[Osmf-talk] Trademark Policy

Frederik Ramm frederik at remote.org
Thu Dec 20 10:41:42 UTC 2012


    one thing that the OSMF is likely to decide on in the coming year is 
a policy that governs the use of our trademarks.[*]

A typical trademark policy looks like this:

"Use of our name/logo/... is permitted for the following cases: ... In 
all other cases you require explicit permission from us."

and this will often be accompanied by an informal/unwritten custom about 
when and under what conditions such an "explicit permission" will 
usually be granted.

In a crowdsourced project like ours we have tons of individuals using 
our name all the time, and in most cases we *want* (or even require) 
them to use it. There have been a few isolated cases in the past where 
we (politely) asked someone to rename his iPhone App because it sounded 
too "official", or where asked someone to let us have a named page they 
had created in the social media space, but neither the positive nor the 
negative cases are nailed down in any kind of policy.

I would like to invite the readers of this list to discuss what uses of 
our trademarks we should generally allow/encourage, and for what uses we 
should require people to get explicit permission from us.

The OSGeo foundation, which is in a loosely comparable situation to us, 
has the following trademark guidelines (and theirs is, in turn, a 
shortened and modified version of the Mozilla Foundation's policy):


Do you think something similar would work for us? Are there bits in 
there where OSM should be stricter, or more liberal, about trademark use 
than OSGeo?


[*] Trademarks, here, means trademarks we already have or aspire to have 
- basically, our name and logo.

Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail frederik at remote.org  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"

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