Serpent

Apple Computer and the Church of Satan

Soon after the birth of this website in January 1999 c.e., we decided to make a tribute to the company that manufactures the computers and the operating system which we love—Apple Computer.

So, to this end we were inspired by Apple’s advertising campaign which featured images of famous individuals, all of whom had a hand in changing the direction of the thoughts of their contemporaries. Specifically, each image was a black and white photograph of one such personage. Over that backgound was superimposed one of the “rainbow” Apple logos, along with the ungrammatical, but catchy, phrase, “Think different.” Therefore, since the Church of Satan is an organization which was founded on the premise of supporting thought that moves beyond herd strictures, and as the man who founded the organization and its philosophy of creative iconoclasm, Anton Szandor LaVey, was an ardent supporter and exclusive user of Apple Computer’s products and services — he owned a classic Mac, a Performa, a desktop Power Macintosh, and several PowerBooks — we thought that it would be more than appropriate to make a gentle parody of Apple’s ad campaign. By using an image of LaVey and super-imposing the logo and “Think Different” phrase, we arrived at a perfect tribute to Apple Computer’s products and their alleged support of iconoclasm.

Additionally, we came across a web site, Made With Macintosh, that encouraged support of Apple Computer by offering “ web badges” which contained the phrase “Made with Macintosh,” as well as one of Apple’s logos. Their site instructed those who had made sites on an Apple computer, particularly those with outstanding content, to prominently display any of the badges which they offer, as well as the option of creating one’s own badge, so long as the badge was linked back to their site. We felt that our participation in this program was certainly appropriate, as www.churchofsatan.com was generated entirely on a Macintosh computer, and it had been recognized with an award by AvatarSearch. We proudly included, beneath our tribute/parody — which was linked to Apple Computer’s official website — a “Made with Macintosh” web badge. And so these remained until today, 6 February, 2001.

During the two years that these items were on our site, we received no complaints from anyone who stopped by to take a look. In fact, visitors asked if there might be a poster available of our parody (we answered in the negative) and some even expressed to us that they thought it a pity that Apple Computer itself had not had the “testicular fortitude” to have used the image of American religious pioneer Anton Szandor LaVey in their actual campaign.

We did receive one note of complaint, not from a visitor to our site but from a law firm representing Apple computer, claiming trademark infringement. We replied in detail, explaining the above, and we did not hear back from them for over a year. We recently received an e-mail, a more complete fax transmission, as well as a hard copy via snail-mail from the law firm Arent Fox with a new complaint, not quite identical to the earlier mail received from a different law firm. We have below reproduced our reply that was sent as a faxed document and it quotes the pertinent text from their complaint.

28 December, 2000 c.e.

FAX TRANSMISSION

Total Pages: 4

To: Ms. Jessica M. Brody of Arent, Fox, Kintner, Plotkin & Kahn, PLLC

Fax #: XXX-XXX-XXXX

Copies sent to: Blanche Barton, Church of Satan / Steve Jobs, Apple Computer

Re: Alleged Trademark Dilution, Attorney Number 1227, Client/Matter Number 021023-00016

Dear Ms. Brody: Today, I am in receipt of both a fax and an e-mail claiming to originate with you. The contents of each are not identical, your e-mail message being in error regarding the contents of our site, so I shall instead address your faxed communication, which more accurately reports the graphics which we display. Also, please note the new e-mail address at lower left, as the one you used today will be terminated at the end of December.

I quote from your letter:

It has recently come to our attention that you are displaying a MADE WITH MACINTOSH badge and logo and a THINK DIFFERENT badge and logo on your web site at www.churchofsatan.com. Apple believes that your use of the made with macintosh and think different badges in this manner is likely to tarnish the goodwill associated with the APPLE Marks, and constitutes dilution in violation of the Federal Anti-Dilution Act. Additionally, Apple believes that your use of the MADE WITH MACINTOSH and THINK DIFFERENT badeges also violates the terms of your license agreement with Apple for use of these badges.

