Attorneys learn to think systematically. So too do engineers, philosophers, mathematicians, MDs, and other scientists.
Ideally, attorneys and other thinkers consider not only their own position, but other perspectives too. The better an attorney understands their opponent’s argument(s), the more effective they can be in representing their client’s interests.
It goes without saying to longtime readers here that MHProNews’ management are not attorneys. But we can read, research, analyze, and think. We can and do cite sources, first, because it is the right thing to do. But also because crediting the source is what the law suggests should occur. The Daily Business News on MHProNews does not knowingly use another party’s writing or images, without giving proper credit.
For media and certain kinds of critical analysis, there’s a legal principle involved – and its know as “fair use.”
A well known, third-party example will help illustrate and make the point of fair use. CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News are among the mainstream media that routinely use each other’s logos, quote each other’s work, and use each other’s video clips. Since the work of all mainstream media is copyrighted, and their trade marks are registered, how is it possible for each news outlet to use the other’s work legally?
Because such use is covered under the well-established principle used by media known as “Fair Use.” The composite images show below are from this date, and are shown under fair-use guidelines.
How Is MHI Spending Members Dues?
The Arlington, VA based Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) apparently decided some time ago that it is okay to spend untold thousands in dues and other revenue money defending themselves and/or Clayton Homes, or their related lending units. Meanwhile, they routinely refuse to defend the industry at large that they claim to represent.
Who levels the charge that MHI isn’t acting in the best interests of most of their own members? Answer, past and current MHI members. Even MHI’s prior president, see linked report further below, arguably took some polite-but-pointed parting shots at his own prior bosses.
The quotes that follow are for newcomers to MHProNews, which are attracted day-by-day to this industry-leading trade publication.
The following quotes serve to make the point that MHARR’s founding president and former MHI VP likewise made, or that the new NAMHCO association’s founder made, when they announced their break with MHI over their failures to perform. Following these quotes below, we will springboard to the headline topic, after these thought-provoking examples.
What is MHI Actually Accomplishing?
MHI is what we’ve editorially and satirically have called the:
- Monopolistic Housing Institute, or the
- Machiavellian Housing Institute, or the
- Manipulative Housing Institute, with each satirical alternative title intended to provoke thought and analysis by industry professionals and observers. Are any or all of those alternative titles an apt description, or not?
Perhaps the bigger or better question is why does MHI target MHProNews – a pro-sustainable and pro-ethical growth trade publisher, that for years was an MHI member – instead of spending those resources defending the industry at large? If MHI were doing their jobs, they would have arguably have no concerns from our analysis, critiques, and commentaries, would they?
So, whatever MHI says to their allies privately, what is increasingly apparent is the validity of the concerns of those industry members noted above about topics like those linked from this report.
The related reports, further below the byline and notices, are but the most recent reasons why a growing number of industry professionals are alarmed at what MHI allows – and what their puppet masters do.
Meanwhile, MHI’s attorney’s target MHProNews’ publisher. Isn’t their action a stealth attack on the First Amendment?
Since that’s their apparent tactic, we’ll look below at some claims from their purported outside counsel, which is citing the Lanham Act as their claimed grounds for possible legal action against this platform’s publisher.
In a letter dated 12.21.2108 to MHProNews’ parent company’s managing member, attorney John J. Greiner, of Graydon Head & Richey, LLP gave numerous examples of his complaints, referencing the Lanham Act. Perhaps Greiner doesn’t think we can read, research, or think for ourselves?
Consider but a few of the legal references that arguably refute Greiner’s claim.
It is worth noting that a specific article Greiner mentioned is this one:
Note that it mentions Clayton Homes, as well as MHI?
Greiner says “Again, we demand that you immediately pull this material from your blog and cease and desist any further copyright violations going forward.”
First, while our website is made up of several blogs, it is more properly trade media. Moving on from that minor point, Greiner ominously stated what MHProNews has said for years, “We will monitor your site to ensure that you comply.” That’s Greiner stating the obvious. MHProNews has been read by MHI staff, plus large, medium, and small industry members for years. The quote below is one of many examples.
Response to MHI’s Disputed Allegations
Our publisher and managing member said, “We reject this claim by MHI, their purported attorney, and object to the notion that we’ve ever intentionally misused their logo or name. Anyone of sound mind who objectively reads our various fact-checks, analysis, and critiques of MHI and their puppet-masters knows that we are not claiming to be MHI. Far from it, we’re holding them accountable for their various actions and/or failures to act. We are not claiming to be MHI, nor have we claimed to be endorsed by them. Let others bear the burden of being ‘endorsed’ by MHI, which reportedly has many of its top people under investigation.”
