This Apache® Project Website Branding Policy define how Apache projects must refer to trademarks and requires a few specific elements on websites. The site map of trademark resources is also helpful.
This document defines the brand and trademark management requirements for Apache® projects on their own websites. This includes all Top Level Projects (TLP), each of which is managed by a Project Management Committee (PMC). It also includes requirements and other best practices for how subprojects, products (i.e. software releases), and other parts of the ASF's web presence should be presented to the public. The PMC Branding Responsibilities also explains how PMC members must manage their project's brands in other ways.
This policy is meant to promote and improve the image of all
projects that are part of the ASF, as well as to show that all
Apache® projects are part of "community of
developers and users" that we believe is an important factor in our
success. While each of our projects manages their own affairs within the
broad guidelines of the Apache Way, a consistent public branding and web
presence that ties all of our projects together with the well-known
http://www.apache.org homepage benefits all of us by ensuring that
end users and future contributors know how to find official project resources.
Questions? Apache committers with questions can contact the Trademarks Committee. The formal Trademark Policy explains how other organizations should refer to Apache project trademarks and logos. A list of ASF trademarks and guidelines for reporting potential misuses of trademarks are also available.
Incubator Podlings in the Apache Incubator have their own detailed Podling branding guidelines, questions go to the general@incubator list. Podlings must comply with all Project Branding Requirements before graduation to a top level project.
Use of Apache Marks at Events is covered under our Third Party Event Branding Policy, and explains how to seek permission.
Apache projects must host all official website content on an
apache.org domain. This includes content overseen by the
project's PMC (including top level website, downloads, wikis, etc.),
and ensures both that the ASF infrastructure team can maintain the
services, as well informing any users that the content is official
and comes from the ASF and the project's PMC, and not a third party.
The homepage for any project must be served from
http://*project*.apache.org, both to ensure consistent branding
and to allow for automatically generated links (like
primary links to the project as a whole must point directly to the
homepage, and not to alternate sites or domains.
Projects are free to use any infrastructure supported technology for managing and deploying their websites, and are free to use any look and feel in their designs. In the future, we expect to ask projects to add a specific style or graphical element (from a choice of several variants) for their link back to www.apache.org that will help give users a better sense of the connection between all Apache projects.
Guidelines for choosing names of new projects exist, but haven't yet been reviewed and merged into this policy document.
The primary branding for any project or product name must be in the form of "Apache Projectname". This ensures that the project or product is associated with the ASF as a whole in the minds of users, as well as to ensure third parties cannot as easily misuse our project names. The first and most prominent references to a project or product on every page, and uses in page titles or headers, must use the "Apache Projectname" form of its name. Other references may use either "Apache Projectname" or "Projectname" as appropriate for the subject matter.
Every product homepage and any overview download pages for the product must include a prominent reference to the product as "Apache Foo", and must include a brief one sentence description of the function of the software product itself. For example:
The Apache Xerces XML parsing library software provides a complete implementation of the XML 1.0 parsing specification, and is easily configurable and compliant with current standards.
This description is both useful for new readers to your page, and is important for the ASF to maintain an overall list of trademarks for our software products. A trademark is only important when associated with a specific kind of goods: in our case with the actual downloadable software products that the ASF and our PMCs provide.
Note that it's best to pass the sample description by trademarks@, to ensure it's a proper trademark goods description. For example, in the past Apache Tomcat's website said it is an "implementation" and a "collaboration", not as a product with functionality. Apache SpamAssassin's website described itself as a "project" and a "version" and otherwise refers to the software as "it". Neither of these contains a proper trademark goods description (i.e. computer software that performs a function). While this trademark description style may sometimes seem clumsy in technical documentation, it is a critical way that we can enforce our trademarks - plus, it only needs to be done in one prominent place on the website.
Project and product names should always be referred to in a consistent casing and used as an adjective, and never as a noun or verb, like any trademark should be used. This is important to do on your project homepage and on the download page; at other places on the website or in technical product documentation it's not required.
We consider the names of all projects, subprojects, and products to be trademarks of the ASF. While not all bare product names (i.e. just "Foo") may be exclusive trademarks of the ASF, all names in the form of "Apache Foo" should be exclusive to the ASF.
Terminology: a project or subproject is a community and any associated products that are managed by a PMC; the same brand guidelines apply to both. A product is a specific, downloadable software product that our users might want to use in some way. There are a few extra specific requirements for product branding. Note that most projects and subprojects release a product with the same name (i.e. the Apache Foo project releases a software product called Apache Foo).
Whatever main navigation system your project website uses, it must feature
certain text links back to key pages on the main
www.apache.org website. These
links can appear in whatever main navigation system your site uses on
all top level pages for the project or subproject.
"License" should link to:
"Sponsorship" or "Donate" should link to:
"Thanks" should link to:
"Security" should link to either to a project-specific page detailing how users may securely report potential vulnerabilities, or to the main http://www.apache.org/security/ page
All projects must feature some prominent link back to the main ASF
Link back to www.apache.org: All project and subproject homepages must
include a prominent link to the main
http://www.apache.org homepage. This
may either be a featured link in your main navigation system, or may be a
text link in your Main homepage text. A best practice is to include a short
sentence or paragraph on the homepage noting that this project is an Apache
project, and is part of a larger community of developers and users.