To begin, the site in question, The Official Website of the Church of Satan (www.churchofsatan.com), was designed and maintained by myself, Peter H. Gilmore, but it belongs to the Church of Satan, a corporate entity. I am its designated webmaster. I am also a proud user of Macintosh computers.

First allow me to examine the issue of the MADE WITH MACINTOSH web badge. The badge, which includes the phrase “Made with Macintosh” as well as a rainbow colored Apple logo, was obtained at the Made with Macintosh site (URL: www-tech.mit.edu/Projects/Macmade/) and is used on the Church of Satan site according to the guidelines Made with Macintosh has published regarding the use of this badge. Specifically they state that it be displayed on a web page created by a Macintosh computer (it is) and that the badge be linked back to their site (and it is so linked). Let me quote from their FAQ:

Made with Macintosh Frequently Asked Questions

Why did we make this page?
Our goal is to promote the fact that the best web pages out there have been made on Macintosh systems. We feel that the user community is unaware of the dominance and power of Macintosh systems in this field. Both through its ease of use and its power the Macintosh allows designers to create more interesting and involving sites. The efficiency which Macintoshes give to site design, creation and maintenance translate into better, more expansive sites that are updated more regularly than average sites. These sites also usually have a level of professional detail not seen on other sites.

Why should I put the badge on my web site?
What do I gain as a developer? Making people more aware of how dominant the Macintosh is in the creation of web pages means software developers will allocate greater amounts of their time and resource towards developing software for our market. Look at the situation with Netscape plug-ins right now. Many of the plug-ins are available only for Wintel machines. If youÍre a Mac developer, are you likely to use these? No. You use plug-ins that are available for Mac. If developers become more aware of this, we will start seeing Macintosh plug-ins and software before Wintel versions.

And from the Made with Macintosh main page is this invitation:

Show the world your page was “Made with Macintosh” by adding one of our badges.

Our page was indeed created with a Macintosh computer using the Mac OS. It has also been recognized by peers as a site deserving an award for excellence in design. The site was launched on 1 January of 1999, and in March of that year we won an award, The AvatarSearch Mystic Site of the Web Award. Let me quote the explanation from AvatarSearchÍs site (emphasis added):

The AvatarSearch Mystic Site of the Web Award exists exclusively for the benefit of the Occult Community on the Internet. Its sole purpose is to provide a means of recognition for a Web Site’s Achievement and service to the Occult community worldwide. This section is more than just a list of links. These Award Winning Web Sites are among the very finest of an Occult nature on the Internet. All of the sites listed here have proven to demonstrate both Excellence in Design and provide an important resource to Mystics and Occultists Worldwide. No preference is given to any specific Occult Tradition (Eastern or Western, Oral or Written) as the primary concern is what these sites have offered and the way in which it is presented.

Considering the above, I feel, as a proud supporter of Apple Computer, that I agree with the stated goals of the Made with Macintosh site and thus should participate in their program. I thus included included their web badge on the Church of Satan site in complete accordance with their guidelines, which demonstrates that this award-winning site was created on a Macintosh.

You claim that our use of this badge “constitutes dilution in violation of the Federal Anti-Dilution Act.” Please detail how this is so? Dilution, as I understand it, is an issue wherein a mark/graphic is used that is akin to one already trademarked and well-known but which is used for some other product or service which thus can cause confusion in people’s minds regarding the existing and well-known trademark. That is not the case here. We have not generated any graphics which are similar to Apple’s logos for the purpose of misdirecting people to some other product or service, nor have we in any way attempted to confuse people regarding these graphics. As is explained in the FAQ quoted above, the graphic is precisely one of Apple’s logos which directly and proudly points towards Apple Computer itself—it thus does not dilute the mark.

