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Python Trademark At Risk In Europe

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the from-community-import-firepower dept.

Python 122

mvar writes "A company in the UK is trying to trademark the 'Python' term for all things computing. The Python Software Foundation is asking for help. According to the PSF, they contacted the company in order to settle the matter but 'They blew us off and responded by filing the community trademark application claiming the exclusive right to use "Python" for software, servers, and web services — everywhere in Europe.' They now seek help from the community in several ways: By sending a letter to the EU council if you happen to work on a company that uses the Python programming language, by providing EU-published material regarding the Python language (articles etc) and/or financially supporting the PSF in the upcoming legal battle."

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122 comments

Great justice system as usual (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910363)

I don't think I'öö follow any laws anymore. It's just stupid.

Re:Great justice system as usual (4, Insightful)

dmbasso (1052166) | about a year ago | (#42910953)

The company is *trying* to trademark it, no misdeeds by the justice system yet. Only the regular human stupidity and greed so far.

Re:Great justice system as usual (4, Informative)

Kupfernigk (1190345) | about a year ago | (#42911355)

Yes, why are they not simply filing an objection? That's what you do. Someone applies, you object. You do not write to the EU Council of Ministers, you write to the European Trademarks and Patents Office.

Just like you do in the US. It isn't hard. Someone tries to file a trademark using your established name, you send them a batch of stuff, application gets rejected.

Re:Great justice system as usual (2)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about a year ago | (#42912223)

Beyond this, why not get companies like ActiveState to weigh in? I'm sure they don't want ActivePython [activestate.com] (MSRP $999) to suddenly be infringing.

Since I know some of the guys from ActiveState read Slashdot, I think the issue should be resolved within the day (after they sic their lawyers on the issue).

Re:Great justice system as usual (2)

s1d3track3D (1504503) | about a year ago | (#42913203)

if you happen to work on a company that uses the Python programming language

Yeah and get google involved and you wont need much more help

Obligatory (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910381)

"And now for something completely old and similar."

Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (4, Interesting)

CajunArson (465943) | about a year ago | (#42910389)

At least in the U.S., trademarks come into existence by use in commerce. Registering a trademark is a good idea, but not even a requirement (which is why you see (TM) for non-registered trademarks and (R) for registered marks).

Assuming that the Python programming language and other related marks have been used in commerce *before* this other Python outfit showed up, then they don't have to worry about losing their rights to the name. Unless Europe allows for hijacking of marks simply through registration, I don't see what the Python guys should have to worry about (unless the other "python" company was using that mark in commerce before the real Python guys were).

Notice how confusing it is to name things above because of the conflicting "Python" mark? That's why there are trademarks, because if you have these name collisions it becomes difficult to accurately identify the source of the good or service.

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (1)

HappyPsycho (1724746) | about a year ago | (#42910683)

I don't see what the Python guys should have to worry about (unless the other "python" company was using that mark in commerce before the real Python guys were).

Question: How much will it cost to oppose the mark? You have to remember this is a non-profit org, this situation is still in the early stages so it may be possible to prevent this from reaching the courts. This assumes someone reasonable at the trademark office....... *thinks about what goes on in the US patent & trademark office*. Oh god they are screwed...

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (1)

Threni (635302) | about a year ago | (#42910731)

What if they ignore this problem and get sued but have no money so don't pay anything and then contiune to ignore the problem?

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (4, Informative)

Jason Levine (196982) | about a year ago | (#42910979)

If you get sued and ignore the lawsuit, you will have a judgement issued against you. It won't be a fair one, either, because the other side will give their side of the story and you'll be seen as the type of person/group that ignores lawsuits. (Not looked favorably upon by judges.)

If you ignore the judgement and just continue on, you risk further injunction by the court including jail time for contempt.

Ignoring lawsuits is bad. Ignoring judgments from lawsuits is even worse.

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (-1, Offtopic)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about a year ago | (#42911229)

Ignoring lawsuits is bad. Ignoring judgments from lawsuits is even worse.

