable references; without them, any crackpot would be able to insist that their bizarre theories be inserted. But he's perfectly free not to disclose any confidential information; nobody's putting a gun against his head or breaking into his office to search it. It just means that the article won't contain alleged "facts" about his company that he is unable or unwilling to prove, that's all.

Posted by: Jonny Cache Mon 30th April 2007, 2:48pm

I confess that I've only sampled this groove a couple of times, but it seems that the initial poster suffers from a common misconception about our Purview in this Review. We are far too busy trying to bring about Peace On Middle Earth (POME) to bother with any lesser concern. I realize that it gives DT Yet Another Grail (YAG) for his Fringe-Quest (F-Q), but seriallly, folks, don't you think he can get enough of that in his own WP'HOOD, without having to range so far and wide?

Jonny cool.gif

Posted by: biographco Mon 30th April 2007, 9:06pm

As far as "Suits" go, I said nothing about suing Wikipedia in the last posting. Also, outside of the Wikipedia box, you cannot be "Blocked" because this is the United States and under free laws. We want to stop being harassed by the certain editors of Wikipedia and LEFT ALONE! When this happens, there will be no further action by us. If the article is corrected so all are happy, and the harassment against us stops, then we don't have any problems. It's as simple as that.

If anything, this incident will make Wikipedia BETTER by spotlighting the REAL problem editors.

QUOTE(dtobias @ Mon 30th April 2007, 7:00am) *

The thing is, nobody on Wikipedia is engaging in defamation. All they're doing is saying that the burden of proof is on him to show some sort of continuity between a company that demonstrably went out of business 70-some years ago, and one that was incorporated 60-some years later. Wikipedia has strict policies requiring claims to be backed by verifiable references; without them, any crackpot would be able to insist that their bizarre theories be inserted. But he's perfectly free not to disclose any confidential information; nobody's putting a gun against his head or breaking into his office to search it. It just means that the article won't contain alleged "facts" about his company that he is unable or unwilling to prove, that's all.

Mr. Tobias, we have documents, references and "Verifiable" proof that CAN be revealed publicly that proves we are the same and continuation of the company. this even includes goverment declarations. They are all EASILY accesible on the website, and all over the internet. The only thing we will NOT reveal is our privacy as a privately held corporation. However, the proof that is verifiable has been "Ignored" by Wikipedia and the certain "Editors". I also invite ALL of our Wikipedia Review members to PLEASE visit our website, and you can see for yourself as well.

QUOTE(Somey @ Sun 29th April 2007, 7:48pm) *

If you're gonna go after somebody for something they did on the internet, it's best to just sue 'em and get it out there, rather than engage in a lot of sabre-rattling...

Somey, thank you for your input and you have been very kind. I was not refering to a "Suit". I think there is confusion here, it is beyond that now. All we want is for the article to be corrected and the harassment to stop. That is all, very simple. We have verifiable references that we are who we are, which in any other Wikipedia article would be fully acceptable, but NOT on ours. Again, singled out, and indicative of an agenda.

QUOTE(Anonymouse @ Sun 29th April 2007, 5:47pm) *
Well, one would think the burden of proof would be on you to prove you are the same company. If I open a store, and call it "Gimbel's", then you don't automatically assume that it is the same as the old one. ~~~~

Please visit our website, all the proof is there, as well as on the internet... You can see in the article "American_Mutoscope_and_Biograph_Company" that is exactly what is going on (Intended force disclosure of private/proprietary primary source documentations), and what the other editors are attempting to do. We have verifiable "Proof" published and government certified that we are who we are that has been ignored. That pretty much says it all.

Posted by: biographco Mon 30th April 2007, 9:46pm

For our Wikipedia Review members and ANYONE here are links that verifiy our company. Just for fun, check it out...

(YOU HAVE TO HAVE ACROBAT READER TO SEE PDF'S)

http://concise.britannica.com/ebc/article-9079257/Biograph-motion-picture-studio

http://www.moviemaker.com/magazine/editorial.php?id=86

http://www.biographcompany.com/laresolution2.pdf

http://www.biographcompany.com/laproclamation2.pdf

http://www.biographcompany.com/senatorialaward2.pdf

http://www.biographcompany.com/rudyletter2.pdf

http://imdb.com/name/nm0000217/

http://imdb.com/company/co0066927/#productionX20company

Posted by: dtobias Mon 30th April 2007, 9:57pm

Those various proclamations prove nothing, given that governments at all levels are issuing tons of this sort of ceremonial stuff, often with little or no scrutiny; I've heard of complete hoaxes being "honored" in this manner, if the hoaxer manages to pull enough political strings. I'm a bit more surprised that Britannica bought your assertion that your company is a continuation of the older one; I'd think that being out of business since the 1920s is enough reason to consider any new company of the same name a totally separate thing.

Posted by: biographco Mon 30th April 2007, 10:08pm

The last posting was in reference to verifiable information on our company. The information that is there was and is verified and published. this should have been accepted by certain "Editors" and was not. This happened before you even entered the discussion. The only other "Proof" (Please read ENTIRE article discussion) was for the editors to gain private information about the company. If we did not supply this, then the article would remain incorrect. The information in the article on Wikipedia intended to harm the company's image and reputation (Admitted by an "Editor" in writing). We have verified published information and we have offered it time and again. If this was not the case, the information that is readily available and verifiable should have been enough to verify our valididty, as in all the other Wikipedia articles.