You also claim that our “use of the MADE WITH MACINTOSH badge also violates the terms of [our] license agreement with Apple for use of these badges.” Since this badge originates with the Made with Macintosh site and is used in accordance with their guidelines, I suspect that it should be up to them to ascertain that these are not in violation of their terms and license agreement with Apple before offering them to the public. Have you approached the Made with Macintosh site to have its activities curtailed? I would like to know if you have also approached any of the numerous other sites which use the badges from the Made with Macintosh site as a means for showing support for Apple Computer? I noted among those registered there, amidst the many personal, business, and school sites, one for the Burnt Store Presbyterian Church (www.helbing.net/bspc) promoting their religion and one called WICCA (www.angelfire.com/ak/lovelylight/index.html) promoting a neo-pagan religion. If you have not also contacted them, why then have you chosen to exclusively censor the use of this badge on our site which promotes understanding of a minority religion? Essentially, if we are the only site contacted by your firm among those participating in the Made with Macintosh campaign to support Apple Computer, then this would seem to be a case of discrimination. Does Apple Computer wish to make it a practice to discriminate against a minority religious group? And you should understand that we are a legally recognized religious organization which is noted in the US Army Department of Chaplains Handbook (both in print and in their online version at http://www-cgsc.army.mil/chap/relpractice/other/satan.htm).

If the Made for Macintosh site initiates a change in policies and guidelines, then we too shall comply with the policy changes made by the Made with Macintosh site, as I suspect would all the other sites who also participate in this program. In brief, we are using the badge as are many other sites; if you think we need to stop, then this should justly apply to all other sites who participate.

Your firm, in representing Apple Computer, contends that our “use of the MADE WITH MACINTOSH badge in this manner is likely to tarnish the goodwill associated with the APPLE Marks”? If so, please explain how it is likely to do so, when, as noted above, there are numerous sites which use this and similar badges provided by Made with Macintosh in the very same manner. Additionally, might you explain in what manner this badge may be used which you think will not be likely to “tarnish the goodwill associated with the APPLE Marks.”

Now to examine the second graphic on our website which you find objectionable. Above the “Made with Macintosh” badge, I placed a parody of one of Apple Computer’s advertisements in the style of the “Think Different” campaign which I created. This campaign’s print ads each consisted of a black and white photo of an iconoclastic figure from Western Society, upon which was superimposed the short phrase “Think Different.” There was also a rainbow-colored version of the familiar Apple logo superimposed on the photograph as well. My parody consisted of taking a black and white photo of the founder of the Church of Satan, Anton Szandor LaVey, over which I superimposed the phrase “Think Different,” as well as the rainbow-colored Apple logo. Additionally, if one clicks on this image, it is linked to Apple Computer’s website, which I think serves to prevent dilution of these Apple Marks.

Now, visitors to our site who have commented on this graphic have appreciated that it is intended as a parody, and I’ve received a good deal of response from people who have told me that they enjoyed the humor of this image. Anton LaVey, who died in 1997, was truly an iconoclastic figure in American religion, founding the Church of Satan in 1966, which is a world famous and a worldwide organization. Perhaps you haven’t read any of the material on our website? If you did, you would discover that the Church of Satan was formed as a means for gathering together fellow iconoclasts and free-thinkers who felt that the tyranny of Christianity and other spiritual religions was oppressive to the animal nature of humanity. Satan is used not to mean the devil of Christian mythology, rather we return to the original Hebrew etymology of this word which is a title for one who is “an adversary, an opposer, one whose duty it is to question.” In short, the essence of Satanism is to “think differently” from the herd, to question the status quo, and to blaze a trail toward finding oneÍs own solutions. Not unlike the stated goals behind Apple Computer. Is it that we “think too different” for your client?

Our philosophy champions innovators, not imitators, and that is why, when Apple Computer launched their Macintosh in 1984, it became the computer of choice for Mr. LaVey. He exclusively used Apple Computers up to his death, and was proud to own Powerbooks, a Performa, and several desktop Macintosh computers. And Mr. LaVey’s choice of Macintosh has had a strong influence on those attracted to his philosophy, such that most of the highly creative members of the Church of Satan have also made their commitment to using products made by Apple Computer. Thus, Anton Szandor LaVey has helped Apple to make hundreds of sales of their equipment to our worldwide membership.