Minor nitpick: Ignoring unjust laws and lawsuits based upon them is good. It's necessary to ignore laws to function in a police state. Ignoring (or even inviting) unjust judgments is a cornerstone of protesting unjust rule of law. Civil disobedience isn't always bad. Until all laws have mandatory auto-expire time stamps what you say is "bad" just can't always be the case. It's illegal to masturbate in Texas, despite everything being bigger there... Protip: If you don't ignore the possibility of lawsuits you can't write any software thanks to patents. Let's say I sue you for disrespecting the flying spaghetti monster, if you don't ignore the lawsuit you could wind up traveling to a foreign land and getting executed by religious extremists.

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (5, Insightful)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | about a year ago | (#42912091)

Ignoring unjust laws and lawsuits based upon them is good.

NO NO NO NO. No one in the US should ever follow this advice because it will very likely destroy you and whatever cause you seek to promote.

You don't do civil disobedience by ignoring lawsuits because the judge is going to consider a lack of rebuttal on your part as an acceptance of the claims made by the plaintiff. In essence, by ignoring the lawsuit (assuming it was properly served) you are saying "Yeah, just accept whatever that guy says, and make it fact from the perspective of the law"

The concept of civil disobedience against an unjust law is that when you ignore the law, you sure as hell DO SHOW UP IN COURT and explain exactly why you did not follow that law. Appearing before a judge is the EXACT THING YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO DO because that is your first best chance to get someone to literally judge your case. The judge could very well say "Yes, that law is unjust and you are free to go." Or he might not, but the point is you must accept the penalty for your actions and work your way though the judicial system.

Ignoring a lawsuit is the worst possible legal advice I have ever seen on the internet. Perhaps the only thing you could have given which was worse advice is to ignore the lawsuit, and then threaten the judge and the judge's family... Very bad advice.

I'll say it again, never never never never ignore a lawsuit. If someone files a lawsuit against you, go get a lawyer, and be prepared to present your case to a judge.

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (2)

EasyTarget (43516) | about a year ago | (#42912489)

The judge could very well say "Yes, that law is unjust and you are free to go."

yeah... happens all the time.

You can only deal with unjust laws in this way if the legal system is decent, honest and just.

But unjust laws are, by implication, associated with unjust processes; and it is a safe bet that any Judge who is willing to hear a case based on an unjust law will not be interested in justice. In that circumstance the correct response is to say 'I will not acknowledge you.' The state will then attempt to use coercive force on you; what happens next really depends on your strength of will, your tolerance to pain, and how deep the injustice is.

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (1)

morgauxo (974071) | about a year ago | (#42914175)

How just the legal system is has nothing to do with it! Their job is to uphold the law! If the law is really bad and the judge is a good person then he/she might try to lessen the impact by selecting a less harsh punishment but that is about the best you can hope for. It's called "Separation of Powers". It's not within the judge's responsibility or even authority to make the law. He/She is there to uphold the law. At the upper levels this may involve some interperetation where the written law is unclear but it does not involve changing it!

If you want to get a law change petition the legislative branch, not the judicial! Sure, protest. Do that to get others on your side. You need support when your legislators are elected. Show them they will get more votes in the next election by seeing things your way. Yes, protesting may land you in jail for a bit. Sometimes that's the price to be paid for getting change. Don't expect the judge to take pitty and change the law for you though!

Spend some time in jail for protesting the law you dislike if you have to but don't go for breaking it!

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42912541)

Seriously. This.

I get tired of slashdot's armchair activists giving ridiculously fucking stupid advice.

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42913087)

I'll say this: If you were thinking of ignoring it, then just represent yourself in court. No need to hire a lawyer, because you're still going to get a better outcome than you would have gotten if you never bothered to even show up. You might even be surprised, a lot of courts certainly make a big show about how difficult it is to deal with pro se defendants, but really, the judges put a lot of effort into dealing with the fact you don't know all the details of the law.

