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Why no hat? Here's why.


Here's my "simple" explanation:

1. When Red Hat decided to create the Fedora project, not a lot of thought
was given to the once-and-future logo.  The reason we're having the logo
discussion now is because the type treatment "logo" we have now is
sufficiently un-logo-like that people are creating their own logos left
and right.  So, yes: we've got a project named Fedora, and we need a logo
that is not a hat.  And yes, it's weird and frustrating, but
non-negotiable, because...

2. Red Hat, the company that will be paying for a *ton* of Fedora
development for the foreseeable future, *strongly* prefers that Fedora not
use a straight-up hat.  Out of respect for the relationship with Red Hat,
and the resources that Red Hat provides and will continue to provide, the
Fedora project will not use a straight-up hat.  Is it a legal issue?  
Maybe there's some legal risk involved, but it's really a branding issue.  
Red Hat has spent a ton of blood, sweat and tears to make that red fedora 
worth what it's worth, they don't want any confusion to arise regarding 
that mark, and we're going to respect that stance.

3. For right now, Red Hat *does* own the Fedora trademark, and it's still
not entirely clear whether ownership of the mark will be (a) handed to the
Fedora foundation, or (b) licensed very broadly to the Fedora foundation 
for its use.

But again: it's not a legal issue.  It's an issue of respecting our
largest sponsor's wishes.  Red Hat wants Fedora not to use a hat; 
therefore, Fedora will not use a hat.


(NOTE: clever treatments of secondary Fedora images that involve a hat as
an element may well be a different matter.)

_____________________  ____________________________________________
  Greg DeKoenigsberg ] [ the future masters of technology will have
 Community Relations ] [ to be lighthearted and intelligent.  the
             Red Hat ] [ machine easily masters the grim and the 
                     ] [ dumb.  --mcluhan

On Tue, 23 Aug 2005, Bryan J. Smith wrote:

> On Tue, 2005-08-23 at 21:13 -0500, Bryan J. Smith wrote:
> > But it's called _Fedora_.  What do you mean no hat?!?!?!
> Let me put it this way, and explain it to me like a 2-year old.
> First off, let's start with ...
>   "Fedora(TM) is a trademark of Red Hat, Inc."
> The name "Fedora(TM)" would be considered "infringement" from a legal
> standpoint if it came from another vendor.  But it comes from Red Hat!
> So I'm still _failing_ to understand how the use of a trademarked word
> that basically says "hat" is any different than a trademarked
> illustration of the same damn thing.
> Especially under these context:  
>   http://www.fedora.redhat.com/about/trademarks/  
>   http://www.fedora.redhat.com/about/trademarks/guidelines/  
> If Red Hat is going to give up control of the trademark, I still _fail_
> to see the difference.  If Red Hat is going to assert it cannot allow
> another use of a "hat" in a logo by the Fedora Foundation or whatever
> entity that "owns" its governance, then how can it assert the use of
> even the word "Fedora(TM)" outside of Red Hat's control at all?
> Again, explain this to me like a 2-year old?
> Is Red Hat going to maintain it owns the trademark of Fedora(TM) in the
> future, and the guidelines of its use?
> If so, then why can they do the same with an illustration?
> And if not, is not even the word "Fedora(TM)" going to be a possible
> point and example of use without permission?  Or is Red Hat going to
> give permission?
> And if so, then why can't they do the same with an illustration?
> Again, IANAL, but this doesn't make sense to me.
> -- 
> Bryan J. Smith     b j smith ieee org     http://thebs413.blogspot.com
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> The best things in life are NOT free - which is why life is easiest if
> you save all the bills until you can share them with the perfect woman
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