Friday, November 15, 2013
EFF criticizes Shuttleworth, Canonical
The EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation) is an organization that protects the freedom of the open source community. In a statement about Canonical and Mark Shuttleworth, they voiced their frustration at the way things have been handled as of late.
If you read my last article about "fix ubuntu" then you know what some of this is about.
Here is the official release from EFF:
“Over the past few days, EFF and one of our staff technologists, the talented Micah Lee, have had an illuminating back and forth with Canonical Ltd over the use of the Ubuntu mark. While we don’t believe that Canonical has acted with malice or intent to censor, its silly invocation of trademark law is disturbing. After all, not everyone has easy recourse to lawyers and the ability to push back,” states the organization on its website.
Mark Shuttleworth also said that Canonical needed to enforce their patents, or they would lose them. This is one of the ideas that has been pointed out by the EFF as a fallacy.
“Canonical’s trademark ‘policy’ does not and cannot trump the First Amendment. Imagine the impact on free speech if you needed a ‘grant of permission’ from BP, Coca-Cola Amatil, or EFF before using one of their trademarks as part of speech criticizing their conduct.”
“It is well-settled that the First Amendment protects non-commercial websites—like https://fixubuntu.com—that use trademarks to comment upon corporations and products,”
For more information on the "fix ubuntu" scandal, check out my post directly below this one.
I personally am glad they spoke up. The fix ubuntu website wasn't even a directly inflamatory attack on Ubuntu or Canonical. It was and is simply a solution to a problem. He doesn't post any opinion at all other than the label "fix ubuntu".
P.S. Thanks goes to Softpedia for their continued excellent coverage of the open source and Ubuntu/Linux world.
Posted by Dennis Gutowski