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (1)

morgauxo (974071) | about a year ago | (#42914007)

What? Since when do judges even have the authority to declare a law unjust? They are there to judge wether or not you broke it and/or determine the apropriate punishment. It doesn't matter if the judge agrees with the law or not he/she is there to uphold it. the judge might be able to lessen the impact of a bad law by handing out minimum sentences but that's about it. It's the legislature's job to actually make the law.

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (1)

Kupfernigk (1190345) | about a year ago | (#42911413)

It cost as much as gathering together a sheaf of prior usage examples, preferably original documents or photocopies of dead tree press, details of registration of any companies using the mark, a few letters from organisations already legitimately using the mark, sticking them in a big envelope along with a letter saying which application you are objecting to and why, and sending it to the right place. The last time I did this, it was free. You don't even need a lawyer: IT people can usually figure out forms pretty well.

Europe is application-based (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910701)

And there's no opposition system absent prior rights, so unless these guys want to claim THEY have rights to Python, it'll just be OHIM that can stop it.

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42911199)

At least in the U.S., trademarks come into existence by use in commerce. Registering a trademark is a good idea, but not even a requirement (which is why you see (TM) for non-registered trademarks and (R) for registered marks).

Assuming that the Python programming language and other related marks have been used in commerce *before* this other Python outfit showed up, then they don't have to worry about losing their rights to the name. Unless Europe allows for hijacking of marks simply through registration, I don't see what the Python guys should have to worry about (unless the other "python" company was using that mark in commerce before the real Python guys were).

Notice how confusing it is to name things above because of the conflicting "Python" mark? That's why there are trademarks, because if you have these name collisions it becomes difficult to accurately identify the source of the good or service.

Similar situation was with AROS and its Zune:
http://aros.sourceforge.net/documentation/developers/zune-dev/zune-application-development.php
http://aros-exec.org/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?post_id=20849

Not entirely true... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42911221)

Your post sounds like copyright registration but Trademarks are similar but different (sorry, you'll have to look it up yourself). Also, they'll have to register Python under local US and International trademark-recognizing body. Unfortunately, the US isn't the arbiter for everything trademark/ copyright related. After the go to those steps, they will also have to define what industry the name 'Python' exists under.

Long story short, existence of prior-art isn't enough. The only "real" prior art that can be used as evidence is if it's registered with the trademark or the "international trademark" office. My experience is only with local US trademark office, that's why I don't know what the international organization is called.

Re:Not entirely true... (1)

Half-pint HAL (718102) | about a year ago | (#42912537)

True. If "Python", being free, isn't considered as "trading" by the appropriate authorities, it can't be a prior mark. However, they could always argue genericity -- Google has 60 million hits for the search Python language, so it's definitely in active use as computer terminology...

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (2)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about a year ago | (#42911367)

Assuming that the Python programming language and other related marks have been used in commerce *before* this other Python outfit showed up, then they don't have to worry about losing their rights to the name.

This is generally, but not alway, true. There have been instances of trademarks issued despite widespread prior use. The most egregious example was when Microsoft was given a trademark on "Windows" despite the fact that many others, including The X Window System [wikipedia.org] and W [wikipedia.org] , had used it years before, and it was a common term in the industry to refer to a retangular region of a computer display as a "window".

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year ago | (#42914895)

Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First

Actually, in the area of programming languages, Python the language was second. Before Python the language, Python was an implementation of Common Lisp. (It's still around, inside CMUCL and SBCL and their derivatives.)

Re:Just oppose the mark.. and Python was First (1)

Zamphatta (1760346) | about a year ago | (#42915013)

I was thinking the same thing. It's like the concept of 'prior art', the legal system should just laugh at these clowns for trying to register something that's been used by someone else for the past 22 years worldwide. The way I see it, this company trying to do this to PSF, is akin to a patent troll.

no way this will go down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910417)

they are so owned... get the popcorn!