QUOTE(dtobias @ Mon 30th April 2007, 2:57pm) *
Those various proclamations prove nothing, given that governments at all levels are issuing tons of this sort of ceremonial stuff, often with little or no scrutiny; I've heard of complete hoaxes being "honored" in this manner, if the hoaxer manages to pull enough political strings. I'm a bit more surprised that Britannica bought your assertion that your company is a continuation of the older one; I'd think that being out of business since the 1920s is enough reason to consider any new company of the same name a totally separate thing.

Mr. Tobias, apparently maybe you do have an agenda. I do not have to defend or be defensive about our verifiable information, nor us being Biograph Company. Because of your demeanor and attitude, and if you are accusing us of being a "Hoaxer", and saying that Encyclopedia Britannica "Bought" our assertion proves that as well, then it is obvious you do have an agenda, which is to discredit me, and our company. Because of this I will not be able to reply to your posts.

Posted by: Somey Mon 30th April 2007, 10:21pm

I will at least say that the Biograph Company website has improved dramatically since the last time I checked - all the extraneous, non-company related stuff is gone now, so that's good. But the WP article is now using pages from the "Wayback Machine" at archive.org as citation sources for stuff like the "studio lot on the moon" claim, which is no longer on the company site, so that's bad. IMO, if you have to rely on an archive.org version of something for a cite, then you're just being nasty.

There's also this:
http://www.biographcompany.com/about_us/legal.html

QUOTE
The American Mutoscope and Biograph Company, Inc. owns all trademarks/service marks of, and associated with the American Mutoscope and Biograph Company, Inc. from January 1st, 1896 to the present.

Assuming this is true, then that would tend to make the comparison to Gimbel's somewhat less apt, in so far as anyone trying to "resurrect" Gimbel's without owning such trademarks really would just be borrowing the name. I still don't think they can claim legal continuity, but is that really what they're claiming? Maybe I'm making the wrong distinction here, but I get the impression they're mostly claiming they own the IP rights that were held by the original company, assuming those haven't actually passed into the public domain. That last bit, to me, would be the crucial issue - obviously 75 years have now passed, but IP rights can be renewed, and IIRC the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act might help them somewhat in that regard. (I'd have to research that, except that I really, really don't want to...)

If they're saying "we are the same company," then you're in grey-area-land. That's almost a philosophical issue more than anything else. IOW, if Biograph is saying that the Wikipedia editors they've dealt with are biased against privately-held companies, particularly those that sell consumer products, I could probably believe that. But this doesn't change my original assessment of the situation: Biograph's civil case is just not there, at least in my opinion... I wish I were wrong... dry.gif

I'm sorry to say this, but if I were the Biograph Company, I'd probably cut my losses - maybe make a new, non-confrontational account to argue against splitting the article, assuming that's considered desirable. With any luck, the furor will die down before the WP'ers get it into their heads to add a whole section on the Wikipedia-based squabbling itself.

Posted by: dtobias Mon 30th April 2007, 10:31pm

My only "agenda", by the way, is that I'm pissed off at somebody who threatens legal action against people who are doing their best to have an accurate article about a historical company, with facts which may or may not be in congruence with your own view of the world.

Posted by: biographco Mon 30th April 2007, 10:50pm

QUOTE(Somey @ Mon 30th April 2007, 3:21pm) *
If they're saying "we are the same company," then you're in grey-area-land. That's almost a philosophical issue more than anything else. IOW, if Biograph is saying that the Wikipedia editors they've dealt with are biased against privately-held companies, particularly those that sell consumer products, I could probably believe that...

Somey, I would love to be more open, but we are the same company. We have confidential "Things" proving this in which I wish I could go into, but can't. It is not a gray area, and I hate to be so vague, but have to, in order not to violate our right of privacy as a company. On this civil case, all civil cases are tough, and yes it would be difficult. But I can say the FBI takes this very seriously, and again have to stop there due to confidentiality. On Wikipedia, we are blocked and with what is going on it would be impossible to make a non-confrontational article. The whole thing could be solved if a correct article could be attained but that is not going to happen. Remember, this whole thing is about our validity, which is being fought tooth and nail by certain Wikipedia editors, with insults, slander and malice. Why? There is an agenda, and that's that. It is to discredit the company, and even me.

Posted by: dtobias Mon 30th April 2007, 11:36pm

So I suppose the company didn't die in the 1920s... it was just put in suspended animation, and was revived by some electric current applied by Dr. Frankenstein.

Posted by: biographco Tue 1st May 2007, 1:18am

QUOTE(Somey @ Mon 30th April 2007, 3:21pm) *
I will at least say that the Biograph Company website has improved dramatically since the last time I checked - all the extraneous, non-company related stuff is gone now, so that's good. But the WP article is now using pages from the "Wayback Machine" at archive.org as citation sources for stuff like the "studio lot on the moon" claim, which is no longer on the company site, so that's bad...
I just wanted to add a thank you on the website revision compliment. There will be some more revisions soon. However, the moon subject and everything is still there and on the website. It is valid, and can be referenced. Also, on the "Archive.org, yes they are just being "Nasty". Again, an agenda to discredit the company by using something valid and twisting it. I would also like to add one other thing. It is very obvious of intentions here. Wikipedia is "Not" an informational source. This is a witch-hunt, nothing more. Every resource is being used to dig up something "Bad" on the company. This is not unbiased which shows both sides, but one side or none. We are singled out. No other article has the references and cross-references like this one, nor been pulled apart like this one (PLEASE READ OTHERS LIKE GAUMONT). This is not my opinion, it is obvious and has been for some time. We did not initiated any ill feelings, nor wish any problems with Wikipedia, when this started from them and the certain Wiki-Editors back in 2004. I am also going to post now what we believe is going on:

http://wikipediareview.com/lofiversion/index.php?t7257.html

You may want to even start another thread on just this topic. In summation, I want to state again, that we just want correct and fair information out there, and not to be harassed and left be. I guess for Wikipedia that is way too much to ask, so we proceed.

