How many openSUSE fans want a name change? The answer is 42…and it’s not enough

openSUSE fans can rest easy that their lovingly curated swag remains relevant, after the community behind the Linux distribution voted against a proposal to change the project’s name.

Community leaders had turned to the people – or at least interested members of the openSUSE community – following debate on whether the project should reconstitute itself as a new legal entity, such as a community.

This had unsurprisingly led to discussion over the openSUSE name and trademarks – SUSE and the SUSE logo are trademarks of SUSE LLC, the commercial company that champions the project and its open source operating system.

So, a straightforward proposal was put to the community: Do we change the project name?

An apparently overwhelming 225 voted no, while 42 voted yes.

There were 491 people eligible to vote. Some community members suggested that the apparent turnout was low because no alternative name was suggested. Although – as experience in the UK shows – sometimes people are prepared to vote heavily for a leap into the unknown.

You can recap the arguments here, but the key issues were a potential loss of brand recognition, a pile of work required to rename domains, et, and a “tremendous amount of communication (and money)… to establish the new brand name.”

And of course, that “Changing the project name will make current openSUSE swag (T-shirts, mugs, stickers, etc) obsolete.”