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From: Phil Hughes < phil@ssc.com>
Newsgroups: comp.os.linux.announce
Subject: Linux Trademark press release
Date: Sat, 21 Dec 1996 02:46:52 GMT
Organization: ?
Approved: linux-announce@news.ornl.gov (Daniel Quinlan)
Message-ID: < cola-quinlan-851136412-2271-0@proton.pathname.com>

Members of the LINUX community have been up in arms during the past six
months over the efforts on an individual named William R. Della Croce,
Jr. from the Boston area to collect 10% royalties on sales from
businesses marketing Linux products.  He bases his written demands on a
US trademark which he claims to hold on the name "LINUX" for a computer
operating system.  He, in fact, holds such a registered trademark, based
on his claim made under penalty of perjury that he is the owner and
first user of the mark for operating systems, and that he was not aware
in 1994 or 1995 of any other person who might claim or be using this
name and mark for an operating system.  This claim is absurd on its
face.

A group of companies (Workgroup Solutions, Inc, a Colorado corporation;
Yggdrasil Computing, Inc., a California corporation; Specialized Systems
Consultants, Inc., doing business as _Linux Journal_, a Washington
corporation; Linux International, a New Hampshire unincoroprated
association, and Linus Torvalds, have retained an internationally known
software industry attorney, G. Gervaise Davis III, of the Davis &
Schroeder law firm in Monterey, CA to seek cancellation of this
registration on the grounds that it is fraudulent and obtained under
false pretenses. Mr.  Davis and his firm are handling the case on a
vastly reduced fee basis, because of their long standing relationship
with the U.S.  software industry.  Davis was the original attorney for
Gary Kildall and Digital Research of CP/M fame in the 1980s.

A Petition to Cancel was in fact filed with the Trademark Trial and
Appeals Board in Washinton, DC. on November 27, 1996, detailing the
improper actions of Della Croce and setting out the true facts with a
number of exhibits and attachments.  Mr. Davis advises us that we can
expect to have further steps taken by TTAB, under their complex
procedural rules over the next few months.  TTAB will first notify Della
Croce of the filing and permit him time to respond, then evidence can be
collected and depositions taken, and then the parties can file briefs
and other responses.  Often these cases take more than a year to be
resolved by a TTAB decision.

All of our industry is fully aware that Linus Torvalds developed Linux
and that it has become one of the world's most popular operating systems
during the past six years. The participants in this proceeding expect
the TTAB to cancel the registration, after hearing and seeing the
massive evidence demonstrating that Della Croce had no conceiveable
legal basis for his claim to the mark.

The petition itself is available on SSC's web site and Mr. Davis' law
firm at www.iplawyers.com.  We urge that interested persons read it, and
distribute it and this message to all members of the LINUX community so
that they will be aware of what is being done about this outrageous
trademark claim.  We will try to keep everyone posted on developments in
the case through user groups and webpages.

We will continue to keep you updated on the happenings in this action.
Check out the Hot Linux News button at http://www.ssc.com/lj/ for the
latest updates.

- -- 
Phil Hughes, SSC, Inc. P.O. Box 55549, Seattle, WA 98155  (206)PUBS-REF
>>> Publishers of pocket references for UNIX, C, ..., Linux Journal <<<
    E-mail: phil@ssc.com  Phone: (206)782-7733  Fax: (206)782-7191
SSC/Linux Journal web site: http://www.ssc.com/

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