Posted by: Somey Tue 1st May 2007, 4:03am

QUOTE(biographco @ Mon 30th April 2007, 5:50pm) *
...I would love to be more open, but we are the same company. We have confidential "Things" proving this in which I wish I could go into, but can't...

So, that means compromising a bit more on the wording, doesn't it? As hard as that probably is to take, given what's already happened.

I mean, being "the same company" in terms of possessing various copyrights and trademarks, and even the original film library or whatever, is one thing. And that's probably good enough for most purposes - possession is 9/10ths of the law, after all, at least in the US. But you can't claim organizational continuity, or administrative continuity, or even artistic continuity, right? Everyone connected with the company from 1930 is presumably long since gone, may they rest in peace. From a purely human perspective, it can't possibly be the same company, even if it's the same company in various (if not most) other respects.

Nobody is telling you how to run your business (or at least I should hope not). Reviving the "spirit" of a company like Biograph is a noble thing to do, at least in my opinion, but at the end of the day that's essentially a marketing claim. No matter how valid it is, it's not something you can insist on everyone accepting at face value - you have to convince people, and Wikipedians are (as you've seen) notoriously hard to convince. In some cases that's good, in others, maybe not so good, but either way, Wikipedia is so damn big now that it can only function on the basis of consistent application of rules, which often don't make sense and contradict each other, but they're rules nonetheless. Every time someone makes an exception for someone, or something, there's an uproar - so they avoid making exceptions, even in unusual cases like this one. There have been plenty of times when the uproar has started right here, even...

Anyway, that's all I'm saying.

Posted by: biographco Tue 1st May 2007, 4:57am

Somey, thank you for the comments. Yes, we are the same company, and the information can be accessed on our website. I do wish I could go into it further, but can't because I would be compromising the privacy of the company and its officers. Honestly, we really don't have to convince anyone, the information is there and if it is accepted by certain parties, that is fine. If it isn't by certain parties, the party or parties are detached from reality, and we simply do not deal with them. We will NOT release any private company information, nor be pressured into doing so (refering to Wikipedia).

Also, please go to the other articles on Wikipedia with similar companes, such as "Gaumont", who claims to be the "Oldest movie company in the world". There is hardly any refrences on that article, and the statement goes unquestioned. However, I had found out on thier own website the company went under in 1938. the name and "Some" trademarks were "Bought" by another company. The stocks were liquidated, and the rest of the company remnants sold off. Wikipedia not only NOT questioned this, but pushed the "Gaumont" article as valid without question or further references, defying anyone questioning it. You can read for yourself.

We feel that some of these Wiki-Editors are possibly influenced by Gaumont who has started to use "The Oldest movie company" (Which is a phrase we used for years) since March 2007 in Variety (Magazine) as thier new company "Campaign" push. It smells, that is a fact. To summarize, we are who we are and that is it. We will not be harassed, threatened, misrepresented, slandered, or defamed. The point being is the malicious intent in regards to the certain Wikipedian editors toward us, and that this is part of a smear campaign and a defamation "Agenda". It is all right there and obvious. This is what we want stopped and it will be. Our goal is to have a fair and balanced article, or no article at all, but not a defamatory one. I hope this clears things up.

Posted by: Uly Tue 1st May 2007, 9:12pm

I think a closer parallel would be the British East India Company. Here's a little quote from that article:

QUOTE
In 1987, coffee merchants Tony Wild and David Hutton created a public limited company called "The East India Company" and in 1990 registered versions of the Company's coat of arms as a trademark, although the Patent Office noted 'Registration of this mark shall give no right to the exclusive use of the words "The East India Company"' [4]. By December 1996, this company had a website at www.theeastindiacompany.com. It sold St Helena coffee branded with the Company name and also produced a book on the history of the Company. This company has no legal continuity with the original Company, even though it claims on its website to have been founded in 1600.

Posted by: Somey Tue 1st May 2007, 10:34pm

Okay folks, we're going to try again with the all-new, shiny-clean "censored" version of this thread. I'm still not so sure the subject shouldn't be closed, but I'm at least going to put it back out into the (public) Articles forum, so non-members can see it.

Also, I have to apologize to Dan Tobias, whose http://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikien-l/2007-April/070132.html about this thread is no longer reflective of what's here. To think, he even used it as an example of why linking to us shouldn't be disallowed! Ah well, those are the breaks, I guess... By all means, please convey my apologies to the WikiEN-L folks for having done all this nasty, hypocritical censorship stuff.

