Subject: RE: APL license - What about the enforced logos?
From: "Lawrence Rosen" <lrosen@rosenlaw.com>
Date: Wed, 29 Nov 2006 20:51:42 -0800

> Let me defenstrate that idea:  "Windows" is about as descriptive a
> term for a bunch of windows as one can think of.  Yet Microsoft has
> managed to gain a strong trademark for a word which was used
> generically to describe a rectangular pile of bits on a screen.

It is still fenestrated. 

The saga of the Windows trademark is lore in legal circles. There was
enormous effort expended on proving (through mass marketing!) that the mark
had acquired secondary meaning. Which it still does: You can now demonstrate
even more strongly with consumer surveys that "Windows" now stands, in
almost everyone's mind, for a computer operating system and not just "a
rectangular pile of bits on a screen."

If we can demonstrate that "Open Source" has acquired secondary meaning
associated in the minds of the public with OSI-certified software, then
perhaps it could be OSI's certification mark for such software. But then OSI
would have to exercise tight control over uses of that mark on software, as
much control as Microsoft exercises, through such lawsuits as the Lindows
litigation, to protect the mark. Are you really up for that?

/Larry


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Russ Nelson [mailto:nelson@crynwr.com]
> Sent: Wednesday, November 29, 2006 1:58 PM
> To: license-discuss@opensource.org
> Subject: RE: APL license - What about the enforced logos?
> 
> Lawrence Rosen writes:
>  > > Uhhhhh, I'd like to correct this misrepresentation of history.  We
>  > > tried to protect it as a trademark, however it is too descriptive.
> In
>  > > order to gain a trademark on something so descriptive, you need an
>  > > expensive legal staff.  We don't have that, and so, no trademark for
>  > > "Open Source".
>  >
>  > Uhhhhh, I'd like to correct that. In order to gain a trademark on
> something
>  > so descriptive, you need a change in the law. :-)
> 
> Let me defenstrate that idea:  "Windows" is about as descriptive a
> term for a bunch of windows as one can think of.  Yet Microsoft has
> managed to gain a strong trademark for a word which was used
> generically to describe a rectangular pile of bits on a screen.
> 
> --
> --my blog is at    http://blog.russnelson.com   | You can do any damn
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