Sunday, July 13, 2014

Delaware Bikes announces new Mission Statement

In light of a recent legal challenge to our name and domain, Delaware Bikes has released the following mission statement:

Delaware Bikes is a non-profit Advocacy and Advisory Committee that communicates primarily through a Blog known as DELAWARE BIKES. Delaware Bikes does not solicit members, nor does it ask for monetary donations. Although based in Newark, the blog covers issues of interest to cyclists statewide.

Guided by these 5 components - Engineering, Education, Encouragement, Enforcement and Evaluation - Delaware Bikes is committed to supporting the implementation of, overseeing of, and enforcement of DelDOT's Complete Streets and Bicycle Policy. Delaware Bikes strives to create a safer environment for all cyclists on Delaware's roads and pathways, with a special emphasis on those who cycle as their primary means of transportation, by advocating for improvements within the existing infrastructure.

The committee unanimously voted to maintain Delaware Bikes, and if anything, calls on Bike Delaware to examine their name and domain in light of false advertising. At the time of this writing, Bike Delaware:
  • Focuses almost their entire energy on multi-use trails and pathways funding.
  • Has undermined, or attempted to undermine initiatives and projects related to on-road advocacy.
  • Engages in misinformation campaigns through their website and lobbying activities.
  • Does not link constituent organizations, and rarely cross-posts critical issues.
  • Serves few needs and interests of today's recreation and transportation cyclists. 
These are not merely allegations - one only has to examine Bike Delaware's website to understand their priorities. To that end, we dispute the following from their Attorney:

"Generally, merely inverting the words in a mark does not distinguish the marks, especially in view of the similar meanings and connotations of the respective marks. The significant similarities between the marks - particularly where the services are identical/overlapping and are directed to the same consumers and through the same trade channels - is likely to confuse consumers."

Delaware Bikes does not serve Consumers, nor does it operate within Trade Channels. Our focus (or services, if you will) is not identical, and has minimal overlap. Both websites are available for all to read, and both supply news of interest to cyclists. However, a critical difference between us is that unlike Bike Delaware, who requires that members pay a fee, Delaware Bikes does not solicit memberships nor do we accept donations of any kind. Therefore, we question the "competition" that they allege. And indeed, many people read and follow both websites.

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