Students Sue School District In Trademark Fight Over Racial Justice Podcast Name

Black learners in Denver are suing the college district, expressing it is hoping to “steal” their podcast title “Know Justice, Know Peace.”

The lawsuit claims the students, who produced the racial justice podcast “Know Justice, Know Peace” subsequent George Floyd’s murder in 2020, designed “an immediate hit” that obtained the consideration of media outlets such as the “Today” display, The Denver Submit claimed.

The group — composed of 4 Black latest and former college students at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Early University — sued Denver General public Schools in federal courtroom on Monday. The district submitted a few trademark applications, which includes one point out application and two federal apps, for the identify, according to the lawsuit.

A Colorado trademark registration referenced in reporting by Chalkbeat Colorado reveals the district described the series as “offering data about inequities in the educational program [and] providing solutions for applying, enhancing, [and] sustaining fairness.”

The lawsuit explained an irony in the district’s work to trademark the title.

“The irony of DPS’s makes an attempt … is that DPS has for many years fallen way quick on Black history, racial justice and education and learning around these important difficulties,” the lawsuit explained. “That their newly found and noticeably tardy desire to address racial concerns had to come in this type is a unfortunate commentary on the point out of DPS.”

A spokesperson for Denver Community Faculties, following originally not supplying comment “due to the pending litigation,” informed HuffPost that the district seems to be ahead to the authorized process and “clearing up any misinformation that is in the criticism.”

“It is regrettable that Mr. Jeffrey Kass [the student’s attorney] has misrepresented the details and regulation in an attempt to push the narrative that DPS did just about anything other than assert its rights by way of the legal method,” the spokesperson wrote.

“We are unhappy that we were unable to appear to a mutually agreeable resolution with these pupils, and we keep on being open up to even more discussions.”

District Deputy Superintendent Anthony Smith fulfilled with students and their dad and mom in an effort and hard work to “coerce and bully” them into expressing the district owned the trademark, according to the lawsuit.

“Notably, it is your clients who are liable for trademark infringement,” the district’s law firm reported in a letter to the students’ lawyer.

Chalkbeat reported that an attorney for the district despatched a letter in August to former principal Kimberly Grayson, who was concerned in the podcast’s generation, concerning her registration of a organization named “Know Justice, Know Peace: The Acquire LLC.”

The letter, which Chalkbeat stated it been given via a community information ask for, mentioned the title belonged to Denver Public Educational institutions and described the podcast as created with district gear on its assets.

Grayson explained in an electronic mail to district team received by Chalkbeat that she registered the company mainly because she experienced still left the faculty and the college students desired to record the podcast independently.

She wrote that the district was contradicting alone for expressing its stance on equity though also stating it “OWNS 4 Black young ladies’ picture, voice, and written content,” according to Chalkbeat.