[THIN] NEWS: Lindows forced to change their name to Linspire

  • From: "Jim Kenzig http://thin.net" <jimkenz@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: thin@xxxxxxxxxxxxx, windows2000@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 14 Apr 2004 22:13:09 -0400

It's catchy. I guess it could stick.

Michael's Minute: Linspire

In the US, we have the rule of "double jeopardy," which says you can't 
be tried for the same offense multiple times. This is because putting 
defendants through multiple identical trials is patently unfair - 
regardless of the outcome. This is exactly what Microsoft is doing. They 
sued us over the trademark in the U.S., where both companies reside, and 
we have repeatedly prevailed. After about two years, they began suing us 
in multiple foreign countries over the exact same issue, while delaying 
the U.S. action. At about sextuple jeopardy, we had no choice but to 
select a different product name internationally. (I had to look up 
'sextuple' - it's not a word that I use every day, and it means 6 
times.) The simple truth is that the sheer number of lawsuits launched 
by the richest company in the world is tough for any company to 
withstand. In addition to our victories in the United States, last week 
we won our case in France when the Court in Paris rejected Microsoft's 
demand for a preliminary injunction, but we must still change our name - 
what a shame. This is not how the legal system is supposed to work.

Today we're announcing our new name - Linspire. The new name 
incorporates the notched L we are known for, 'Lin' from Linux and 
'spire' which means pinnacle. More important than what people think of 
the new name initially, is what they come to think of it over time. Few 
people who hear "Motorola" think of radios for motor cars, but that's 
the heritage of their name. Motorola's products and services now convey 
much different meaning to consumers. Lindows will face the same 
challenge with our new name. Most computer users have never experienced 
Lindows, so we have a chance to make that all-important first 
impression. We will work hard to make sure Linspire comes to stand for 
affordability and choice as well as ease of use.

Now you probably have a lot of questions about the new name. Let me try 
to answer them below:

Q: Why are you changing the name everywhere instead of just the affected 
A: Two reasons. First Microsoft is asking courts to levy massive fines 
just because users in certain foreign countries can access our website. 
We can't afford to lose a battle on this topic. Second, we have 
partnerships with hard disk, motherboard, laptop and desktop companies 
that want to ship our products to their worldwide market. If they are 
restricted to certain countries, then it impedes their business and 
therefore ours.

Q: Where will the Linspire name be used?
A: Our website name will change to Linspire. If someone types 
"lindows.com" they'll automatically be taken to Linspire.com. We'll 
migrate the thousands of web pages to the new website. It's a big and 
costly job, but we'll do our best to minimize the impact to you. We'll 
keep the great support area at support.linspire.com as well as the most 
active forums in the industry!

Q: What does the new logo look like?
A: Scroll to the bottom of the page to see it.

Q: What happens to the Lindows.com website?
A: Most of the content will move to Linspire. Corporate information will 
still be available at a new site, www.lindowsinc.com.

Q: Will the LindowsOS software change?
A: The functionality of the product will not change, but there will be 
name changes throughout the product. A new version is now available with 
the new name for you to download and install.

Q: Will the Lindows name still be used?
A: Yes, primarily in the US and as our corporate name. Since many people 
know our company as Lindows, and there are hundreds of stores with our 
products on their shelves, we will keep the name Lindows as our 
corporate identity, and the product may be merchandised under that name 
in the US. For some users the name lindows will have more value than ever.

Q: Is there any promotion related to the new name?
A: We'd like to take out full-page ads in the Wall Street Journal, PC 
World and eWeek, but our budget doesn't allow for that. We have 
something even better planned though. For the next few days, we have a 
special offer where you can receive a copy of Linspire, 
hot-off-the-presses for free. That's right, zero dollars. But there's a 
catch - actually two. First, you must use a special coupon code. Simply 
click on $49.95 Linspire 4.5 OS from the order page. Then click on the 
'Apply Coupon' button and enter the coupon code. Second, the download 
will only be available from our BitTorrent P2P system so our servers 
don't melt. Don't worry if you've never tried BitTorrent. It runs on 
Microsoft Windows, Macintosh and Linux computers and is easy to get 
started. We'll give you step by step instructions. And no, it's not an 
oversight that I haven't provided the actual coupon code. You'll have to 
guess what the one-word code is.

Q: Does this mean the end of the lawsuits?
A: We're hoping that this puts a halt on the international lawsuits. A 
Microsoft spokesperson has publicly stated that "We're only asking that 
Lindows change their name" which is what we have done. However, the US 
lawsuit is well underway and we look forward to having our day in court.

Q: What is the update on the US case?
A: Microsoft has appealed to the 9th Circuit. We are continuing to ask 
for a prompt trial where the evidence can be heard by a jury. It's 
unclear whether the Court of  Appeals will grant Microsoft a hearing or 
send it back to the original Judge who can schedule a trial date.

Q: Will my existing Lindows products still work?
A: Absolutely, and we'll stand behind any products you have purchased in 
the past.

Q: Do I need to upgrade to Linspire right away?
A: No, that is not necessary. Your copy of Lindows will still work and 
interface with CNR, the Internet and everything else, you do not need to 
upgrade. You will always be able to find the latest version of the 
operating system in your my.linspire account, so you can upgrade 
whenever you would like.

Q: Where will I find my downloads and account information?
A: CD downloads, account information, and all the other resources that 
you are used to having in your my.lindows account can now be found at 

Q: I am an OEM or Reseller, and I ship Lindows computers or software, 
what should I do?
A: You may continue shipping your existing inventory. For any new 
products, you will want to use the new Linspire-branded product line. 
Within the next week or two, there will be Linspire-branded products for 
our entire line-up, including Linspire, Linspire OEM Edition, Linspire 
Laptop Edition, Linspire Developer Edition and a Spanish-language Linspire.

What do you think of the new name and logo? Are there any questions you 
have that I have not answered here? Sound off in the Linspire forums.

-- Michael

Please visit support.linspire.com to answers questions you may have 
about LindowsOS or Lindows.com.

Bringing Choice to Your Computer!

About Lindows, Inc.
Lindows, Inc., is a leading developer and vendor of affordable 
Linux-based operating systems, applications software and computer 
services, designed specifically for desktop and laptop computers in 
homes, schools and businesses.  At the cornerstone of Lindows, Inc. is 
the Linspire operating system.  Linspire uses our unique CNR technology 
that allows the installation, updating and management of thousands of 
software programs with just one click.  The Linspire Laptop Edition is 
specifically tailored for the power management and wireless needs of 
mobile computer users.  The Linspire operating system is also offered in 
Spanish (www.linspire.com/espanol) and Japanese (www.linspire/edge). 
Those who are interested in becoming authorized resellers of Linspire 
should visit www.linspire.com/reseller, or www.linspire.com/builder if 
interested in selling computers pre-loaded with Linspire. Corporate 
information about Lindows, Inc. is available at www.lindowsinc.com.

Linspire is a trademark of Lindows, Inc., a US Corporation. Copyright © 
2004 Lindows, Inc. All rights reserved. Linspire and Lindows, Inc. are 
not endorsed by or affiliated with Microsoft Corporation in any way.

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