Simple: Change name of the programming language (4, Funny)

Phrogman (80473) | about a year ago | (#42910483)

(In Europe only mind you) to NameRippedOffByTheFuckingCocksuckersAtPythonComputerServices or whatever :P

Easily resolved (4, Insightful)

Shemmie (909181) | about a year ago | (#42910489)

Everyone hits social media, hard - their name won't be worth toffee in the tech world. Which is ironically who they are trying to sell to.

Make it clear you wouldn't do business with them - and wait until they relent.

Re:Easily resolved (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910771)

They are not trying to sell to you or me. They are trying to sell to our bosses & our bosses bosses. How often do they consult with us prior to purchase? Other than MAYBE to casually ask our opinion about "Python"

Re:Easily resolved (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42911893)

They consult with us all the time. You should find a new job.

Even Linus registered the Linux trademark long ago (5, Insightful)

optikos (1187213) | about a year ago | (#42910563)

Why did the Python community drag its feet for so long on officially registering its brand-name? For the cost of approximately one hour's of lawyer's time, the low trade-mark fees 8 years ago would have been the cheapest solution to this situation. Now many many hours of lawyers' time will need to be expended to rectify the situation.

Re:Even Linus registered the Linux trademark long (1)

tuffy (10202) | about a year ago | (#42910769)

The Python trademark was registered some time ago in the US [python.org] but it's unclear why the Python Software Foundation didn't do the same in the EU.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madrid_system (1)

optikos (1187213) | about a year ago | (#42911091)

Years ago, the Python community should have paid the fees for the Madrid-System extension of the U.S. trademark registration to various other nations.

Re:Even Linus registered the Linux trademark long (1)

lxs (131946) | about a year ago | (#42911175)

I'm guessing that they'd have to register it separately in all member states.

Re:Even Linus registered the Linux trademark long (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year ago | (#42911209)

Couldn't they have done it in the WTO and made it applicable worldwide?

Trademark registration must be done nationally... (1)

gwolf (26339) | about a year ago | (#42911271)

Or with the still relatively few supranational bodies that do this, such as the EU. But a trademark must still be registered dozens of times all over the world, and that makes the process way messier. Of course, there are many Pythonists in the EU, and it would have had sense, but then again... It is most probably not registered in my country, or anywhere else in Latin America. Is it worth, as a previous post mentions, to pay for "an hour worth of lawyer fees" (plus the registration fee) over and over? How often must the trademark be revalidated?

Re:Even Linus registered the Linux trademark long (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910837)

In other words, if they would have just paid the protection fee, they wouldn't have to have their fingers broken. Now its too late.

That's what a trademark is. Protection. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42911383)

So either you should try to abolish trademarks or you should pay up if you want one.

They paid in the USA.

Re:Even Linus registered the Linux trademark long (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42911745)

That is not entirely correct:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux#Copyright.2C_trademark.2C_and_naming

"In the United States, the name Linux is a trademark registered to Linus Torvalds.[5] Initially, nobody registered it, but on 15 August 1994, William R. Della Croce, Jr. filed for the trademark Linux, and then demanded royalties from Linux distributors. In 1996, Torvalds and some affected organizations sued him to have the trademark assigned to Torvalds, and in 1997 the case was settled.[114]"

In fact, the above is the first thing that came to my mind when I read the summary.

Re:Even Linus registered the Linux trademark long (2)

Scarletdown (886459) | about a year ago | (#42914859)

That is not entirely correct:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux#Copyright.2C_trademark.2C_and_naming [wikipedia.org]

"In the United States, the name Linux is a trademark registered to Linus Torvalds.[5] Initially, nobody registered it, but on 15 August 1994, William R. Della Croce, Jr. filed for the trademark Linux, and then demanded royalties from Linux distributors. In 1996, Torvalds and some affected organizations sued him to have the trademark assigned to Torvalds, and in 1997 the case was settled.[114]"

In fact, the above is the first thing that came to my mind when I read the summary.

