Anitra Freeman (
Thu, 6 Aug 1998 15:51:00 -0800

At 7:29 PM -0800 8/4/98, WebMaster wrote:
>Mr Latham's site was removed because he violated our Terms of Service

Bruce, I appreciate you writing to us.  I know that your action of pulling
the site was standard in the industry in cases of trademark violation.
However, I hope that you realize that this is not enough to resolve the

To quote from your own service agreement, "In the case of any
such complaint, XOOM reserves the right to remove the content complained of
while the XOOM member and the complaining party attempt to resolve their
dispute. This could result in your page(s) being removed from XOOM for as
long as it takes to resolve the dispute."

Theodore Latham has not, to date, been given any information by you or by
the complaining party as to what item is in dispute or who has lodged the
complaint.  He has no chance to prove his rights to whatever item is
displayed or to remove it from display or to resolve the dispute in any
other way.  The only data he has is a search he did tracing the cause for
site closure to a three-layer moving picture -- an MPEG -- that he claims
he never displayed.

I do hope that it is not possible for me to choose any XOOM member page at
random and write to you, claiming "The such-and-such on so-and-so's page is
mine, and I'll sue you for displaying it!"  -- causing you to simply delete
that members account, on the instant.  I could wreak havoc.

That scenario sounds totally bizarre -- but there is nothing in your words
or actions so far to prove that you haven't behaved just like that, so that
my page or any other Xoom member's page is at day-to-day risk of any
passing person's casual spite.  I hope that you realize that you cannot
continue to operate a major web service with that kind of image.

I'm looking forward to hearing from you what steps you are taking to give
Theodore Latham full disclosure of the complaints made against him, and to
make a resolution of the dispute possible.

I will do everything I can to help.  I am one of those who takes a "calmer,
more inquisitive tone."  However, I also believe that Theodore Latham has a
legitimate complaint against you, one that gives me grave concerns about my
own use of Xoom, or anyone else's.  To anyone trying to create a presence
and a service on the Net, the prospect of being arbitrarily yanked without
notice on the basis of a complaint you won't even be allowed to know the
details of is daunting.  You already have problems enough.  Please don't
add to them.

Anitra L. Freeman, for SHARE/WHEEL
Seattle Housing and Resource Effort
Women's Housing Equality and Enhancement League
Tent City 2