Formal board meeting minutes from 2010 through present. Please Note: The board typically approves minutes from one meeting during the next board meeting, so minutes will be published roughly one month later than the scheduled date. Other corporate records are published, as is an alternate categorized view of all board meeting minutes.
* ISSUES FOR THE BOARD As noted in last month's report, we await ratification by the board as to the status of brand policy and unresolved questions thereon (issue continued from last month). As directed by the President, I am prioritizing available efforts on projects and podlings that are clearly and actively accepting of the relationship with brand policy. * OPERATIONS Slightly slower month than usual on crises and questions, which let us spend some time focusing on adding to the documentation. Two draft proposals are awaiting more feedback: - Services naming policy: https://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/services - Merchandise use policy: https://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/merchandise (public) https://svn.apache.org/repos/private/committers/brand/merchandise.txt (committer-only additional permissions) A proposal to encourage (rather than prohibit) "Apache" in third party event branding has been brought up. As with the draft proposals above, disappointingly little (none, so far on events) feedback has appeared. Similarly, a call to members@ soliciting questions about Apache brands met with resounding silence. Met with trademark counsel to improve operations around registration processing and timelines and to bring new counsel on our account up to speed on our objectives. * REGISTRATIONS & CONTRACTS Several project registration requests have gotten change suggestions from counsel to better provide the best chance at registration without conflicts or office actions. I don't know yet if this is a trend at the USPTO or just a factor of some specific project names that are more common words being popular. New applications for COUCHDB, MESOS, and BIGTOP have been submitted. We responded to an overly-broad potential conflict on our TEZ application made by an overzealous examiner.
* ISSUES FOR THE BOARD As noted in last month's report, we await ratification by the board as to the status of brand policy and unresolved questions thereon (as is amply reflected in mailing list archives). Separately, it is clear we lack the volunteer time to respond to questions from outside parties and PMCs with either the timeliness, or the consistent and knowledgeable answers and assistance that our projects and contributors deserve. I do not have a solution to this long-term issue other than the documentation already provided, so I look to President and the board as a whole to help brainstorm. In particular, while we have detailed documentation and education on a wide variety of trademark related questions, it is clear from recent experience that what's provided is not sufficient to better educate our project communities and our Membership. * OPERATIONS Issues and questions are far behind normal answers given the long, contentious, and confusing threads about all of brand policy (or lack thereof). Attempting to answer Member questions, deal with the harsh rhetoric, and providing additional explanations for brand activities sucked up virtually all available volunteer time over the past month. Additional documentation was created in response to questions, including listings of both selected known trademark issues requiring evaluation, as well as a listing of known cases where non detailed overview of all existing brand documentation: https://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/policies I co-presented "Trademarks In Open Source" at the Practising Law Institute legal education conference, which was very well received. * REGISTRATIONS & CONTRACTS Signed updated event contract for a major Hadoop-related conference. Our CASSANDRA application in the US has published for opposition. Several requests are still in process at various stages. -- - Shane https://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/resources
* ISSUES FOR THE BOARD Please see the president's report. In particular, a clear ratification by the board if the existing policy documents posted on the website are correct or not. While PMCs report to the board, my expectation is that the brand policies are required policies by PMCs, and that the board will take action to work with PMCs repeatedly refusing to follow them. If there are specific policies that the board wishes to change to guidelines, that would be fine. If the board votes to change all brand policies to be non-required, well... I'm not sure what other work there would be for Brand Management to do. https://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/ Also, please see the brand request in the President's submitted budget. * OPERATIONS trademarks@ requests and questions both internally and externally; and discussions from PMCs and Members, continues to grow beyond the capacity of the few regularly participating Brand Management Committee members to respond to. Our current volunteer pool and resources are insufficient to continue to be able to provide sufficient services for projects requesting help or registrations. I do not have a current solution for this, so over the next quarter will work with the President to look for improvements or additional proposals to the board. To address some of the questions from the many discussion threads about brand processes and details of specific issues, I have published some additional information for review by the board and any interested Members or committers. * REGISTRATIONS The IMPALA registrations have been donated to the ASF. Our HADOOP application in India has been published for opposition; this is the last step before the registration will actually issue. Our APACHE registration has finally issued in Brazil. Several requests are still in process at various stages.
* ISSUE FOR THE BOARD: Budget overrun. * OTHER OPERATIONS: Very busy; more issues arise than we have volunteers able to provide useful answers. * BUDGET Brand is currently overspending compared to the last board-approved annual budget, both in the short term, and for the foreseeable future given known and likely requests from projects and podlings. There are two factors that have almost completely hidden the true cost of brand from us before quite recently, meaning that most expectations in the past of what we get vs. what we pay were unrealistic: 1- Originally, counsel provided essentially all services pro bono, only passing on actual registration application fees. In mid-2015, counsel move us to a new retainer which charges for services at a discount rate, and generally ensures a flat cap of $5K per month for legal services to limit our budget exposure. Note that this also seems to limit the rate at which some work is accomplished as well. 2- Due to a billing error, 5 months of past bills were never sent until just this month. Thus we have an additional $18k due this month for services rendered in the past; however once this is covered future bills should be much more even. To provide services that projects and podlings are asking for, an estimated monthly run rate is $6K/month. This accounts for $5K of services from primary counsel monthly, plus the occasional registration application fees; plus the rare fees from outside counsel where primary counsel aren't able to directly represent us. * OPERATIONS Along with the extra discussions spilling over about two major projects the board has shown concern over in the recent past, a wide variety of questions continues to come into trademarks@ from both our projects and outside parties. Providing timely, polite, and correct answers or guidance to all requests is no longer something sustainable with volunteers. While some of these questions are mostly answered by existing documentation, it's clear that the documentation isn't widely known. Separately, many of these questions are not covered by documentation, and we don't always have volunteers who can provide consistent, clear, and appropriate answers. Unlike with code checkins, providing an incorrect answer sometimes results in bad results that *cannot* easily be corrected. To ensure at least our "how to deal with an infringement" documentation is usable, we are working on an experiment with the Hadoop PMC to have them use the docs (and ask questions/suggest improvements) to start contacting some of the existing misuses of their brand. * CONFERENCES I will be presenting at ApacheCon Seville on three topics: - Improving your Apache Project's Image and Brand - Practical Trademark Law For FOSS Projects - Successfully Profiting From Apache Projects And Brands All slides will be posted on our resources page after the conference: https://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/resources * LICENSES / REGISTRATIONS Still finalizing conference branding contract, will be signed as soon as it reflects our current v1.3 Event branding policy. Registration applications are in process per request from Hadoop, Hive, Bigtop, and Tez PMCs in the US and Tomcat PMC for international jurisdictions. - Shane
Travel, the school year, and preparing for upcoming talks have led to less progress on brand answers and policy improvements than I hoped, although Mark Thomas has done an excellent job in several areas both answering questions and helping to analyze issues, including some ideas for improving operations in the longer term. I hope to have some plans documented by ApacheCon, although finding the a workable and sustainable solution to protecting Apache brands will be a long-term effort that will require more help. I will be presenting "Practical Trademark Law for FOSS Projects" at All Things Open, based largely on experiences with Apache projects dealing with third party uses. I will also be presenting several trademark-related talks at ApacheCon in Seville, Spain. Separately, I have been invited to speak at a law conference on open source trademark matters. One question about registered trademarks did come up that needs clarification: PMCs are responsible for policing notable use of their project trademarks in the same manner whether their trademarks are registered or not. The ASF treats all Apache project names and logos as trademarks of the Foundation. Two PMCs with strong brands have been actively working on addressing some trademark issues, which is great to see the attention and care. Unfortunately the number of times that PMC members either disagree on actions to take or have misconceptions about how trademark policies work means that there is still a lot of back and forth with trademarks on many of the issues. The Domain Name Policy is being updated to prohibit the use of Apache project names as second level or similar style domain names when used for content related to potentially similar software products or services to that Apache project. It's clear from review that we will need to publicize this more widely to ensure PMCs are aware of it. A major non-English website and long-running conference using one of our registered trademarks was brought to trademarks@ and will need to be addressed. Given the popularity of the project, it's disappointing that this website was never reported before now. There is also little apparent interest from the PMC to work on addressing it. I am negotiating an contract update to continue licensing a project's registered mark for a recurring conference.
Interesting and complex questions continue on trademarks@ apace. The growth of both projects/podlings, the major vendors that use them (and sometimes abuse them) continues to outstrip our small amount of volunteer energy available to properly address them. The trend is clear that we are not able to provide the level of brand management expertise to all Apache projects that is asked for. Separately, it's clear from spot checks that some projects are not doing as thorough a job of branding or trademark enforcement as we would expect to maintain the expected Apache-style long-term independent community governance with new and diverse contributors. A number of attempts over the past two years to draw in new skilled volunteers has resulted in but one volunteer with the consistency, experience, and levelheaded-ness to be a regular advisor or driver of branding issues. Similarly, it appears that we are over capacity of our legal counsel given our limited budget and our monthly discount fee agreement, even only accounting for the most basic of PMC-requested services. Mark Thomas has started work on improving our event branding policy, especially with respect to ensuring that Apache branded events don't unduly conflict with our own ApacheCon conferences. Interesting trademarks@ discussions this month: - Are favicons part of a project brand? In general, yes they are. - Several merchandising requests, both permissions and to buy. - Numerous discussions about Apache Spark, OpenOffice, and OFBiz marks. - Offer to sell us a projectname.nyc domain name, refused. - Shane
Complex questions and heated discussion threads continue to pour through trademarks@ from a variety of PMCs and outside parties alike. Even accounting for the slowdown of responses during many recent summer vacations, the trend of notable issues requiring thoughtful and knowledgeable responses continues to grow faster than the number of volunteers providing regular and productive assistance. A PMC with a popular project is requesting international registrations in European Union, Japan, and India for their project name, and have supplied a detailed and well-thought-out rationale for the expense and effort for the additional registrations (a US application is in process already). Notably, a company working in this space has volunteered to help cover the legal costs of the registration in a way that properly respects our fundraising policies. While there are outstanding issues relating to the PMC's work on policing third party uses of their brand, I support the additional registrations and hope to work with operations@ on an appropriate way to secure greater rights for the ASF while minimizing our actual expenses. Unfortunately the discussion on the PMC's progress became more heated and widespread than I thought would be productive. Several trademark policy improvements are being proposed to better clarify allowable third party uses, in response to both existing projects as well as an incubating project's questions about ability to allow the project donor to continue using the brand. The policy for incoming names will be clarified to ensure it's clear that when donating a software product brand or trademark, it must be fully donated to the ASF, and the original donor does not retain any special rights. For cases where the original donor still has questions, the best advice will be for the podling to choose a new, unique name that the ASF can fully own.
# Strategic Planning As more projects express interest in trademarks and more uses thereof (in certifications, services, transfers to or from third parties, etc.) the variety of kinds of questions coming to trademarks@ continues to grow. While we have basic documentation, it's clear that a solid understanding of how open source trademarks work in the software vendor world is still lacking among most PMCs and Members. Long term, finding much better ways to provide better branding and trademark support to our projects will be critical, both for our many big data projects (due to the extremely competitive market and pressures from for-profit vendors) and for the Foundation's reputation as a vendor-neutral and independently led home for project communities. In my mind, this is our second most important issue to solve, after the question of hiring sufficient operational and infrastructure staff to ensure that our core services are managed appropriately. # Operations Summer vacation and home contractors have slowed response times. A number of other project and Branding Committee members are providing some feedback and thoughtful commentary on some issues, but it's still very spotty. In particular, one project with past issues has been providing some very thoughtful and helpful comments and questions, which is great progress. # Registrations Cloudera has assigned the IMPALA mark with a number of international registrations and applications to the ASF for the podling's use. Another open source foundation has denied our request to use the trademark for one of their projects recently forked to an Apache project. While this is one of the rare cases where it could be appropriate to transfer the trademark - they have stopped development of the project and it's an amicable fork - we will abide by their request (and I'll ensure the PMC does so). Our ACCUMULO and TAJO registrations in the US have completed, and our TAJO application was published in the USPTO Gazette, the final step to being completed. Our assumed applications for a recently graduated podling are being opposed, and we're working with counsel on the most effective way to secure sufficient registration(s) for our purposes. - Shane
# Operations A number of project-related discussions spilled across trademarks@ this past month, with complaints about either vendor use of project brands or PMC handling of the situations; Spark and Cassandra both were major sources of discussion and action by members, the PMCs, and the board. The good news is that this shows a wider variety of individuals are looking at and raising issues that affect how our project brands and the Apache brand are used (or mis-used). We've long needed to have more Members and project contributors looking for and bringing up these issues. The not as good news is the way that these issues have been raised, as well as in some cases how the PMC has responded. The trouble with branding mis-uses is that many project participants don't pay attention until they happen to see something that REALLY UPSETS THEM! Thus we historically have plenty of times with no reports, and then suddenly a project contributor or ASF Member RAISES THIS HUGE ISSUE THAT MUST BE DEALT WITH. Since branding issues are not as clear cut as compiler errors, this often results in an imprecise call to action that is sometimes taken in the wrong spirit by the receiving PMC, resulting in a lot of unfortunate noise and anger. Separately, one PMC did not appear to take recent complaints seriously enough, to the point where the board required a new project report and discussed some very serious potential future consequences. This not as good news calls for better behavior in three kinds of situations: 1- If you see an Apache project branding mis-use, say something - in a polite, specific, and actionable way. We have guides for this. Branding issues need to be as specific as possible, to ensure we can request concrete steps by the mis-user to correct them. In particular, assuming ignorance rather than malice, and raising issues in a positive way really help to reduce miscommunications and arguments about details. http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/reporting 2- It's clear that not all PMCs fully understand and/or regularly pay attention to their project's branding issues. Detailed procedures exist, but ensuring that PMCs are truly taking things like Project Independence to heart in their day to day actions - as well as in the public uses of their brand by vendors in the ecosystem - is something we still need to work on. Branding issues are far easier to solve the earlier they are reported, and PMCs need to fully ensure the appearance of independent governance for their projects: http://community.apache.org/projectIndependence 3- While we are a volunteer-led organization that allows individual project participants broad responsibility and ability to direct their own project's affairs, we are still a single Foundation with documented governance and required policies. It should not take a director bringing up serious consequences to a PMC to have the PMC take credible reports of brand mis-uses seriously, and to take positive action on specific issues immediately. # Registrations After some great progress on a few legal related issues, several new issues have come up and some past ones seem stalled. It's clear I'll need to work on more time as VP to keep the legal & application process side of the house on track. This needs more investigation to see if it's related to our current counsel billing process and budget. OFBIZ is now our registered trademark in the US. We have applied for US registrations for TEZ and FLINK. Several other projects have expressed interest in US registrations, including one or two logo registrations. # Organizational Note For the record, I have been laid off from my employer, and am now formally unaffiliated. This does not change my view on the VP, Brand Management position, which has always been that the good of the Foundation as a whole comes first.
## Board Issues (overview, more below): - DLAPiper submitted bill for $16K+, which will be re-billed at $5K/month instead; however project-requested expenses are significant. - Couple of significant cases where PMCs are clearly not effectively policing or noticing mis-uses of their brand. ## Operations: Wide variety of questions as well as some good discussions on trademarks@ about a few of the issues. Still hoping for some substantive comments on the self-help/reporting guidelines as well as the brand usage guidelines. http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/templates/ http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/guide Added Mark Thomas to the Brand Management President's committee. Spoke and/or led sessions on branding issues and Apache project branding policies & tips at ApacheCon, Community Leadership Summit, and at OSCON. Feedback was positive; it's clear the larger ecosystem of FOSS developers still needs a lot of education on trademark issues. Have been requested to give similar talks at two future conferences. ## Registrations: After a quiet period, counsel took action on a number of registration applications, as well as responded on our behalf to several office actions and other registration issues with our applications as well as two competing registration applications from a third party. This was great to move through some of our backlog of requests; however it also resulted in many hours of work (which are billed at a discount). Have a couple more projects requesting registration in US and elsewhere that are still to be processed. ## Issue - Budgeting: With the number of projects requesting registrations - both in the US and in selected international cases - and the number of office actions or other legal conflicts, counsel presented a $16K bill for the past month. Our agreement specifies a monthly limit, however the full (discounted!) amount will still be carried forward. Given the interest from projects requesting registration once they understand the value, I expect proportionally more projects over the next year will be requesting registrations. This is hard to predict how quickly it will build, but will clearly be significantly more expense this coming FY than was actually spent last FY. The main drivers are 1) more projects being making request, and 2) the new fee discount (instead of pro bono) that we have with counsel. ## Issue - PMC Policing / Independence: While the self-help guides and process for policing project marks are much improved, recent events show that the ability or even apparent interest by PMCs to actually police their marks varies widely. The fact that we have a number of very "hot" projects these days while still seeing a relatively low number of potential infringement issues coming to trademarks@ tends to point to the fact that most PMCs aren't as active at reviewing third party use of their brand(s) as expected. We have what is becoming a very clear and detailed guide - but not nearly enough PMCs or committers are actually following it. Unless we can get communities engaged in this work, we should expect to see more issues like the two notable project questions that came up recently.
Several significant brand issues reported this month which unfortunately show that PMC awareness and capability to deal with trademark problems varies widely. In particular, the lack of timely response and thoughtful analysis in two situations is disappointing, where issues that should have either been dealt with, or at least attracted attention from the PMC still aren't resolved. One of these involved a third party showing clear confusion as to the source of our software product; instead of contacting the Apache project directly, they had been contacting another software vendor with questions about our software. This specific case is not the real issue; the real issue is ensuring that PMCs as a whole can consistently and fairly act to police their brands, especially when PMC members work for the vendors potentially causing issues. To help ensure guidelines are sufficiently clear, I'm working on much more detailed explanations as well as asking for reviews and feedback on documentation on trademarks@. In the spirit of self-service, proposed template(s) for contacting third parties and guidelines for how to properly refer to Apache project names are now published: http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/templates/ http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/guide (draft) I would love to see more Member feedback on these over on trademarks@, as well as thoughtful and specific suggestions for clarifying the Domain Name and Event Name branding policies to ensure that PMCs can apply them more easily and consistently. To help test these guidelines, I will be using them to contact a number of companies misusing our Hadoop brand in their software products shortly. Met with DLAPiper counsel to ensure they are addressing a number of outstanding applications and legal questions, including a review of the OpenOffice PMC's proposed repackaging license Submitted formal trademark complaints to the Microsoft store in relation to third party software using our OpenOffice registered trademarks. At the request of PMCs: Renewed OPENOFFICE.ORG US registration; TOMCAT US application was finalized; provided responses to USPTO office actions for FLINK and PDFBOX applications. Several US and international registrations are preparing for applications.
A host of personal emergencies and a variety of new, complex issues in the past month mean that there's a backlog on making improvements to brand how-to policies and procedures, but looking forward to newfound free time to make progress shortly. Created a BRAND private JIRA to track internal tasks and make it easier for other trademarks committee members to productively review and work on improvements. Unfortunately, a PMC sent a strongly worded infringement letter to a third party who actually holds a registered trademark to their name locally. We were lucky in that this only resulted in the third party having their legal counsel email us back with a polite "We're not infringing, here's why, please go away" letter. I'll need assistance reviewing the existing procedure and improving it so it's easy to understand when PMCs may directly send infringement letters, versus when they must work with the Trademarks Committee. A lot of attention was brought to poor third party usage of our HADOOP® name in places where nary an Apache® can be found. Dealing with this effectively - as long experience with some issues with the Hadoop PMC show - requires a much more detailed naming guideline so that PMCs and third parties alike can have a specific and dispassionate answer as to how often the Apache must be used before the project name. We could use more thoughtful feedback on trademarks@ here. Several PMC trademark registrations in the US and elsewhere, and a renewal are outstanding, and will be processed (and billed by our counsel) in the next few weeks.
Busier than usual month on trademarks@, but now have the time and organization - and documentation improvements - to really improve our ability to respond to basic questions, and to provide guidance and precedents for more complex questions. Approved several continuing events; the number of Apache projects with notable annual conferences using our brands continues to grow strongly. Hadoop PMC handled a number of details around proper references to their brand by different vendors nicely. Working with the AOO PMC to make formal trademark infringement complaints to the Microsoft Store due to a vendor there misusing our OpenOffice marks. Counsel is working on our backlog of registration requests; began applications for TOMCAT internationally, TEZ, CASSANDRA, and MESOS. KYLIN and SPARK projects are preparing justifications for their international registrations. KYLIN PMC also wishes to register their logo. Awaiting assistance from operations@/treasurer@ to report past brand payments, we have an additional invoice awaiting approval based on the report. Shane has started a regular review of selected project homepages and brand presentation, both as a way to help PMCs understand policies as well as to suggest improvements for ways to help draw in new contributors. Will be posting regular updates on http://communityovercode.com/ throughout the year.
Overall trademarks questions were down over the end of year holidays. A couple of PMC requests for registration are awaiting my time to complete review and move forward, which I will catch up on this month. A number of different individuals and organizations have asked to produce t-shirts and similar goods featuring Apache project logos, so I plan to publish a formal policy outlining requirements, and broadly allowing such use for non-profit purposes by outside parties. The USPTO has published our HBASE, CTAKES, PDFBOX, MANIFOLDCF, and TOMCAT registrations in the gazette, which is the final step before the official registrations are granted. A registration by Oracle of OPENOFFICE.ORG has finally completed in India.
A very wide variety of questions on trademarks, including many thoughtful requests from proposed/new podlings for assistance on helping them vet their incoming project names; great to see IPMC folks really connecting the dots on this issue early on. Also, kudos to Hadoop PMC for working on addressing some third party issues recently. Litographs, a t-shirt vendor we have a licensing agreement with is working on getting more big data related Apache project logos and codes on their products. I'm working on processing several trademark registration requests for projects. Will work with President to submit one PMC's justification for spending on their international registrations.
I was invited to be a panel speaker on "Community Trademark Policies" at the annual SFLC Law Conference  at Columbia Law School. The feedback there and from other sessions at ApacheCon make it clear that the gap between how our policies are supposed to work, and the actual knowledge of our policies - both among lawyers and committers alike - is still wide. This gap is not unique to the ASF, but it does affect us differently from other software non-profits in that we have hundreds of separate project communities and thousands of active committers - all as volunteers. The trademarks@ list was quieter than usual, although the complexity of issues being brought up continues to grow. A competing USPTO registration application for XSTREAM HADOOP  was discovered, and the Hadoop PMC has requested that we have counsel work to object to the application. APACHE is now officially a registered trademark in Norway, reg # 284311.  https://www.softwarefreedom.org/events/2015/sflc-fall-conference/  https://tsdr.uspto.gov/#caseNumber=86786875&caseType=SERIAL_NO&searchType=stat usSearch
Presented two updated brand education sessions at Apache:Big Data and ApacheCon Core in Budapest. Questions both at the sessions and in the halls at the conference show that we still need to improve education for PMCs and committers in Apache projects. Published updated and annotated site map and resources for branding policy and practices, as well as a trademark registration cost guideline. Site map includes links to brand-related education and presentations: http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/resources Signed non-exclusive, annual renewable licensing agreement with Litographs, a garment, poster, and printed goods vendor for use of Apache project marks in exchange for a percentage of royalties. The detailed agreement uses similar terms that we've provided to independent Member shops in the past, but can serve as a solid model to better memorialize other requests from third parties who wish to produce non-computer related goods promoting Apache communities using Apache marks. Working with the President, please see the Tomcat PMC's additional report requesting authorization to use existing Brand budgeted funds to pay for several international trademark registrations of their TOMCAT mark (which we've already applied to register in the US). I fully support the Tomcat PMC's request. Looking forward, we are still evaluating the Brand budget situation given the unexpected loss of our pro bono counsel support. It will take some time to see what the expected monthly expenses for DLAPiper support will be given our level of work and our discount structure.
Operations proceeding normally. The Mesos, Tomcat, and Spark projects have requested registrations both in the US as well as internationally, including Europe and other jurisdictions. Working with the PMCs to provide a justification to the board for the registration fees, which are not able to be covered under the existing brand budget. Various PMC members requested clarifications as to how Apache marks should be handled in various common software distribution or install channels, like linux package managers and the like. The Mesos project noted concern over several US registrations that will cause problems for their requested application. Registration application of HADOOP in India was provisionally denied; however counsel believes we can overcome the issues at very minor cost and have the registration granted.
A quieter month than usual for requests, but running a little behind due to summer vacation time. Thanks as always to members helping to constructively answer questions. Secured agreements allowing registration applications of APACHE in Norway and Australia to proceed. Signed updated engagement letter with DLAPiper outlining their new cost structure. Operationally they will continue providing services we need, however registration related items are no longer pro bono, but will be charged at a discounted rate with a monthly cap to limit our expenses.
Fielded a broader array of questions on trademarks@ this month, especially some interesting questions from PMCs about registrations, appropriate logos and conflicts, and a number of good discussions from PMCs about proper usage of Apache marks by third parties. Thanks to Mark Thomas among others for helping to answer questions. DLAPiper, for reasons unrelated to our work, can no longer provide pro bono handling of our docket and new registrations (although they can continue to serve as pro bono counsel for trademark questions). They can offer us a flat and discounted monthly rate to continue at the same level of docketing and registration services, which I plan to continue with. Other counsel were approached to see if they could perform these services for our projects pro bono or cheaper, but they report they are not able to.
Fielded a very wide range of questions from projects and third parties alike about branding policy and permissions. Thanks to those members helping out on trademarks@, especially folks surfacing questions from various private@project lists for advice. Several previously requested project registrations are currently on hold due to administrative issues. Approved the new names Apache: Big Data and ApacheCon: Core for the updated ApacheCon branding used by LF. Investigating a report that a notable contributor to Apache projects is being threatened with legal action related to their use of our APACHE brand on their products.
## Operations: Higher than usual number of questions on trademarks@, including a number of new kinds of questions; overall I view this as good because many new third parties are asking questions based on our updated Contact Us page. Resolved 3 PODLINGNAMESEARCHes, 4 new ones submitted. As discussed at last month's meeting, the Apache Orc pTLP creation did have a PODLINGNAMESEARCH, which is something we need to more clearly document for future pTLPs to ensure their PMCs understand any issues with their chosen names. ## Registrations: At the request of the relevant PMCs, we submitted US registration applications this month for: OFBiz. Several other PMC registration requests are still coordinating getting all the information needed reviewed by the PMC and to counsel. Our HADOOP trademark registration application in Japan was finally granted. The OPENOFFICE trademark registration application in Canada that was originally begun by the prior owner has finally issued the formal registration.
## Budget: *Board action needed* * BUDGET REQUEST INCREASE: += $2,425.00 on behalf of the well organized Tomcat project who wishes to register their name as both a service mark in the US, as well as a software product mark in the EU/CTM, India, and China. Given the President's adjusted budget request for brand, the core budget is only meant to (primarily) cover a US software product registration for any TLP that requests one. Thus I would like to increase the brand budget request by +$2425 to meet the Tomcat PMC's request (which I support). Separately, please FYI that due to a billing error, over $12K of legal fees and outside counsel expenses incurred during 2014 was not actually billed to the ASF until last month; apologies if this caused some confusion as to the monthly brand expenses in the past. ## Operations: Gave two well-received talks at ApacheCon Austin related to brands, one focused on education for PMCs and the other focused on helping vendors working in our project technology spaces how to respectfully use Apache brands. The level of questions I got both after the talks and during the conference was much better than in past years in terms of PMC members asking more detailed and thoughtful questions. Work on the requested detailed risk analysis for the board of not registering our project trademarks is progressing slowly due to ApacheCon, budgets, and the like. Propose to present something next month. Interesting questions on trademarks@ this month about the recent Groovy project submission to the Incubator (no TM issues expected), the use of trademarks in relation to email addresses (to reduce spam), as well as questions about detailed uses of marks including the Apache Attic as well as a higher volume then usual from both PMCs and outside parties. (Outstanding) Waiting on infra to confirm if supporting a regularly maintained list of all Apache product trademarks is feasible; if it is not feasible, then I would expect to ask for an additional budget item to complete this task in the future. ## Registrations: At the request of the relevant PMCs, we submitted US registration applications this month for: Accumulo, ManifoldCF, Tomcat. The Tajo, ManifoldCF, DeltaSpike, Accumulo, Bigtop, OFBiz have requested to register their project names; we're still coordinating getting all the information needed for those and previous requests to counsel. The PMC requested Cassandra and CouchDB applications are on hold pending various legal consent issues. The Tomcat PMC has requested additional registrations, both as software products in the EU/CTM, India, China and as a service (i.e. the service of providing developer support to contributors) in the US. This is on hold pending a decision on budget. The Corinthia podling has requested to register their product name, and may have volunteers to donate the costs associated with the registration if the official Brand budget cannot be used to pay for podling registrations. Awaiting feedback from the Corinthia PPMC currently.
## Budget: I hope the board will approve the President's submitted Brand budget, based on actual past year spend. The board should be aware that if many projects request registrations - especially any projects that may require additional legal support - I expect we may make an additional budget request in the future at that time. The actual spend for the past year is lower than expected due to several factors, both in speed of execution for existing registration questions, as well as some billing delays from counsel (i.e. where we were billed much later than I had expected for previous services). ## Operations: Unblocked the ™-registrations@ process for handling PMC questions about registrations, which resulted in several earlier requests now being processed. Posted Apache Branded Social Media Guidelines/Best practices, based on the excellent guidelines the Apache CloudStack project; we hope all Apache projects will find them useful. Review welcomed before pushing them out. http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/socialmedia Posted Apache Project Branding Best Practices and emailed to PMCs. http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/register Working on trademarks@ as well as with DLAPiper counsel to prepare information on risk analysis for our current trademark policy and our current low rate of registrations for projects overall per the board and President's request. Note: I do not expect full details available for this month's meeting. Requested operations@ generate a full listing page of trademarks for all Apache projects. If this is not practical for our own infra to perform, I would recommend that we add budget to create this in the future. Requested a detailed cost accounting from DLAPiper per request of Treasurer/Virtual for use in future audit. ## Registrations: Our registration application for HADOOP in Korea has been formally refused due to a pre-existing registration for similar claimed software products. Korea is a first-to-file country. At the request of the relevant PMCs, we submitted US registration applications for: PDFBOX, CTAKES, HBASE. The OpenMeetings, Traffic Server, Tomcat, CouchDB, DeltaSpike, and Spark have requested to register their project names; we're still coordinating getting all the information needed to counsel. The Cassandra PMC has requested to register their mark, however we are waiting for a third party consent to be signed before proceeding to prevent any problems.
Worked on clearing podling name search entries; however not all PPMCs are performing the needed steps before submitting. Submitted two educational talks on branding plus a potential barcamp/PMC tutorial at ApacheCon Austin. Denied a services branding request using a derivative of a registered Apache mark that would highly likely be infringing if used. While it is positive this third party requested permission first, it is puzzling why they would request permissions for something so clearly inappropriate. Requested branding updates related to improper use of our HADOOP mark on the new opendataplatform.org website. As many popular Apache projects grow in widespread use and broad commercial interest, it will become more important than ever to ensure that our PMCs understand the importance of their trademarks in managing an independent project, and ensuring that they have the tools - education, access to counsel when needed, and the ability to register their marks - to do so. As a new website, the specific legal trademark issues on opendataplatform.org are limited (so far) and it's not clear how the relevant companies will present branding going forward. However third party projects like this that blur the lines between their software product offerings and the underlying Apache software products are likely to cause other issues about end user confusion as to the true source of software, as well as concern with many developers who may be interested in contributing to Apache projects.
The Apache CloudStack PMC is working with the Linux Foundation (LF) directly with the aim of setting up a CloudStack Marketing Alliance, outside of the ASF, to help promote the use and development of CloudStack. The PMC and LF representatives are working within our published brand policy, and are working with relevant ASF officers when needed. This looks to be a very productive start to this PMC's long-running broader work around showcasing CloudStack to the public, and should provide good experiences and models for other PMCs wishing to broaden their outreach. Several other PMCs have begun directly issuing permissions for small/mid scale events using their marks, so the process of PMC permissions is starting to be used, although more education and clearer documentation is still very much needed. Submitted a USPTO registration for FLINK at the request of the newly graduated PMC. The ASF received the formal trademark registration paperwork for our HADOOP registration in Japan. With assistance of counsel and many other ASF'ers, updated and signed an event MOU with Cloudera for their ongoing Hadoop World conference. trademarks@ lost Jukka as a moderator. While Henri volunteered to fill in, the lack of any other volunteers is concerning for the long term with the relatively small number of Members who regularly step up to help productively work on trademarks@ matters.
Updated large scale event MOU with feedback from counsel and many trademark perspectives. Renewed existing Hadoop-related MOU with updated terms. Updated the event policy with clarifications for blackout dates and trademark attributions. A third party is requesting trademark permissions to use an Apache project logo for their training certification program. Starting the process of working with counsel to come up with a workable way to grant permissions. Feedback on our approach - charging fees, other requirements - appreciated on trademarks@. Several projects and members commented on the Corporate Recognition Best Practices, which is helpful both to better explain the practices as well as get feedback on more real-world applications of these type of guidelines for Apache projects.
A request for licensing a project brand for a larger, long lived event is generating some discussion as to what level of policy compliance is desired for major events. I expect we will resolve these next month, continuing similar to past agreements. Our registration application for the HADOOP mark in Korea has been preliminarily refused by the examiner due to a pre-existing HADOOP registration for a similar software product; we will work with counsel and the Hadoop PMC to see what impact this has. Note that Korea is a "first-to-file" country, meaning whoever successfully *files* a trademark first typically secures rights to it. Counsel confirms that we can legally delegate ability to provide project brand use permissions to PMCs and their VPs directly; however they also note that this may have risks - depending on how well PMCs manage this - with our long-term ability to defend our brands.
A quieter month than usual. We made good progress updating public policy documentation to allow per-project approvals for many permissions requests, including a centralized Contact Us page for third party questions. Sally and the press team rolled out the Powered By Apache set of per-project logos which look great. Some projects may wish to request changes to their logos (in some cases, to include just a graphic logo and not wording); they should contact press@ with specific requests and be sure to help update the underlying graphics. Two podlings are in the process of changing branding due to feedback or issues during the PODLINGNAMESEARCH process. While this in some cases may result in additional website and infra related work if a change is made, it is difficult to see how it can be avoided to ensure that the ASF both respects pre-existing third party trademarks, as well as ensuring our ability to defend our top-level project marks in the future.
trademarks@ volume was lighter than usual this month, allowing catchup on some outstanding third party questions. Sally did an amazing job of developing and rolling out the new Powered By Apache logo set and guidelines, including suggested logos for all Apache projects. These are a simple way that projects can choose to have users show their support of Apache and the projects in a wide variety of contexts. Along with DLAPiper's continuing assistance on tracking registrations and legal advice, in conjunction with Jim I've gotten some excellent trademark policy advice from Pamela Chestek, creator of ModelTrademarkGuidelines.org, in terms of the most effective ways to craft our public policies. Started work on updating brand policy contact us page, which starts the process of explicitly pointing third party questions to capable PMCs who have asked to handle more third party questions directly.
trademarks@ continues as busy as ever, even during the summer with OSCON and several long-overdue vacations for myself, so both daily operations and process improvements are running slower than planned. Similarly, discussion on the backlog PODLINGNAMESEARCH escalated quickly during a week I was mostly offline, which led to some unfortunate responses. Thanks to Henri in particular for pulling together constructive criticism and opinions on the remaining open issues. I attended OSCON to help man the ASF booth along with our EA Melissa and a host of volunteers, including David Nalley, Justin, Upayavira, Rich, and especially Dennis Hamilton. Virtually everyone who visited the ASF booth was immensely thankful for the work we and all Apache projects do. The variety of questions from attendees was incredibly varied, everything from "Oh, you have more than one project" to "How much do you get paid for working at Apache" to "How can I get this Apache Foo bug fixed?" We've begun using tm-registrations@ as a working list to manage the details of Apache product name registration applications with the EA and counsel, and DLAPiper has begun using this list. I'm also working with DLAPiper to continue to push more of their responses to tm-registrations@ or trademarks@ wherever possible instead of vp-brand. Counsel have reported back on several legal issues related to registration applications or questions, needing additional direction for applications being made or planned that have been requested by Apache projects. Used board concall to host meeting with Sally and a third party alleging abuse of Apache trademarks by a third party in their hiring process. Interesting queries this week include a blogger asking permission to use logos; a new Hadoop & Spark conference asking for a long-term partnership; notice that OpenMRS has adopted a modified version of our trademark policy; and a request to look into third party use of Apache marks in a negative sense in AdWords.
Several directors and members brainstormed on trademarks@ about ways to improve response times and our ability to help our many Apache projects manage their brands, including ways to better educate and empower PMCs to a much greater degree. In particular Chip and the CloudStack PMC have made proposals/patches to start implementing this for their project, which should be an excellent test case to ensure our documentation is sufficiently clear for PMCs. Our EA has jumped in on tm-registrations@ to help organize data collection for trademark registration details from a number of projects who have requested to register their product marks. As the breadth and complex types of questions both on trademarks@ and other email addresses (including non-list emails) grows, it has reached the point where it is becoming not practical to provide the level of support and expertise we would like to provide to all Apache projects with all volunteers. While our EA will be very helpful to pickup organizing registrations (in conjunction with counsel), many of these questions need some practical expertise to give the best answers. I will be manning the ASF booth at OSCON next week, and hope to be able to help out with sponsor and other contacts.
The number and complexity of issues coming into trademarks@ and vp-brand@ continues to increase. Several projects have requested registration of their project names; work will start as soon as the mailing list for organizing registration information is available. Beginning work with counsel to redirect the majority of work to the lists rather than private alias. Requesting counsel provide more regular billing as well as report of hours for audit purposes. Worked with counsel on several APACHE registration issues with good success.
The volume and variety of questions and issues on trademarks@ continues to be heavy, and in particular continues to show that more education and clearer policy documentation is needed, both for our project communities as well as a more clearly presented and easily approachable set of policy documentation for users and potential corporate sponsors or donors as well. Telecon with the Apache CouchDB project to discuss branding issues and enforcement ideas; the project has some great energy with new code merges and will be working on an improved and better articulated brand for CouchDB overall. Budget request submitted to president@. Note that while our actual spending is still well below budget for last year, this is partly due to delays in billing and processing time from counsel, so I expect to get a number of bills soon. Registrations Responded to a number of questions to APACHE registration issues in various jurisdictions. Preparing registrations for SERVICEMIX and ACTIVEMQ at project request. Working with counsel on securing a coexistence agreement and/or opposition to a third party registration of an Apache product name.
* Operations trademarks@ volume and variety of questions continues to be heavy. In particular we have a number of new requests to make Apache branded swag. A key need is a way to ensure that our own /marks/list listings of Apache marks is kept updated and includes sufficient information to provide to third parties reviewing our trademark policies. While Ross has suggested tasking EA to begin this as a manual process (by reading board graduation votes), an automated one that takes into account future product releases is needed. If we can't attract volunteers for this kind of task, will work with president@ to find appropriate infrastructure work to complete. * ApacheCon / CloudStackCollab I gave three presentations about Apache branding at both conferences last week, to moderate audiences but with very good feedback from attendees. Posted on the conference site and: http://www.slideshare.net/shanecurcuru It was clear both from hallway/after hours conversations and from specific feedback on my talks that more education is needed, both for PMCs (to best protect our brands) and for vendors who commonly engage with Apache projects (to ensure they understand that Apache product names are our trademarks, for example). Recorded a podcast about Apache branding activities at ApacheCon: http://community.redhat.com/blog/2014/04/upstream-podcast-4/ Similarly, I had a number of conversations with the CloudStack PMC about their desires for getting better support for branding and marketing (and infra) activities; the result of which can be seen in their monthly board report and emails to press@ / infra@ Met with Linux Foundation (LF) staff about ApacheCon and other conference branding. IMO branding at these conferences was great. LF is already producing the upcoming MesosCon, so we will need to work on ensuring an improved event approval process to work with LF events for our many Apache projects. * Registrations Registration of APACHE has succeeded in Switzerland! While we have made several registrations, this one has finished it's process, mostly merely because of the timing of the paperwork.
trademarks@ traffic continues to grow and bring up new issues. It's been very helpful to have a couple of members really step up to help and thoughtfully answer various questions; David Nalley has been especially helpful in this regard. Started a discussion on ways to improve services that trademarks@ and the ASF offers to our projects, although there's limited feedback so far there on some new ideas. I updated the Project Independence requirements in response to issues raised recently with the focus of the page: http://community.apache.org/projectIndependence.html Had a brief but productive call at DLAPiper request; they have a number of specific documents almost ready to offer to help improve and simplify our brand policing and education activities that I'm looking forward to. DLAPiper submitted a US registration for LUCENE. DLAPiper is submitting an international registration for HADOOP covering EU and several key first-to-file countries.
This was a very busy month on trademarks@, and there are a number of open questions still being worked on. There have also been a number of good discussions about clarifying our policies - both for PMCs as well as for third parties - and about improving the Project Independence guidelines. Incubator PMC and trademarks@ was contacted by a third party about our use of the Apache Sentry name for our security-related product. Discussions are continuing. My two talks on Brand Management were accepted for ApacheCon Denver, and also one brand talk at the following CloudStack Collab that week. Phew! The Apache Hadoop PMC created email@example.com privately archived mailing list; plans are to use it for better coordination of various Hadoop-related brand policing. Met with counsel for the CLOUDSTACK matter, and met with a representative from UKFast to work on a settlement to ensure our registration in the EU can continue and to ensure that UKFast recognizes our marks.
UPDATE: requested addenda with details of budget request at bottom. Board Issue: see President's report and Special Order A for a request for additional budgeted funding. See also the attached memorandum in board@ email from DLAPiper counsel Mark Radcliffe supporting this request. Along with the usual branding questions we've been having many more detailed questions about how Apache branding should (or should not) be applied in much more esoteric cases. A key question this month is what Maven artifact group IDs should be used when third party vendors provide patched versions of Apache software in various Maven repos. Reviewed and approved new ApacheCon contract and sponsor prospectus re: branding requirements. Held a videoconference hosted by counsel at DLAPiper with several vendors providing Hadoop-related products and services to get feedback on the best ways to roll out new Hadoop and related product branding requirements for third parties. Feedback from the meeting and from DLAPiper counsel show that this effort to ensure our ability to defend the Apache Hadoop trademarks will be a long-term effort. Met with DLAPiper counsel on ways to efficiently improve trademark enforcement in general, as well as brainstorm on ways to provide better training to our PMCS about brand management and awareness. Brainstormed specific ways that DLAPiper can better support our Hadoop and related products brands. UPDATE: Justification for updated budget request (Special Order A) == Brand Management == (Updated Request Jan 2014; net +$64,735.00) Recurring Expenses : $36,760.00 (+274%) 1.Register/Record most incoming podling names in US : $ 6,760.00 2.Register/Record selected key incoming podling names Intl : $ 4,000.00 3.Declarations/Renewals fees : $10,000.00 4.Separate Counsel legal fees : $16,000.00 Backlog registration exp : $41,375.00 (+XX%) 5.Register most TLP in US : $11,375.00 6.Register selected TLP Int'l : $15,000.00 7.Registrations of APACHE : $15,000.00 Category Total : $78,135.00 (+583%) Details: 1.Register/Record most incoming podling names in US $6,760 - Register the product name of most/all incoming podlings in the US. USPTO registration fee is $325 for each; est. up to 20 annually. Obviously we will want to coordinate with Incubator to ensure we're only registering podlings nearing graduation, typically. - Record change of ownership of any previously registered podling names. I.e. when an incoming podling has a registered trademark, we should to legally record this change of ownership with the applicable country registry of trademarks. Recording serves as notice to third parties of our ownership, and allows us to renew registrations. USPTO recording fee is $65; other jurisdictions are $100-$500 est. 2. Register/Record selected key incoming podling names Intl. $4,000 - Where a podling has existing international registrations, record the change of ownership internationally. Approximate cost $100-$500 each; est. 1-2 podlings annually. - If we have some podling with high popularity and vendors using it's branding, we may want to register up to one podling/year name internationally, probably in EU/CTM to preserve rights in those first-to-file jurisdictions. Approximate cost $1,500 ea. if done with a US registration. 3. Declarations/Renewals fees $10,000.00 - Registrations require maintenance and renewals: in the US, you must file 8&15 declarations at 5 years or risk losing the registration; at 10 years you must renew it. US 8&15 declarations are $300 each. US 10year renewals are $400. International renewals are more expensive. NOTE that we won't need much of this 3. budget for the next few years, since we only have ~20 current registrations that are on track for renewals soon- this will only really be needed when our backlog registrations age to 5 years. Obviously, we only renew registrations for active projects. This is an estimate for annual costs about 4 years in the future, assuming a roster of ~100 registrations. 4.Separate Counsel legal fees $16,000 While DLAPiper provides services pro bono, they sometimes have a conflict of interest with a particular registration, requiring us to seek another counsel's services. Similarly, for many international jurisdictions, DLAPiper arranges discounted (but not free) services from local counsel. This is an estimate of annual expenses based on: - Third party legal services dealing with non-US renewals or other registration questions: est. 4 cases x $2,000 est. = $4,000 - Third party legal advice dealing with office actions etc. in cases where DLAPiper has a conflict: est. 2 cases x $6,000 est. = $12,000 ---- Note these backlog requests are temporary for approx. 2 year period, until we catch up with existing project registrations we pursue. 5.Register most TLP in US : $11,375.00 This would register many of the simple to register names of software products that match our existing TLP project names. A proposed list of names to register as an example is: (USPTO fee $325ea) Accumulo, Airavata, Ambari, Archiva, Aries, Avro, Bigtop, Camel, Cassandra, Cayenne, Chukwa, Clerezza, Continuum, Crunch, Curator, CXF, Etch, Felix, Flume, Geronimo, Giraph, Gora, Hama, Hive, Isis, Jackrabbit, jUDDI, Kafka, Karaf, Lenya, Lucene, Mahout, ManifoldCF, Marmotta, Maven, Nutch, OFBiz, Pig, Pivot, POI, Sling, Solr, Sqoop, Stanbol, Struts, Synapse, Tapestry, Thrift, Tiles, Tomcat, TomEE, Turbine, Tuscany, Whirr, Wicket, Wink, ZooKeeper Obviously, this is subject to change depending on the activity level of various projects, and as PMCs request to be added/removed. Note that Traffic Server has already requested to be added. 6.Register selected TLP Int'l : $15,000.00 A few projects have such active communities and pressures from vendors attempting to leverage their brands that I believe we should register their product names in selected international jurisdictions. 7.Registrations of APACHE : $15,000.00 This would cover registering our house brand of APACHE in a number of international jurisdictions and dealing with attendant issues.
Board issue: please see two resolutions for an increased budget for Brand Management to meet our needs for our strategy change to use registered trademarks in many more situations. Operations And Community ======================== We had a much busier than usual month for questions and issues raised to trademarks@, and a number of issues will take some time to work with the relevant PMCs or third parties to fully resolve. A request to MapR correcting their poor use of the Apache HBase name was originally met with a less than acceptable response, but with an stronger restatement of our requirements resulted in quick action to correct the issues. A separate and much smaller request from the Apache Camel VP to Red Hat was unfortunately met with no substantiative response; while escalation to their senior trademark counsel was not as well received as I had hoped, I did establish a better communication channel for any future branding questions to that company. Updating Branding Strategy ========================== In reviewing more complex branding issues with our CouchDB, ActiveMQ, Camel, Hadoop, and CloudStack projects (as well as experience from past trademark enforcement actions), it has become clear that we need to make some changes to our overall branding strategy. I had a call with counsel from DLAPiper to discuss both our project branding strategy as well as matters relating to our overall Apache house brand, and they confirmed my ideas. Similarly, a thread on trademarks@ shows that the ability to defend our project brands is critical to our long term mission. Therefore, I am proposing that we improve our branding strategy by changing to registering most or all of the software product names that match our many Apache project names in the US. This change will require a notably expanded Brand Management budget going forward to meet our expected annual expenses relating to registering new podling/graduating TLP names, as well as a separate, much larger short-term budget which will be used to register our many existing TLP's names. I am very cognizant of our duty to take care in the use of the funds our many Sponsors (and donors) entrust to us. However I believe that this improvement in branding strategy is critical to ensure that we can effectively maintain our strong sense of independent community and our long-term ability to continue our mission. I will also note that in a number of conversations with Sponsors I have had that this ability to defend our brands is important in their minds as well. Trademark Registrations ======================= Counsel have made several registration applications in various jurisdictions for our APACHE overall "house brand". These registrations are part of a longer term effort to ensure our strong ability to defend our Apache brand itself. Separately, the USPTO issued a registration for our CLOUDSTACK product name on the supplemental register, and our efforts to secure the registration in Europe are progressing well.
No current board level issues. Stepped up trademark enforcements for several projects with good results. Added ea@ to the trademarks@ list and reviewed our two runbooks as we start to find ways the EA can assist with organizing answering issues on trademarks@. Sent [ACTION] Review your Apache project's brand use to pmcs@ with pointers to various updated and clarified PMC-related branding requirements to ensure that PMCs are aware of their responsibilities. Oddly, there were no comments directed back to trademarks@.
No board level issues. Progress on getting through the backlog of requests and podling name searches is going well. Otherwise a slightly busy month for trademarks but no major unexpected controversies. I have started documenting foundation/Brand/runbook.txt for common procedures in answering questions on trademarks@; in particular questions that either relevant Apache project VPs can answer themselves, or that members of the Trademarks Committee can answer directly. Similarly, the President has asked the EA to assist with monitoring the trademarks@ list, and she has started a set of "common questions and how to address" list which looks to be helpful in the future. I have a call with counsel shortly before the board meeting to discuss specific legal agreements for intake of trademarks, in particular to cover graphical logos. This is needed to ensure that we have clear trademark rights in the future for our projects, as we have seen in some cases where for-profit companies who at the start have the best of intentions, but over the long run change behavior to our detriment.
Sam submitted a brief verbal report. Committee is running routinely. One item Sam would appreciate board members (and others) weighing in on the distribution of iOS applications in the App Store:
No board-level issues. Trademarks@ continues to run at a moderate pace; hopefully with my return from summer leave we will be able to improve this. Ross (+1!) has stepped in to push on improved guidelines for approving use of Apache project brands in events, documenting a basic process for pushing as much of the evaluation and approval process out to PMCs as is practical. This will be part of a larger effort to push more work out to PMCs. The first step will be to work with the Trademarks Committee to ensure we have a more detailed policies and very clear procedures for evaluating and approving brand-related requests of various kinds. We need to ensure that PMC members have sufficient information to understand enough of the larger issues around branding and trademarks to make informed decisions about specific kinds of requests that can be raised to trademarks@ for a NAK process similar to PMC changes. This will be a long term effort, both in documenting as well as in ensuring PMCs are informed. I am naming Christian Grobmeier and David Nalley to the Trademarks Committee in recognition of their helpful and thoughtful trademarks@ work.
No report was submitted.
Trademarks has had a moderate month, with basic questions being answered. Some needed brand policing actions are being queued up for next month. Burns & Levinson is ably supporting us in pursuing just the CLOUDSTACK trademarks both here in the US as well as in Europe. No board level issues; however, I may need to call upon operations@ folks to help provide better coverage for questions: at least having someone reliable get back to various questioners quickly with pointers to our policy and a "we're working on it" would go a long way.
A normal month for trademarks@, although a bit behind on resolving questions in the past couple of weeks. Thanks to Ross for updating various policy documentation to reflect that trademarks@ now handles all event-based branding approvals. DLAPiper has been doing plenty of registration and recordation work for us this month, including recording the change of ownership of various donated registered marks in key jurisdictions. Registration applications have been made for ACTIVEMQ and SERVICEMIX to replace earlier applications that timed out. OPENOFFICE application is being updated and re-submitted in Canada, which if successful would allow us to note that name is registered. SUBVERSION is being applied for "incontestability", which would ensure our very clear ownership of the name in the US.
No board level issues. Very busy month. * Operations And Community The trademarks list has been very busy this month, both with general questions and especially PODLINGNAMESEARCHes. That JIRA now sends notifications to the list, so we should not get behind in the future. There were more than the usual litany of brand questions, requests for approval, and potential complaints about poor use of Apache brands. It is clear both from the volume of requests on trademarks@, the types of questions, and the number of questions that include potential legal issues that Brand Management needs to make significant changes in how we operate. The commercial and technology impact of many Apache projects is growing very quickly, and is resulting in many commercial companies pushing the boundaries, both in cases where they blithely use (or misuse) Apache brands for their own purposes, as well as in cases where they (or their counsel) ask pointed questions as to how far they can take the use of our brands, in some cases at the expense of our communities. Similarly, discussing recent trademark questions with counsel has made clear that there are additional legal risks with how we allow use of Apache brands in some areas, in particular in how we approve incoming podling names and logos. As I am taking a 12 week leave from my employment this summer, I plan to spend part of that free time working with the trademarks committee to greatly update and improve both our policy, create detailed runbooks for processing questions and requests, as well as bootstrapping improved enforcement for a number of popular Apache projects. We also welcomed a couple of new member subscribers to tm@, welcome! * Registrations And Legal Issues Signed client engagement letter with new trademark counsel of Burns & Levinson, who will be appealing the technical denial of Citrix's attempt to register the CLOUDSTACK mark in the US and the CTO (EU). Thanks to the Cloudstack PMC in efforts to gather data of distinctiveness of the mark in short order at counsel request. DLAPiper has submitted US registrations for the ACTIVEMQ and SERVICEMIX trademarks. Hopefully they will proceed through the process and be registered in the ASF's name in a few months. Working with counsel to determine what issues in use of the JSPWIKI name exist for an Apache project due to a PODLINGNAMESEARCH. Working with counsel to greatly update our process for incoming grants for trademarks. Recent issues raised have made it clear that we will need to be much more rigorous in how we accepting incoming brands for podlings/products, including potential legal assignments.
No board level issues. For awareness, note that brand may need to request additional funding during the upcoming budget year. This primarily depends on both our ability to secure pro bono services of various levels, and especially how long it takes us to organize new trademark registrations. While I had planned to spend more of last year's budget, it took longer than expected to get balls rolling; however we should roll much faster this year. Amount < $20K, so should not be a fundraising concern. Trademarks has had quite a busy month with more than our fair share of controversies and reported potential infringements from a variety of projects. While I can understand that many of our development volunteers may want to see fast and decisive action on each of their perceived issues with third party use of Apache brands, we need to ensure that our brand enforcement is clear, correct, and effective; this takes time to analyze issues. Notable issues being worked on include branding use around Hadoop, HBase, log4j, CloudStack, OFBiz, OpenOffice, and CouchDB. It is clear both from the number of issues, how they are being brought up, the size and types of companies that they are dealing with, and advice from counsel that we will need to make a number of changes in our brand management procedures. These will include more thorough procedures around how our projects create their brands as well as how people report issues and how the Branding committee deals with issues.
No board level issues. The trademarks@ list has had a very busy month. Along with a number of podling name searches with a variety of questions, Christian Grobmeier and others worked to centralize an ASF-wide name search procedure. With the growth of the ASF and the wide number of ASF products and even sub-projects having such a large impact on the technology industry, we will need to be correspondingly careful when selecting new product brands for our many Apache projects. Early draft merchandising guidelines are being discussed; with so many projects in different areas we need to provide much better and simpler guidelines for the many volunteers and respectful organizations that simply want to give away t-shirts and swag with Apache project logos on them. This is a recurring question that we need a better way to answer. Infra created the vp-brand@ alias which is saved to a restricted archive, which will be used for legal privileged conversations with counsel. Brand Management submitted the same budget request as last year. While we under-ran our budget last year, we do expect (now that we have experience with how long things take) to use most of the budget this year. The Apache UIMA project has agreed to change the name of their newly created TextMarker sandbox component to avoid a potential legal conflict with a long-established and registered product name from the European company SoftMaker. It is important to understand that this is a unique situation, and in *no* way serves as a precedent for other Apache project name choices. It is clear from the wide variety of third party software products using the Hadoop name that we need to work with the vendor community to make some changes to ensure the Apache Hadoop project gets the credit it deserves. Apologies to the Apache Hadoop PMC for the delay in working through a plan with them after conferring with counsel from DLAPiper; I've been quite sick on and off for a few weeks.
No board level issues. I expect to submit the same annual budget request as last year. Overall questions to trademarks@ are up, and we've had a lot of podling name search queries lately, which are working fairly well, although it's clear from comments on the searches that the Incubator documentation is not as clear as it could be. The Apache UIMA project was contacted by Softmaker.de with a complaint  that the sandbox plugin release of Apache UIMA TextMarker software was a name conflict with SoftMaker's TextMaker word processing software, which is registered in several jurisdictions. ASF Counsel is preparing a detailed response, which will be sent directly to them via trademarks@. An independent third party contacted trademarks@ about an interesting idea for an Apache product logo on merchandise; we are working to get feedback from the relevant PMC. Trademarks@ will be working on improved and simpler merchandising policy for Apache brands, since this can be a great way to bring awareness when done in appropriate ways. Shane was contacted to join a new cross-OSS-project wiki that claims to want to offer suggestions for trademark polices for open source groups - if this gets some traction, it would be a great thing for all of us: http://modeltrademarkguidelines.org Shane spoke at ApacheCon NA to give "Managing Open Source Community Brands" which was well recieved and brought in a lot of good questions from Apache committers during the conference.   https://mail-archives.apache.org/mod_mbox/uima-dev/201303.mbox/%3C513F5124.70209%40softmaker.de%3E  http://communityovercode.com/2013/02/apachecon-presentation/
No issues requiring board or President attention. I've caught up on replying to all outstanding questions, which run the usual gamut. A branding complaint was made by one company whose engineers work on a major Apache project about behavior in a private email sent from another company whose engineers work on the same project. This was addressed well by trademarks@ volunteers, but serves to show a couple of key points we need to continue to educate our communities about: - Branding issues are almost never immediate-time-sensitive. Unless the question is about physical media being printed for an in-person event happening within the week, branding questions can ALWAYS wait a few days to organize a response and deal with. - The ASF is responsible for enforcing brand use of the Apache brand(s). While we certainly very much appreciate third parties alerting us to potentially improper uses of our brands, it is NOT appropriate for third parties to directly work on enforcing Apache brands without our explicit consent. The Apache OpenOffice project has made a request that we lodge a complaint with certain search terms being used on Google AdWords that may infringe on our marks. They have examples of infringing sites using these marks to drive traffic, which is clearly a problem for this project with it's large end-user population.
No issues requiring board or president attention at the moment. We've had a higher than usual rate of general questions from third parties and from our PMCs. Overall this is a good thing, as we're starting to have more documentation available to point to, and many of the questions from PMCs (and especially most incubator podlings) are showing a slightly better understanding of branding issues. Shane is speaking at ApacheCon in Portland, both as a session and as a tutorial on How To Manage Your Apache Project Brand. This is a tutorial specifically aimed at PMC members and committers in terms of how to apply Apache Brand policy in real life. I hope to work with Concom to see if there's some way to provide discounted tickets to PMC members (a'la the press training provided by Sally in the past), since this providing better support to PMCs is a key Brand Management need. Tutorial: http://na.apachecon.com/schedule/presentation/203/
Operations And Community ======================== Ongoing work with the HBase PMC to address potential misuses of the HBase and Hadoop brands; progress is slow due to the holidays. My Managing Open Source Brands talk was accepted at ApacheCon NA, as was a similar tutorial focused specifically on helping Apache PMCs understand how to manage their brands. External Requests ================= Contacted by a third party claiming a potential conflict with a module name within an Apache podling. Awaiting more details from the third party before working with Legal on an official response. Clarifying Apache policy about transfer of pre-existing trademarks during the Incubation process. Fundamentally, the ASF needs full rights to any trademarks before graduation to TLP is approved. This needs to be better documented within the Incubator and in our public policies to ensure that new podlings with strongly held brands know what to expect. Trademark Registrations ======================= Working with counsel on ensuring a third-party registration of a mark for an incubating project is completed and transferred before graduation.
Operations And Community ======================== Name searches for Incubator podlings continue to come in; most are well researched. Actively working with several PMCs to assist in policing use of their names. We're still seeing a wide variety of familiarity (both good and not so good) with the PMC Branding Requirements and trademark basics across PMCs, so each case is very different in terms of how the community is understanding and dealing with the issues. External Requests ================= Commented on the transfer of a twitter account to a third party at the PMC's request (the mostly-unused @tapestry account to another unrelated, outside software project). As long as Apache marks are respected and general policies followed, PMCs are free to define how they promote their brands. Trademark Registrations ======================= Approved counsel to proceed with a required office action (with attendant discounted filing fees) for the OPENOFFICE registered trademark in Canada. Per counsel's suggestion, maintaining this registration is likely to strengthen our ability to defend marks related to Apache OpenOffice. Greg Stein provided SFLC with documentation of our payment for some past Subversion registration costs; SFLC were asking for Treasurer to provide actual receipts of payment.
Operations And Community ======================== Approved several new name searches for podlings readying for graduation; the new energy in the incubator is certainly helping with podlings being more organized on the branding front. External Requests ================= Responded to a higher number of third party requests this month, nothing unusual. Signed an agreement for use of one of our project marks in a major television series after working with counsel to update the agreement to something suitable. Trademark Registrations ======================= OpenOffice.org trademark registrations in Taiwan are recorded as being transferred to us. We plan to work with DLAPiper to record transfers in major markets where the pro bono rates make sense for the relevant projects.
Operations And Community ======================== Responded to a usual array of requests, including several book publishers who seem to be appreciating our FAQ entry for them. Approved the Airavata name for TLP; kudos to the PPMC there for doing very thorough research around the name! External Requests ================= Commented on a fundraising@ request that included an agreement that could have granted far too broad rights to our marks in a sponsorship agreement. Trademark Registrations ======================= Worked with DLAPiper to ensure past registration tracking from Sun/Oracle legal firms for OpenOffice.org registrations is fully transferred to us.
Operations And Community ======================== The Cocoon PMC has politely contacted several groups about potentially confusing names. The emails sent worked well, although one detail was misstated; trademarks@ will remind pmcs@ of the proper procedures with clearer documentation. The parties who have responded have done so favorably. External Requests ================= Waiting feedback from counsel on a request to sign agreement to use Apache OpenOffice software in a television production. The release form includes indemnification clauses which I'm not comfortable signing without legal review. This showcases a (minor) issue with having a major end-user consumer product at Apache: organizations who want to use our marks in non-traditional ways who wish to have legal releases beforehand. This is not a board issue, but is something to think about as the reach of Apache project grows. Trademark Registrations ======================= A [VOTE] confirmed my recommendation to *not* pay any fees to complete a previous OpenOffice.org registration in a small country in the Balkans. Sadly, only limited discussion on the amount of funding we are willing to spend on either registration recording, or registrations in non US/EU countries. Where we do choose to register marks, it will likely be only in the US and EU jurisdictions where appropriate and important for a specific project and for the ASF as an organization.
It is good for Apache to have its products mentioned in public productions. But Apache cannot indemnify producers. Perhaps we can write a clause that would satisfy producers as a substitute for indemnification. We have budget to engage outside legal counsel to write such a substitute clause, which we can then post on our web site.
Operations And Community ======================== I gave a talk "Managing Community Open Source Brands" at OSCON which was well received. I was surprised at how many OSCON attendees commented on the importance of this talk: a half-dozen people each said "wow, yeah, this is something we really need to do better". One attendee with legal experience noted that the outline in the talk (based on our brand management) was spot on with their experience with other trademark management processes. http://www.oscon.com/oscon2012/public/schedule/detail/24228 External Requests ================= AOO continues to be the most active project in terms of brand issues, working on both repackagers for portable software (USB sticks) as well as various media (movies, TV shows) requests for licenses. The previous user of an OpenMeetings domain name has responded favorably to requests to provide credit to the Apache OpenMeetings podling. Granted permission for use of the feather in a graphic for a small scale Lucene/Solr event. This is one of the cases where it makes sense to be flexible with logo use for the benefit of our communities. Trademark Registrations ======================= Completed agreement assigning "FLEX" registered marks from Adobe to the ASF. DLAPiper is completing work to fully track all dockets for our various registrations. They have a draft chart showing fees we would be responsible for if we choose to either renew or update the ownership of various trademark registrations we have inherited around the globe. While DLAPiper is working to cover many of these fees as pro bono, there are still many cases where there will be actual expenses in the $500 - $1000 range per jurisdiction. trademarks@ will soon need to better define our strategy re: where we plan to maintain registrations per project, so that we can better request the required budget in the future.
Operations And Community ======================== Worked with the AOO PPMC to review proposals for various requests, especially repackagers for mobile applications (run off of USB stick, etc.). External Requests ================= Several trademarks@ participants as well as members of specific PMCs have been providing responses to external questions (either on trademarks@ or from their projects) recently which is very helpful; often asking for clarifying information or refering to specific parts of our documentation that are related to questions. Trademark Registrations ======================= Working with DLAPiper on review of proposed assignment of "Flex" mark. Recieved three invoices from past trademark registration activities for the Subversion mark; working with counsel and Subversion PMC to verify how we should handle paying them.
Operations And Community ======================== Requests for assistance to review foundation/Brand/foundation-marks-list.csv have not met much success within the membership, so reviewing projects' compliance with branding requirements is taking longer than expected. Worked with Apache Archiva PMC to respond to a third party's apparent plans to rebrand from MailArchiva to Archiva. External Requests ================= Several requests have come in from OOo/AOO land about permissions to use AOO branding on various third party software download or CD-ROM sites. Working with AOO PMC to set requirements and guidelines to ensure such sites distribute proper AOO releases, without improper changes or additions. Approved branding aspects of Zeta Components podling community's desire to continue to use the Zeta name after they are retired from incubation, i.e. after IPMC explicitly confirms their podling retirement. Trademark Registrations ======================= "Hadoop" is now US registration # 4131061 - yay! http://tarr.uspto.gov/servlet/tarr?regser=serial&entry=85377777 Have requested DLAPiper register "Lucene", and confirmed description with Lucene PMC.
Operations And Community ======================== Created spreadsheet of project branding status so that volunteers can work on reviewing Apache projects branding. Submitted budget request for trademark registrations and transfers. External Requests ================= I submitted a talk that was accepted at OSCON on "Managing Community Open Source Brands". Answered a small number of third party requests about branding use, including two for use on merchandise. Received a complaint about documentation issues on the Apache Jackrabbit and Apache Sling websites from an end user; Jukka responded with pointers. Trademark Registrations ======================= Awaiting final notice of Hadoop trademark registration from USPTO. Working with DLAPiper to get various existing trademark registration dockets organized in their tracking system.
Apologies for a late report. Operations And Community ======================== Calling for volunteers to work in an organized fashion to review branding status for all TLPs. It's clear that a more active approach with specific PMCs that have not reported completion is needed. Meeting with counsel from DLAPiper to work on reviewing basic policies, get cost figures (for next year's budget request which will be higher), and to organize which tasks that need counsel support versus can be done by volunteers with training. Worked with CouchDB PMC to make suggestions for the PMC to deal with specific Couch-* named product by third party. The recently detailed Incubator podling name search guidelines have been very helpful for several new podlings to review the suitability of their names in a organized fashion; many thanks to the IPMC members who put that guide together! External Requests ================= Signed release for use of Apache OpenOffice as set dressing in a major US company motion picture. Thanks to AOO PPMC for the approval and DLAPiper counsel for legal review. Trademark Registrations ======================= Waiting for meeting with DLAPiper, expect more news next month.
Operations And Community ======================== Thanks to the trademarks@ denizens as well as other members for some great commentary and suggestions in the past two months. External Requests ================= The usual end user questions; many this month are answered by FAQ entries. Trademark Registrations ======================= The Hadoop registration has been published in the USPTO register for its 30 day notice period! Waiting on legal-internal@ for counsel to make an application for another very popular Apache project (that has requested it). Checked in trademark-registrations.csv to begin tracking of various registered marks renewal, etc. dates.
Operations And Community ======================== Formally contacted Team OpenOffice.org e.V. again to insist that they correct their misuse of our OpenOffice.org brand. Approve request for Apache Rat's potential project name. Approved clarifications of Apache Extras project guidelines and package naming suggestions brought up in conjunction with ComDev; thanks to Chris Mattman, Benson, and others for their helpful work on the thread. External Requests ================= As usual, answered a handful of regular brand usage requests on trademarks@, typically by referring to our published policies and FAQs. FAQ drafts to provide answers for more common publishing requests are in the works. Trademark Registrations ======================= The CEO of Sonatype has agreed to assign the "Maven Central" mark registration to the ASF once their US application is completed, as part of the MOU the Maven PMC is working on with Sonatype.
Operations And Community ======================== The Apache OpenOffice podling has chosen that as their official name going forward (by a [VOTE]). The Apache OpenOffice podling, trademarks@, and press@ dealt with a number of potential misuses of the OpenOffice.org brand, in particular a fundraising campaign run by a German charity Team OpenOffice e.V.. Along with a number of private requests to Team OpenOffice, we've also issued an open letter to the larger ODF ecosystem to better tell the branding story of where OpenOffice.org and Apache OpenOffice are going in the future. https://blogs.apache.org/foundation/entry/open_letter_to_the_open Special thanks to several of the Apache OpenOffice mentors who were working on the community and other aspects of this issue. External Requests ================= Team OpenOffice e.V. requested permission from the Apache OpenOffice podling to create a separate software product branded as OpenOffice.org. This request has been denied. As usual, answered a handful of regular brand usage requests on trademarks@, typically by referring to our published policies and FAQs. Trademark Registrations ======================= The existing Hadoop mark registration has been transferred from Larry Rosen to SFLC / Aaron Williamson as our contact attorney.
Operations And Community ======================== Robert Burrell Donkin has been doing some great work clarifying and simplifying the Incubator's trademark policies to ensure that new podlings are aware of brand and naming issues when they enter incubation - many thanks. While many trademarks policies could still use clarifications or more FAQ entries, much of the future work we will likely be doing on branding as relates to our own projects will be about best practices or suggested guidelines for projects, or for providing branding advice or help to projects that ask for it. I held a small but very useful Branding & Trademarks Meetup at ApacheCon. About 15 attendees had a great discussion, both in terms of sharing expectations and in terms of answering questions and making suggestions for documentation or procedure improvements. Thanks to all who attended - I think I learned as much as everyone else did! I created an "Apache Software Foundation" Google+ organization page. External Requests ================= Several regular trademarks@ participants have been starting to step up to answer simple third party questions, which I also appreciate. We should have some more FAQ's available soon that will help in this process (i.e. when a simple question that's already covered comes up, any Trademarks Committee members should be able to reply with a "please see this FAQ" email.) Working with the Lucene PMC to provide guidance on their email to a potential infringement of the Lucene logo. Trademark Registrations ======================= I will be working with VP, Legal to secure appropriate legal counsel (either pro bono or paid, as needed) to ensure that our trademark registration needs are met, both for the Apache mark and specific requested project marks.
Operations And Community ======================== UIMA and a third party asked for clarification of when TM is needed in logos. Current consensus is that it is important for the primary project logo, but not strictly required on other graphical branding elements, especially smaller logos or cases where the association is clear. Discussions about what a "distribution of Apache Foo" truly means, and how we should allow third party names in a similar style continue to crop up. While every case is unique, it's clear that given our limited resources, we need a general policy that is fair and appropriate to allow us to simplify the process for evaluating third party requests or uses of Apache marks in their product names. External Requests ================= trademarks@ is now receiving OpenOffice.org mark usage requests from the previous OOo website form. The issue of how to manage this mark is still not clearly decided, and trademarks@ will push to work with the AOOo podling to get a more concrete plan around its future branding. Similarly, the AOOo podling's work at identifying social media accounts that use aspects of the OpenOffice.org branding is another area where the AOOo project's end user focus and large, pre-existing brand is another area where our projects are requesting more guidance in terms of controlling our brands. Still waiting on the Maven PMC completing its work on maven.org domain name MOU and confirming it with Sonatype. (repeat from last month) Trademark Registrations ======================= A new registration for our Apache mark in various classes is being discussed with counsel.
Operations And Community ======================== Tomcat and trademarks@ have been working with a number of third parties to correct potential infringements or grant simple permissions. The Apache Flume podling has requested an evaluation of their project name vis-a-vis another registered mark; more feedback from people experienced with our trademark policy is needed to ensure we can provide projects with timely advice on naming issues. External Requests ================= Still waiting on the Maven PMC completing its work on maven.org domain name MOU and confirming it with Sonatype. (repeat from last month) Trademark Registrations ======================= Larry forwarded correspondence from Oracle dealing with past details of some OpenOffice.org trademark registrations. This will require coordination between trademarks@, legal-internal@, and ooo-private@ going forward, and speaks to the very large scope of the OpenOffice.org donation to the ASF, and to our future plans for ensuring we have the capacity to manage the many brands our projects now use.
Brand management is becoming a bigger issue with several projects trying to resolve trademarks, and wide variations of understanding Apache policy and appropriate responses to third parties.
AI Shane: prepare discussion for board face-to-face in Vancouver AI Shane: report on Apache trademark application next month
Operations And Community ======================== The Apache OOo podling has had a wide variety of discussions about the future of OpenOffice.org, both its code, its brand, and its domain(s). The question of the kinds of uses we will allow for the OpenOffice.org brand and domain name will be a key issue to resolve both for the Apache OOo podling as well as the large existing community of users. External Requests ================= Still waiting on the Maven PMC completing its work on maven.org domain name MOU and confirming it with Sonatype. (repeat from last month) Several parties have already contacted us requesting permissions for either new or continued uses of our new OpenOffice.org marks. Permission request from planetcassandra.org, a Cassandra blog aggregator run by a third party; expect to grant permission since they've done a great job branding it fairly. Trademark Registrations ======================= Larry has submitted the registration for the "Hadoop" mark; no status updates are expected for a number of months (the USPTO process is lengthy). I have signed trademark grant forms from Yahoo! for the Oozie mark and logo, and from Oracle for a wide variety of OpenOffice.org marks and logos. Much work will be in the years ahead tracking registration renewals, including minor budget request increases, and most importantly pro bono counsel time.
It was noted that the nofollow links policy is not yet finalized.
Operations And Community ======================== A number of PMCs are now using the Apache Trademark Reporting Guidelines to make first contact and work on branding issues with third parties using their respective marks. Working with fundraising@ on [PROPOSAL] of Apache Corporate Recognition Branding Policy  to address per-project Thanks! pages and other kinds of outbound links to commercial third parties. Much of this falls between fundraising@ and management of Sponsorship programs, and Branding in terms of how to document for projects website best practices. Worked with Concom on several third party event sites and approvals. External Requests ================= Still waiting on the Maven PMC completing it's work on maven.org domain name MOU and confirming it with Sonatype. The Hadoop PMC had a number of great discussions on what it means for a third party product to "include" or be "compatible" with Hadoop. This kind of discussion continues to cry out for a more detailed policy and a new options to the "Powered By" phrasing that we suggest third parties use for their products that include Apache products. Volunteers needed! Jim denied an independent developer's question as to using the name "Apache" in their webserver product. Imitation as a form of flattery? Trademark Registrations ======================= Trademarks@ is working with legal-internal@ on a number of registrations or transfers. In the future, we will need notably expanded EA and counsel assistance on managing registrations. SFLC reports that the "Apache" registration should be re-submitted shortly. Unfortunately no specific agreement has yet been reached with the third party currently using the name with respect to hardware. Larry has volunteered to submit the "Hadoop" registration; trademarks@ will coordinate with the Hadoop PMC. Oracle has volunteered to transfer a large number of OpenOffice.org related marks from around the world to the ASF. Trademarks@ is reviewing the specific transfer agreement to ensure it covers our concerns and expects to sign this shortly. Yahoo! is in the process of donating their Oozie mark to the ASF for the newly hatched Oozie podling, related to Hadoop; we merely await the signed paperwork.  http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/linking.html
Larry reports that the OpenOffice.org trademark assignment waiting Oracle's signature, and that the Hadoop registration application is waiting for dates of first use from PMC.
Operations And Community ======================== The Domain Name Branding Policy passed the [VOTE] and is final; the Tomcat PMC has already used this to work with the tomcatexpert.com domain holders to ensure their branding gives proper credit to our communities. Emailed pmcs@ reminding them to follow up and report on their branding progress, including linking to the newly published PMC Branding Responsibilities  and Apache Trademark Reporting Guidelines . Several PMCs are also now using our sample contact letter for third parties using our marks . A member erroneously forwarded a trademarks@ message to their employer, reportedly not realizing the list is privately archived. Sent a "trademarks@ private list etiquette" email to remind subscribers. Awaiting feedback on legal-internal@ of the status of (re-)starting trademark registrations for Apache and Hadoop. Note the registration for Apache was temporarily withdrawn while counsel work with a third party on a consent agreement for longstanding previous (non-infringing) uses. Thanks to Jukka for starting work on a feather with TM. External Requests ================= The Maven PMC continues to work productively with Sonatype on an MOU for the maven.org domain name and its use. The Tomcat PMC is doing a great job of policing their brand, and serves as an example of best practices. Note that they have an outstanding request to legal-internal@ needing assistance in contacting the unreachable developers of an iPhone app. Working with the Hadoop PMC on a number of third parties using our Hadoop mark in a wide variety of new ways. Yahoo! reports that they have completed updating all websites with the old "Yahoo! Distribution of Hadoop" naming which was requested earlier. Received information on some existing OpenOffice.org (a podling starting in the incubator) and Open Office (an unrelated product) trademarks, which trademarks@ will work with legal-internal@ to track when the podling is created.  http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/responsibility.html  http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/reporting.html
Operations And Community ======================== It is clear from a number of events recently that we still have a significant amount of work to do in explaining our branding policy both to our projects as well as to the many vendors who use our products. The Domain Name Branding Policy up for a [VOTE] to finalize which I hope to announce the results of immediately after the board meeting. I have asked legal-internal@ to begin the process of registering our "Hadoop" mark for our software product. External Requests ================= The Maven PMC has contacted Sonatype about their non-attribution of our Maven trademark, however Sonatype has not yet (as of this writing) responded. The PMC is also continuing work with Sonatype on the issue of the central repository oversight and branding issues. Concom has been alerted that Cloudera is planning to run their Hadoop World conference in NYC simultaneously with ApacheCon in Vancouver. While there is an agreement about their conference name, this points out the fact that we need to ensure that any brand licensing policies we have have very clear expectations and especially are carefully reviewed to ensure they cover all aspects that are important to our brand image and our communities health. Joyent based their new Trademark policy for Node.js on our formal policy as they blogged, which was a nice recognition of our work: http://blog.nodejs.org/2011/04/29/trademark/
Operations And Community ======================== Reviewing board reports shows that a number of projects have not actually reported a branding status update. Of projects that have reported status, most are nearing completion, except for adding TM's to graphics & logos. Will send followup to pmcs@ and will need assistance confirming that all projects report branding status in reports going forward until complete. Looking for more feedback/review of the draft Domain Name Branding Policy  before finalizing it and using that as the basis of a Service Naming policy. I urge all board members to review  and provide feedback on trademarks@, since I think it best expresses the ethos of how we want to allow uses of our marks in non-software product areas. External Requests ================= The Maven PMC has begun working directly with Sonatype on the management of the central repository Maven uses, which I believe is the most important issue to resolve. There are some other existing strictly branding-related issues to work on with Sonatype, which are progressing slowly due to lack of volunteer cycles. Assisting the Hadoop PMC on contacting several software vendors using our Hadoop mark in a variety of ways. Reviewed a trademark question from an aspiring musical rap artist who wants to name their band after one of our projects.  http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/domains.html
Doug asks whether VP Brand Management should identify the marks that we want to register. Shane replies that there are a small number of projects that we probably want to register. Shane asks how urgently the board wants to have all projects in compliance with branding policy. Greg replies that it's not urgent. Shane observes that we are tracking compliance.
One board-level issue: Discussion item 8.A: Trademark protection strategies. Operations And Community ======================== Published version 1.0 of Third Party Event Branding policy  after a vote on the concom@ list. Concom has signed an MOU with a third party in the past codifying their specific use of our brand(s) within their event, so any MOUs should specify the version number of the policy being conformed to. Worked with Concom on questions around Cloudera's Hadoop World, Yahoo!'s Hadoop Summit, and FuseSource's CamelOne events. Projects report good status on implementing Branding Requirements, although a large number of projects are either pushing back or having difficulty adding the TM to primary project logos. External Requests ================= Prepared a letter addressing Sonatype's use of our Maven mark in various cases and reviewed with Maven PMC. At PMC's request, awaiting feedback from Jim on his meeting with the Sonatype CEO first. Reviewed and did not object to Cloudera's new Hadoop-related product name, with some mixed consultation with the Hadoop PMC and counsel.  http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/events.html
One board-level issue: Discussion item 8.A: trademark policy ownership. Operations And Community ======================== Drafted Third Party Domain Names policy , based on trademarks@ discussion and the existing Event branding policy; I expect a forthcoming Third Party Services policy to be similar. An expanded "Rationale" or ethos behind our branding policy is likely to grow into a larger "Why our trademarks are important" document which should help third parties much more quickly explore uses of our marks that are acceptable. Began to use legal-discuss@ to request broader legal suggestions for specific kinds of brand policy questions. It is still difficult to get a large amount of feedback (either there or on trademarks@) for new policy ideas. Projects continue to report status on implementing Branding Requirements. Continued a number of discussions including private@maven relating to trademarks and especially use of "MVN" as a separate mark than "Maven", as well as clarified guidelines that plugin names may use different standards than full software product names. Many thanks to Brian and Brett for organizing many of the threads there. External Requests ================= Awaiting feedback from Jim on a meeting with the Sonatype CEO to determine next steps to address Sonatype's use of our Maven mark in various cases. Contacted a number of third parties about uses of Apache marks, including use in certified training classes, which is a new category of use. Greg as VP, Subversion contacted WANdisco on their use of our registered Subversion mark, with specific remediations requested. I'm looking forward to seeing how effective and timely Subversion's approach is, since the original email was very well written. Yahoo!, Cloudera, and IBM have all confirmed that they plan to change the branding of their respective "...Hadoop" products to conform to our policy.  http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/domains.html
One board-level issue: Discussion item 8.A: trademark policy ownership. Operations And Community ======================== Projects continue to report status on implementing Branding Requirements; we are making good progress so far although there is still a lot of work to complete. Updated the draft Third Party Event Branding Policy and sought consensus on promoting to final. Working with trademarks@ and legal-discuss@ on expanding the Event branding policy concepts to cover domain names and services. The primary mission of Apache is the distribution of software products for the public good; we need to clarify what our brand and marks policies are for other items, like services, that Apache and it's projects may not offer directly. Trademarks@ continues to discuss our "licensing" policy for recognizing third party uses of our marks that we approve of. This will be an ongoing issue for the year, both to define our branding policy, as well as to define any potential legal agreements we choose to make. Continuing work on private@ on followup issues related to Sonatype's use of our Maven mark and with the PMC to understand their expectations for our management of the Maven brand. Note that the Maven PMC's drafting of their own trademark guidelines is one of the reasons for discussion item 8.A above. External Requests ================= Contacted a number of third parties about uses of Apache marks; all are either cc:'d or bcc:'d to relevant PMC private@ lists. Greg is working with Legal Affairs to work on the appropriate action to take towards WANdisco's various mis-uses of our Subversion registered mark. Given Subversion's past corporate history, Greg is taking this on as VP, Subversion, although in the future we need to clearly document whether a PMC's VP or VP, Brand should be driving any legal-related actions around brand. Working with VP, Concom to finalise Event policies and issue appropriate approvals for upcoming third party events. External Meetings ================= Had a call with Cloudera's CEO to discuss their use of our Hadoop mark; call report sent to trademarks@ and private@p. They plan to comply with our requests for renaming their CDH product, although the rebranding work will take some time on their website.
One board-level issue: Sonatype's behavior around the Maven mark (below). No changes in Brand budget are currently expected. Operations And Community ======================== Projects continue to report status on implementing Branding Requirements and have brought good questions back to trademarks@ both about guidelines and about various third party uses. A bug was spotted in the Branding Requirements by the DB PMC: trademarks should be used as adjectives, and not nouns; this will be updated shortly and once a set of Trademark Policing guidelines is ready, will be pushed to pmcs@. Drafted and published a number of Trademark FAQ's to more easily cover specific types of third party uses of our marks. External Requests ================= Contacted a number of third parties about uses of Apache marks; all are either cc:'d or bcc:'d to relevant PMC private@ lists. Contacted a number of third parties using our Hadoop mark, both on general branding issues and in particular for Cloudera and Yahoo! about their use of Hadoop in software product names. Third parties in this case should look to our Powered By... guidelines: http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/faq/#poweredby Contacting several third parties about their use of our Subversion mark is on hold pending feedback and clarification over trademark policies with the Subversion PMC. Several third party non-product-related uses of Apache marks were brought up on trademarks@ this month. This both speaks to our popularity, and the fact that we have a central place for dealing with these issues. It also brings up some policy questions in terms of how actively we wish to pursue third parties, especially when they are not directly software product related. External Meetings ================= Jim, Larry and I had a call with the CEO and legal counsel of Sonatype to discuss both Sonatype's use of our Maven mark, as well as to clarify past statements by Sonatype's marketing officer. We came away with much more understanding of the positions of our two organizations relating to the use of our Maven mark, however not all issues were resolved.
One board-level request: potential funding for graphic designer (Discussion). Volunteer graphical design energy is historically difficult to find and especially keep active. Hiring/contracting a part time graphical designer could go a long way to improving the public image of our websites - both a.o and project websites. Key tasks: making a.o style actually look good; producing a proper set of feather image variants (including ones for inclusion on TLP pages); offering graphic design service to projects. Operations And Community ======================== Some positive reactions to the Branding Requirements have come back from PMCs, as well as a few discussions and improvements. Next step is to publish Trademark Policing Procedures to committers@ next month, so that all committers are aware of what to do about trademarks. Awareness of trademarks, both in general and allowable uses, seems to be widely varied across committers. I will contact projects about including the branding checklist in their quarterly reports until each project is updated. Discussed upcoming marks actions with several PMCs to get project feedback on various third party uses. Discussed many branding issues at ApacheCon with a variety of PMC members, and also with some external analysts. Requested RedMonk to assist on branding strategy as part of our existing engagement. Working with Subversion PMC to normalize trademark policy; they still have their legacy trademark policy from pre-Apache time posted. External Requests ================= Contacted third parties about the use of our Solr mark on their websites.
No board-level issues noted.  Operations And Community ======================== Apache Project Branding Requirements have been sent to pmcs@. The policy includes a checklist of brand-related items that PMC chairs are requested to include in their future quarterly board reports until their project is compliant. Projects were asked to comply with branding requirements by the end of Q1 2011. Several PMCs have responded with clarifying questions, as well as several reports of potential infringement of their products' marks by third parties, which will be followed up on trademarks@. I've also asked the Incubator PMC to work on updating the Podling guidelines to ensure they will match the branding requirements when new TLPs graduate in the future. External Requests ================= Requested assistance of VP, Legal and counsel to assist with potential misuse of our Maven mark; investigation is ongoing. I attended the Lucene Revolution conference and answered a number of questions at our booth about Apache branding.  Note that a number of trademark-related issues crossed over to board@ this month; please let me know on trademarks@ if the board has any specific response to issues.
The board discussed the ownership and possible misuse of the Maven brand, and Larry Rosen is involved in discussions with the lawyer.
AI Jim contact the CEO to try to resolve the issue.
No board-level issues noted. Operations And Community ======================== Submitted a [DRAFT] Event Branding Guidelines to concom@ to provide some much more specific rules for third parties running events using our marks; this is becoming a very popular question with many third parties wanting to run Apache project-branded or related events; some of the branding of these events is starting to cause concern. Apache Project Branding Guidelines still awaiting sufficient personal time to kickoff (kindergarten started last week!). External Requests ================= Answered several non-infringing questions from third parties. Received a new report of a third party in Indonesia mis-using our branding; will work with legal-internal@ as needed to review how best to file any appropriate complaints.
No board-level issues noted. Operations And Community ======================== Overall it was a very quiet month. Apache Project Branding Guidelines will be sent to to pmcs@ next month; delay due to lack of volunteer time this month. External Requests ================= A Lucene subproject approached trademarks@ asking about the suitability of their proposed Incubator podling name. The conversation was moved to legal-internal@ to discuss the specific legal issues around the name. An external vendor approached trademarks@ in relation to using the Tomcat logo on a button at events; working with concom@ to provide an answer since it's event-related.
Approved by general consent.
No board-level issues noted. Operations And Community ======================== Apache Project Branding Guidelines will be updated with minor clarifications based on feedback from trademarks@ and introduced to pmcs@ in the next month. Process of registering the "Apache" mark is in progress with counsel; I will follow up to see what updates to the main website are needed to reflect the status. VP, Subversion is working to formalize the previous "Subversion" trademark agreements made by Subversion Corp. previously with various organizations to reflect the assignment (and now management) of those marks to/by the ASF. External Requests ================= We received and replied to several questions about potential fraud using the Apache name. Apparently an organization in India has been using a number of variations of "Project Apache" or "Apache Project" either to sell software or as some sort of money making scheme. Several users emailed various lists at the ASF asking "Is this you?". I've replied to each noting that the ASF does not have a relationship with that organization; that our software is always available for free; and that only information at apache.org is official ASF policy. trademarks@ will be investigating reporting the offending domain names as infringing to their webhosts, and may ask legal-internal@ for further advice in dealing with this issue. Work continues with several organizations to correct infringements of our marks in association with websites and several products. While we need to ensure that our marks are respected, for organizations that show a willingness to improve, we should be cognizant that changes sometimes take time to complete.
No board-level issues noted. Operations And Community ======================== Apache Project Branding Guidelines are published but unexpected drains on time this month have delayed rollout to projects. Note that the "Subversion" registered trademark in the US has been transferred to the ASF from Subversion Corporation. Process of registering the "Apache" mark is still in progress with counsel. The primary committers of the Apache iBATIS project have forked the code, and have re-branded their follow-on project as mybatis and mybatis.net at http://mybatis.org/. Brian Fox of Apache Maven is ensuring that the primary Maven POM groupID of org.apache.ibatis is still controlled by the ASF. External Requests ================= Answered various non-infringing related questions; other than some confusion around iBATIS, it was a reasonably smooth month. Work is in progress with several organizations and one individual to correct infringements of our marks in association with websites and several products. Other corporations are receptive to our requests for updating their use of our marks, although in some cases the process seems to be a lengthy one.
Board-level item: See discussion item A; I'd like to ensure the board is on board with these guidelines. Operations And Community ======================== Published complete draft of Apache Project Branding Guidelines that will be rolled out to projects shortly (see discussion item A). Asked legal-internal@ to begin process of registering the "Apache" name as a trademark with USPTO. I plan to similarly register the feather as well in the future once we clean up the graphics. This is part of my plan to ensure that we're clearly marking and claiming our own trademarks. Asked for volunteers on site-dev@ to add a "TM" to the feather graphic and on other top-level sites. Asked legal-internal@ for details of ensuring trademark rights of logos, including a specific case related to a project logo. Conduct internal [POLL] and determine that the ASF should accept donations and maintain registrations of existing well-known domain names containing our marks that PMCs wish to maintain as pointers to their projects. External Requests ================= Answered various non-infringing related questions, including suggesting best practices changes on Apache project websites. Work is in progress with several organizations to correct infringements of our marks in association with websites and a product. Working with Hadoop PMC to determine proper use of potential new security-related trademark which is also being requested for outside (i.e. third party) use in relation to events and other giveaways.
The document being reviewed can be found at http://www.apache.org/foundation/marks/pmcs/
No board-level issues noted. Operations And Community ======================== Published first of many trademark usage FAQ's that should greatly simplify future end-user questions. Similarly checked in overall ToDo list to encourage more committee participation. Approved and created JIRA to get the donated ofbiz.org domain name transferred to the ASF so we can continue to point it at the project. External Requests ================= Answered various non-infringing related questions. Worked with Microsoft, Red Hat, and Yahoo! in conjunction with Noirin as VP, Concom to ensure appropriate usage of our marks at specific third party run events. Work is in progress with two organizations to correct infringements of our marks in association with a website and a product.
Compliments to Shane on running this function smoothly.
No board-level issues noted. Submitted a small budget to cover registration of select ASF trademarks. Operations And Community ======================== Sally/Serge/Shane f2f meeting now scheduled for next week, which should allow us to publish more ideas and guidelines in our areas. Seeking more input on trademarks@ on branding and marks principles. External Requests ================= Answered various non-infringing related questions. Many thanks to Larry and Legal PMC for beginning work with Eclipse on an understanding about the Eclipse Scout and Apache Scout projects. This points out that part of our key branding guidelines includes the use of Apache in our project and product names.
No board-level issues noted. Expect a small (<$5,000) budget request from Brand Management for select trademark registrations. Operations And Community ======================== Submitted draft principles for brand management and trademark licensing, along with a preliminary list of Trademark FAQs to the trademarks@ list for discussion. February meeting with Sally and Serge to work out details of PRC break up was postponed to later in Feb due to bad weather. External Requests ================= Answered various non-infringing related questions. Acknowledged existing merchandising policy in relation to request for shirts for the community from an ASF member. Forwarded a potential name conflict with Apache Scout (a subproject of Web Services) to Eclipse in relation to their proposed new Scout project. Approved transfer of Subversion registered trademarks to the ASF, asking ASF counsel to arrange the details. Working with Lucene PMC to better clarify policy relating to potentially commercial links on project websites, when used in relation to services requested by the community.
No board-level issues noted. Operations And Community ======================== Policy discussion quieted down over the holidays, but is expected to pick up soon to better define our trademark guidelines. Apache Pivot was warned about a potential trademark conflict with a Microsoft project named Pivot (that they appear to have applied for a registered trademark on), however the PMC preferred to keep their name. Our previous two SpamAssassin trademark registrations were allowed to go abandoned (last month; was omitted from SpamAssassin report). Given the well-established use with our software product, I don't believe this will be an issue going forward. Planning on attending February meeting with Sally and Serge to work out details of PRC break up, including budget and responsibilities. External Requests ================= Answered various non-infringing related questions. VP, Concom signed the Memorandum of Understanding between the Apache Software Foundation and Cloudera with regard to Hadoop World, after consulting with counsel and trademarks@. The agreement is for a year, at which point both our overall trademark use guidelines and any event-specific guidelines (worked out in conjunction with Concom) should be well defined, ensuring that any future agreements comply with our overall guidelines.
Shane clarified that the F2F with Sally and Serge will be in the Boston area.
Issues for board attention ========================== See agenda item 8A. Notices to the board ==================== I've formed an Officer's committee to assist in Brand Management, comprised of Upayavira, Jukka Zitting, Craig L Russell, Grant Ingersoll, Noirin Shirley, Jim Jagielski, Lawrence Rosen and Doug Cutting. Operations And Community ======================== Created trademarks@ as our operational mailing list for managing trademarks; this is privately archived, member subscribeable, and used to discuss policy and to answer external requests about marks; there are currently 21 members subscribed. We're in the process of moving trademark-related discussions to this list instead of prc@. We plan to use site-dev@ for issues relating to "look and feel" branding, in conjunction with VP, Marketing and Publicity. Discussed a proposal for new Powered By logo guidelines, and hope that more projects will adopt official Powered By logos. Larry drafted a nice "here's a reminder of our policies" default email for use as a base to answer trademark use requests, which was used for the TomcatExpert request below. Bertrand wrote a Foundation blog entry educating the public that the ASF only publishes official information on the apache.org or apachecon.com domains, and that web content on any other domain is not from the ASF itself. This is to address the issue of both potential fundraising websites and other community support websites that are run by others. External Requests ================= Answered various non-infringing related questions. SpringSource notified us of their plan to launch tomcatexpert.com, a community support and information site for Apache Tomcat. After reviewing the site and asking for some specific changes, sent SpringSource our default email, with a reminder to respect our marks. IBM asked if they could use a modified but obviously Apache Hadoop elephant logo in a IBM logo of theirs for an unspecified project. The request was denied, because it would be a clear infringement of the actual Hadoop elephant that identifies our software product.
WHEREAS, the Board of Directors deems it to be in the best interests of the Foundation and consistent with the Foundation's purpose to appoint an officer responsible for Brand Management, including but not limited to management of the ASF's trademarks, service marks, and related ASF logos. NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the office of "Vice President, Brand Management" be and hereby created, the person holding such office to serve at the direction of the Board of Directors, and to have primary responsibility of managing the ASF's trademarks and brand; and be it further RESOLVED, that Shane Curcuru be and hereby is appointed to the office of Vice President, Brand Management, to serve in accordance with and subject to the direction of the Board of Directors and the Bylaws of the Foundation until death, resignation, retirement, removal or disqualification, or until a successor is appointed. Special Order 7F, Appoint a Vice President of Brand Management, was approved by Unanimous Vote of the directors present. The board further acknowledges that officer's committee was established to assist in this work, initially consisting of: Upayavira, Jukka Zitting, Craig L Russell, Grant Ingersoll, Nóirín Shirley, Jim Jagielski, Lawrence Rosen and Doug Cutting.
Brian Beck (Bradford Learning) and Jim Harter (Covalent) are seeking permission to use the Apache feather logo for Web-based training courses on Apache 2.0. The logo appears in similar fashion and location in each module throughout the course. Bradford Learning and Covalent Systems are co-developers of this course. The usage is in a Flash graphic, with http://www.bradfordlearning.com/wts/ being a typical example (use the pre-filled login). By unanimous vote, this request was approved. Dirk volunteered to be the contact point for this request. It was suggested that Dirk inquire on the feasibility of Bradford Learning actually donating the graphic to the ASF.
The following resolution is proposed: RESOLVED, that the Apache Software Foundation approves use of the Apache feather trademark by Lars Eilebrecht for the purpose of an Apache httpd reference card. The resolution was proposed and seconded, and was voted upon. The resolution was approved by unanimous vote of all directors present.
Tripwire has requested written approval to use the Apache name in a new product implemented as a plugin module for the Apache HTTP server. The name would be "Tripwire for web pages, Apache edition, powered by Covalent" This request has been granted. The ASF will await the formal written request to be received, at which point Jim will sign and return.
See foundation/Licenses/Covalent-PB.txt This request has been granted. The board recognizes that Jim has sent the required authorization to Covalent.
Dirk suggested that we should make an effort to officially register the use of Apache and the multi-colored feather as an ASF trademark. This led to a general discussion about retaining counsel for the ASF (next item) and will be postponed until such time as that relationship is established.
This item was tabled in the interests of time.