Also, regarding the concept of fair use of copyrighted material, please note the following (emphasis added):

The 1961 Report of the Register of Copyrights on the General Revision of the U.S. Copyright Law cites examples of activities that courts have regarded as fair use: “quotation of excerpts in a review or criticism for purposes of illustration or comment; quotation of short passages in a scholarly or technical work, for illustration or clarification of the author's observations; use in a parody of some of the content of the work parodied; summary of an address or article, with brief quotations, in a news report; reproduction by a library of a portion of a work to replace part of a damaged © reproduction by a teacher or student of a small part of a work to illustrate a lesson; reproduction of a work in legislative or judicial proceedings or reports; incidental and fortuitous reproduction, in a newsreel or broadcast, of a work located in the scene of an event being reported.”

Thus, it seems from the above passage that it is allowable for us to parody your client’s ad campaign since we only use some of the content of the work being parodied (the Apple logo and the “Think Different” phrase from the ad campaign, not any of the black and white photographic images). If you think otherwise, please explain and cite legal precedents to defend your position. The parodic nature of this would also seem to move it beyond the other claims you make against this image.

Considering the material which I have presented above, it seems to me that we are not using the above mentioned badges and logos in a manner that constitutes dilution. The THINK DIFFERENT logo is incorporated into what is a parody, and since the particular manner in which we use the Made with Macintosh badge is consistent with the manner in which it is used on numerous other websites which participate in the program offered by the Made with Macintosh site, the overall claim of “dilution” does not appear to stand up to scrutiny. You have not elucidated how the particular manner in which we use this badge tarnishes the “goodwill associated with APPLE Marks,” so I would be pleased to address this issue if you would explain in detail what you perceive to be the error of our manner of usage and what you would consider to be a proper manner for their use.

To repeat, our parody of the “Think Different” ad is, to my knowledge, within our rights to create and display, and the gentle mockery and good humor of this has been noted by many who visit our site, which has thus in our experience brought additional public goodwill towards APPLE Marks, not a tarnishing of them. We, as proud users of Apple products, are doing our best to support Apple Computer, as we have done in the past through word of mouth.

The question you may need to answer is: “Why does Apple Computer accept many grassroots efforts by the proud users of their products, yet in this case seems to be attempting to silence our efforts to be part of this support by claiming that we may be tarnishing the claimed goodwill supposedly associated with APPLE Marks and products?” If your reasoning stems from Apple’s possible prejudicial judgments against the philosophies of the Church of Satan, I would like to point out that the lawyers from the American Civil Liberties Union who have worked with us on cases of religious discrimination would perhaps find this to be a matter worthy of their attention. Also, it occurs to me that this issue may also be of interest to other users of Macintosh products, and the Church of Satan has access to many journalists in all forms of media who might find this particular exchange to be newsworthy.

And finally, as an individual who has long campaigned to support Apple Computer amongst my colleagues in web and print media, I find your letter to be one which diminishes my respect for a company which has previously held my esteem as one of the true forces for free-thought and innovation currently active in today’s marketplace of ideas and technology.

Sincerely,

Magister Peter H. Gilmore
Church of Satan
Webmaster: www.churchofsatan.com

After sending this response we had to wait over a month for a reply from this attorney. Examining the e-mail response, I noted that the points made previously had been ignored, and instead a new, seemingly contradictory, approach has been taken which now includes the information that Apple Computer has been receiving complaints about our site. This is addressed in my response below, sent on February 6, 2001 c.e., which contains the complete text of the attorney’s reply, which is shown via indented text.

Dear Ms. Brody:

This letter is in response to your December 28, 2000 letter concerning your organization’s use of the MADE WITH MACINTOSH badge and logo and the THINK DIFFERENT badge and logo on your web site at http://www.churchofsatan.com.

I must note at the outset that your response, which I note was over a month in coming, fails to deal with the points made in my response of 1/28/2000 to you, which I shall address directly in the due course of this e-mail.

