ANSI - American National Standards Institute
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ANSI Committees Approve Guideline Documents on Software, Embedded Trademarks

Text available for public viewing in ANSI Online Library

New York, Jan 30, 2009

The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Patent Group and Intellectual Property Rights Policy Committee have approved two guideline documents on software in standards and embedded trademarks. The documents are now available for public viewing in ANSI’s online library.

ANSI Guidelines on Software in Standards details the inclusion of normative software in American National Standards (ANS) when the software is intended to be extracted for use in implementations of the standard.

According to the document, a standard should provide a description of features from which competing and interoperable implementations can be developed; it should not serve as an endorsement for a particular solution or mandate the use of a specific and proprietary copyrighted software/source code. Overall, the guidelines conclude that a standard that requires the use of particular software should be an exceptional situation.

ANSI Guidelines on Embedded Trademark provides guidance on trademarks, service marks, and certification marks as forms of intellectual property.

The guidelines posit the general rule that a standard should not give the appearance of endorsing any particular products, services or companies. Proper names, trademarks, service marks or certification marks of specific companies, products or services should not be included in the text of a standard or in an appendix if it appears that they might cause this effect. According to the guidelines, certain exceptions can also apply, including non-endorsement usage and fair-use references to third-party marks.

For more information, visit ANSI’s online library.

 Homeland Defense and Security Standardization Collaborative