NeoOffice CD Distribution & Trademark Usage

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* * * DRAFT * * *

Many people have expressed interest in either distributing NeoOffice®/J on CD or in obtaining such a CD—particularly those users with dialup or metered connections to the internet, which are still quite common in much of the world. The NeoOffice® community is of course eager to facilitate the distribution of NeoOffice®/J to all users, current and prospective.

Distribution of NeoOffice®/J is not simply unrestricted provided the source code is made available (which is common for software released under the GNU General Public License; the GPL permits the distribution of software in any manner provided the source code is also made available to all those receiving the software). The GPL is only a grant of source code copyright.

NeoOffice®/J, like a number of open source software packages (such as AbiWord, software, and the Red Hat Linux distribution) is also governed by trademark laws, which are different from copyright. NeoOffice® is a registered trademark (thus the little ® after NeoOffice® in official usage) and is protected under United States and international laws.

Reasons why we use trademark protection? viruses, rip-offs (Luxuriousity), etc (e.g. protection/quality to the end-user), volunteer effort, funded by donations

So, while the GPL premits you to copy, modify, and redistribute NeoOffice®/J source code and binaries, the GPL does not permit you to violate (use without permission) the NeoOffice® trademark. Trademark usage must be negotiated separately.

In a nutshell, NeoOffice® (NeoOffice®/C) and NeoOffice®/J are GPL software; you may resell them without negotiating a trademark license provided you recompile and excise all references to the NeoOffice® word mark from the software. If you wish to resell NeoOffice®-branded software, you must adhere to the NeoOffice® Trademark Usage Guidelines or negotiate a separate trademark license.

NeoOffice® Trademark Usage Guidelines

NeoOffice® is a registered trademark of Edward H. Peterlin within the United States for all goods falling within International Class 9, including but not limited to software and computer software products. This trademark is in effect until 2013 under Section 8 of the Trademark Act of 1946.

The GNU General Public License (GPL) does not cover trademark usage, only source code copyright. Trademark usage is covered under different laws.

I [Edward H. Peterlin] will take whatever legal action is necessary to ensure no one uses the NeoOffice® trademark in any way I deem to be unfit. Any usage of the NeoOffice® trademark for software that is not directly affiliated with myself is hereby forbidden.

This should also serve as notice that usage of the NeoOffice® trademark is hereby granted for any mirroring of the NeoOffice® binaries that provides free access for any and all individuals. Usage of the NeoOffice® trademark is also granted for personal or non-profit use (e.g. burning CDs to hand out to family/friends, use for installs, handing out CDs at conferences, any non-proifit activity or organization, etc.).

The moment that an exchange of money is involved, usage of the NeoOffice® trademark is hereby prohibited unless 100% of gross margins on such sales are donated back to and Planamesa Software.

Definition of Gross Margins

"Gross margin" is the net profit minus cost of goods and services sold. For exmaple, if it costs you $9 to make a CD and you give it away for free, your gross margin is -$9.

My usage of the term "gross margin" is explicit. I am not in any way trying to impinge upon any free usage of the trademark NeoOffice®, in the literal sense of free.

This includes any use of the trademark NeoOffice® in such a way that it does not directly relate to the sales of software...e.g. listing on freshmeat, including CD inserts with magazines, giving away free CDs at conferences, giving away free CDs of any sort, etc.

CD Distributors

The following community members have volunteered to distribute NeoOffice®/J CDs in their respective regions of the world. Some may do so for free, some may do so at cost (cost of CD plus postage), and some may also require a small amount to be donated towards supporting the NeoOffice®/J effort.


North America

  • Person X - contact info [default to PM on trinity?] - terms


  • JKT (UK only) - To contact, send a Personal Message (PM) to me via the Trinity website: [1] and I'll get back to you as soon as possible.

Other Sources (Magazines, etc.)

  • NeoOffice/J 1.1 RC is on the July 2005 Macworld UK CD [2], and their CDs may also regularly include NeoOffice/J patches.

How do I become a CD Distributor?

  • Your CD must contain items 1, 3, and 6 of this section
  1. The latest full binary release (e.g., NeoOffice/J 1.1 Release Candidate)
  2. The latest patch at time of burning (if you burn disk-per-person), as some patches can get large enough to be annoying to dialup users
  3. The NeoOffice/J source (ca. 1 MB .tar.gz archive) to satisfy GPL requirements
  4. Language Pack installer for your region, if applicable
  5. Localized help content installer(s) for your region, if applicable
  6. The Readme.rtf file from the official disk image (place this file at the root of your CD)
    You may modify or add additional information to the Readme.rtf file, but you must not replace any of the existing content of the file.
Items 1, 3, and 6 are found on the official disk image (.dmg) downloaded from
  • Notify Ed [email, PM on trinity, how?] that you will be in compliance with the NeoOffice® Trademark Usage Guidelines
  • At this point you may choose to add yourself to the list on the wiki (not required)
  • A CD label and CD covers for Community Distributor use are available here (the CD label is also available via CVS)
  • Transfer any profit / "donations" from your distribution activities to and Planamesa Software on a regular basis
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