Apple is the owner of numerous famous trademarks and service marks including, without limitation, MACINTOSH, APPLE, THINK DIFFERENT and MADE WITH MACINTOSH (collectively, “APPLE Marks”). A current list of Apple’s trademarks may be found at http://www.apple.com/legal/publictmlist.html. Apple strictly enforces the extent and use of its famous trademarks, and has published guidelines for use of its marks on its web site at http://www.apple.com/legal/default.html#tm. Additionally, Apple has developed a technology web badge program through which it provides a limited license to users for several of Apple’s trademarks. The official Apple web badges and associated Guidelines and License may be found on Apple’s web site at http://www.apple.com/about/webbadges/index.html. You will note that Apple’s THINK DIFFERENT logo is not one of the trademarks licensed through the web badge program.

None of which has been disputed. We are in the process of reviewing the above suggested materials, as well as conferring with legal counsel.

As indicated in your December 28, 2000 letter, your web badges were improperly obtained from the “Made with Macintosh” site located at http://www.tech.mit.edu/Projects/Macmade.

Please define “improperly obtained.” The badges are offered by Made with Macintosh to anyone who uses a Macintosh to create their innovative websites. As very carefully explained and documented to you in my previous letter, we indeed suit these “Made with Macintosh” guidelines and thus chose to participate in Made with Macintosh’ s program of “grassroots support of Apple Computer.” So your phrase “improperly obtained” does not seem, as far as I can see, to be related to the actual means by which I obtained these. If you are intending to say, but failing to do so with clarity, that Made with Macintosh has improperly obtained these badges, and then they “improperly” offer them to we unsuspecting Macintosh enthusiasts, then I suggest that you communicate this to them. I have apprised them of your correspondence with me and I am awaiting their response. If indeed Made with Macintosh is distributing these badges in violation of Apple Computer’s expressed intentions, then we agree that such badges should be removed from all websites currently displaying them.

Have you approached other sites currently participating in this program with a request to remove these badges? You should understand that if the site I have designed is singled out as the only one which is not allowed by Apple Computer to use badges offered by this Made with Macintosh program, in which hundreds of sites currently participate including those presenting both Christian and Pagan beliefs, then you are demonstrably acting in a discriminatory manner against the minority religion which I represent, and I will not hesitate to make this quite clear to the public at large—both Mac users and non-Mac users.

You are apparently unaware that the Church of Satan does not engage in nor does it condone illegal activities, and the same held true for its founder Anton Szandor LaVey, and in fact both support a society governed by law and order. Our philosophical roots include such champions of individualism as Nietzsche, Twain, and Benjamin Franklin. Anton LaVey himself said of another American pioneer, Martin Luther King, Jr., “A man like that belongs on a pedestal.” (page 197, Popular Witchcraft by John Fritscher, The Citadel Press, 1973).

Additionally, the Church of Satan does not discriminate based on gender, race, or sexual orientation, and was in fact one of the first Western religions to express complete acceptance of gay and lesbian members, many of whom have held positions of respect in our organization from its inception in 1966.

Those who are prejudiced against our philosophy have tried to smear us with falsehoods, but then such has often been the case in our society when a new religion presents ideas that may be seen as disturbing to the status quo. We do indeed “Think different,” but in a way that promotes individual excellence and freedom of thought. We advocate a form of “productive rebellion” which is often demonstrated through the creation of works of music, art, film, literature, and poetry. One of our axiomatic premises is that all great inventors and innovators were at first considered to be blasphemous and thus shunned by their contemporaries.

You should be aware that this web site is not an official Apple web site, nor is it otherwise affiliated with Apple. Consequently, the web badges you are publishing and distributing on your web site are unauthorized copies of Apple’s official web badges and/or counterfeit copies of Apple’s famous trademarks and logos.

The above paragraph is unclear to me. Please restate it so I may precisely understand your position. Are you trying to say that the web badges which I am displaying, which came from Made with Macintosh, are unauthorized copies? Are you saying that they have made “counterfeit copies of Apple’s famous trademarks and logos”? If so, as asked above, are you also approaching them and ordering that they cease and desist in what you allege to be distributing of unauthorized or counterfeit web badges/logos?

Thus, by persisting in displaying and distributing these unauthorized and counterfeit web badges, you and your organization are in violation of the federal trademark laws.