I hope that the settlement afterward included representatives from the likes of Redhat, Debian, SuSe, Slackware, and whatever other distros existed back then holding an ass kicking party with Croce as the guest of honor.

call up this company (4, Insightful)

lkcl (517947) | about a year ago | (#42910663)

how about all of us calling this company up, several times a day, and *politely* telling them what we think? the sheer number of calls would, just from them having to answer the phone, cause them to lose money, as well as make it clear that we're not impressed.

Re:call up this company (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#42914101)

how about all of us calling this company up, several times a day, and *politely* telling them what we think? the sheer number of calls would, just from them having to answer the phone, cause them to lose money, as well as make it clear that we're not impressed.

just ask them if they offer django on their cheap ass virtual servers... and if they do, ask them about python version.

So who is the company ? (4, Insightful)

Alain Williams (2972) | about a year ago | (#42910709)

Name & shame them!

Re:So who is the company ? (4, Informative)

SilenceBE (1439827) | about a year ago | (#42910821)

http://www.veber.co.uk/ [veber.co.uk] & pobox.co.uk [slashdot.org]

This hasn't been an issue since then because the python.co.uk domain has, for most of its life, just forwarded its traffic on to the parent companies, veber.co.uk and pobox.co.uk. Unfortunately, Veber has decided that they want to start using the name "Python" for their server products.

Seems like a cheap way to abuse the popularity of python to try to sell their own products. This is a company that I surely will ignore if they come in my path, don't like that kind of shenanigans.

Re:So who is the company ? (3, Funny)

happy_place (632005) | about a year ago | (#42911381)

This company sounds absolutely reptillian in their nature. Like some massive hungry slithering bottom-dwelling reptile that strikes out at any warm-blooded thing that's good, and wraps itself around it for its own selfish enrichment, squeezing the life out of its prey. Dunno why they'd want to be named Python, it's a lovely language... and friendly... unless you don't like indenting.
 

Re:So who is the company ? (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about a year ago | (#42910833)

From TFA (ignore my sig this time around...):

"Specifically, it is the company that got a hold on the python.co.uk domain 13 years ago. At that time we weren't looking a lot at trademark issues, and so we didn't get that domain."

Re:So who is the company ? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910899)

How are you going to shame a company that has been using the name in their business for 13 years. This is actually PSF's fault for not registering their trademark when this other Python company grabbed the python.co.uk domain 13 years ago.

Re:So who is the company ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910911)

The article says that 13 years ago, that company registered python.co.uk so I assume their website is http://www.python.co.uk

Re:So who is the company ? (1)

Khyber (864651) | about a year ago | (#42910921)

veber.co.uk

  pobox.co.uk

If you couldn't be bothered to RTFA just two fucking paragraphs in, I have serious doubts whether posting this information will get you to do anything or not. You seem too lazy to be much more than a REMF armchair quarterback.

Re:So who is the company ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42913331)

Why not modify Wikipedia instead and add their name to the "natural enemy" section.

Time for retribution. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910733)

It seems as though reasonable avenues have been tried without success, so time to go for the jugular. After they get this travesty resolved they should go after the python.com domain too.

It's protected in the UK under Common Law (3, Interesting)

tlambert (566799) | about a year ago | (#42910799)

It's protected in the UK under Common Law: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Passing_off [wikipedia.org] , and therefore in the entire EU, due to treaty: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trade_mark_law_of_the_European_Union [wikipedia.org]

Is this "story" to try and get money for an hour worth of lawyer time, or just publicity for Python itself, since people are starting to not care about it that much, and they want more developers?

Re:It's protected in the UK under Common Law (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42911009)

The 'passing off' tort doesn't apply in this situation, unfortunately. Now, if the European crowd were pushing their own Python programming language, or in some way trying to trade off PSF's brand, then yes, it would.