Anyway, if we're going to continue this thread - and I'm not saying we should - please, everyone try to be nice-ish, and if you're going to call the cops, just call 'em already, and allow us to be surprised (pleasantly or otherwise?) by the results. biggrin.gif

Posted by: biographco Tue 1st May 2007, 11:38pm

QUOTE(Somey @ Tue 1st May 2007, 3:34pm) *
Anyway, if we're going to continue this thread - and I'm not saying we should - please, everyone try to be nice-ish, and if you're going to call the cops, just call 'em already, and allow us to be surprised (pleasantly or otherwise?) by the results. :D

Somey, sounds good. I do want to make one point however. Mr. Tobias used strong language and insulting verbage towards me and the company on WR which there is no excuse for. If he has an issue or a comment, or even rebuttal, please have him act with respect and decorum in this forum. This will also help keep WR on a civil level. Also, with this thread there really is no more I can add, except that we want the harassment to stop and for the article on the company to be corrected. It can also be used as a positive force, in which unbiased Wiki-Editors can try and correct not only our article, but the ones on Gaumont and Pathe as well. Thanks:)

Posted by: biographco Wed 2nd May 2007, 12:16am

I would also like to post a clarification on an item posted by Mr. Tobias on http://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikien-l/2007-April/070132.html. the following is the posting and my response to this and clarification:

The person (with a questionable grasp on reality) from American Biograph and Mutoscope Company is here accusing Wikipedians of hacking his bank account, in addition to calling it "defamatory" that they don't accept on his say-so that his company is the legitimate successor to a company that went defunct back in the 1920s.

our response:

The person (with a questionable grasp on reality)

This is a personal attack and is uncalled for.

from American Biograph and Mutoscope Company is here accusing Wikipedians of
hacking his bank account,


I did not accuse ALL Wikipedians or Wikipedia. I said that there is a possibility and it needed to be "Looked into".

in addition to calling it "defamatory" that they don't accept on his say-so that his company is the legitimate successor to a company that went defunct back in the 1920s.

1. That is NOT what is "Defamitory" about not accepting my "Say-So". What is, is the examples of "We want the company to look ridiculous", in the articles discussion pages.

2. I am not asking to go on my "Say-So". I have offered creditable and verifiable sources indicating who we are, including other encylopedias, publications, etc. This is NOT on just a "Say-So".

In summation, we have offered verifiable and published sources for the article to Wikipedia. In reality though, the article will not be changed. Most likely in the days ahead it will be segmented more and the outcome is for this will be an attempt to make it even more damaging to us. However, this kind of vindictiveness, and that is obvious, will not harm the company, or our validity. We are the same company and hold the private and confidential "Items" to prove this. No amount of slander or misinformation against us can change that. The attempts made by the certain Wiki-Editors, allowed by Wikipedia itself, only makes Wikipedia again look like the publication that it is... What is that kind of a publication? That is for the readers to decide.

Posted by: Joseph100 Wed 2nd May 2007, 12:48am

QUOTE(dtobias @ Mon 30th April 2007, 8:00am) *

The thing is, nobody on Wikipedia is engaging in defamation. All they're doing is saying that the burden of proof is on him to show some sort of continuity between a company that demonstrably went out of business 70-some years ago, and one that was incorporated 60-some years later. Wikipedia has strict policies requiring claims to be backed by verifiable references; without them, any crackpot would be able to insist that their bizarre theories be inserted. But he's perfectly free not to disclose any confidential information; nobody's putting a gun against his head or breaking into his office to search it. It just means that the article won't contain alleged "facts" about his company that he is unable or unwilling to prove, that's all.



To believe the statment made by MR. Dtobias, "love, peace and wikipedia" numb nut, and I have some nice land in Florida for sale, cheap, and with the gators thown in for free...

Let's be clear, there is no rule of law on Wikipedia, other than jungle law. There is no such thing as fair and just when dealing with Wikipedia - it is just a dank dark jungle full of intellectual thugs, like MR Dtobias and JIMBO's merry band band of juice drinkers, who's lies and deceit and thuggery makes Wikipedia, the laughing stock of the intellectual world.

Drink up.

Posted by: Somey Wed 2nd May 2007, 3:56am

QUOTE(Joseph100 @ Tue 1st May 2007, 7:48pm) *
To believe the statment made by MR. Dtobias, "love, peace and wikipedia" numb nut, and I have some nice land in Florida for sale, cheap, and with the gators thown in for free...

I thought we were going to be nice-ish...?

Technically, that isn't exactly what Dan wrote originally. This thread has been heavily modified FOR MORE LOW-END POWER!!! to allow the, uh, discussion to continue in a more, uh, constructive fashion.

Nevertheless...

I, for one, completely accept the notion that Wikipedia has to have high standards as to what constitutes verification of an assertion by a self-interested entity. I would hope for nothing less, in fact... The issue here is really the threat of undue emphasis, and potentially an effort to "punish" a principal representing the subject(s) of an article for, and I think we all have to admit this, being a "tendentious editor" and violating WP's internal definition of "conflict of interest." While that editor may have been tendentious, the company itself has not been - it's still just a company, and even if we accept that the editor represents the company, or even is the company, his behavior shouldn't be a factor, as hard as that is to accept.

Personally, I don't think they should split the article, and making some sort hard distinction between the "old company" and the "new company" really isn't all that necessary in terms of providing accurate information. Britannica's approach to the situation was the right one: Simply mention that the company has been revived, maybe include a few details about how it was revived, and leave it at that. After all, AMBC, as it's currently constituted, is in the same business, claims a fairly plausible (though admittedly not rock-solid) chain of ownership, appears to be working with the same titles, and apparently has plans to continue doing so.

