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Re: Ongoing Firefox (and Thunderbird) Trademark problems

On Wed, Jun 15, 2005 at 12:07:16PM -0400, Eric Dorland wrote:
> * Simon Huggins (huggie@earth.li) wrote:
> > On Wed, Jun 15, 2005 at 02:16:18AM -0400, Eric Dorland wrote:
> > > * Marco d'Itri (md@Linux.IT) wrote:
> > Like others in this thread I disagree with your position.  I don't
> > think you'd be compromising Debian's principles in doing this as
> > it's just about the name and it's purported to be easy to change the
> > name if downstream users do patch it.
> > If people want to rip out the guts of firefox then they have to
> > rename it.  I see no problem here.  Debian has proved it only wants
> > to do nice, fluffy things to firefox, Gervase is being accomodating
> > as far as I can tell.
> > Why do you want to make Debian the distribution that users moan
> > about shipping iceweasel when there is no reason not to just ship
> > firefox?  Pragmatically yours,
> Indeed the most pragmatic thing to do is to keep the name. But you
> don't feel that accepting a deal with the Mozilla foundation is
> against DFSG #8? Why not? 

You have the right to modify the code whether or not it is in Debian.

The license to the code is not specific to Debian so I don't believe
that this contradicts the spirit of DFSG #8.  The rights are the same
for you as they are for users i.e. they have the right to go to Mozilla
and prove they produce good enough software to use Mozilla's trademark
and call it firefox just as you have.  The license isn't specific to
Debian therefore this satisfies that clause.

I honestly believe the above paragraph is consistent.  Obviously there
are people out there who will argue that this clause means you can't
possibly do it as the name is different and Joe Random Hacker can't
somehow break firefox yet ignore the Mozilla Foundation and trade on
their good reputation by using their name.  I think however that that is
a specious argument and that all sane users of firefox will be able to
negotiate as you have done or not bother and change the name.

The Mozilla Foundation have made many shows of good faith via Gervase in
this long running debate which he has continued to follow despite the
criticisms levelled at him/the Mozilla Foundation.  Obviously if they
turn around in the future and say "oh we hate your blah patch you can't
use the name" then we can /then/ make it a big issue and change the name
to iceweasel and be happy.  I honestly think this is unlikely though and
to do so now would be not only be premature but be harmful to users and
your/the project's relationship with Mozilla.


Just another wannabie |    <will-h> the seat on my     |  Just another fool
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