Linked by Adam S on Tue 2nd Aug 2005 13:09 UTC, submitted by Georgina
Linux A lawyer acting for Linus Torvalds has contacted Linux vendors in Australia and asked them to sign a legal document relinquishing any legal claim to the word "Linux" and demanding they purchase a licence for its use from the Torvalds-created Linux Mark Institute, which administers the Linux trademark. The effort is part of an 18-month struggle to get 'Linux' registered as an Australian trademark.
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What misuse?
by Ronald Vos on Tue 2nd Aug 2005 13:29 UTC
Ronald Vos
Member since:
2005-07-06

However, Steve D'Aprano, operations manager at prominent open source vendor Cybersource, told ZDNet Australia his company would sign the statutory declaration.

"If Linux were to fall out of trademark protection, there would be nothing to prevent unauthorised, shady and unscrupulous individuals and organisations from using the term for cheap knock-offs cashing in on the name or other products which harm the reputation of Linux, and by association, ourselves, he said.


That's kinda rich, considering we're talking about libre and gratis open-source software, which you're free to do with whatever you please. (Including putting out sub-par distros)

Reply Score: 0

RE: What misuse?
by cibus on Tue 2nd Aug 2005 13:34 UTC in reply to "What misuse?"
cibus Member since:
2005-07-06

No matter how open-sorce it is you are still not allowed to call it Linux if it is _not_ Linux.
"Linux powered" is actually quite a buzzword these days.

Reply Score: 2

RE: What misuse?
by Blackhouse on Tue 2nd Aug 2005 13:35 UTC in reply to "What misuse?"
Blackhouse Member since:
2005-07-06

You are free to use it, and getting a license is fairly easy (read here: http://www.linuxmark.org/index.html). This is just to protect the Trademark Linux, so that it is not misused for purposes it's not meant for.

Reply Score: 5

smitty_one_each Member since:
2005-07-07

This will be helpful to you, when you invest time into a supposedly 'Linux' product that does the Ronngg Thing.

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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you sir are a massive tool.

How is this like microsoft, Linux is a pretty made up word. oh wait , it is an original word unlike windows.

how many windows did you see today already? how many linuxes (as in noncomputer things)

Linus has the trademark in United States.

This is because there is ONE linux, and redhat isnt it, the kernel linus produces is linux, everything else is linux based etc. He wants to protect his personal kernel and it's name.


is he ever gonna profit? probably not in any substantial way, does it give him the ability to protect his work from the next IP fools ala SCO, you better beleive it.

Reply Score: 0

MYOB Member since:
2005-06-29

"how many linuxes (as in noncomputer things)"

Linux washing powder, made by a Swiss company. Its quite cool, phosphate free stuff, in fact....

Reply Score: 2

Anonymous Member since:
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Hey, cool!

Gotta get some of that to wash my plush Tux with.

Linux not only makes your computer clean but also your clothes. That is something Microsoft will NEVER be able to match. ;)

Reply Score: 1

rcsteiner Member since:
2005-07-12

That's why Linus ended up creating the formal trademark in the first place. I'm not surprised that he's being proactive.

Reply Score: 1

Nicholas Donovan
Member since:
2005-07-28

I have to laugh at the people who will scream and yell at the stupidity and the audactiy of SCO, but then deny Linus the very right to protect a trademark that he owns that may help prevent such a situtation in the future.

Try running a business and you'll soon see. Your trademark or name brand is one of your primary selling points.

It's worth protecting regardless of whether your software is open source or not.


Cheers,

Nick

Reply Score: 2

Anonymous
Member since:
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Actually trademark owners are required by law to protect them (or else they will lose their trademarks).

Reply Score: 2

Ya
by Anonymous on Tue 2nd Aug 2005 15:34 UTC
Anonymous
Member since:
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Ummm there is a wee bit of a difference between trademarks and patents and copyrights =)

I surely hope people can legally attribute a name to a product without people bitching

Reply Score: 0

Yo Y'all!
by Ben Jao Ming on Tue 2nd Aug 2005 17:28 UTC
Ben Jao Ming
Member since:
2005-07-26

I believe trademark laws only apply to related businesses - so the Linux washing brand is completely legal but anybody wanting to sell software should go ask Linus before calling it Linux.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Yo Y'all!
by MYOB on Wed 3rd Aug 2005 00:20 UTC in reply to "Yo Y'all!"
MYOB Member since:
2005-06-29

Theres also an extremely good chance that Linux washing powder predates the Linux kernel, as the company that makes it was founded before Linus was even born (1950). However, they're still not in the same category.

Its not quite as clear as in the US, where VAX sued DEC - ending up in an out of court settlement and agreement that DEC wouldn't sell vacuum cleaners. I wonder did that follow over through Compaq to HP in fact... hrrm....

Reply Score: 1

Re: Yo Y'All
by Andrew Youll on Tue 2nd Aug 2005 17:33 UTC
Andrew Youll
Member since:
2005-06-29

In the UK atleast, TM's are in categories, you can register 1 TM in various Categories, but your TM only applies to those categories. So as you say there is a 99% chance that Linux is not TM'd in the "Chemical Cleaner" / "Domestic Detergent" categories (if these apply to Swiss law)

Reply Score: 1

He is frackin' right.
by l3v1 on Tue 2nd Aug 2005 17:51 UTC
l3v1
Member since:
2005-07-06

Come on people. He made the damn thing. He invested quite a lot of effort and time, still does. Just give the man some credit. Just think about it a bit: what open source OS would you have if The Linux Kernel weren't there ? Right, BSD. And yes, the list is that short. [note to BSD madmen: I don't care whether the BSD kernel is better or worse here.] Now he wants to be sure the trademark remains with him, and he is damn right about it. This will change nothing about linux OSes or linux-related FOSSD. And, this whole thing wouldn't have started if some SOBs wouldn't have wanted to trademark the Linux name for themselves.

Reply Score: 1

v Mr. Torvalds is wrong
by Anonymous on Tue 2nd Aug 2005 18:52 UTC
re: Mr. Torvalds is wrong
by Anonymous on Tue 2nd Aug 2005 21:55 UTC
Anonymous
Member since:
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Free Software was never about the "Free" use of trademarks. It is probably the most silly waste of time anyone cound spend fighting for that. Trademarks hardly stop the "Free" distribution of software and don't infringe on your rights under the GPL(or others). In other words, a rose by any other name would smell as sweet. Even Stink-weed.

Reply Score: 0