However, no 'passing off' is occurring in this situation - that the European company is attempting to register the name for its own use means that tort does not apply.

captcha: communal

Re:It's protected in the UK under Common Law (1)

tlambert (566799) | about a year ago | (#42911851)

The 'passing off' tort doesn't apply in this situation, unfortunately. Now, if the European crowd were pushing their own Python programming language, or in some way trying to trade off PSF's brand, then yes, it would.

However, no 'passing off' is occurring in this situation - that the European company is attempting to register the name for its own use means that tort does not apply.

captcha: communal

I believe the broad scope of the application would also apply to a computer language named 'Python' by the company. This makes it appear that 'Python' the language is their own.

So basically they would be "passing off" the Open Source project as their work. According to my reading of the PDF of the law, this appears to meant it applies.

what IS the PROBLEM here? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910801)

What did the company do that is wrong? They had the domain registered for years, why shouldn't they be allowed to make python servers? It's not like anyone who isn't an idiot would confuse python-server-hardware with python-programming-language.

Is there some back story somewhere that show the company acting dickish? When I saw the headline I was ready to grab my pitchfork (even though I'm a Ruby guy), but the "plea for help" doesn't justify any anger.

Re:what IS the PROBLEM here? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42911587)

> exclusive right to use "Python" for software, servers, and web services

There's at least two idiots who couldn't even read TFS, you and someone who modded you up. Really, you don't see how Python-programming-language and any Python-based project with Pythonin the name can infringe on Python-software or Python-web-services trademark?

Re:what IS the PROBLEM here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42913001)

I read the TFS and the TFA, but both were devoid enough detail to decide if confusion was going to enter the marketplace:

"Trademark law is mainly a way to protect the public, rather than the trademark holder. This means that uses of trademarks that confuse consumers -- which in our case would include our developer and user community, or anyone else who might be likely to use the Python programming language -- are not permitted under law."
-- http://www.python.org/psf/trademarks/

I look forward to enough facts coming forward to rake this company over the coals, but that day hasn't come.

Re:what IS the PROBLEM here? (3, Insightful)

Half-pint HAL (718102) | about a year ago | (#42912667)

They had the domain registered for years, why shouldn't they be allowed to make python servers? It's not like anyone who isn't an idiot would confuse python-server-hardware with python-programming-language.

Google Python webserver. Then think about what you've just said....

Since it has already been used for the language (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910805)

they cannot demand trademark on it because it is already in common and widespread use.

This has got to be some damn stupid 'merkins not understanding that Europe has a law system like the USA and that trademarks still have to be new and unique to be trademarked.

"But it's Europe!!! With lots of strange languages! And funny looking passports!!!!!".

Just contact the PTO where this application is going in and inform them of your use of the mark prior to their application, never mind use.

Re:Since it has already been used for the language (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910887)

This has got to be some damn stupid 'merkins not understanding that Europe has a law system like the USA and that trademarks still have to be new and unique to be trademarked.

I suppose you were too busy drumming up your anti-American hatred to read the first goddamn sentence of the summary, which states:

"A company in the UK"

Congratulations, you're an asshat.

Apparently you can't read. Normal for a 'merkin. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910973)

"A company in the UK is trying to trademark the 'Python' term for all things computing".

That company will know the UK law. Even if they are breaking it. After all, just because they're asking for the trademark doesn't mean they are legally allowed to get it.

Python are running around screaming ENDOFTHEWORLD!!!! because of it. For no other reason than they're idiots and think "OMG EUROPE!!! They're all foreign there and aren't American! We're DOOMED!!!".

You can have trademarks with the same name as long as they are different areas.

Just like in 'merkinland.

Re:Apparently you can't read. Normal for a 'merkin (1)

Scarletdown (886459) | about a year ago | (#42915045)

You can have trademarks with the same name as long as they are different areas.

Just like in 'merkinland.

Considering that they are both in the IT arena where one is software for a programming language and the other is trying to get protection for web servers, software, and other stuff, then there is a conflict and possibility of confusion here.

