[linux-elitists] BurnAllRedHat?

M. Drew Streib dtype@dtype.org
Thu Dec 13 11:15:13 PST 2001

On Thu, Dec 13, 2001 at 10:54:58AM -0800, Rick Moen wrote:
> But the Red Hat legal page claims that other vendors may not _mention_
> the words "Red Hat" in product information and related advertising.
> See:  http://www.redhat.com/about/corporate/trademark/page8.html

Heh, nice try on their part, but they can't enforce that.

I'm no trademark lawyer, but I've got a variety of books on my bookshelf
that support this. According to "Patent, Copyright, and Trademark" by
Nolo Press:

The following uses, although technically not trademark fair use, are often
lumped under the same label by courts and attorneys:
  * comparative advertising
  * journalistic accounts of the owner of the mark or the goods or services
    identified by the mark, and
  * parodies involving the mark

What all of these uses have in common is that the public is not being led
to believe that the non-owner is the source of the goods or services 
identified by the mark. In other words, fair use of a mark is possible when
no customer confusion is likely to result from the use.

It seems that most of what we're looking for falls under comparative 
advertising, when it is made clear that Red Hat is not the source of the
copied distribution.

I'm too lazy to look up case law right 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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