Just to introduce myself, I am a member of the trademark team at Canonical. As you are no doubt aware, Canonical owns a number of trademarks and these include UBUNTU, KUBUNTU, EDUBUNTU, and XUBUNTU. The trademarks are registered in both word and logo form. This policy encompasses all marks, in word and logo form, collectively referred to as “Trademarks”.
Your Ubuntu-eee project has been brought to our attention:
As much we do appreciate your enthusiastic support of Ubuntu and appreciate the time and effort you have devoted to the project, we’re afraid that there are trademark issues with your project. We’ve tried to define a reasonable trademark policy that allows people to customise Ubuntu, and use the marks to promote the project, while at the same preserving the integrity of the marks.
In terms of our trademark policy you cannot use the Ubuntu circle of friends logo in combination with other marks or logos. It concerns us because, among other things, it implies a connection and endorsement that doesn’t exist and we believe that this is potentially confusing to users. The circle of friends logo you have used replacing the circles with the letter e is in breach of this. We’d be happy to offer the assistance of our marketing team if you would like help in redesigning your logo.
In terms of our project name, Ubuntu-eee, is in breach of our trademark policy. Ubuntu-eee implies an official endorsement, which is not the case. We do encourage people to make custom versions of Ubuntu, and we have established the “remix” concept and terminology to allow use of the trademark if the changes are minimal or include only software from the Ubuntu repositories. It is of course fine to host repositories and distribute the software – the issue is that you are attaching the brand, quality and assurance messages of the Ubuntu marks to something which is not Ubuntu. We wouldn’t have a problem with you naming your project Ubuntu for eee or Ubuntu-eee remix, for example.
Regarding the url, again, there is a trademark issue with this as in terms of our policy we do not allow the word Ubuntu to be used in a domain name or url and Ubuntu-eee is in breach of this.
Again,we’d like to stress that we do appreciate your enthusiasm for Ubuntu, however, the Ubuntu name and logo to refer to your own project (i.e, not Ubuntu) needs to be changed.
We trust that you will understand our position in this regard. If you have any questions or would like to discuss it further, please let us know.
The Trademark Team