[linux-elitists] BurnAllRedHat?

M. Drew Streib dtype@dtype.org
Wed Dec 12 10:22:19 PST 2001

On Wed, Dec 12, 2001 at 01:09:44PM -0500, Ruben Safir wrote:
> I'm  not sure how you can see this as similar to a generic product saying 
> it's similar to brand xxxx, which itself has different meanings in 
> different industries.

The argument went more to use of trademark in a different product than
for comparison of the actual products. Point being, in general, the
actual use of someone's trademark can be acceptable if its use does not
confuse your own product with theirs (and proper credit is given, blah

Owning a trademark does not prevent someone else from using the name,
it just helps to dictate the way in which they must use it. For instance,
I can print on a large billboard that Microsoft(R)* Windows(R)* sucks.

* The Microsoft and Windows names are registered trademarks of Microsoft
Corporation. Drew Streib is not affiliated with Microsoft Corporation nor
any of its subsidiaries.

Trademarks are also somewhat specific to industry, need to
be regularly policed to be enforceable, etc... but that quickly traverses
into a bunch of stuff we don't need to discuss. ;)

> Red Hat distrbutes   Linux technology at it's core, and it is correct to 
> describe it as Red Hat Linux, although Linux itself is trademarked.

Were Linus enforcing (and able to enforce) the Linux trademark, it is 
not entirely clear that "Red Hat Linux" would be allowed. On a technical
front, I agree that the name is appropriate, however. On the legal front,
it would be next to impossible to try to enforce the Linux trademark
in that capacity now.


M. Drew Streib <dtype@dtype.org>, Free Standards Group (freestandards.org)
co-founder, SourceForge.net | core team, freedb | sysadmin, Linux Intl.
creator, keyanalyze report | maintnr, *.us.pgp.net | other, see freedom/law
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