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Re: Misuse of Debian logo for City Tourism

On Sat, Jul 26, 2008 at 01:49:37PM -0400, Joe Smith wrote:
> Unfortunately, The Debian logo was made using a common peice of 
> propreitary software. It consists of a pre-made brush stroke placed on a 
> spiral. At least one message indicated that the spiral was created using 
> basically the default settings of annother part of said software. This 
> has the unfortunate effect that many other people have created logos 
> virtually identical to the Debian Logo completely independently.

This has never actually been demonstrated.  The brush stroke itself is a
default setting, but I find it extremely unlikely that others have
independently arrived at a completely congruent shape.

> For example trademarks creative enough that the odds of anybody else  
> independendtly inventing it are negligable. In that case, it is sometimes 
> possible to sucessfuly argue that the other party is using the mark soley 
> to create customer confusion.

Creativity is not a factor in trademark law.  And there's no reason to go
after these folks under trademark law anyway.

Traditionally, Debian's problem has been a lack of a registered trademark,
combined with an unenforced copyright license on the logo.  There's been
motion in the right direction, to use trademark instead of copyright to
enforce use of the Debian logo; but given that the licensing page on www.d.o
hasn't been updated, we're apparently not all the way there yet.

In the long term, this use of the logo isn't anything we should care about
copyright-wise, and isn't infringing at all trademark-wise.

Steve Langasek                   Give me a lever long enough and a Free OS
Debian Developer                   to set it on, and I can move the world.
Ubuntu Developer                                    http://www.debian.org/
slangasek@ubuntu.com                                     vorlon@debian.org

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