Wed 21 Aug 2019 12:11PM

Legalities around calling our event a 'Decompression'

EJ Erin Jeavons-Fellows Public Seen by 82

According to the Burning Man website (link below), “Decompression”—is a trademark name only permitted for official events of Burning Man and the Burning Man Regional Network, which are contractually obligated to uphold certain principles."
It has come to our knowledge that Kiez Burn is not an official Burning Man regional event despite being the 3rd largest burn event in Europe but Holger (our Regional BM representative) is in discussions of making this happen.

Holger and Erin have been in discussions around this. The easiest way would be just to leave out the term "Decompression". But since there is also the idea to make Kiez Burn an official event, why not trying it with the Decompression? Holger has looked up the criteria (also attached) for official regional events, and he believes that they will apply also for the Decompression.

1. For now, we will remove the name Decompression in our event name to stop further people bothering us or action.
2. James and Daisy will reach out to BM and work on making the Decompression, if its possible with the time we have left before our event.

Use this thread to keep those interested updated


Kris Wed 21 Aug 2019 12:56PM

Are these agreements with an organisation making events or per event? I guess what I'm asking is if we can just stick this under the Borderland umbrella this year until KB becomes a part of the network. There should be enough members of Borderland already involved for that to be an OK thing to do.


walto Wed 21 Aug 2019 9:17PM

Really? I don't think the Dutch decompression was part of that network plus, a decompression party seems rather universal, not limited to events connected to burning man


meowmeow Fri 23 Aug 2019 6:32PM

This seems like a very easily solved problem that doesn’t require being absorbed by the burning man institution: “Kiezburndecompression”, “Decom”, “Dekompression”, etc. I’m more wondering how many people who may have fled BRC to find a better place to have a Burn elsewhere that don’t want to be associated with Burning Man™ and their potential treats feel about a suddenly decision to be approved by Burning Man Inc. Shouldn’t more discussion be made on the pro’s & con’s of being an independent burn before buttons are being pressed?


Erin Jeavons-Fellows Tue 27 Aug 2019 9:28AM

Guys, I do not have the time to be investigating this right now. Does anyone wish to take over?


Erin Jeavons-Fellows Thu 5 Sep 2019 12:17AM

@jamesfish @crazydaisy and are leading the charge on getting the event to become an official Burning Man decompression. The document that covers the requirements is here. I think its a case of writing a couple of emails! Our German Regional Contact @holgerwessels may be able to offer some advice or assistance.


[deactivated account] Fri 27 Sep 2019 1:10PM

I would advocate for standing together as a community on questions like this. Which for me would mean living under the umbrella of Kiez Burn e.V. It would be sad if things started to go in different directions and we'd have a Kiez Burn independent regional summer burn here and a Burning Man TM (far-away capitalists! Trademarking the event is Commodification!) Decompression in Autumn.......... Our community is not that big and together we are stronger <3


James Fish Mon 30 Sep 2019 1:07AM

So, admittedly, we ( @crazydaisy & I) have been pretty slow on the ball on this. (Lots of personal things for both of us.) That being said, after going over the criteria document, there are few things that will make this take more time than we have at this point to get the official decompression tag:

1 is that we'd have to obtain insurance for the event - are we already doing that anyway? - and name BRC LLC and Burning Man as additional insured parties. If we're already obtaining insurance, that part is easy. If we aren't, then we'd have to.

2 - we'd need to sign a 'regional use agreement' document with Burning Man, for the life of me i cannot find this document anywhere on the internet. I emailed around to see if I can get it, but I'm expecting turnaround time on getting a response, not to mention turnaround time on getting it signed off by all parties.

So, looks unrealistic this time, but good to know and to have for next time... and maybe after we get more community feedback as @alina calls for.


meowmeow Mon 30 Sep 2019 4:54PM

But once we can use the word DECOMPRESSION on the internet, all of our dreams will come true!!!


James Fish Thu 5 Sep 2019 12:21PM

@meowmeow : just to reiterate what erin said, making our Oct 11 burn night an official bm decompression =/= making KB an official burn. two different things. getting the stamp of an official decompression for our berlin burn night will help bring in lots of awesome energy and burners from outside berlin!


meowmeow Thu 5 Sep 2019 12:30AM

Wondering when we had the meeting to decide as a community whether we wanted to be an official burning man event or not.


meowmeow Sat 24 Aug 2019 8:11PM

Sounds like the easiest way to avoid headaches. “Dekompression” is also more fittingly German for a Kieznburn decom.