But if you ask me (and I realize nobody has), the comparisons to Gaumont and Pathe aren't close enough to warrant similar treatment. Granted, both Gaumont and Pathe went bankrupt and underwent various merges and restructurings, but from what I can tell, there just weren't any decades-long periods of complete inactivity. In Gaumont's case in particular, that company has always been primarily owned by the mysterious Seydoux family, in some shape or form, and may not have been completely inactive at any time - other than maybe the middle of WWII.

Anyway, the problem with Wikipedia in a case like this (at least as I see it) is that standards of conduct fly out the window when flamewars erupt. People can turn into persecutors very quickly, particularly when dealing with what they see as unreasonable demands. What can be done about it? Maybe nothing, but they should try anyway. Remember, they're the Big Huge Massive Online Encyclopedia - they can afford to back off from counter-attack mode if the situation calls for it... right?

Posted by: biographco Wed 2nd May 2007, 5:16am

Somey, thank you for the input and posting. I want to interject that the "Splitting" of the article is another attempt at asserting misinformation about us. I know it sounds like I am on a soap-box here, but Mr. Tobias, and the other certain Wiki-Editors have made it extremely clear of their distain for us. Please encourage the WR readers to check the articles discussion pages and the archives. It is very clear and all right there. I also sound repeatative, but the reason is an agenda against the company. I also agree that the "Gaumont" and "Pathe" articles are not exact as to us. "Gaumont" was completley dissolved and disbanded in 1938. The trademarks and name were "Picked up" by a completely different entity. Now, I have no problem with them claiming to be 110 years old. What my concern is that both articles were not referenced hardly at all, and the "Oldest movie company" status was not only NOT questioned by Wiki-Editors, but protected by editors such as "Walloon" and "Willbeback" (Who is even an administrator), as ours was veraciously torn apart. My question is why these articles weren't referenced and questioned with the scrutiny as was done on ours? Second, why is there such a personal attack on us? I have refrained from any slurs against even the Wiki-Editors that have been troubling us. Yet from them it is a constant baradement. I can state that the company passed to us from my friend, actress Blanche Sweet, who was at Biograph in the 1900's. She wanted to help revive the company and could, and I cannot say anyomore. There is a direct link all the way down the line from 1895 to us. But I am just not going to freely distrbute confidential company information or records. I would also for arguments sake, call up Paramount Pictures and ask them to reveal their sensitive corporate information. What do you think they would tell you? All we want the persecution and the hard line agenda against us to stop. If the article looked even close to Britannica's (Which we are very happy with) then all would be fine. Sorry for the long disertation, but just wanted WR to have a greater understanding. Thank you:)

Posted by: biographco Sat 5th May 2007, 4:07am

QUOTE(Uly @ Tue 1st May 2007, 2:12pm) *

I think a closer parallel would be the British East India Company. Here's a little quote from that article:

QUOTE
In 1987, coffee merchants Tony Wild and David Hutton created a public limited company called "The East India Company" and in 1990 registered versions of the Company's coat of arms as a trademark, although the Patent Office noted 'Registration of this mark shall give no right to the exclusive use of the words "The East India Company"' [4]. By December 1996, this company had a website at www.theeastindiacompany.com. It sold St Helena coffee branded with the Company name and also produced a book on the history of the Company. This company has no legal continuity with the original Company, even though it claims on its website to have been founded in 1600.


Uly, thank you for your input. This is very similar to what "Gaumont" did. On our company, no. Again, can't go into it, but it is a different situation entirely, and we have legal continuity. Thanks:)

Posted by: biographco Sat 5th May 2007, 9:01pm

QUOTE(Somey @ Tue 1st May 2007, 8:56pm) *
...After all, AMBC, as it's currently constituted, is in the same business, claims a fairly plausible (though admittedly not rock-solid) chain of ownership, appears to be working with the same titles, and apparently has plans to continue doing so.

But if you ask me (and I realize nobody has), the comparisons to Gaumont and Pathe aren't close enough to warrant similar treatment. Granted, both Gaumont and Pathe went bankrupt and underwent various merges and restructurings, but from what I can tell, there just weren't any decades-long periods of complete inactivity. In Gaumont's case in particular, that company has always been primarily owned by the mysterious Seydoux family, in some shape or form, and may not have been completely inactive at any time - other than maybe the middle of WWII.


First, thank you Somey for the input... I needed to interject a quick item here for our WR readers. This next quote comes from the "Gaumont" http://www.gaumont.fr/gaumont/qui.html profile itself...

"In 1925, Leon Gaumont signs an agreement of distribution with the Subway Goldwin Mayer and creates a new company GMG, Gaumont Metro Goldwin, dissolved in 1928. With the arrival of speaking, in 1930, Leon Gaumont withdraws itself: Gaumont Franco Film Aubert (GFFA) was born: in addition to the extension of the park of rooms, the company produces comedies and, especially, immortal Atalante of Jean Vigo. In 1938, the GFFA becomes the New Company of the Establishments Gaumont (SNEG) ..."

This explicidely states that Gaumont is a "New" company, only carrying on a "Gaumont" name. Yet, in Wikipedia, there is NO contradiction on the "Gaumont" article, ..." See Wiki-Talk http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Gaumont_Film_Company and it is fully accepted by Wikipedia with only ONE source that this is the same and contunuing company...

