Dear High Times the 'Women of Weed' will not be misrepresented or silenced
Dear High Times,
I am writing to you, and sharing with others, because you have left me no options. I am an almost 25 year veteran of the Cannabis/Hemp movements/industries and have shared a relationship with High Times magazine for almost as many years. Within the pages of HT, my products have been featured and articles were written about my activist and business efforts. It was my honor have spoken on expert panels and judge multiple High Times Cups and in 1997, long before “pay to play” was standard, my company received the “Bioneer Award for Outstanding Achievement in Body Care”, from High Times sister magazine, Hemp Times. I have also enjoyed personal relationships with many amazing people that built the High Times brand. Our shared history is why this is particularly painful.
Mother Earth’s Green Services llc (MEGS llc) is the parent company where the brands of cannabis topicals, Cannabis Basics and Hemp Basics reside. It is also home to the private social club “Women of Weed.” At great effort and expense, all of these brands have multiple federal trademark registrations, some historical in nature. “Women of Weed” was born in May of 2013 and will be celebrating six years next month. What started in Washington state, now has 167 amazing cannabis women from around the globe with an estimated 2,500+ years of service to the Cannabis plant. We have never advertised or self-promoted and still, we are a nationally recognized entity. Women of Weed has an official member limit but we celebrate all women who are working for the complete emancipation of the Cannabis plant and all who love her.
The issue is, for the past fourteen months, High Times has promoted and held events under the Women of Weed name, directly infringing upon our federally registered mark that covers gatherings of women for business, activist or social purposes, in Cannabis or Hemp. High Times used images to promote these events that are disrespectful and sexualize women in our culture. These actions are debasing and are confusing the marketplace. High Times is now also making money through event sponsorships under our mark. The USPTO expects us to actively protect our intellectual property, thus we have sent out three progressive cease and desist letters to the editors, event producers and owners of High Times following each event. Each cease and desist was met with disregard and not once have we heard from your legal team. Attached below is the third and final cease and desist and also some visuals of our mark use.
My burning question is, how dare you? How dare you use the intellectual property of pioneering cannabis women for your financial gain. How dare you sexualize us and use our mark for your purposes, all in the guise of celebrating women in the cannabis industry. Many people are already aware that High Times has lost its heart and now possibly its soul as well. You sold yourself to the highest bidder, then dedicated writers, editors and event producers, left decades of their groundbreaking work behind because they could no longer tolerate the company’s new culture. They left in their wake a mere shell of what High Times once was.
As the legal owner of the Women of Weed Federal™, and a fierce advocate of Women’s rights, I am compelled to speak my truth, no matter the outcome. I will not be quiet and let anyone with money steal what we have built, strategically protected and rightfully, legally own. I am not surprised by the need to fight for my rights as a female cannabis activist and business owner, after all, the Equal Rights Amendment has still not been passed in this country. I am, however, shocked, saddened, and disgusted that I have to fight an entity that I have admired and even respected for so many years.
Founder Women of Weed
Founder & CEO Cannabis Basics
International Cannabis Health and Beauty Aids Producers Alliance (ICHABAPA), Founder
NORML Women of Washington, Treasurer
American Herbal Products Association (AHPA)
Hemp Industries Association (HIA)National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA)
The Cannabis Alliance