License for application name and logos (Was: Creative Commons license for pictures)

Jeff Spaleta jspaleta at
Thu Sep 29 21:30:46 UTC 2005

On 9/29/05, Christian Jodar <tian at> wrote:
> Firefox uses the MPL and is included into Fedora. They also have a logo
> that is published under a license more restrictive than the Creative
> Commons BY-SA (creators are OK to remove the NC part) because no
> deribated work can be made.

take a step back... you need to keep "copyright" and "trademark"
seperate.  Mozilla's "trademark" policy is restrictive..but the logos
are under a "copyright" license that is MPL... "copyright" and
"trademark" are seperate concepts that apply to the logos in different

AND i will point out that even mozilla's complicated trademark policy
allows for the re-distribution by 3rd party vendors for sale. Let me
simplify what mozilla is trying to do with their "trademark" policy.
The want to make sure that people do not produced hacked up poor
quality versions of the codebase and try to "advertise" them as
officially sanctioned versions. The "trademark" policy does not stop
me from distributing the logos that come with doesn't
stop me from modifying the logos and then using modified logos..onr
including those logos or modified versions of those logos a cd that i
charge money for. The "copyright" license for the logos that are
included is exactly the same as the "copyright" license of the rest of
the mozilla codebase. Use of the logos is restricted by "trademark"

I can copy,modifiy and distribute the mozilla logos..i can even sell
copies of them. These activities are things control by the "copyright
license." What I can not do.. is use those logos to advertise software
that misleads users into thinking its software built or sanctioned by
the mozilla project. Using logos to "advertise" or to "promote" falls
under "trademark". You can not quote trademark policy to make a case
for copyright licenses.

Again i strongly suggest you talk to the gnome project, since that
project deals with items that are both "trademarked" as well as
"copyrighted" and licensed under the GPL "copyright" license.

> So why is it OK for Firefox and it would not be for GCfilms.

because you are not talking about gcflims restrictions on "trademarks"
you are talking about the "copyright" restrictions in the case of
GCflims and the contributed artwork you want to include.  It is
absolulely imperative that you comprehend the difference between
"trademark" and "copyright". Quoting mozilla's "trademark" policy when
you are in a situation that invovles conflicting "copyright" licenses
is just going to drive you insane unless you understand the

> Don't tell me there is no solution for this.

Well I'm not going to delibrately lie to you.

> My only constraint is to have a license for logos that is made for art
> works (GPL is not).

As I have pointed out before.. GNOME has just successfully run a
splashscreen competition where all the entries were GPL.  Clearly its
possible to get artwork that is licensed GPL or GPL-compatible as long
as you make that a requirement as part of the contest.  GNOME just had
this contest in like the past month or so.

> CC are the ones preferred by creators and I think
> they are more free than license we find in Fedora for other logos.

It depends on the specific projects that are including the artwork. If
GCflims was licensed as BSD or even LGPL, this would not be an issue
at all.

> Or if using no explicit license for pictures made them under international
> law (even if the software is GPL'ed), it would be OK also for me.

you don't get it.. if there is no explicit copyright license...then it
is very doubtful they could be included in Fedora. "copyright" is the
only mechanism by which Fedora has the ability to distribute anything
at all. If there isn't an explicit license.. thats a non-starter for

> I have a software where I can change the license. Some pictures made for
> it with a free license (*). And it is really hard to use them.
> It sounds really weird for me.
> * quote from :
> "Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2.0 license
> This is a copyleft free license meant for artistic works and entertainment
> works."

Feel free to contact the FSF and get clearer guidance about whether or
not you can include artwork inside GCFlims in the way you want to. 
The also say that those "OtherLicenses" are GPL incompatible and
should not be used for contributions to GPL software.  The GNOME
project is clearly going out of their way to avoid exactly the
situation you are in and you should take a good long look at why GNOME
chooses to avoid this situation.


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