The correct course of events that should happen is that the group that develops the Python language should protest the trademark application and present their evidence. Then whoever oversees the issuance of trademarks should look at said evidence and tell the ones trying to get the trademark to either piss off or bugger off (their choice.)

Popular pressure (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910839)

May we who are not owners of any office, but are potential consumers, start a campaign in the social media saying that we will not buy their (python.co.uk) service until they change their name?
Additionally, we would send emails to contactus@python.co.uk saying the same thing.
What do you think?

Bone-headed Decision by Veber/Pobox (Parent Comp.) (4, Insightful)

mrpacmanjel (38218) | about a year ago | (#42910855)

So let me get this straight:

A UK-based ISP/Cloud services company offers Linux/Windows based Cloud Servers and they think it's a good idea to name the product range after a well-known programming language?

It's a nice way to "gain the trust" of potential customers - "Yeah we're the guys that screwed over the Python community (we totally stressed them out and cost them major $ too) - buy our stuff you can trust us!"

"btw, we off Linux installed on our servers too. Ironic don't you think?"

No doubt this will gain a lot of negative publicity especially on sites like slashdot.org - you know the very people that know a lot about ISP/cloudy services!!!!!

I'm getting some popcorn.

Re:Bone-headed Decision by Veber/Pobox (Parent Com (3, Funny)

Half-pint HAL (718102) | about a year ago | (#42912781)

It's also a good way to screw over your buyers.

Yes, we promised you Python webservers, and we delivered your Python webservers as promised.

No, of course you can't program them in Python. Python is an optional extra, not a standard component of a Python webserver. What you want is our PyPy webserver a totally unique and new trademarked name for our Python webserver running a Python webserver.

No, Pypy doesn't run Pypy, just standard Python. If you want Pypy, you'll need to get PyPyPyPy, a Python webserver running the PyPy Python interpreter virtualised inside a Python session.

Re:Bone-headed Decision by Veber/Pobox (Parent Com (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#42913869)

maybe the thought they'll get points from ms for doing this. though fat chance since ms has it's own cloud to sell.
btw one thing they think that cloud isn't good for is "high volume data transfer scenarios.". they're selling people shit.

you know what's REALLY shitty? you have to sign up(free, sort of, they'll want your cc number) to see what os's /configurations they offer! and I'll bet you ten bucks one of them includes something with a python interpreter!

Re:Bone-headed Decision by Veber/Pobox (Parent Com (1)

Scarletdown (886459) | about a year ago | (#42915105)

Just like Microsoft trademarked Microsoft Windows instead of just Windows, perhaps this company should add a descriptive word before the Python name and trademark that instead. Porcelain Python perhaps?

Accident waiting to happen.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910881)

Hosting provider isn't it....
I feel an Anonymous attack coming....
Let's see how their customers like that.

Riding off the name of free software..... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42910889)

....while using free software. From the footer on the front page of the pobox.co.uk [pobox.co.uk] website (operated by the company concerned, according to the article):

Joomla! is Free Software released under the GNU/GPL License.

Nice....

Is it really a good choice? (2)

Coisiche (2000870) | about a year ago | (#42910963)

I live in UK and the first association I make when encountering the word "python" is with Monty Python's Flying Circus. That would also be true of many people I know. Why would anyone want to use that as a trademark in this country when so many people will immediately think of a comedy team?

Re:Is it really a good choice? (4, Informative)

tuffy (10202) | about a year ago | (#42911111)

The language is named after Monty Python's Flying Circus, but the trademark only applies to software.

Re:Is it really a good choice? (3, Interesting)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | about a year ago | (#42911141)

The language was named after Monty Python. Whether that was a good idea or not (take it up with Guido van Rossum) is irrrelevant at this point.

Re:Is it really a good choice? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42911305)

You, sir, are a geek.
Most people don't have a clue what "Monty Python's Flying Circus" is.
"Is that those touring Russian performers? With the animals?"

