Naming of OpenBeOS and Haiku

If you were around the community when Be Inc went under, and Palm sent a cease and desist order to OpenBeOS over the name of the project, you’d understand why the name OpenBeOS needs to be kept at a distance from the Haiku project.

As far as Haiku protecting it’s name, one big issue is efficiency of the dev team. The last thing the Haiku core team needs right now is a separate distribution using it’s name. Think about all the bugs and such that should be separate issues from Haiku itself that would be presented to the Haiku team in the case of a related project sharing trademarked Haiku badges. The team already has it’s hands full with creating Haiku. They don’t need an increased workload supporting other distributions.

The name is indeed an important part. There is a very important reason why Haiku is no longer called OBOS, as I’ve stated twice now. Please consider this, and not use OBOS.

How long have you been around Haiku and BeOS? You don’t seem to know and understand why Haiku came to be called Haiku. It was originally called OpenBeOS/OBOS. BeOS is proprietary intellectual property of a private holding company. OpenBeOS had to change it’s name due to this. It is now called Haiku. Using the name OpenBeOS, especially as the name of a distribution of Haiku opens up the door for litigation. Due to a distribution being based on Haiku, this opens the door to Haiku being named as a defendant in a lawsuit over the name. So please, do yourself and the entire Haiku community at large a huge favor and not use the name OpenBeOS/OBOS.

I was interested in your project until you said you would rename it OBOS. I, and others, have a very good reason to not support any project related to Haiku that is called OBOS/OpenBeOS.

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Interesting… I think this is a feature of English culture. In movies (it is how I know it) they always asking one another “what is your name?” — they answering with meaningless ‘John’ or ‘Will’, and they think that they know each other now!
Of course the name is important, but if it gives some meaning, not only bambal-jambal of sounds, which some times also useful thing…

Unfortunately there is another sad side effect of the our culture. Litigation over use of registered intellectual property. OpenBeOS already faced this once. Why repeat it?

I welcome this packageless distribution based on Haiku. I don’t support naming it OpenBeOS, OBOS or the like.

There is absolutely no need to use a name that could bring a lawsuit to the Haiku project. Haiku is called Haiku and not OpenBeOS for the sole reason that BeOS is a registered trademark. The owners of the name BeOS have already stated that the name OpenBeOS infringes on their trademark. The Haiku community dealt with this once already 15 years ago. Why does it keep getting revisited? Please stop.

Let’s stop discussing the new / old name.
This is definitely not the most important thing now :slight_smile:


I sincerely would rather you put effort into this packageless distribution and not have to deal with lawyers over a poor choice in names. That’s the only reason I’ve discussed it this far. This is why names are important. As good as OpenBeOS sounds, and despite “OpenBeOS” not being a registered trademark itself, it infringes on the registered trademark of “BeOS.” This makes it a poor choice. The reason OpenBeOS was never registered is due to the fact that it infringes on BeOS.

This is very interesting, do you have any pictures of this cease and desist order sent by Palm? When exactly was it sent? Be Incorporated was defunct as of the end of 2001, when OpenBeOS had hardly begun, the survey (ultimately ignored) on names for OpenBeOS is from 2002, the shell of Be Inc. ceased to exist in 2003 (after paying shareholders proceeds from the lawsuit) and the announcement that OpenBeOS was now called “Haiku” came in 2004.

OpenBeOS had no formal existence, there wasn’t yet anything like Haiku Inc. So who was the cease and desist order addressed to? Do you know why nobody else ever mentioned this? I think it certainly should have prompted a faster process than was observed.

:thinking: Apparently PulkoMandy is nobody?

There are many in the community who were around at the time this happened. You apparently were not. I remember seeing a picture of the order as was passed around the BeShare servers at the time. I personally did not preserve any proof. Perhaps someone else did. The fact that OpenBeOS is now called Haiku should be proof enough. The community in general was happy with the original name.

As far as who the order was addressed to, the only code for OpenBeOS that was completed back then was OpenTracker and OpenBFS. Dig through the Tracker and Deskbar code. You’ll likely find the names of a few people who were active back then and received the order.

Certainly I wasn’t “in the community” of people who communicate legal threats by quietly sharing them on BeShare and never mentioning them anywhere outside that, then suddenly remember about them over a decade later but having no proof they existed at all.

