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Re: Trademark policy for packages?

Henning Makholm <henning@makholm.net> wrote:
> Does the use of a trademark word to refer unambiguously to a specific
> technical protocol in package descriptions and documentation (that is,
> not in marketing materials) even require a trademark license? I know
> that it certainly does not in Denmark, but of course that does not say
> anything about the rest of the world.

It does not in the US either, last time I checked.

The legitimate purpose of a trademark is to prevent confusion about the origin 
of the good (or service), and this sort of usage doesn't cause confusion.

This is the reason we generally consider trademarks unproblematic.  As long as 
they are restricted to their original intended use, they don't conflict with 
the goals of free software.  Avoid any uses which might cause confusion about 
the origin or endorsement of something, and you'll usually be fine; and 
that's a good thing to do anyway.

If you really want to be on the safe side, write "This is *not* MIT's 
implementation of Kerberos." after anything which describes it as 
implementing the Kerberos standard or Kerberos protocol or whatever.  That 
makes it clear that you're *not* trying to pass this off as MIT Kerberos.

Nathanael Nerode  <neroden@twcny.rr.com>

Make sure your vote will count.

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