So get a new name! (1)

Greyfox (87712) | about a year ago | (#42911343)

I never liked "Python" anyway. It's a great opportunity to find a new name. A better name! May I propose: Bieberconda?

Welcome to the UK! (1)

EdgePenguin (2646733) | about a year ago | (#42911483)

We have based our economy on financial services rent seeking for years, its about the time we got international recognition in the IP trolling sector!

UK key decision makers Unite (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42911535)

I went to http://www.python.co.uk/contact-python , where I found an email address and wrote them this:

I am a key decision maker for a number of clients in the field of
highly distributed computing. My clients have included [Anonymous Coward]. I am also an
active member in the Python community and fully support the PSF. The
PSF is financially supported through donations from people like me.
That money mostly goes to underwrite conferences which helps
disseminate knowledge. Cloud computing has become accessible to a far
large number of businesses, in no small part, due to their efforts.

  But now some of the money that I, and other key decision makers like
me, have given will now go to legal fees towards defending trademarks.
I don't really see how having the Python brand could benefit you. How
would you view, say, an internet security firm which named themselves
Java? Either way the battle will cost the PSF tens of thousands of
pounds and, thus, alienate the community which are your customers.

If you are key decision maker in the UK, please write something similar. They must not realize what they are doing.

TradeMark of Copyrighted stuff is a bad idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42911711)

It means automatic trademark dilution.

And no recourse to cease and desist letters possible.

Just a waste of money on the part of the company...

Kudos to this company ... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42911813)

Anything to stop the spread of this horrible crap language and its self-righteous zealot fanboys.

An easy battle (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42911855)

Unlike America, Europe isn't a land of lawyers, but a land of Laws. Identify the principles behind a given set of Laws, and the outcome is easy to calculate. Europe has just as many 'chancers' as the USA- the dumbo criminals milked by cynical lawyers who advise them to waste their money in hopeless schemes.

The easiest way is for the PSF to have a word with one of the insanely well connected famous computer tech personalities in Europe. Then the legs of the carpetbagger will be cut off with a rusty bandsaw.

Although these issues don't really need a lot of ground level activism and outrage to be settled the way we want, the expression of outrage and activism is good practice for the times when companies like Microsoft make a major financial effort to buy key politicians within Europe. A better cause to rally the troops behind would be the obscenity of big names attempting to persuade the naive that software purchased outright is a 'service' not a 'product', With a 'product' you OWN that particular expression of IP, be it software, or a physical device, and are free to sell it to another,

Re:An easy battle (1)

Half-pint HAL (718102) | about a year ago | (#42912941)

Sorry, you can't bundle Europe that way. The legal systems of the UK were the foundations for the legal systems in all the colonised countries. The distinction is more "Common law" and "Roman law". Common law can be thought of more-or-less as "English-speaking law". (Inasmuchas any lawyer speaks English.)

I wrote a letter as requested, but... (1)

CaptainOfSpray (1229754) | about a year ago | (#42912117)

Unable to deliver your message. 553 Contact your postmaster/admin for assistance. Perhaps the PSF's Inbox is a little undersized...

PSF started the fight (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42913747)

For the love of God, read the article!

Veber were planning on naming their servers Python, and PSF CONTACTED THEM to make them stop. Veber RESPONDED by taking out the Trademark claim t DEFEND themselves.

If PSF hadn't been so pissy about it, Veber wouldn't have had to lawyer up.

I'm going to patent a programming language "JOE" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42913799)

I'm going to patent a programming language "JOE" - yes JOE is the supper duper set of all programming language and one line of code
can do a millions things - bug FREE, no testing, no code review, no compilation, no need for 20 years of programming.

See JOE comming to your desktop in 2014.

Re:I'm going to patent a programming language "JOE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42915569)

Because the name perl was too long?

Contact (1)

goblinspy (2738809) | about a year ago | (#42913959)

contactus@python.co.uk is their contact infomation on python.co.uk. Have to see how much their cloud services can handle email traffic :).
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