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Re: Bug#265352: grub: Debian splash images for Grub

Raul Miller wrote:
> On Tue, Oct 12, 2004 at 10:43:15AM -0700, Josh Triplett wrote:
>>Anyone who distributes the work, modified or unmodified.  I don't think
>>we can't regulate "use" and be Free; fortunately, most uses of the logo
>>are distributions, such as putting it on a website, or stamping it on a
>>CD and distributing the CD, or similar.
> I don't quite know what you're saying here, but I should probably point
> out that anyone can use the debian logo for anything if they modify it
> sufficiently that there's no confusing the result with the logo.

Which is only part of what is required for Freedom.  A piece of software
that restricted the types of use you could use the software for, but
only of the unmodified versions, would still be non-free, and would most
likely not require any extensive debate on debian-legal, nor would there
likely be any dissent.

>>Please refrain from using "dishonest" in that context; unmodified or
>>modified use of any Free image as a logo is perfectly reasonable.  Any
>>special restriction that you can only justify by saying "it's the Debian
>>logo" is a non-free restriction; it's an image, and it should be usable
>>just like any other Free image.
> Anyone can use the debian logo in any context.
> However, if they're going to be using the logo in a fashion which would
> lead the user to believe that something non-debian is debian, that would
> be [a] deceitful, and [b] illegal under trademark law.

And not something that should be permitted; for that matter, whether
they use the logo or not, they should not be able to lead someone to
believe that something non-Debian is Debian.

> It just so happens
> that other forms of deceit might not be illegal under trademark law,
> but that doesn't mean that it's deceitful to use the word deceitful to
> describe this issue.

*This issue*, meaning leading someone to believe that something
non-Debian is Debian.  That doesn't mean they should be limited to using
the logo only to refer to Debian, only that when referring to something
else, they can't say that that something else is Debian, whether or not
they use the logo.  Is that not a clear difference?

In fact, I think "leading someone to believe that something non-Debian
is Debian" is the only thing we really want to prohibit.  What if we
just said (not proposing a license, just a general idea): "You may use,
copy, modify, and distribute this logo for any purpose.  However, if you
use the logo in a manner which does not refer to Debian, it must be
clear that that which it does refer to is not Debian, nor is it endorsed
by or affiliated with Debian.".  Does that not capture the basic idea of
what we want to cover?  ("it must be clear" is intentionally vague, so
as not to proscribe a method for making it clear; it may be clear
without any explicit notice, or it may require some form of explicit
notice.  Also, obviously the exact wording needs polishing to be more
clear about what types of things are "Debian", such as including
official Debian products, standards, etc, as well as making the same
statement for the trademark on the word "Debian".)

The thing to keep in mind is existing practice: the logo is already used
in everything from desktop themes to the OpenOffice.org splash screen to
the icon used for Debian package files; we must ensure that these uses
are perfectly acceptable.

>>>Your proposed license, in any case, says that recipients may not use
>>>this software (the logo image) as a basis for other software (logo
>>>images) that competes with ours.
>>That's exactly the kind of restriction I'm trying to avoid; if I have
>>somehow not made that clear, my apologies. :)
> I don't understand this at all -- why not just avoid this issue in
> your license?
> It's not appropriate to use copyright to enforce debian trademarks,
> though it's probably ok to mention their existence in a license.

I agree.  I did not propose a license that would do such a thing; for
that matter, I wasn't attempting to present a license at all in that
point, only to suggest general types of uses that should and shouldn't
be allowed.  My main point is that under the combined effect of all
licenses that legitimately apply to the work, whether copyright,
trademark, or anything else, the work must still be Free Software.

- Josh Triplett

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