Please demonstrate to me that you have ordered Made with Macintosh to cease and desist with their distribution of these allegedly counterfeit badges and have made efforts to halt the use of these badges by the many sites now participating in the Made with Macintosh program of Apple support. I am not “distributing” them, from my understanding of that term, merely displaying them for the enlightenment of those who view our website, but perhaps we need to define this term. If we are being singled out as the only participant of this program to be so asked to remove these badges, then, as stated above, I will bring this matter before the public.

Let us consider the resultant publicity which will arise through this demonstration of what would appear to be hypocrisy on the part of Apple Computer. When one contrasts Apple’s prior advocation, via an advertising campaign, that it is a positive act to “think different,” with their current desire, as evidenced by the efforts of your legal office, to apparently regulate just “how different,” I posit that one might expect a rather negative response from the majority of users of Apple products and services, whom I suspect are basically classically liberal-minded individuals who were attracted not only to Apple’s technology, but to their stated philosophy of support for iconoclasm.

With respect to any properly authorized Apple web badges, the Apple license agreement states that “[y]ou may not use the Badge or any Apple trademark on a Web page which contains subject matter which Apple may deem, at its sole discretion, in poor taste or to be disparaging to Apple or its products or services.” [1] Furthermore, Apple’s trademark license is “revocable at Apple’s sole discretion.”

This seems to contradict what you stated above. If these badges are counterfeit and not authorized (and as such, I’ve pointed out the Made with Macintosh site is the distributor of these items in question and thus you should be approaching them), then I must ask how you can revoke an authorization you claim above does not exist?

Also, please state very specifically what subject matter on our website is now being deemed by Apple Computer as being in poor taste? It is a site established for the presentation of the philosophy of the Church of Satan which also serves to dispell misconceptions or deliberate distortions of our unique perspective on the human species. Our support of Apple computer, as I have explained in detail in my previous letter, is not an effort to disparage Apple or its products or services. It is a sincere effort at advocation of Apple Computer. However, once this exchange we are having is brought before the public, I am of the opinion that the positions you are taking on behalf of Apple Computer will perhaps work to disparage the reputation of the company which you are here representing.

[2] Apple has received multiple complaints regarding your use of Apple’s trademarks and logos,

I respectfully request to know the number of complaints and from what manner of people they are coming. Have you in any way attempted to investigate the complaints? Do you simply accept them at face value? Since we are an organization established to challenge the norm, encouraging different thought as a value to be cherished, it follows that we have detractors, those we would view as being reactionaries who wish to maintain a status quo of conformity. It is this type who would harass us, and by sending in complaints to Apple they may feel that this is a way to somehow attack our organization. I suggest that such complaints are authored by individuals who do not understand our philosophy and are thus inspired by prejudice and bigotry. Therefore, I am disappointed that Apple Computer would submit to pressure coming from what I think to be clear acts of religious intolerance.

I and others might ask “Where did Apple Computer’s support of ‘The Outsider’ go?” Was that all merely an effort to market products to people who want to give themselves the illusion that they are somehow revolutionary, and not an actual support of those who are pioneering in fields of human endeavor? As I stated before, the philosophy of the Church of Satan is about individual liberty, resistance to entrenched authority, and an evolutionary state of iconoclasm. Does Apple Computer now shrink from the advocacy of those who truly “think different”?

and has determined that your continued use of Apple’s trademarks may be deemed disparaging to Apple or its products or services.

I submit that “Deemed disparaging by whom?” is a pertinent question which you have not explored. If bigots feel this way, is it not cowardly of Apple to submit to this pressure? If this was Germany of the mid 1930’s, and web and Apple technology existed, and our site was one promoting Judaism with a nod towards the superiority of Apple products and services, would Apple Computer have gone along with complaints from supporters or members of the Nazi regime, who clearly would deem Jewish support of Apple as “disparaging” and demand such support to cease?

Pursuant to the terms of the license agreement, Apple has therefore revoked any license it may have previously granted to you to use its trademarks.

This also seems rather unclear to me. Please state quite precisely what license, and under what circumstance, you “may have previously granted” it, which you are now revoking.