If you have alternate suggestions for the text for links pointing back to the main ASF pages that better fit with your project's web presence, please let trademarks@ know.
Including "Thanks" links to third parties - if your project has typically companies that donate software licenses or support to project committers, please follow the Corporate Recognition Guidelines. It is important to ensure any such pages are presented publicly in a manner that is distinctly different than the formal Sponsorship program.
Apache Foo, Foo, Apache, the Apache feather logo, and the Apache Foo project logo are either registered trademarks or trademarks of The Apache Software Foundation in the United States and other countries.
This may appear in page footers or in any other appropriate location.
At the top of each project or product homepage, and on the top banner of each page where the project name appears, you should include the appropriate ™ or ® symbol next to the first main occurrence of the "Apache Foo" project name, both in header/title text and in the first place in running text. This highlights our trademark claim and emphasizes its importance to us.
Proper attribution must be given to any other organization's trademarks that are referred to on our websites. All non-ASF trademarks must be attributed to their owners when displayed on ASF project websites. This may be done specifically, for each other referred mark, or generically, and is typically done in the footer of a webpage. For a specific example:
FooBar and the FooBar logo are trademarks of Yoyodyne, Inc.
To provide a generic trademark attribution (either to cover cases where a large number of marks are used, or in case we're not sure which words are other organization's marks), you can add instead:
All other marks mentioned may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.
Logos are important to recognize as trademarks as well. For the project's official logo (if it has one, and especially if it uses the ASF feather), ensure that it includes a small "TM" symbol in the graphic or immediately adjacent to it. For pages that include the project logo on them, ensure you mention "... and the Project logo are trademarks..." in the attribution.
Projects may may choose to use the Apache feather in their logo if they wish. For details on the proper Apache visual identity and feather graphics, please work with press@.
Projects are encouraged to create a variation of their main logo as a "Powered By..." or " Project Inside" logo. This logo may be used by third parties to denote that they build products or services using the associated product. While we must ensure that the main product logo is associated with the actual product that the Apache project provides, we allow third parties to more broadly use "Powered by..." logos in conjunction with their own products.
Update 2014! New Powered By Apache logos are available for all projects to use (or request updates to).
All projects must provide a DOAP - Description Of A Project - file or entry for both the project itself and all product releases that they make - OR otherwise provide structured data such that the projects.apache.org website can find it. Follow the guidelines at to make a DOAP file and register it. This will allow the ASF to best showcase all of its projects and products in a variety of ways.
Update Apache Trademark Lists, briefly describing each software product. In the future, we hope to generate this list from DOAP files of all products.
If your project has subprojects that are software language specific, be sure to name them appropriately. For example, "Apache Xerces Perl" is not appropriate, since it improperly uses the trademark "Perl". A better project name would be "Apache Xerces for Perl". For example, the ASF could allow a third party named FooBar to ship a software product called "FooBar Software for Apache Xerces" or "BarFoo Services for Apache Xerces". The ASF would not allow "FooBar Xerces" or "BarFoo Xerces" forms of a name to be used by FooBar, since Xerces is our trademark. The same applies to the use of the word "Perl" (which is a trademark of The Perl Foundation ).
Registered Trademarks If a PMC would like to request legal registration of their project's trademarks, please registering their marks, please follow the REGREQUEST instructions.
Project-related Domain Names If there are pre-existing non-apache.org
domain names directly related to the project that are in use for
project-related purposes, the project's PMC may request that the ASF (and
the infrastructure team) take over the registration of those domain names
if they are freely available or will be donated to the ASF. Note that in general
projects must publish any and all official information at their
project.apache.orgdomain, or on an Infrastructure-supported wiki
site. If your PMC plans to actively manage and maintain these
non-apache.org domain names, then contact
email@example.com for advice on determining if we should ask Infrastructure to take
over the registration and how to setup the redirects to the primary project
homepage. In general a simple INFRA Jira ticket is used to officially request that the
ASF take over a donated domain name ownership.
Update coming soon: policy details on using pre-existing non-*.apache.org
domain names to host end-user focused content. Note that the developer or
contributor homepage for a project must be at the proper
Projects may not use domain names owned by third parties to host official project content. The content must be migrated, or the domain must be transferred to Apache infra.
All Apache top level projects should be fully compliant with these guidelines. Any projects which are not compliant must work with trademarks@ to ensure that they are. All Incubator podlings must either comply with all requirements before graduation, or must have a specific and short-term action plan to complete compliance in short order after graduation (in case there are technical issues with website updates, etc.)
Update 2014 Please contact trademarks@ directly with branding questions - there is no longer any need to include this in your board reports.
Project Branding Report Checklist - Project Website Basics : homepage is project.apache.org
Project Naming And Descriptions : use proper Apache forms, describe product, etc.
Website Navigation Links : navbar links included, link to www.apache.org included
Trademark Attributions : attribution for all ASF marks included in footers, etc.
Logos and Graphics : include TM, use consistent product logo on your site
Project Metadata : DOAP file checkedin and up to date
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 or services.
This document is aimed at the ASF's internal community and the PMCs that manage our projects, and does not override or replace our formal Trademark Policy. If you have a question that is not specifically answered here or that you'd like further clarification on, please contact us. Further resources about trademark law and policy are also available.