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Linux is now trademarked.
August 21, 2005 5:17 PM   Subscribe

Linux®
posted by riffola (27 comments total)

 
Linus Torvalds recently had the name Linux trademarked. A company has been setup to ensure that users of the name pay a fee for it.

Although it now appears this is not as evil as it sounds. Suspicions fade over Linux trademark move.
posted by riffola at 5:18 PM on August 21, 2005


Lemme guess. A cabal of trademark lawyers kidnapped Richard Stallman and Linus Torvalds and are holding them hostage...
posted by alumshubby at 5:19 PM on August 21, 2005


Imminent death of open-source OS predicted.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 5:26 PM on August 21, 2005


Well, the link's short and sweet. So's this:

Mountain. Molehill.
posted by kaemaril at 5:34 PM on August 21, 2005


Linux was trademarked over a decade ago.

Fees for the sublicensing of the Linux trademark have been required since at least 2000.

Linus explained this before and again recently.

If I wanted to read crapfilter, I could just read slashdot.
posted by nmiell at 5:35 PM on August 21, 2005


and the USPTO search interface is crap.

Search for trademark serial number 74560867.
posted by nmiell at 5:43 PM on August 21, 2005


b o r i n g (R)
posted by clyde at 6:00 PM on August 21, 2005


The FreeBSD Foundation recently acquired its trademark from Wind River Systems. It currently applies only to "CD ROMs featuring an archive of computer programs which may be accessed for use archived on a CDROM.", so although it may be "dead" it's still less encumbered than Linux (in software licensing as well). /shameless fanboy plug

After reading this it doesn't seem like a big deal. Since Linux is trying to get more open to commercial markets and the rates are reasonable it's probably a good thing. Seeing Linux® still looks really dirty to me, though.

nmiell, thanks for those links. I'm still a bit confused: what exactly chagned about the trademark if it was already registered 10 years ago? Did this recent action just change who has to license?
posted by nTeleKy at 6:00 PM on August 21, 2005


Well that marks the end of my hand-rolled 'Super Dooper Linux' distro I was planning a launch party for next friday. :/
posted by crunchywelch at 7:02 PM on August 21, 2005


Am I outraged? Happy? Aroused? Help me out here.
posted by boo_radley at 7:23 PM on August 21, 2005


p.s. no trademark on "teh lunix" as of yet.
posted by boo_radley at 7:23 PM on August 21, 2005


nTeleKy: It seems the Linux Mark Instute is now actively contacting companies regarding the trademark, while they were pretty passive in the past. LWN has a detailed (that is, boring) article.
posted by reynaert at 7:31 PM on August 21, 2005


One of the reasons I not only learn to use but also advocated for Linux back in the '90s was that it seemed "anti-corporate" compared to Microsoft, Apple or IBM products. I realize that many will say that Linux was never really supposed to be taken that way, that most "anti-corporatists" eventually "grow up" and "mellow out", and that yes it's nice to have kernel-level drivers for my cheap readily-available corporate hardware (I used to have a hard time applying the Compatibility Guide), but "Linux [circle R]" leaves a taste in my mouth perhaps akin to what Rev. Phelps would feel seeing a gay bar named Jesus Christ.

In the past few years though i've come to see Linux not as a cause but as an Operating System. The difference with this one is I can acquire and use it for free; perhaps I've aged enough that that is enough.
posted by davy at 7:40 PM on August 21, 2005


In the past few years though i've come to see Linux not as a cause but as an Operating System.

Even though it's just a (shitty) kernel.
posted by angry modem at 7:44 PM on August 21, 2005


Alright, angry modem, alright, a kernel distributed as a package with an OS around it. Fine. So technically now I'm using a Redhat Beta-test distribution called Fedora Core 3, which incliudes a Linux kernel with drivers, GNU tools, a GUI, etc. Which, because the fiucking kernel can't do shit without the other stuff, we call the whole thing "Linux".

Yes, yes, you're so right. I hope you're a happy asshole now.
posted by davy at 8:07 PM on August 21, 2005


Although it now appears this is not as evil as it sounds.

Here are my two responses to this:
1. What the fuck are you talking about?
2. You mean, since it wasn't ever evil at all, it is now...even less...not evil......
posted by odinsdream at 8:10 PM on August 21, 2005


Yes, yes, you're so right. I hope you're a happy asshole now.

You know, um.. he is right. Linux is the kernel... and... everything you just finished saying. That... doesn't make him an asshole...
posted by odinsdream at 8:12 PM on August 21, 2005


How's that BSD Numa support coming?
posted by cytherea at 8:13 PM on August 21, 2005


The act of trademarking the name and following through on it is not as bad as it could have been. That should be enough for both your reponses.
posted by riffola at 8:31 PM on August 21, 2005


Nice to see this sort of nonsense break out just as I'm starting to get into FreeBSD.
posted by clevershark at 8:37 PM on August 21, 2005


yay, silly amounts of controversy over something that is not all that exciting!! Can we fight over whether or not Green Day SOLD-OUT!!!
posted by N8k99 at 8:47 PM on August 21, 2005


Can we fight over whether or not Green Day SOLD-OUT!!!

We can if you like. NO THEY DIDN'T!!!
posted by Jimbob at 8:53 PM on August 21, 2005


Apparently Davy is quite passionate about a... [chuckle]... Linux kernel with drivers, GNU tools, a GUI, etc.... [guffaw]... dude Davy, it's just an OS, err kernel, err, GUI, errr what the hell is it again?

Meh. Gotta go restart XP.
posted by AspectRatio at 9:05 PM on August 21, 2005


I like the FreeBSD version of Linux.
posted by mosch at 10:20 PM on August 21, 2005


So is the trademark not-free as in beer or not-free as in speech?
posted by seanyboy at 12:14 AM on August 22, 2005


Ed is the standard text editor.
posted by gramschmidt at 9:10 AM on August 22, 2005


"Ed is the standard text editor."

Huh? I thought that was vi (or one of its "clones")? But what do I know, I'm happy with Pico for lighter stuff, or Emacs when I need a big 'un. (And if somebody mentions nedit I'll become QUITE UPSET!)
posted by davy at 11:26 PM on August 22, 2005


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