"Gaumont is a French film production company founded in 1895 by the engineer-turned-inventor, Léon Gaumont (1864-1946). It is the oldest running film company in the world." [i]See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaumont

Yet on our article http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Mutoscope_and_Biograph_Company it is completely ripped apart with 40+ references trying to disprove (Unsuccessfully) that we are the SAME or continuation of the same company, even though we have verifiable outside sources, (One being Encyclopedia Brittanica) which have been completely ignored by the Wiki-Editors and the Wiki-Staff. Our situation is different since we are a continuation. But nevertheless on the articles and prejudice, I would like for someone to explain to me why? Thanks:)

Posted by: Cedric Sat 5th May 2007, 9:21pm

QUOTE(biographco @ Sat 5th May 2007, 4:01pm) *

Yet on our article http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Mutoscope_and_Biograph_Company it is completely ripped apart with 40+ references trying to disprove (Unsuccessfully) that we are the SAME or continuation of the same company, even though we have verifiable outside sources, (One being Encyclopedia Brittanica) which have been completely ignored by the Wiki-Editors and the Wiki-Staff. Our situation is different since we are a continuation. But nevertheless on the articles and prejudice, I would like for someone to explain to me why? Thanks:)

This would be the nearest explanation I can come up with:
FORUM Image

Posted by: biographco Sat 5th May 2007, 9:31pm

QUOTE(Cedric @ Sat 5th May 2007, 2:21pm) *
This would be the nearest explanation I can come up with...

THAT IS COOL!! LOVE IT!! LOL

Posted by: JTM Sun 6th May 2007, 3:05am

QUOTE(dtobias @ Mon 30th April 2007, 5:57pm) *

Those various proclamations prove nothing, given that governments at all levels are issuing tons of this sort of ceremonial stuff, often with little or no scrutiny; I've heard of complete hoaxes being "honored" in this manner, if the hoaxer manages to pull enough political strings. I'm a bit more surprised that Britannica bought your assertion that your company is a continuation of the older one; I'd think that being out of business since the 1920s is enough reason to consider any new company of the same name a totally separate thing.


Yikes, what a cynical take. I would think that having a Britannica entry with this information would make it presumptively correct. After all, Britannica pays folks to check facts before they write articles. Fabrications would be grounds for dismissal. My sense is that you are disagreeing simply to be disagreeable. If I'm not mistaken, in internet terminology this is called trolling.

Posted by: Somey Sun 6th May 2007, 3:37am

QUOTE(biographco @ Sat 5th May 2007, 4:01pm) *
...This next quote comes from the "Gaumont" http://www.gaumont.fr/gaumont/qui.html profile itself...

"In 1925, Leon Gaumont signs an agreement of distribution with the Subway Goldwin Mayer and creates a new company GMG, Gaumont Metro Goldwin, dissolved in 1928. With the arrival of speaking, in 1930, Leon Gaumont withdraws itself: Gaumont Franco Film Aubert (GFFA) was born: in addition to the extension of the park of rooms, the company produces comedies and, especially, immortal Atalante of Jean Vigo. In 1938, the GFFA becomes the New Company of the Establishments Gaumont (SNEG) ..."

This explicidely states that Gaumont is a "New" company, only carrying on a "Gaumont" name...

And yet it's quite possible that some of the same people, particularly the owners, who ran GMG might have ended up with GFFA or SNEG, since it was only ten years. Does anyone know, actually?

It seems to me the problem is really that AMBC is both the same company and a different one simultaneously. AMBC wants to assert that the similarities are what's really important, and Wikipedia wants to counter-assert that the similarities are superficial and it's the differences that are important - even going so far as to dismiss evidenciary claims made by AMBC that would probably be accepted at face value, had they come from a company that hadn't been accused of editing the article about itself.

It's a terribly interesting problem, but the unusual nature of it actually makes it more difficult to find fault in the positions and/or actions of both parties. I realize that's a highly equivocal, and therefore wimpy-assed stance to take, but I'm not sure what other stance would make sense to me.

Posted by: biographco Sun 6th May 2007, 4:23am

QUOTE(Somey @ Sat 5th May 2007, 8:37pm) *

QUOTE(biographco @ Sat 5th May 2007, 4:01pm) *
...This next quote comes from the "Gaumont" http://www.gaumont.fr/gaumont/qui.html profile itself...

"In 1925, Leon Gaumont signs an agreement of distribution with the Subway Goldwin Mayer and creates a new company GMG, Gaumont Metro Goldwin, dissolved in 1928. With the arrival of speaking, in 1930, Leon Gaumont withdraws itself: Gaumont Franco Film Aubert (GFFA) was born: in addition to the extension of the park of rooms, the company produces comedies and, especially, immortal Atalante of Jean Vigo. In 1938, the GFFA becomes the New Company of the Establishments Gaumont (SNEG) ..."

This explicidely states that Gaumont is a "New" company, only carrying on a "Gaumont" name...

And yet it's quite possible that some of the same people, particularly the owners, who ran GMG might have ended up with GFFA or SNEG, since it was only ten years. Does anyone know, actually?

It seems to me the problem is really that AMBC is both the same company and a different one simultaneously. AMBC wants to assert that the similarities are what's really important, and Wikipedia wants to counter-assert that the similarities are superficial and it's the differences that are important - even going so far as to dismiss evidenciary claims made by AMBC that would probably be accepted at face value, had they come from a company that hadn't been accused of editing the article about itself.

It's a terribly interesting problem, but the unusual nature of it actually makes it more difficult to find fault in the positions and/or actions of both parties. I realize that's a highly equivocal, and therefore wimpy-assed stance to take, but I'm not sure what other stance would make sense to me.

