Subject: Re: Promotion of derived products, the Microsoft case (was: Scope of copyright on derivative works)
From: "Cinly Ooi" <cinly.ooi@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 30 Sep 2007 09:54:14 +0100
Sun, 30 Sep 2007 09:54:14 +0100
> Phillipe,
> Please show me any country where a statement like "LedgerSMB runs on
> Windows Vista" would potentially violate Microsoft's trademarks.


Another example, "appABC is built on top of Eclipse Platform", or "Supported
Platform: Linux, Solaris, Windows". IANAL, in my view, all are  examples of
statement of fact, and something any developer can reasonably expect to be
able to do unless it does not actually work on Vista/Eclipse/OS, then it is
a misrepresentation problem. The statements are neutral and generic. Note
that in the appABC example I deliberately avoided using Eclipse Foundations'
sactioned terms "built on Eclipse"/"Eclipse powered" or the sort.

This is different from using a particular mark, says OSI's "Approved by OSI"
or "Microsoft Vista Compatable" or "built on Eclipse" because the phrase
themselves are "trademarks" and carries special meaning (implies endorsement
or satisfy a special requirement). Of course Microsoft can choose to
trademark "XXX runs on Windows Vista", but the point is it did not.

The only problem I can see is potential confusion with trademarks, but the
test is whether joe public can be confused. I think joe public today will
not be. However, your lawyers might choose to prove me wrong. ;-)

Best Regards,
Cinly



Phillipe,
Please show me any country where a statement like "LedgerSMB runs on Windows Vista" would potentially violate Microsoft's trademarks.

Another example, "appABC is built on top of Eclipse Platform", or "Supported Platform: Linux, Solaris, Windows". IANAL, in my view, all are  examples of statement of fact, and something any developer can reasonably expect to be able to do unless it does not actually work on Vista/Eclipse/OS, then it is a misrepresentation problem. The statements are neutral and generic. Note that in the appABC example I deliberately avoided using Eclipse Foundations' sactioned terms "built on Eclipse"/"Eclipse powered" or the sort.

This is different from using a particular mark, says OSI's "Approved by OSI" or "Microsoft Vista Compatable" or "built on Eclipse" because the phrase themselves are "trademarks" and carries special meaning (implies endorsement or satisfy a special requirement). Of course Microsoft can choose to  trademark "XXX runs on Windows Vista", but the point is it did not.

The only problem I can see is potential confusion with trademarks, but the test is whether joe public can be confused. I think joe public today will not be. However, your lawyers might choose to prove me wrong. ;-)

Best Regards,
Cinly