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Debian Linux

Debian Allows Trademark Use For Commercial Activities 57

Posted by samzenpus
from the my-trademark-is-your-trademark dept.
sfcrazy writes "According to the new trademark policy, Debian logos and marks may now be used freely for both non-commercial and commercial purposes. Stefano Zacchiroli, current Debian Project Leader and one of the main promoters of the new trademark policy, said 'Software freedoms and trademarks are a difficult match. We all want to see well-known project names used to promote free software, but we cannot risk they will be abused to trick users into downloading proprietary spyware. With the help of SPI and SFLC, we have struck a good balance in our new trademark policy. Among other positive things, it allows all sorts of commercial use; we only recommend clearly informing customers about how much of the sale price will be donated to Debian.'"
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Debian Allows Trademark Use For Commercial Activities

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  • Way to go Debian :)
    This is definitely a move in the right direction. Unlike the death threats from Intel if you use that sticker that comes in the boxed proc. Have you read that thing?
    • Who reads the shit that comes with the hardware? You unwrap it, plug it in, and run it! Have you ever read the owner's manual that came with your car? Me neither!

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        Yes! I did read the owners manual to my car. That is why I know it has 156HP and a 13.7gal fuel tank. There is a lot more I know about it, but that's irrelevant. Pretty much useless knowledge until I decide to sell it...if I ever do. It's a really nice car and I like it a lot.

        It's sad that I am one of the few who still reads things these days. You should try it, you'll learn a lot about things.
      • by Burdell (228580)

        Yes, I read the owner's manual for my car. Then I ordered the shop manual and reviewed it as well. There's a lot of good info in there.

        • The shop manual is indeed good reading. I have two for my motorcycle, and one each for the cars. I've never learned much of anything useful from an owner's manual though.

      • I just bought a new truck last week and I've been reading the manual ever since. It does a ton of stuff that I wouldn't know how to use if I didn't read the manual. Automatic headlights and windshield wipers, and voice commands to do everything from turning the air conditioner on to changing the station on the radio or making a phone call. I just noticed tonight that it says to keep the remote key far away from the rear of the truck when washing it because splashing water could cause the automatic power

        • by crutchy (1949900)

          ...but have you driven it yet?

        • by gnapster (1401889)

          I just noticed tonight that it says to keep the remote key far away from the rear of the truck when washing it because splashing water could cause the automatic power liftgate to open if it sees a key nearby.

          Wut?

          "Oh, no! My shipment of prize fighting eels! I told you to walk around the front of the car! ...Stop screaming, you baby. It's not like they're poisonous."

          • You kick your foot under the back bumper to make the liftgate open. A convenient feature if you have a bunch of stuff in your hands at the time, but if you're spraying water under the vehicle, the sensor might open the liftgate.

            It makes sense, but I didn't think of that until I saw it in the manual.

            • by gnapster (1401889)
              Indeed. The last thing I want is to be fishing for my keys when my arms are full of prize-fighting eels.
  • by alexhs (877055) on Sunday March 03, 2013 @03:52PM (#43063303) Homepage Journal

    Does it actually change anything ?

    The widely recognized ("official") logo was already the open [debian.org] one, while nobody uses the "restricted" logo.

    The new trademark policy [debian.org] states: You cannot use Debian trademarks in any way that suggests an affiliation with or endorsement by the Debian project or community, if the same is not true.
    But the official logo doesn't imply endorsement, that's what the restricted logo does. Or isn't the logo part of Debian's trademark ?

    Or is it newspeak for an actual restriction of rights ?

    • by Anonymous Coward

      I don't follow Debian, but I can recall their logo from my memory. This is the first time I have ever seen the 'restricted' logo.

      • by Nimey (114278)

        I'm a longtime Debian user and I can't remember ever seeing the restricted logo either. One wonders why they bother having it.

        • I have seen it now and then, for example on the cover of a special issue of GNU/Linux Magazine France that provided an official install CD of Debian, about ten years ago.
        • by crutchy (1949900)

          i got a tshirt with a big debian swirl... now i'm awesome :)

        • Well, you haven't seen it precisely because its use was too restrictive! Now, this might change.
      • The stylized bottle below the Debian swirl in the restricted logo [debian.org] practically explains the Debian philosophy. It's a gift from the free software genie.
    • I think you're mixing up trademarks and logos. The logos are among of the Debian trademarks but aren't the whole of them. The word "Debian" is a trademark too, for example.

      As such, the part of the policy you quoted means a tech company can state "We provide support for the Debian platform to our clients" (and use the open logo) as part of its commercial offerings because it doesn't imply it's affiliated to or endorsed by the community.

    • by unixisc (2429386)

      I too am wondering about the significance of this. It's obvious that if someone re-distributes Debian software, then under the Debian FSG, they'd have to re-distribute the source code w/ it. Aside from that, what control does Debian have? Do they demand that the company in question not deal in any proprietary software? If so, they would be far overreaching.

      Also, while Debian's distros are good, how much of a brand value does Debian itself have? For instance, does anyone prefer Iceweasel to Firefox?

  • by Mister Liberty (769145) on Sunday March 03, 2013 @05:03PM (#43063633)

    Ubuntu to Amazon: may we use your logo?

    Debian to Amazon: you may use our logo.

  • Minus all that ubUnity cruft...

  • Many people are wondering in this thread why they should care. I should hope the answer would be obvious. When an average human goes to buy a typical retail product they are not doing a lot of research ahead of time. They will often do some research today, but they are rarely drilling down into the specs to find out if the device will do precisely what they want to do. This works fine for most people because they don't want to do many things, if any, which the manufacturer did not intend. Most of us who wan

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