Somey, thank you for your input and let me try to clarify this further. I did receive "Items" from a person from Biograph Company that was back all the way to 1908 with the company. I can't go into this more than that because of confidentiality. As stated before, we have direct links all the way back, not just similarities. My problem is that the Gaumont company states that its company was transferred and a new company formed. They also claim to be the "Oldest in the world", which is fine by me. My problem is that Wikipedia's article states them as the "Oldest movie company in the world", yet with us they assert we are an "Entirely new company" and only "Took the name" which is not true. Gaumont has been given the benefit of the doubt without having to "Prove" anything, and if there information is ambiguous, it's "Oh well". We, however, have been scrutinized, disected and interrogated to prove who we are. On another note, we did NOT post the original article on the company. We did a couple of times interject information, but to be honest we were unaware at the time of the strangeness of Wikipedia and thought it was legitimate. Wikipedia has made assault after assault on us for no reason. The editing has been completely biased. They have stated time and again they want us to look "Bad". "Ridiculous", etc. They have ignored all legitimimate sources. With all due respect, this negates finding or not finding fault in "Both" sides, since Wikipedia has assaulted us for no reason. My question is, what proof is needed by us that we have not provided, short of revealing our confidential company information, to prove who we are, and why are we being pressured to show even more proof? We have verified published sources, government documents, published articles, verifiable and reputable listings, references, etc. Again, what proof is needed to prove who we are that we have not provided already? Thanks:)

Posted by: wikilove Sun 6th May 2007, 11:23pm

QUOTE(dtobias @ Mon 30th April 2007, 2:00pm) *

The thing is, nobody on Wikipedia is engaging in defamation.


blink.gif

QUOTE(dtobias @ Mon 30th April 2007, 2:00pm) *
It just means that the article won't contain alleged "facts" about his company that he is unable or unwilling to prove, that's all.


Proved to whom? People in that group don't analyze information for veracity. They vote on who they like, or don't like. And put in what they will. The most influential admin gets final say. That's it.

Posted by: biographco Sun 6th May 2007, 11:44pm

QUOTE(wikilove @ Sun 6th May 2007, 4:23pm) *

QUOTE(dtobias @ Mon 30th April 2007, 2:00pm) *

The thing is, nobody on Wikipedia is engaging in defamation.


blink.gif

QUOTE(dtobias @ Mon 30th April 2007, 2:00pm) *
It just means that the article won't contain alleged "facts" about his company that he is unable or unwilling to prove, that's all.


Proved to whom? People in that group don't analyze information for veracity. They vote on who they like, or don't like. And put in what they will. The most influential admin gets final say. That's it.

I couldn't agree more:)

Posted by: biographco Sun 6th May 2007, 11:55pm

QUOTE(Anonymouse @ Sun 29th April 2007, 5:47pm) *

Well, one would think the burden of proof would be on you to prove you are the same company. If I open a store, and call it "Gimbel's", then you don't automatically assume that it is the same as the old one. ~~~~

All the proof is there. You can see in the article "American_Mutoscope_and_Biograph_Company" that is exactly what is going on (Intended force disclosure of private/proprietary primary source documentations), and what the other editors are attempting to do. We have verifiable published sources and government references certified that we are who we are that has been ignored by Wikipedia. That pretty much says it all.

Posted by: wikilove Mon 7th May 2007, 12:52pm

I hadn't read the details before Mr. Biograph - but to be honest, I think that you can forget about due process, facts and what-not. Honestly, you are wasting wind talking about it, even here. You aren't going to be listened to over there (and the more you argue, the worse they will treat you). No one here can do anything about what's going on over there. We can sympathize, but this is standard operating procedure (typical) stuff.

Identifying problem editors would be an issue if WP were a company and they were engaged in quality control. It is not. Even if you manage to get WP to alter text (difficult to do) they would not admit any error or fault, nor would they chastise the editor(s). Ever.

Your article is reasonably benign, which is a fortunate thing, all things considered. (You've actually provoked them by talking about it over here - lots of them read this secretly).

My advice: I'd focus on other venues for raising the profile of your company or project.

And watch your page daily for vandalism.

Posted by: biographco Wed 9th May 2007, 12:23am

QUOTE(wikilove @ Mon 7th May 2007, 5:52am) *

I hadn't read the details before Mr. Biograph - but to be honest, I think that you can forget about due process, facts and what-not. Honestly, you are wasting wind talking about it, even here. You aren't going to be listened to over there (and the more you argue, the worse they will treat you). No one here can do anything about what's going on over there. We can sympathize, but this is standard operating procedure (typical) stuff.

Identifying problem editors would be an issue if WP were a company and they were engaged in quality control. It is not. Even if you manage to get WP to alter text (difficult to do) they would not admit any error or fault, nor would they chastise the editor(s). Ever.

Your article is reasonably benign, which is a fortunate thing, all things considered. (You've actually provoked them by talking about it over here - lots of them read this secretly).

My advice: I'd focus on other venues for raising the profile of your company or project.

And watch your page daily for vandalism.

Wikilove, thank you for your input. Actually, I'm not posting any new things, just replying to any inquiries freinds at WR have. I do want to thank everyone here for their input and concerns, and yes it has done alot of good:) Thomas@Biograph Company

Posted by: GlassBeadGame Wed 9th May 2007, 12:58am

QUOTE(biographco @ Tue 8th May 2007, 6:23pm) *

QUOTE(wikilove @ Mon 7th May 2007, 5:52am) *

I hadn't read the details before Mr. Biograph - but to be honest, I think that you can forget about due process, facts and what-not. Honestly, you are wasting wind talking about it, even here. You aren't going to be listened to over there (and the more you argue, the worse they will treat you). No one here can do anything about what's going on over there. We can sympathize, but this is standard operating procedure (typical) stuff.

Identifying problem editors would be an issue if WP were a company and they were engaged in quality control. It is not. Even if you manage to get WP to alter text (difficult to do) they would not admit any error or fault, nor would they chastise the editor(s). Ever.

Your article is reasonably benign, which is a fortunate thing, all things considered. (You've actually provoked them by talking about it over here - lots of them read this secretly).

My advice: I'd focus on other venues for raising the profile of your company or project.

And watch your page daily for vandalism.

Wikilove, thank you for your input. Actually, I'm not posting any new things, just replying to any inquiries freinds at WR have. I do want to thank everyone here for their input and concerns, and yes it has done alot of good:) Thomas@Biograph Company


I think there is some level of outside recourse that is appropriate. This is always preferable to engaging in WP internal processes. Like my grandma said "don't gladly suffer fools". Trying to make WP responsible might mean a civil action, a media campaign, or approaching your state legislature (especially given your company's important role in the development of the film industry.) But to keep your integrity you need to establish boundaries. This is something intolerable to a cult. Let them know you were here first and you didn't ask to be dragged into their various role playing dramas.

Posted by: biographco Fri 11th May 2007, 9:19pm

QUOTE(GlassBeadGame @ Tue 8th May 2007, 5:58pm) *

QUOTE(biographco @ Tue 8th May 2007, 6:23pm) *

QUOTE(wikilove @ Mon 7th May 2007, 5:52am) *

I hadn't read the details before Mr. Biograph - but to be honest, I think that you can forget about due process, facts and what-not. Honestly, you are wasting wind talking about it, even here. You aren't going to be listened to over there (and the more you argue, the worse they will treat you). No one here can do anything about what's going on over there. We can sympathize, but this is standard operating procedure (typical) stuff.

Identifying problem editors would be an issue if WP were a company and they were engaged in quality control. It is not. Even if you manage to get WP to alter text (difficult to do) they would not admit any error or fault, nor would they chastise the editor(s). Ever.

Your article is reasonably benign, which is a fortunate thing, all things considered. (You've actually provoked them by talking about it over here - lots of them read this secretly).

My advice: I'd focus on other venues for raising the profile of your company or project.

And watch your page daily for vandalism.

Wikilove, thank you for your input. Actually, I'm not posting any new things, just replying to any inquiries freinds at WR have. I do want to thank everyone here for their input and concerns, and yes it has done alot of good:) Thomas@Biograph Company


I think there is some level of outside recourse that is appropriate. This is always preferable to engaging in WP internal processes. Like my grandma said "don't gladly suffer fools". Trying to make WP responsible might mean a civil action, a media campaign, or approaching your state legislature (especially given your company's important role in the development of the film industry.) But to keep your integrity you need to establish boundaries. This is something intolerable to a cult. Let them know you were here first and you didn't ask to be dragged into their various role playing dramas.


Oh we did try to establish boundaries and asked not to be drug into thier "Games". Go to the discussion aqnd archive pages on our article on Wikipedia...

Thanks:)

Posted by: Toledo Fri 16th November 2007, 6:04pm

Under federal trademark law, "Nonuse for two consecutive years shall be prima facie abandonment." If Biograph went out of business in the late 1920s or the late 1930s (the Wikipedia article isn't clear on that), its trademarks entered the public domain two years later. Likewise, the article says that all of the copyrights on their films had expired without renewal by the 1940s, and that the films themselves were donated to MOMA in the 1930s.

So, with the Biograph trademarks in the public domain by the 1940s, the Biograph copyrights in the public domain by the 1940s, and the film library donated to a museum — what assets were left to transfer when the new/revived Biograph was incorporated in 1991? The burden of proof would be on the company incorporated in 1991 to show that it has some legal connection to the older company, beyond re-registering some of the older company's public domain trademarks.

Posted by: GlassBeadGame Sat 17th November 2007, 3:02pm

QUOTE(Toledo @ Fri 16th November 2007, 1:04pm) *

Under federal trademark law, "Nonuse for two consecutive years shall be prima facie abandonment." If Biograph went out of business in the late 1920s or the late 1930s (the Wikipedia article isn't clear on that), its trademarks entered the public domain two years later. Likewise, the article says that all of the copyrights on their films had expired without renewal by the 1940s, and that the films themselves were donated to MOMA in the 1930s.

So, with the Biograph trademarks in the public domain by the 1940s, the Biograph copyrights in the public domain by the 1940s, and the film library donated to a museum — what assets were left to transfer when the new/revived Biograph was incorporated in 1991? The burden of proof would be on the company incorporated in 1991 to show that it has some legal connection to the older company, beyond re-registering some of the older company's public domain trademarks.


Burden of Proof? If I remember correctly the issue if whether there should be one or two articles on Biograph. This isn't some adversarial proceeding. Who is Wikipedia to impose any burden on a private business? It is question of backing assertions with reliable sources, not proving anything. This just demonstrates the hostility that admins and editors have taken against this company for daring to wander into your role playing game uninvited.