[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: Trademarks: what is the line?

On Sun, Jan 02, 2005 at 12:25:25PM +0100, Francesco Poli wrote:
> Yes, but is requiring a global replacing of trademarked strings and
> images acceptable?
> I mean: it seems that Mozilla is requiring us
> * either to comply with strict modification constraints
> * or to replace every and each trademarked reference to the work with
> something else
> First option seems unacceptable (we couldn't even patch for security
> reasons before they decide to release a new version, correct me if I'm
> wrong).
> Second option would require the Debian package maintainer to dig into
> the source and play "seek & destroy" with all cases in which the work is
> referenced as "Mozilla {thunderbird|firefox}" or in which the official
> logo is used...
> This seems a bit more than requiring a name change (per DFSG 4).

Just as "sweat of the brow" is not copyrightable (in the US), Debian has
not, to the best of my knowledge, ever declared a package "non-free"
because it was too much trouble to do something that was legal and would
render it free. Certainly, the unmodified version may be non-free, and it
may not be *worth our while* to make a free variant, if nobody is willing
to volunteer to do it - but that isn't the same thing as the theoretical
stripped version not being free. It's only "not being worth the trouble"
(and implies that if, say, someone over at Fedora stripped it and published
the stripped tarball, we could potentially start from that point, even if
our maintainer hadn't done the work).

Of course, history has demonstrated that we often can find someone who
cares enough to do the gruntwork. But not having that isn't a matter of
freeness, only a matter of whether it is worth our bother.
Joel Aelwyn <fenton@debian.org>                                       ,''`.
                                                                     : :' :
                                                                     `. `'

Attachment: signature.asc
Description: Digital signature

Reply to: