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This Domain Name Branding Policy defines requirements for when third parties may be eligible to request permission to use Apache® marks in their domain names and the process to request permission from an officer of the ASF.

Domain Name Branding Overview

In general, you may not use Apache marks such as "Apache Project" or "Project" in your own domain names if that use would be likely to confuse a relevant consumer about the source of software or services provided through your domain with products or services provided by Apache Project or the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) as a whole. You should apply the "likelihood of confusion" test described in our formal Trademark Policy, and please realize that the use of Apache marks in third party domain names is generally not "nominative fair use."

You may be eligible to request permission to use Apache marks in your domain name related to our products if your domain's website content meets our requirements below and you request permission. Thus in some cases a website providing advice and consulting about the Apache Project may be granted permission to use a domain name like ProjectAdvice.com if you get specific permission from the VP, Brand Management or the VP of Apache Project. Note that podlings in the Apache Incubator may not grant permission for third party requests for their podling trademarks, only VPs of top level projects may do so.

Note that this does not generally apply to our "Apache" trademark; use of that mark in domain names that may be confusingly similar to any Apache project or product or service is not allowed. The Apache brand is important to all Apache projects, and is special to the ASF as a whole, as well as being the primary way that consumers discover our projects and products.

Not Using Bare Names As Second Level Domains

Outside parties may not use Apache trademarks alone as second level domains or their functional equivalents when the content of that domain is related to any related software products or services. Thus, you may not use a domain called tomcat.com to provide server-side software or services.

This applies to second level domains, as well as their functional equivalents, like tomcat.co.uk, flex.org.au or other similar domain schemes where the domain registrar generally assigns a third level or similar domain. Uses of Apache trademarks in domain names must include additional words or characters that clearly differentiate the spelling and meaning of the domain name from the bare Apache product trademark.

Not Promoting Similarly Named Software Products

Domain names using Apache marks must not be used to promote software products that are similar to Apache software products, or to promote software products that are similarly named in any fashion to any Apache products or projects. Domains using Apache marks may only be used to provide services and/or differently-named software products that are directly related to the Apache product whose mark is being used.

Clearly Display Non-Affiliation

Website content must clearly and prominently inform the public that the domain and your organization are not affiliated with, endorsed by, or otherwise associated with the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) or any of its projects.

This must include an appropriate statement specifying the above in the main text body of your About or similar explanatory page of your website, as well as being included in at least the footer of the main landing page for the website. Depending on the type of content for your website, we may also require a prominent non-affiliation notice within the text of the main landing page itself.

Provide Credit To Relevant Apache Project Community

The primary landing page of the domain's website, and any "About", "Contact", or similarly named page(s) must provide a prominent text credit and link to the Apache project whose mark is being used, as well as a mention of the independent community behind the project. A common motto of Apache projects is "Community over code", and prominent uses of Apache marks must clearly provide credit to the community behind the mark and its product.

Include Links To Relevant Apache Product Resources

The website must include a prominent section or page named "Resources", "More Information", "Links", or some other appropriate title that features hypertext links to the mailing lists and other services that the relevant Apache project itself provides. This must include at least a link to the homepage of the Apache project, as well as a link to the Apache project's mailing lists, plus a brief description of these resources.

You may contact the relevant Apache project to get a listing of appropriate links to include. The use of freely available, publicly archived mailing lists and other support tools are a critical part of any Apache project, and ensuring that links to our mailing lists are provided freely is a benefit both to Apache projects and our users.

Non-Disparaging References To Apache Projects

Domain names using Apache marks must not be used to disparage the reputation of the Apache Software Foundation, its projects, products, or communities. Factual comparisons of Apache software versus other software are appropriate as long as they are not used in a misleading way.

As a non-profit devoted to the public good through the software that we produce, it is inappropriate for us to provide permission for third parties to use our marks to disparage our communities or our work.

No Exclusive Or Controlling Relationship

Websites hosted at domain names using Apache marks must not give the impression to relevant consumers that the organization controlling the domain has an exclusive or controlling relationship with any Apache project or with the Foundation as a whole, or with any service related to our products.

For example, a website declaring itself "The Only Resource For Apache Project" would not be permitted since it implies an exclusive resource. Likewise, branding or taglines such as "The Apache Project Project Leaders" are not allowed, since that implies control of that Apache Project.

Users of Apache marks in third party domains must acknowledge that Apache projects are solely managed by the Project Management Committee (PMC) of the project, and not by any single individual nor by (even partly or indirectly) any third party organization. Similarly, domain names using Apache marks that state or imply that that organization has an exclusive or sole relationship to any Apache project would both be factually incorrect, as well as harmful to the Apache project's community, and are not allowed.

Trademark Attributions And Proper Apache Brand Usage

Any use of Apache trademarks on any pages of the domain must comply with our trademark policy and follow our Apache Product Name Usage Guide.

