[Foundation] On a coherent compliance, trademark and IPR policy

Iain Shigeoka iain.shigeoka at messaginglogic.com
Wed Oct 9 23:02:59 CDT 2002


Hi all,

One of the stickier and longer running unresolved issues on the Jabber
standards/JSF docket has been the combined issues of "Jabber compliance",
the Jabber trademark (TM), and intellectual property (IP). IMO, part of the
difficulty is they have a combined business and technical aspect. Although
the council and board are supposed to help JSF work these issues out, I
think that we as a community must provide guidance on creating an overall
strategy or set of goals that meets our needs.

There's no real good place to start so I'll arbitrarily suggest we begin by
tackling TM, then compliance, and finally IP. So I'm going to throw out a
strawman set of goals and approach and then everyone can poke holes in it
and hopefully move the discussion forward.

Goals

1) Allow zero-cost, open use of the Jabber protocol
2) Ensure interoperability
3) Foster an active developer and user community
4) Encourage evolution and use of Jabber outside the realm of IM
5) Encourage commercial use of Jabber (controversial?)

Strategy

1) Resolve TM issue. Have Jinc commit to the TM either being used
generically and freely by the community or not. If Jinc decides to keep the
Jabber TM, the JSF should select a new TM to describe the protocol (e.g.
XMPP). Whatever we come up with, let's call it the TM. The TM describes the
technology and standards.
2) Define Jabber compliance. This ties into the IETF work being done and all
the JEPs underway. Peter has some really great ideas on XMPP vs. Jabber
(http://www.saint-andre.com/jabber/xmpp+jabber.html) and this might play
well into the JabberEnvironments ideas by Adam Theo
(http://www.theoretic.com/?Jabber_2.0). Part of the standards process should
define compliance tests. Compliant implementations may use the TM in
literature, and apply the JabberPowered TM and logo. JSF certifies
compliance and enforces TMs.
3) Secure unencumbered use of IP from Jinc as needed. The IETF effort will
require IP issues to be resolved so I think most of this will naturally fall
out from the IETF process.

Schedule

I think its important that we set some milestones in order to make sure
things proceed on some reasonable timeline. Here we want to be reasonable
but not pushovers.

1) Jan 2003 - Jinc commits to TM decision. If they don't commit, the
community must move forward by abandoning Jabber and selecting a new TM. The
name can't be a roadblock to progress. Is this a reasonable amount of time
for Jinc to make a decision?
2) ?? - coordinate compliance tests and JabberPowered "certification" to be
ready when the IETF work completes. As I understand, its on a pretty fast
track so it should be sooner rather than later.

Thoughts? I've got my fire suit ready, flame on!

-iain




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