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Re: Using the Term Debian, DWN 04Jan05 - www.debianshop.com


[I'm moving this from -legal to -project since it's more appropriate
there.  The original -legal posting is at

* Andreas Brakoulias <andreas@brakoulias.freeserve.co.uk>
> The 'Using the Term Debian' exchange in the first 2005 DWN, reminded
> me of the www.debianshop.com which is 'For everything Debian'.  The
> 'Announcement About the Debian Trademark' insists that 'no business
> use the name "Debian" in the name of the business, or a domain name
> of the business'.

Let me say a few words about the trademark in general first.  The
original trademark policy was very unclear and it was also never
enforced properly.  We're currently working on a new policy which will
both protect the Debian trademark but also let people use the name for
reasonable purposes.  As to enforcement, different lawyers
unfortunately have completely different opinions about this, ranging
from "don't do it, because you might in turn get sued" to "yes, you
have to protect your trademark".

As to the specific case of www.debianshop.com.  I'm aware of them, and
while I personally am not happy about the name (since it clearly
violates the existing trademark policy), I see no reason at the moment
to enforce our trademark and ask them to change their name.  The
people behind debianshop.com are actually quite reasonable people and
work with the Debian UK community.

I realize that this answer is probably not very satisfying.  However,
before we go about enforcing anything, we need to do two things:
  - create a clear trademark policy
  - decide how much enforcement we want

In the meantime, I'm keeping a list of domains we're not entirely
happy with.
Martin Michlmayr

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