I’m not one to use this term, I generally prefer Urban Farmer. But I know a lot of other people that like to call themselves “urban homesteaders.” So this is to stand up for them! Excuse me, this may get snarky.
There’s a family out there that I found a few months ago (after I had started using the term urban homesteading, btw) and was following. They were homesteading on a city lot. I thought it was fascinating. At first I thought maybe I could learn something from them. Then I quickly realized that they didn’t seem all that interested in teaching people but rather just bragging about what they do. But I continued to follow just in case they would change their ways. Then today they posted something and all of a sudden I learned a LOT.
The Dervaes family claims on their About Page, “Please note that Path to Freedom is a noncommercial, family-operated venture. We devote countless hours to this site, and, despite the opportunity for profit, we remain committed to keeping it an advertisement-free forum. We do this because we believe in giving freely to others, a value upon which strong, healthy communities are built. We hope you will take this principle to heart, and will view this site not just as a place to “take” (answers, ideas, inspiration), but as an opportunity to “give” as well. Whatever you may gain by reading about our journey, please remember to “pay it forward” to others in some fashion. Together, we can ignite a revolution of spirit that will truly change our world for the better!.”
Well, you want a revolution? One is coming, but it’s not the one you wanted to ignite.
Today they posted this nice little form letter that reeks of “cease and desist” but doesn’t actually say the words. Actually they claim that they are the victims in all of this – something I’ve noticed they do a lot. They also claim to only have trademarked the terms “urban homesteading” and “urban homestead” to keep corporations from doing so. Well what exactly are you protecting the rest of us from when you treat those that use the terms the same way that corporations would have?
My friend Nicole, of FARMcurious did the research for us. So go check it out.
There’s a movement. Go post on your blog that you are an urban homesteader and bring this to the forefront. We must fight those that try to trademark a lifestyle and deny those of us that live that lifestyle from saying what we do. So far we’ve already forced them to shut down their Facebook pages. Just desserts for getting Facebook to shut down pages that contained those terms including the Instutute of Urban Homesteading’s page? Seems like it to me. Join the Facebook page Take Back Urban Home-steading(s) and become part of the movement to get our lifestyle back from the Dervaes Family.