Gentoo Foundation artwork approval process

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The artwork approval process is used to formally approve commercial use of the Gentoo logo on merchandise, as well as give advise to users or organizations who whish to use the Gentoo logo in line with the Gentoo Name and Logo Usage Guidelines.


The Gentoo Foundation owns the Gentoo logo as a trademarked component, and allows the use of this logo in a certain number of situations. This usage is documented in the Gentoo Name and Logo Usage Guidelines and should be the main reference for any question regarding the use of the Gentoo logo.

Part of this guideline document (license) is that the Gentoo logo can be used on merchandise (or outside the given license if approved by the Gentoo Foundation, Inc.) but only after formal approval of the artwork. This is to ensure that the logo is used in a proper fashion and not distorted (such as by changing the aspect ratio).

Right now, this approval process is ad-hoc, by scheduling the request for approval on the monthly trustee meeting of the Gentoo Foundation. On the AGM meeting, August 2016, and reconfirmed on the trustee meeting of September 2016, the trustees decided that this process should be better formalized.

This page documents the process to use in approving artwork for use in the situations mentioned in the Gentoo Name and Logo Usage Guidelines.


The formalization process has two important aspects:

  1. The approval flow through bugzilla
  2. The approval votes

Bugzilla approval flow

Formal approval is done in Gentoo's bugzilla. Requests for approval of artwork will be registered in bugzilla, as well as the artwork itself (as attachment). It is registered with

  • the Product being set to Gentoo Foundation
  • the Component being set to Artwork approval (not yet active in bugzilla)
  • the Assignee being set to, accessible by the members (see next section)

The address is to be added to the Cc list.

Approval or discussion to change the artwork is done through bugzilla. If final approval for the use is given (see next section) the bug is marked as RESOLVED:FIXED, unless the bug itself was more broad than just the approval of the artwork. In the latter case, the bug is re-assigned to the trustees for further handling.

At all times should the approval be commented so that the requestee is informed about this decision.

Approval votes

To ensure that the approval is sufficiently supported, at least a majority of the Artwork project members have to approve. Additionally, at least one approval must be from a Gentoo Foundation trustee (who may or may not be part of the Artwork project).

If the necessary quota cannot be reached in due time (within a month), the bug is handled by the Gentoo Foundation trustees on their monthly meeting (after the request has been undecided for a month).

Questions and answers

Why does at least one approval have to be from a trustee

The process must ensure that the logo usage is within the applicability of the published guidelines. This can be accomplished in two ways:

  1. Create a subproject or project with formal membership approval (members of the approval team), which differs from the Gentoo Project's existing approach for handling projects
  2. Ensure that the trustees stay informed of decisions (Cc in bugs) and are represented (vote requirement from a single trustee)

Having a trustee be involved also ensures that artwork approval requests are taken up during the trustee meeting if they are not handled in due time. And in the mean time, the artistic experience and interpretations are leveraged from many people (well, at least those of the Artwork project).

Why is the decision not just kept on the trustee meeting

The documented process should speed up the approval requests. Until now, the decisions were made on the trustee meetings, but often decisions were also postponed because additional information was needed... which meant that the requestee (who often could give additional information in less than a day) had to wait until the next trustee meeting.

Why stick to the Artwork project

As there is already an Artwork project, it makes little sense to make a separate project. Also, given the current workload (both on the existing Artwork project work and the approval of logo usage by the Gentoo Foundation) creating a subproject of the Artwork project seems more like unnecessary overhead.