[Marketing-Public]Re: feedback request: mozilla redistribution and trademarks

Tristan Nitot tristan at nitot.com
Mon, 29 Sep 2003 10:07:18 +0200

Bart & team,

Bart Decrem wrote:

> Hi folks,
> I'm working on trademark policies and of course one of the biggest 
> issues is how to manage our trademarks (the lizard icon and the 
> Mozilla name) with redistribution of our software.  The MPL of course 
> lets people redistribute our products all they we do have trademarks 
> and an obligation to protect them, lest we lose them because of our 
> failure to enforce them.

I'm glad to see this issue adressed by the foundation. As Mozilla 
becomes more popular, we need to make sure the brand stays "pure". Your 
proposal makes lot of sense. However, not everything is perfect in it. 
Please see below:

> [snip]
> Again, all of the provisions below are about the use of the Mozilla 
> name for promoting or describing software, not redistribution of the 
> software itself.
> [snip]
> 4- Permission can be withdrawn, if, after receiving notice, a 
> distributor fails to make best efforts to address our concerns about 
> shipping a recent product and ensuring that the product is of high 
> quality.  So if you're shipping old versions of software and we put 
> you on notice, you have to fix that or lose trademark permission.  If 
> you've made some minor changes or localization work that degrades the 
> quality of the product, and we put you on notice, you have to fix that 
> or lose trademark permission.  Permission can also be withdrawn if use 
> of the mark would be detrimental to the Mozilla mark in any other way 
> (so if the KKK wants to distribute the KKK Mozilla browser, we would 
> object to their use of our trademark on the cover of the CD and in 
> their marketing materials);

This approach may scare some people who would build stuff on top of 
Mozilla. How can they be sure that their use of the mark would not be 
perceived as "detrimental" by M.o ?

> 5- Modifying our name is not permitted without advance written 
> permission.  So if you want to call a product Moz 1.4 or MozillaPL, 
> you need advance written permission.  We would probably try and 
> accommodate community efforts, such as the localization efforts, and 
> allow them to use slightly modified version of the Mozilla name.  In 
> the case of Moz 1.4, if that product is the same as Mozilla 1.4, we'd 
> probably not allow them to name it Moz 1.4 since that will confuse 
> people.  They can call the product some other name though, if they 
> want, or they can call it Mozilla 1.4;
> 6- Use of the word Mozilla or related names (such as Moz) for company 
> names, project names and web site domain names  would always require 
> permission.  We would probably not allow commercial ventures to use 
> the name Mozilla (so the domain name mozillaoncd.com would have to be 
> changed).  We would allow community efforts, such as projects on 
> Mozdev and localization projects to include the name Mozilla or Moz in 
> the project name or web site address as long as such use doesn't 
> create some specific problem for us.  So mozdev.org, mozillanews.org, 
> mozillazine.org etc are OK;

I would suggest that all project using Moz and mozilla names request 
formally the permission to use this in their names. Of course, they 
would be allowed to continue using it, but it would enable the 
foundation to know who is serious about using our name. I know of many 
domain names that use Moz and Mozilla in their names, but their 
activity/content is just vaguely related to our project.

> 7- We would of course try and stop clear infringements such as the 
> name of the Stopzilla utility for IE, which clearly creates consumer 
> confusion;

Sure, indeed.

> 8- The t-rex icon is ours.  You must get our permission before using 
> it.  Community efforts will receive such permission, commercial 
> efforts may not be able to use this artwork.


--Tristan Nitot

Contributeur Mozilla et OpenWebGroup
http://mozilla.org/    : Efficiency, safety and liberty for browsing.
http://openweb.eu.org/ : pour apprendre les standards.
http://standblog.com/  : un blog sur les standards.
http://pompage.net/    : de saines lectures  propos des standards.