Use of Ubuntu trademarks by derivatives (Re: Concerns)

Krzysztof Lichota krzysiek at
Mon Jan 8 23:07:43 GMT 2007

Matt Zimmerman napisał(a):
>> 5. What are the rules for using "based on Ubuntu xx.xx" or "compatible
>> with Ubuntu xx.xx" when advertising distro? This also brings question
>> where credits to Ubuntu should be put - on main page, in docs, on CD
>> cover, on CD?
> "based on Ubuntu ..." requires no prior permission; this is fair use of the
> trademark to refer to Ubuntu itself.
> Serious inquiries should be directed to trademarks at and/or an
> attorney, but informally, the rules can be easily summarized thus:
> It is acceptable to use Ubuntu trademarks to refer to official Ubuntu
> projects and products under provisions for fair use.  However, using them
> for other purposes (for example, to refer to a derivative distribution) does
> not qualify.
> This is clearly exemplified by the difference between stating that your
> project is "Foobar, based on Ubuntu" (fair use) and "Ubuntu Foobar"
> (requires permission).
>> I would also appreciate clarification if using Ubuntu archives (and
>> mirrors) for derivative distros (the non-rebuilt ones, according to your
>> classification) is OK or not and what are the rules.
> The Ubuntu archives are a public service for anyone to use; mirror policy is
> at the discretion of the operator, but these are also public as a rule.

Thanks a lot for explanations :)
I think it would be useful to have a webpage and mailing list for
discussing Ubuntu derivatives as with growing Ubuntu popularity, there
will be more and more derivatives. What do you think about it?

If not a webpage, I can prepare a wiki page summarizing these rules.


	Krzysztof Lichota

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