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by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
non-profit, openness, trademark

automattic, wordpress

WordPress Trademark Transfered From For-Profit Company, To Non-Profit Foundation

from the didn't-see-that-coming dept

We recently wrote about Twitter's smart and open trademark policy, in that it readily and freely licenses its trademark to many companies, with only a few small exceptions. It looks like blog provider WordPress is doing its own interesting trademark move as well. The company recently announced that it has transferred the WordPress trademark away from the company itself and given it to the WordPress Foundation, a non-profit organization charged with promoting access to WordPress and related open source projects. In other words, even if the company's current execs lose control over the company, the trademark itself won't be abused by new owners, since the mark will remain with the foundation. Given how often we see trademark law being abused these days, both of these examples of smart, forward-looking companies taking a much more progressive approach on trademark really is quite refreshing.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 13 Sep 2010 @ 7:24pm

    It is good to see a whole new ecosystem emerging that challenged the old assumptions about things.

    People will have a choice to use whatever is more useful to them and like you said it is refreshing.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 14 Sep 2010 @ 8:14am

    A point that should not be lost in talking about this matter. A trademark is not a stand-alone piece of property. It is its use in conjunction with a good or service provided in commerce that gives it meaning under law.

    To view it otherwise would be a significant mistake that could ultimately "kill" the mark.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    drmike, 16 Sep 2010 @ 6:41am

    They did?

    A quick check of the US trademark database at shows no transfer has been made. The trademark is still held by Automattic. You may want to verify your sources.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    WpHey, 18 Sep 2010 @ 10:41pm

    It’s good for both WordPress community and Automattic, I think.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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