Franzi Mon 7 Oct 2019 3:21PM

Also, I would be more careful in promoting the idea of random becoming a GbR @holgerwessels and @jamesfish ..since there is also a liability side of things. So not sure that is really what you want.


Owl Mon 7 Oct 2019 3:09PM

Hm. If you are just a bunch of people, then you're automatically forming a GbR (Gesellschaft bürgerlichen Rechts), and that will be the Entity then (if not one person is taking all responsibility, signing the contract, running the account etc.). A GbR can be formed verbally, but is sometimes better with an one-page-contract to be signed by all who form it (so people know what they are agreeing to).
The benefit question is for someone else to answer :-)


Owl Mon 7 Oct 2019 3:37PM

@franzi6 ah, I didn't follow the discussion fully, was just concluding from what @jamesfish mentioned, since at Ponyhof there is usually a GbR. A GbR is truly a risky thing in the long run (that's why its existence in case of Ponyhof is limited to 6 month), entities with limited liability are way better. It was just to mention that if a group of people states they are doing something together, they automatically form a GbR, and that it is good to be aware that any risk (liablility, finaces, taxes) is only shared, not cared [about] ...


James Fish Mon 7 Oct 2019 2:22PM

hey Holger thanks for the documents. I started filling it out, but not sure who is our official production entity contact here, since from my understanding KiezBurn eV isn't officially involved and we are just a bunch of people who feel like organizing this.

"Production Entity as should appear on contract: ___________________________
Type of Legal Entity: ______________________________________________
Mailing Address of Entity: _________________________________________
Entity E-mail address: ____________________________________________
Contact Person at Entity: __________________________________________
Role of Contact Person with Entity: ___________________________________
E-mail Address for Contact Person: ___________________________________
Phone of Contact person with Entity: __________________________________"

and to answer the question on the form of how does this event benefit the community: from my understanding any profit will get reinvested into kiezburn operating overhead like renting freiland, power/water, right? or funding art/dreams in the future?


Owl Mon 30 Sep 2019 5:34PM

@jamesfish @crazydaisy I'm sorry for missing out the part of wanting to become an official event. I hope the stuff emailed to James is sufficient. Personally I'm not sure if BM Org needs to mentioned in the insurance since this is more an American juridical situation that people sue everyone even if they are only slightly involved by watching over the trademark.
You (we) probably have to send in the event details, and then get the DocuSign version of the contract (maybe indeed after some turnaround time) which then has to be signed by the e.V. (probably by two board members).
What I just learned by browsing through the documents: the financial documentation is expected either 30 days after the event or at the end of the fiscal period (end of year). That gives some extra time to resolve the money side of the event.
More interesting could be the question of the expected giveback to the Burning Man community by donating a part of the surplus, if that is an accepted or unwanted request.


meowmeow Tue 27 Aug 2019 11:51AM

I’m warning everyone now, if I’m in charge of this, I’m just going to rename it “Kiezburn de-cum” and call it good.


meowmeow Fri 23 Aug 2019 6:19PM

Although the dutch regional did get put under assault from Burning Man Inc and eventually sanctioned as the sleeping sheep version. Although, I’m Wondering if there’s a difference between a Berlin decompression and a Kiezburn decompression.


Erin Jeavons-Fellows Mon 26 Aug 2019 7:44AM

Yes, indeed. youre right, we should discuss more on the pro’s & con’s of being an independent burn.
in regards to the name, Dekompression is still too close to the trademark name. We can be a official BM event without KB being officialised


Erin Jeavons-Fellows Thu 5 Sep 2019 12:58AM

We voted for official burning man event so we can try to call ourselves a Decompression... although with 5 weeks left and the BMorg just finishing up at BM that may not be possible. We will stick with Burn Night until anything changes.

The decision to make KB an official event should be voted for by the community and be separate to this event.


walto Wed 28 Aug 2019 5:17PM

such a topic would be for the general assembly of the Kiez Burn e.V. More info: and no, no such decision has been made yet.


Franzi Mon 7 Oct 2019 3:19PM

Hey @jamesfish Kiez Burn e.V. is officially involved since we signed the contract with the venue :)