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

Re: trademark licenses and DFSG

* Stefano Zacchiroli <zack@debian.org> [111010 13:58]:
> > Note that I am not talking about violating the terms of a trademark
> > *license* here, which I maintain we generally have no reason to seek
> > (or accept), but about whether such use infringes actual trademark
> > rights directly.
> Whether the license part is relevant or not depends on the extent of
> fair use that can be granted to Debian packaging. For instance, I've
> little doubts that distributing unmodified upstream code would
> constitute fair use and hence grant us to reuse upstream marks in both
> package names and in the application itself. But when you start changing
> the code --- either in functional or non-functional ways --- the point
> that you're outside trademark fair use can be made.

I think the fundamental question here is: Which uses of a name are
restricted by trademark laws?

Clearly a trademark restricts how[1] it can be used in advertisements
or anything being like advertisements (like things printed on the
package of some shelved DVDs).

The question is: What else is restricted? Are package names?
Are window titles? Are directory names? Are things mentioned in some
README file?

I doubt any lawyer can really answer this, but it's still something we
should seek an answer for.

	Bernhard R. Link

[1] note I used "how" and not "if" or "whether".

Reply to: