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Love-letters August 21, 2007

Posted by Florian in GPE, Source.
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I got a nice loveletter from Mr. France of handhelds.org today – I do not think that I should quote him here ;-) But its a good reason to point interested people to two links. The first one is the letter of the USPTO in response to the GPE trademark application from 25. of June. A short summary of that letter is that hey did not accept the screenshot of the old hh.o GPE website as proof for GPE beeing used in commerce by hh.o and request a better specimen for a “GPE product”.

The second link is the page describing handhelds.org itself. The section “What we do not provide” gives us some information that hh.o does not sell any products – no hardware, no software and they do not even provide support. (In the case this page has some “accident” or suddenly changes I have a nice screenshot I can provide.)

So what’s the point here? Is there a secret hh.o product that suddenly pops up to fulfill the requirements for a trademark?

There are more reasons why this whole trademark story smells fishy:

  • The date for the first use in commerce stated in the trademark application is a long time before hh.o Inc. was founded, at a time the platform was part of the CRL and the domain belonged to Kelly Martin. So who did this business? Compaq?
  • Even if the hh.o website tells us that hh.o owns the GPE trademark this is not entirely true: The trademark was filed by George France personally and not by the non-profit handhelds.org Inc.
  • Mr. France was never involved in GPE itself, only in administrating the servers used by GPE. Noone ever “donated” GPE to anyone and he simply has no right to claim GPE for himself.

Someone came up with the argument GPE was forked and did never move to LinuxToGo when this dispute started… well my answer was that future will give us clue about which of these opinions is right. From the time we moved till I was unsubscribed from the old GPE commits mailinglist today there was a single mail on this list – caused by Mr. France himself removing a file from the GPE CVS repository. I do not think that any honest person is able to speak about a fork in this case…

Comments»

1. ljp - August 22, 2007

and… The Opie mark was refused… for different reasons..

“Registration is refused because the proposed mark merely describes a feature of applicant’s goods.”

“When the terms OPEN PALMTOP INTEGRATED ENVIRONMENT are combined, the terms conveys an immediate idea of the applicant’s goods, i.e., applicant provides an open or unrestricted suite of integrated software for palmtop devices. Thus, since the proposed mark OPIE is commonly known to mean open palmtop integrated environment, and open palmtop integrated environment describes a feature of applicant’s software which feature open suite of integrated software for palmtop devices, the proposed mark must be refused registration on the Principal Register.”

http://portal.uspto.gov/external/portal/tow?SRCH=Y&isSubmitted=true&details=&SELECT=US+Serial+No&TEXT=77123610#

2. fl0rian - August 22, 2007

That’s good news! I just found out that the IPKG trademark was refused as well. That made me nosy and I started to search TESS for all the other trademarks their legal website states. I was not able to find other applications by Mr. France – even handhelds.org, bootldr and Familiar seem to be missing. Sounds like this all is much of hot air which is not useful for anything but puts unnecessary pressure on the projects.

3. kr - December 4, 2008

and… The Opie mark was refused… for different reasons..

“Registration is refused because the proposed mark merely describes a feature of applicant’s goods.”

“When the terms OPEN PALMTOP INTEGRATED ENVIRONMENT are combined, the terms conveys an immediate idea of the applicant’s goods, i.e., applicant provides an open or unrestricted suite of integrated software for palmtop devices. Thus, since the proposed mark OPIE is commonly known to mean open palmtop integrated environment, and open palmtop integrated environment describes a feature of applicant’s software which feature open suite of integrated software for palmtop devices, the proposed mark must be refused registration on the Principal Register.”

http://portal.uspto.gov/external/portal/tow?SRCH=Y&isSubmitted=true&details=&SELECT=US+Serial+No&TEXT=77123610#

2. fl0rian – August 22, 2007
That’s good news! I just found out that the IPKG trademark was refused as well. That made me nosy and I started to search TESS for all the other trademarks their legal website states. I was not able to find other applications by Mr. France – even handhelds.org, bootldr and Familiar seem to be missing. Sounds like this all is much of hot air which is not useful for anything but puts unnecessary pressure on the projects.


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