Based on the foregoing, we ask that you remove the unauthorized MADE WITH MACINTOSH and THINK DIFFERENT badges from your web site,

The Church of Satan is always willing to comply with applicable laws, and thus for the present we will remove the “Made with Macintosh” badge as well as our parody of the“Think Different” advertisement which contains a rainbow Apple logo. However, we are continuing to explore the issues which I have raised in this and my previous letter to which you have not yet responded.

and any other reference to Apple or its famous marks.

I would like to point out that this is still the United States of America. As I understand the situation, I am perfectly within my rights to make references to “Apple Computer or its famous marks.” I may, under the law, parody materials produced by this company which has hired you to represent it, which I clearly pointed out in my previous letter and which point you did not address. I may also post or otherwise publish an essay or editorial detailing these exchanges with you as a representative of Apple computer, and I may choose to speak with journalists and whomsoever else I might deem proper “in reference” to Apple Computer.

We further request that you confirm in writing by February 6, 2001 that the material has been removed from your web site. We appreciate your prompt cooperation in this matter.

As stated above, I will remove on February 6 the “Made With Macintosh” badge, as it seems quite possible that Made with Macintosh is distributing these contrary to Apple Computer’s wishes, and the parody which contains the Apple logo/slogan. However, it remains to be seen if further research will establish whether we may rightfully restore these to our site.

Sincerely, Jessica M. Brodey

cc: Apple Computer, Inc.

Anthony V. Lupo, Esq.

Fabricio Vayra, Esq.

[1] Apple Technology Web Badge Trademark License http://www.apple.com/about/webbadges/badges6.html.

[2] Id.

Sincerely,

Magister Peter H. Gilmore
Council of Nine
Church of Satan

This exchange has definitely soured us on some of the taste of Apple, and we have decided to pull the disputed materials. However, it should be noted that subsequently Adweek Magazine deemed this image “Ad Parody of the Year” and published it in their pages where it was viewed by their numerous readers. I also discussed this correspondence on TechTV and in radio and print media. And we received a flood of email supporting our position from both fans and critics of the efforts of Apple.

We are sincerely disappointed in discovering what we consider to be bigotry on the part of Apple Computer, even though we still think they make hardware and software that does excel in the area of rationality, design, and ease of use.

It is also amusing to us that this company uses as a corporate logo an apple with a bite taken from it, which certainly appears to be a reference to that other famous apple. We have not forgotten that forbidden fruit, which would impart knowledge of Good and Evil, offered to Eve in that mythical garden by none other than the serpent, an avatar of Satan himself. Is it not then strange that they seem to fear the admiration of the Church of Satan? As Anton LaVey himself would have said, “They want to dance, but their feet won’t let them.”

One of the pursuits of Satanists is to point out hypocrisy wherever it has entrenched itself, and so we have presented this page. Apple Computer, through the “Think Different” advertising campaign, seemed to be celebrating the lives and ideas of revolutionary individuals. I suspect that some consumers may have bought Apple products, feeling that this company supported people who strive to present their own points of view; such consumers might even have counted themselves, to a lesser degree, as being that type of person. They may have thus felt it was proper to use products manufactured by a company which shared their vision. We now present this material which we think will shatter that illusion; Apple seems to be shying away from contemporary ideas which upset the status quo.

So if you are currently viewing the world through rose-colored glasses (or perhaps lenses in the shades of graphite, indigo, key lime, ruby, sage, or snow, with frames wrought of purest titanium), then now might be the time to remove them and take another look. View with fresh perspective that company which introduced its Macintosh using a lengthy commercial dramatizing an athletic young woman smashing the gray visage of an Orwellian dictator on a video screen. She burst through the ragged, shuffling hordes, a vision of Satanic splendor, and refused to submit to conformity. If we were making this again today, that young woman might be wearing a Sigil of Baphomet, the face on the screen could be that of Steve Jobs, and Apple’s lawyers might be huddling amongst the masses, only moving away from the crowd to stick out a foot in an attempt to trip the heroine on her dash towards the promotion of independent thought.

The more things change, the more they really do stay the same.

Magus Peter H. Gilmore