Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Groupon and GNOME

Update: “Groupon has agreed to change its Gnome product name to resolve the GNOME Foundation’s concerns. Groupon is now abandoning all of its 28 pending trademark applications. The parties are working together on a mutually acceptable solution, a process that has already begun.” ~gnome.org
While I reserve my blog for discussing usability in open source software, a recent issue has recently emerged that deserves a mention:

Groupon has launched a new platform, called Gnome. It's a proprietary tablet system with software which they describe this way:
"When it's complete, Gnome will serve as an operating system for merchants to run their entire operation and enable them to create real-time promotions that bring customers into their business when they need them the most." ~Eric Lefkofsky, CEO
This is disturbing because there is already a system out there called GNOME, a free-software desktop that acts as a platform for many popular free programs.

I don't know of any way to describe this other than Groupon is trying to steal the name from the GNOME Desktop. That's not right.

In the U.S. legal system, trademark owners need to fight to keep their marks when others use them inappropriately. And GNOME is planning to fight this, and they have started a fundraiser on PayPal to help pay for legal costs. Please help.

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