The primary landing page for the domain, and any "Legal", "About", "Disclaimer", or similarly named pages must feature prominent attributions of all Apache marks used on the domain. For example:

Apache Project, Project and Apache are either registered trademarks or trademarks of the Apache Software Foundation in the United States and/or other countries, and are used with permission as of 2014. The Apache Software Foundation has no affiliation with and does not endorse or review the materials provided at this website, which is managed by YourBigCo.

This may appear in page footers or in any other appropriate location. The "Apache Software Foundation" text should link to http://www.apache.org/ and the "used with permission" should link to this Domain Name Branding Requirements page. Note that you must have a current written permission from the VP, Brand Management or the VP of the relevant Apache project to include the "used with permission" phrase.

Logos And Graphics

Third party websites may not use any Apache logos or graphics as part of their website branding. Apache product logos may only be used to refer to the Apache products or projects themselves, must be clearly set off from any of the domain's own branding and logos, and must include a hyperlink to the Apache project's home page where practicable. You must not change the appearance of any Apache logos when using them.

Third party website branding may not include the Apache feather as a brand element in any way. The only use of the bare Apache feather or Apache logo on websites allowed is to provide a single link to http://www.apache.org/ as a reference to The Apache Software Foundation and its projects.

Use Of "Apache" And "ApacheCon" Names

Third parties may not use either the "Apache", "ApacheCon", nor "Apache:BigData" names, nor confusingly similar names, in their domain names. These names are reserved exclusively for the ASF, its projects, and its own authorized conferences.

Requesting Permission For Domains

If you have a website created or in development that you wish to host at a domain name incorporating any Apache marks, please contact us by emailing both the relevant private@*projectname*.apache.org mailing list, and also cc: trademarks@apache.org. Please be patient; we are an all-volunteer run organization.

Please feel free to contact us in advance of setting up your domain with your proposed name and an overview of what the site will be designed for and a mockup of your site content so that we can start the discussion. Note that any permissions granted are contingent on the website content remaining in compliance with this policy.

Rationale

The primary mission of the Apache Software Foundation is to provide software products for the public good. Equally important is The Apache Way, or the community-led, consensus-driven, and public mailing list methods that our many projects use to produce the software products that we provide to the public. Thus these branding guidelines are different from those used for software products, because software products are the key value that Apache projects provide for the public.

The fundamental driver for Apache projects are the communities and PMCs that contribute to and run those projects. As an all-volunteer organization, maintaining the health of the community of committers within a project is critical to Apache and to the project. Thus it is important for any third party uses of our marks to properly credit the community behind the project whose mark they are using.

As a non-profit organization whose mission is to serve the public good, our projects also provide a number of support services for the products that they produce. This is both a useful and free resource for the public, but is also an integral part of The Apache Way, and is important to the health of our communities. Thus ensuring that third parties provide appropriate links to the free support services and mailing lists that our projects provide is important both to our communities themselves, and to the public who may wish to use Apache products. Obviously, third parties that primarily disparage our communities or products are not welcome to use our marks in ways that might be infringing.

Apache projects are run solely by their PMCs, as projects independent of outside corporations or organizations. It is important to maintain both the actual independence of our PMCs from third parties, as well as to ensure that third parties do not use our marks to imply controlling, exclusive, or otherwise exclusionary relationships to our PMCs, projects, or communities.

Similarly, as an all-volunteer organization, our projects may sometimes be limited in the level or frequency of support or other services that they may offer to the public. There are many third parties who have the ability to provide valuable additional services or products related to Apache products. Having reputable third parties offering hosted services, support contracts, consulting and training, and other services at domain names related to our products is a benefit to the public who uses our products, and often can be a benefit to the long term health of our project communities.

Thus while Apache must strongly protect its marks as applied to software products - the primary value we provide to the public - we have established these requirements to encourage reputable third parties to consider responsibly offering services at domain names that may be branded using Apache marks in respectful ways.

As of 2016, version 1.2 of this policy prohibits the use of bare Apache trademarks as second level domain names or their equivalents. It is clear from experience that consumers often assume the second level name of a domain is directly or closely related to the organization that produces the content found on that domain. As the ASF and Apache projects are the only appropriate source of Apache software products, it is inappropriate to use an Apache trademark as a second level domain because it makes it much more likely users and contributors would be led to believe that some other organization is providing that named Apache software.

Other Trademark Guidelines

Please see our formal Trademark Policy and our site map of Trademark resources.

Important Note

Nothing in this ASF policy statement shall be interpreted to allow any third party to claim any association with the Apache Software Foundation or any of its projects or to imply any approval or support by ASF for any third party products, services, or events.

Policy Version

This is version 1.2 of this Apache policy document, published in 2016.
Significant changes will be marked with a new version number.

v1.1 Update to have permissions by VP, Brand or designee

v1.1a (2014) Minor clarification to ensure cc: trademarks@, and only top level project VPs (but not podling PPMCs) may grant permissions (update: April 2016)

v1.2 (2016) Add prohibition on second level domains or similar; Add proper usage to attributions section