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IBM Trademark Policy

Use of IBM logos IBM trademarks include the famous IBM eight-bar logo and other designs and logos owned and used by IBM, as well as IBM product and service names. IBM takes great care in the development and protection of its trademarks and reserves all rights of ownership of its trademarks. IBM carefully limits the use of its logos. No other company may use IBM logos unless it has the express written permission of IBM, or is licensed by IBM to do so. To obtain permission to use any IBM logo, contact your IBM representative or the IBM Call Center at 1-800-IBM4YOU (1-800-426-4968) and ask for Corporate Branding. Fair use of IBM trademarks "Fair use" of IBM trademarks, that is, use by a third party without express permission or license, is limited to text-only references to IBM trademarks such as product and service names, and excludes IBM logos. In such references, you must be truthful, must not disparage IBM, and must not mislead the public. You must be clear and accurate as to the nature of the relationship between IBM and your company, its products, and its services. Following are two common types of fair use:

  1. When you are specifically referring to IBM products. For example... Product X is a middleware platform.
  2. When you are indicating that an IBM product is compatible with another product. For Examples: a) XYZ is compatible with IBM ABC software products. Please note that the emphasis should be on your product name and any accompanying packaging produced by your company. Labeling should place emphasis on your product name so that it is perceived as an application, developed with, compatible with, or running on an IBM product.

General rules for proper reference to IBM product names After obtaining express written permission to use an IBM trademark or logo, the following are general rules for proper usage of IBM product names

  1. The first use of each IBM product name mentioned in communications must be identified in a footnote or attribution. The attribution must be located either on the page/screen where the IBM trademark is used, or in the legal section of the communication or site in which it is referenced. Please note that laws concerning use of trademarks or product names vary by country. Always consult a local attorney for additional guidance. Example: IBM, MVS and WebSphere are trademarks of International Business Machines Corporation, registered in many jurisdictions worldwide.
  2. In the United States, the first reference in text to all IBM product names should be preceded by IBM and followed by the proper trademark symbol. The proper symbol for registered product names is ®. The proper symbol for product names which are the subject of pending applications or are used in accordance with common law trademark principles is ™. Examples: IBM® WebSphere® is the leading software platform for e-business on demand™. The IBM® MVS™ operating system ... Rules for marking product names differ by country. You may need to seek guidance from a trademark professional.
  3. A product name should be used as an adjective qualifying a noun that is a generic description of the product or service. The product name should also be used in a singular form. Example: The WebSphere software family includes over 150 products ...
  4. Do not change the form or representation of the product name, including capitalization or punctuation. Example: WebSphere®, DB2®, Lotus®, Tivoli®

Use of "IBM" as a company name "IBM", the 3 letters in text, is both a trademark of International Business Machines Corporation, and an abbreviation of its company name. When "IBM" is used to identify the company International Business Machines Corporation, it is called a trade name. Trade name usage typically applies when referring to a company as opposed to a particular product. It is permissible to use IBM as a possessive if you are referring to IBM the company. In that case the name does not identify goods or services (which are legally the domain of trademarks). Incorrect use of IBM trademarks Do not omit a footnote/attribution for IBM trademarks. Do not alter the approved IBM trademark. Do not create any new logo for IBM or IBM product names. Do not incorporate any IBM product names into your company's product names. Do not incorporate any IBM product names into the root domain of any Web site owned by your company. Do not misspell or use lower case letters when using the name IBM in text. Do not use the IBM taglines. Do not connect your company name with IBM product names. Do not use the IBM trademark name for a product or service as a noun, or in the plural form. Do not misspell or incorrectly capitalize IBM trademarks. Always include the letters IBM before the trademarked IBM name on the first usage.

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