Minutes of the mozdev Admin Meeting of Friday 5th December 2003

Sunday December 7th, 2003

Brian King sent us a link to the minutes of the mozdev admin meeting of Friday 5th December 2003. Issues discussed include meeting logs and notes, meeting times, incorporation of mozdev as a non-profit organisation, donations, the use of 'Zilla' in project names, the site redesign, upgrading Bugzilla and email addresses on the site.

#1 you cant be serious

by sime

Sunday December 7th, 2003 10:40 PM

Use of 'Zilla' in project names ------------------------------- The owner of the 'Godzilla' name has been making some noise recently concerning the use of 'zilla' in web sites / software, though not directly to mozdev. At this point we decided it would be prudent to ban new projects with zilla in the name, encouraging an alternative. Note that this will *not* effect current projects.

I think there needs to be more noise about this. ZILLA refers to moZILLA, simple. Mozilla foundation havent made a sound about it, It shouldnt affect software projects at all.

#2 Re: you cant be serious

by briank

Monday December 8th, 2003 12:52 AM have had to deal with this issue, and as far as I am aware have got special permission for use in the name. See :

#5 On what grounds does he complain?

by johann_p

Monday December 8th, 2003 9:08 AM

This is just idiotic - I think the danger of somebody confusing a software program with a trash monster is pretty low, and there IS a difference in the names. To ban projects with a name that ends in -zilla is an overreacted and completely unfounded IMO.

#6 Re: On what grounds does he complain?

by mlefevre

Monday December 8th, 2003 3:48 PM

It doesn't matter if there's no danger of someone confusing the name in your opinion, my opinion, or in the objective. What matters is whether someone can pay for a court case which decides that the name isn't confusing.

Are you volunteering to pay the legal fees to defend possible legal action (in the USA)? If not, then you're not in much of a position to tell someone else that they should.

There was legal action threatened before, and AOL's expensive laywers (AOL being the owners of the Mozilla name at that point) made a deal with Toho's expensive lawyers. I don't know the details, but apparently the agreement was along the lines of Toho saying it was ok to keep using the Mozilla name, but not to do anythingelse-zilla. So, the Mozilla name is safe, and there weren't millions of dollars of legal costs.

If you think the legal system in the USA is flawed, you could probably find a lot of people who would agree, but...

#7 So ...

by johann_p

Monday December 8th, 2003 3:54 PM

you think a ridiculous complain like this would be accepted before court in the US? That is really a strange system ...

#8 Re: So ...

by mlefevre

Monday December 8th, 2003 4:01 PM

I'm no legal expert, but from what I've read, in civil cases just about anything can get before a court. Even if it does get thrown out pretty quickly, you still end up with a legal bill, and (although it depends on the state and the court and stuff) the system often isn't "loser pays", so you can win the case and still lose a load of money.

#9 Justice ...

by johann_p

Monday December 8th, 2003 11:28 PM

wow, I thought that at least the loser will pay ... if this is not the case, lawsuits can used to blackmail anyone with not enough money - that can hardly be called "justice".

#10 Re: Justice ...

by FrodoB

Tuesday December 9th, 2003 7:53 AM

Welcome to the wonderful world of corporate legality.

#11 Who infringes whos rights?

by Hloupy_Honza

Wednesday December 10th, 2003 1:05 AM

Toho may be uninterested in the existence of zilla, an edible desert plant of Egypt, nor calabazilla, an inedible, unpleasantly smelling wine of southwestern North America, but in Jack London's ``The White Man's Way'', as you can verify at, ``Zilla was his wife, and no more bitter-tongued, implacable old squaw dwelt on the Yukon.'' That old dragon character being definitely elder than Toho's godlike dragon Godzilla, isn't it Toho, who infringes Jack London's copyright?


by MvD

Monday December 8th, 2003 2:58 AM

Isn't the plan to convert all existing products to Mozilla XXXX (Browser/mail etc). I mean Mozilla still uses the zilla term doesn't it? Or are we having a change in plans?

#4 Re: MoZILLA?

by sime

Monday December 8th, 2003 5:05 AM

Mozilla is the 'company name', so it will always be around. There will be a few name changes when FB goes 1.0