The “community in general” suggested hundreds of new names for OpenBeOS back in Spring 2002, no specific cause or urgency was mentioned for a name change. A few made it to a general poll some months later. Michael Phipps announced a “decision” had been made by December… and then nothing until 2004 when he announced that he’d decided to call it Haiku.

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According to Wikipedia: " In September 2005, ACCESS acquired PalmSource, the owner of the Palm OS and BeOS. The company has used these assets and expertise to create the Access Linux Platform, an open-source Linux-based platform for smartphones and other mobile devices, with some proprietary parts including the user interface and some middleware "

So if you named a fork OpenBeOS you would likely get some legal letters from Access Co, asking why you are infringing upon their intelectual property rights.

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From what I remember, the cease and desist order was indeed listed as the reason for deciding to change the name. I don’t know for certain what exactly was posted outside of Tycom Systems BeShare server, as that was where I lurked and where pretty much all the active devs in the community communicated as well. I also remember that Haiku was the leading name in all the polls that I saw. This was generally well known before WalterCon 1, where the official unveiling of the new name occurred. I can’t speak for your exact experience in the community at the time. I do remember that any and all news in the community was for the most part discussed in the BeShare chats before anywhere else. This was my reasoning for getting my news there.

Yes there were 100s of suggested names. Most of which didn’t exactly portray the image that the project wanted to known for. Yes, it was Michael Phipps who announced the name at WalterCon. No, there wasn’t a secret coup that chose the name as you suggest. Haiku was by far the most popular name in any discussion or poll that I witnessed before the announcement. It just wasn’t made official until WalterCon. This was due to securing a NPC with the name, domain names, trademark process, etc. Nothing official was announced until this process was completed to deter name squatters from hijacking the new name before it was secured. Even so, this didn’t prevent from being squatted on.

It seems to me that perhaps you may have suggested a name that wasn’t chosen and have bad feelings due to this. If this is the case, I’m not sure what to tell you.

I’ll just toss this log on the fire:

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Exactly. OpenBeOS was never registered, as it infringes on this company’s trademarks.

Like I said, I’m not presenting any new info that was not well known at the time. It seems to me we are still having to deal with cases of butthurt, even 15 years after the fact. OpenBeOS as a name is dead. Let it RIP.

I have to agree. It’s nice seeing history, though.

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Agreed. I love the history of the project. I also wish to point out that Haiku has a good reason to distance itself from any related project that uses the name OpenBeOS or OBOS. This is to prevent fallout from a project using such a name blowing back in Haiku’s face. OpenBeOS infringes on a trademark. We’ve already been warned once. I don’t expect a second warning to be so cordial.

You’ve said you “remember seeing a picture of the [Cease and Desist] order” but instead we see that the impetus was just non-specific concern that “Using a name that includes that moniker is asking for trouble down the road” and not any such cease and desist at all.

You’ve also now claimed you saw Haiku was “the leading name in all the polls” when in fact the name choosing poll used a secret ballot and so voters didn’t know what got most votes after the poll closed. They even tried asking, Phipps explained that they’d just have to wait. And they certainly did.

Worst of all so far you’ve now decided was somehow “squatted” even though it was registered before there was such even the “help choose a name” survey question linked above.

That is not the case. In contrast it seems to me that you’ve just decided to double down after being called out for saying something you had no idea about, and so I suggest the best way out of that is usually to say “Yeah, I made all that up. Sorry”.

Sorry, but I didn’t. Let’s just chalk it up to two differing, individual perspectives. As far as the name being squatted, the fact remains that it is. The name remains unused to this very day, but owned by a domain squatter. You can’t just change this fact to suit your argument.

There was no secret vote. The fact of the matter is that the popular vote in the polls was Haiku. The refusal to make an official announcement until WalterCon was for several reasons. One was to secure the NPC name, as I have mentioned. The other was to make the public announcement at the first WalterCon. If you were at WalterCon, you would know this, because it was explained there. I was there, as well as others who are still in the community. Besides being explained there, it was explained ad infinitum in the BeShare chats. Cheers.

I’m not making this up. Read the following. My claim is backed up and documented. The cease and desist order was real, even if I can’t produce a copy of it.

You’ve made the claim that I’m making things up. Evidence has been provided that I’m not. You also claim there was a secret coup that hijacked the project and renamed it without public consent. Care to provide some evidence on this? You’re the one doubling down. Shall we continue? Or will you let it rest already?

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Please don’t.

Probably not. Look at the posting records of the participants. You just keep feeding it…

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