Meta Stack Exchange is where users like you discuss bugs, features, and support issues that affect the software powering all 158 Stack Exchange communities.

What is meta?
Here's how it works:
  1. Any Stack Exchange user can ask a question
  2. The community provides support, votes on ideas, and reports bugs
  3. Your voice helps shape the way Stack Exchange operates

While trolling Stack Overflow, I found a particular user who is using the Super User logo as their gravatar image. Now, I'm no legal expert, but this seems to be to be a violation of the Trademark Guidance, since that logo could potentially be used on any other Internet location that uses Gravatar where that user has used the same email address.

Edit: The issue I see is that this user might be considered an employee or representative of Stack Exchange in general or Super User in particular on these sites.

What can we do when we see such violations?

share|improve this question
"Trolling" SO or "trawling"? – Bart Jun 14 '12 at 18:21
We could thank them for the community evangelism... – Kevin Vermeer Jun 14 '12 at 18:22
Take your pick ;) – saluce Jun 14 '12 at 18:22
@Kevin The problem, as I see it, is that they could be considered employees or in other ways endorsed by Stack Exchange if that logo is being used on other sites. – saluce Jun 14 '12 at 18:23
I guess you could custom-mod-flag one of his posts. If you feel the need to report it, the best thing to do would probably be to e-mail the community team. – jadarnel27 Jun 14 '12 at 18:26
Meh. Pictures are pictures. I think there is a need to act only if that user does something clearly harmful (ie. actually poses as a Super User employee, or insinuates he is one). Based on my past experience with the SO/SE team, their judgement may be a similar one – Pëkka Jun 14 '12 at 18:26
I'm no lawyer either, but I doubt the fact that the logo could potentially be used on any other internet location that uses Gravatar where that user has used the same email address (bolding mine) is really an issue. – Dennis Jun 14 '12 at 18:26
@Dennis But, the logo is protected by trademarks and the user does not (probably) have specific permission to use the logo as his/her avatar on any website. – saluce Jun 14 '12 at 18:28
@saluce: But he's using the avatar here. If you discover that he uses it on another website, that would be entirely different. – Dennis Jun 14 '12 at 18:28
@Dennis He or she's on – saluce Jun 14 '12 at 18:29
@saluce: Unless he uses the same email address here and on another website, that's still not an issue imho. – Dennis Jun 14 '12 at 18:30
The big if here is whether or not the user is using it elsewhere. Since we cannot easily determine this, there isn't anything to worry about really. Note that it's easy enough to use unique per-site email addresses for many techies, so it's not a given this user is using the logo elsewhere. – Martijn Pieters Jun 14 '12 at 18:51
I think you should change your gravatar. It appears like you are attempting to impersonate Pen Jillette – Won't Jun 14 '12 at 19:40

You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .