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Re: Firefox/Thunderbird trademarks: a proposal

Eric Dorland wrote:
Before I get to them, one of the interesting things pointed out in one
of the threads is that the Trademark License might be more onerous
then what trademark law (at least in the US) allows. Now, they're your
trademarks, and I have every intention of respecting your wishes when
it comes to using them. It may not paint the Mozilla Foundation in a
good light if you are indeed trying to impose more restrictions than
trademarks allow.

Trademark law varies much more than copyright law between jurisdictions. I have not intentionally attempted to overreach the scope of trademark law. In any case, with the recent modification, the document is a permissions grant under whatever trademark law is in effect, rather than a contract. So I hope this won't be an issue.

Now then, I personally will not accept any deal that is Debian

Absolutely reasonable - it would be entirely against DFSG #8.

Whether or not this is actually against DFSG #8 or not is
beside the point, I don't want to play if it's only because we're the
popular kid. This problem goes beyond Debian. Other distributions are
not going to be able to use the trademark license as written. Are you
going to cut deals with Fedora, Slackware and Gentoo as well?

Absolutely. Ubuntu have already been in touch, and are watching the discussion closely. And I worked out a deal with Gentoo several months ago.

probably more likely to want to deal than us, but does that mean the
little distros don't get to use the trademarks because they're not
worth striking a deal with?

I'm open to talking to anyone. I'm hoping that what comes out of this discussion is a fairly general trademark permission that we can execute with anyone who convinces us that they aren't going to ship rubbish with our name on.

The reason trademarks like the TeX one are more palatable is that
there's a set of technical requirements and as long as you meet them
you get to use the mark. You've already sort of done that with the
Community Edition licensing, but you haven't gone far enough for what
a distro is going to need:

* Applying security fixes
* Back porting bug fixes
* Making distro specific integration changes

Would you prefer a set of technical requirements? I haven't gone down that path precisely because of the large number of DFSG issues it would immediately raise.

In contrast, my proposal contains provisions for all of the things in your bulleted list. It's really very hands-off.

* The Trademark License is finalized (right now it still says version
  0.7 draft, so I don't consider it in any way binding).

We hope to have a final version in the next few weeks. But if changing the package names requires a long lead time, then perhaps it would be in everyone's interest to get that particular ball rolling.


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