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GNU Coding Standards

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2.3 Trademarks

Please do not include any trademark acknowledgements in GNU software packages or documentation.

Trademark acknowledgements are the statements that such-and-such is a trademark of so-and-so. The GNU Project has no objection to the basic idea of trademarks, but these acknowledgements feel like kowtowing, so we don't use them. There is no legal requirement for them.

What is legally required, as regards other people's trademarks, is to avoid using them in ways which a reader might read as naming or labeling our own programs or activities. For example, since "Objective C" is (or at least was) a trademark, we made sure to say that we provide a "compiler for the Objective C language" rather than an "Objective C compiler". The latter is meant to be short for the former, but it does not explicitly state the relationship, so it could be misinterpreted as using "Objective C" as a label for the compiler rather than for the language.


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