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- To: tops-20@SU-SCORE.ARPA, bug-emacs@MIT-MC.ARPA, info-emacs@CMU-CS-C.ARPA
- Subject: Trademarking EMACS
- From: Charles Hedrick <HEDRICK@RUTGERS.ARPA>
- Date: 11 Oct 84 22:42:20 EDT
There was recently some discussion on the Tops-20 mailing list (and I
think maybe some others as well) about ads from Unipress that have shown
EMACS as a trademark. Since I had more confidence than some of you in
the sanity of the folks at Unipress, I decided to check with them to
find out what is going on. The following response is from Mike
Gallaher, one of the EMACS technical support staff. It was written in
consultation with the president of Unipress.
Unipress is NOT trying to claim the name "EMACS" as a trademark. We
do claim the names "Unipress Emacs" and "Gosling Emacs" as
trademarks, which we have done for three or four months now. For a
period of about two months, between April and June, we did
ill-advisedly place the TM device on the name Emacs. Because of the
lead time for magazine ads, the ads with Emacs(tm) just appeared in
the last two or three issues of BYTE.
Originally, our ads simply used the word EMACS, with no TM. We
received many threatening letters and phone calls from several LARGE
computer companies who claimed that they owned the name EMACS and
that we could not use it. The use of TM on the name EMACS was a
hasty action to defend ourselves from such threats.
After realizing that it is absurd to trademark the name EMACS,
because it has really become a name for a generic class of editors
(as Mark Crispin noted), and to avoid conflicts with trademarks
like "CCA EMACS", we decided to claim the phrases "Unipress Emacs"
and "Gosling Emacs" instead.
Our reason for claiming a trademark in the first place was in
self-defense. We certainly have no intention of keeping anyone from
using the name Emacs for any program, public-domain or otherwise.