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Re: mozilla thunderbird trademark restrictions / still dfsg free ?

On Thu, Dec 30, 2004 at 05:35:55PM -0500, Brian Thomas Sniffen wrote:
> Alexander Sack <asac@jwsdot.com> writes:

> > I don't want to negotiate on the names (again) unless we find a
> > solution that has the backup from debian, from the current package
> > maintainers (eric, takuo et al) and maybe from other free
> > distributions. The last group is not accessible to me, since I have no
> > connections to other projects.
> > Maybe someone can help out on this?

> I certainly can't help you there, and I'm not sure there is any
> subentity within Debian that can usefully give you its blessing.

> > BTW, I don't think they can claim the common words 'bird' and 'fox'
> > their own, so 'freebird' would be valid as much as 'freefox' IMHO. The
> > only name I am unsure of is 'freezilla'. But maybe we can work around
> > this problem by naming it freexilla :)

> There's no disguising the fact that "freefox" and "freebird" were
> chosen to be similar to and evocative of the names "firefox" and
> "thunderbird".  It's a matter of whether they are *confusingly*
> similar.  The easiest way to answer that would be to ask the Moz
> people whether they'd consider them confusingly similar or not.

That's not the Mozilla authors' decision; "confusingly similar" is a call to
be made by a judge, and common sense is a strong indicator for this.  If the
Mozilla authors try to claim that "freebird" and "thunderbird" are
confusingly similar, they should be ignored.  (The names "firebird" and
"freebird" could be considered confusingly similar, however; I wouldn't opt
for "freebird" as a replacement name here without buy-in from the Mozilla

Steve Langasek
postmodern programmer

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