As an investor, founder, CEO and business book author, I write about startups, design, how to build a good business, and I like to muse about culture in any form.

Let the Revolution begin

On an otherwise unremarkable January morning, the US Government recently made my day. Specifically, a public servant named David J. Kappos.  He’s Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office. His organization surprised me with the unexpected delivery of a very official-looking Trademark certificate for:

Citizen Commerce

We had applied for this a year ago, but hadn’t heard any updates in months.  The trademark just showed up.  Shiny gold seal and all.

I’m delighted for Daily Grommet to be the cheerleader and guiding hand for Citizen Commerce.  It’s a movement that represents the following thoughts:

  • Individual people have great power to shape the world we live in, through the most ordinary of behaviors: sharing, writing, talking, buying.
  • We control 65% of the US economy via these actions.
  • Every decision to buy (or not buy) a product or service is a “vote” for something.  A vote for a company and people who do business in a way that supports your values
  • Because the tools to create products are so much more accessible than ever, there is a new Industrial Revolution happening all around us.   Big companies with scale no longer control the tools of production and distribution.
  • With social media sharing tools, technologies, and behaviors (and the engagement of highly accessible video) we can finally have the information to act on our values.
  • We can efficiently organize to support (or expose) companies, people, and products that deserve our time, attention, money and resources

THOSE are the reasons I’m grinning ear to ear holding the Trademark certificate.  Let the Revolution begin.

16 Responses to “Let the Revolution begin”

  1. Victor K

    Congratulations Jules and Daily Grommet!!

    Yes, that piece of paper from the USPTO bearing a gold seal does have a way of putting smiles on people’s faces.

    Hope to be a soldier in your “Revolution”…
    VIVA Daily Grommet!!!!!!!!

    My best and again, congrats!


  2. Doreen O'Brien

    Yeah Jules! Yeah Daily Grommet Team!! Congrats to all!!

    Doreen O’Brien

  3. Steph Lawrence

    Congratulations! What a big step. Have so enjoyed following all your work and can’t wait to see where everything goes! All my best.

  4. Apollo Sinkevicius


    Now the next task for your team is to make “Citizen Commerce” a common term like xeroxing, lysoling, etc.



    P.S. Got to love the “efficiency” of USPTO. I have some outstanding TMs for Pixability still waiting in line.

  5. Victor K

    @Apollo…IMHO, the USPTO is one of very few government agencies doing ‘anything’ well. Just use your TM mark for now and you will soon get your piece of paper, like Jules got, which will let you use circleR. Take care. VictorK

  6. Julia

    Congratulations, Jules! It’s interesting to think about the larger implications of Citizen Commerce and how our economy could be “reclaimed” if enough “peer pressure” builds up around this style of informed, empowered consumerism. I’m looking forward to reading this book which might interest you as well: . Bring on the day when people think harder about what they’re buying, why they’re buying it, and what their purchase means in the greater scheme of things.

    • julespieri

      Hear hear Julia. I like that the thought brings power. It feels less like burden and more like positive expression, action, and joy. Looking into the book you mention…it’s going right on my “want” list.

  7. Dennis

    I hate to state the obvious but does every revolution have to begin in Lexington, MA. Have you ever considered hiring your local equstrians to ride thru the street screaming to the stunned starbucks customers?

    “Citizen Commerce is coming, Citizen Commerce is coming”

    Just a thought 🙂


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