That’s L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach’s tongue-in-cheek way of saying that several of MHI’s top members are facing various forms of legal and media scrutiny.
“An objective reading of what we do would logically reduce their attorney’s argument to a bluff, wrong-headed, or an otherwise misuse of the law, in my lay view. If they want to insist that we are incorrect, that is what juries are for, and we believe in the jury system.” said Tony Kovach. “Furthermore, to be crystal clear, we place a third-party fair use notice routinely on articles. So we believe that we are well covered by the proper understanding of the principle of fair use under the law.”
First let’s note that the Daily Business News on MHProNews uses various kinds and sizes of logos, some of which – see the example logos below – specifically state that the item it is attached to is being provided under fair use guidelines. That is an approved method of citing fair use, per the law. So Greiner and his clients in Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis are sure to see it, here is how a big version of that logo looks.
But even if that disclaimer above the logo was missing, MHProNews has for years noted at the end of each article that third-party images and references are provided under fair use guidelines. That are other ways that MHProNews has taken prudential steps at defending our rightful exercise of fair use.
We’re comfortable with the legality of that, based upon third-party legal experts. For example, see the quotations and citations, found as a download, referenced here.
With that disclaimer, let’s next look at what Greiner of Graydon Head & Richey, LLP has complained about. Because it is illuminating for the industry’s professionals to see what they debatably are wrongfully demanding that MHProNews remove from our website.
What Greiner has not done is say, ‘gee, MHProNews/MHLivingNews, our clients are not willing to debate or discuss the issues you’ve raised in public. They can’t or won’t try to explain any of the allegations or concerns you’ve raised about MHI, Clayton, 21st et al. So, we’d rather try various forms of intimidation tactics, hoping to silence your platform instead. Citing the Lanham Act is just a ploy.’
There are countless examples on MHProNews and MHLivingNews where we’ve used third party images and quotes, but always under legally protected third party media reports, critiques, and analysis guidelines.
As noted above, every day, mainstream media does the same thing. Do you see Fox News suing CNN for showing their logo, when they critique their reports? No. Do you see CNN or MSNBC suing Fox News for showing their respective logos when they are doing an analysis, critique or commentary? No. Why not?
Because the law arguably allows for doing that, and that includes the fair use provisions and rulings under the Lanham Act.
Consider what the Society for Professional Journalists said in their Code of Ethics page.
We’ll stand on our understanding of the law. At some point, they will either sue, or try some other tactic.
But if MHI and their Omaha-Knoxville masters and their allies had the guts, wouldn’t they’d debate in public, instead of ducking public debate? Wouldn’t they – at a minimum – rationally explain concerns over issues like those linked from this report?
Calling out BS
We’re once more accusing the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis and their allies of arguably deceptive trade practices, violations of RICO, marketing rigging, and antitrust laws, among previously cited concerns. Why not have their attorney’s explain those issues?
If their attorneys sue instead, then we’ll have little choice but to countersue, and use the discovery process to gain even more evidence against them. We’d ask for a jury trial, because the jury system is meant to sort out precisely such contests.
If the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis intentions are so pure, why don’t they explain it rationally? But that doesn’t seem to be the path they’ve chosen – as Graydon’s attorney working for MHI exemplifies. If so – if they launch a formal legal suit – then may justice be served, and may the best legal argument win.
But let’s be clear. The latest salvo of the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis isn’t so much directed against us. Rather, isn’t MHI’s aim at keeping the industry at large in the dark about what MHI and their puppet masters are doing?
ICYMI, see what Clayton is said to be doing to their largest independent retailer. Paraphrasing what MHM said last week, ‘if they rape their largest independent, what chance to the rest of us have?’ See that and other reports below.
The time to push back and fight the forces of the axis that seeks to conquer manufactured housing is now. If not now, when? “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)
NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two.
(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)
1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.
2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.
3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources
You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.
Former Manufactured Housing Institute President, Manufactured Home Owners, Urban Institute, and You – manufacturedhomelivingnews.com
” During my time at MHI, I was often asked the same question, “What must happen for business to return – for manufactured housing to begin growing again? ” My stock answer would usually start with ‘financing’ and end with a general comment about the need to bring ‘value’ to our customers.”
Bridging Gap$, Affordable Housing Solution Yields Higher Pay, More Wealth, But Corrupt, Rigged Billionaire’s Moat is Barrier – manufacturedhomelivingnews.com
America woke up today to division. But perhaps 75 percent (+/-) of the nation’s people could come together on a plan that demonstrably could do the following. Increase the U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by some $2 Trillion Annually, without new federal spending.