The fun never stops. One blogger seems to grok the gist of the trademark situation. Even Darryl Taft goes for Maximum Noise, comparing RHT to MSFT in its tactics.
As the blogger above states
1- it is perfectly kosher, and in fact recommended, to defend your trademarks
2- there are ways to go about it.
As webbink, the RHT legal counsel, said, apparently someone in his org decided to "get tough" and send innapropriate letters on his own accord. Do not assume malice where incompetence will do.
One of the positive things to come out of this "debate" is an increasing awareness of the issues of trademark. As Sacha Labourey points out in the Darryl interview, people get confused with the sense of "community". Because we share source code people assume we share everything. The word "share" is close to my four year old twins understanding: share means what is mine is mine and what is yours is mine too.
I remember arguing vividly with my first lawyer, Larry Rosen, about the proprietary trademark as a basis for the business to grow. Larry was from the legacy of "non-profit" open source and had a hard time conceiving of a "for-profit" entity around OSS with trademarks as founding property. Being a professional, Larry of course went ahead and filed the trademarks on our behalf but it seemed to be counter intuitive to him at first. He argued at length that I didn't need to register it since I was already using it on the JBoss.org website to do my consulting business.
Out of this discussion came a statement I would repeat inside JBoss, namely that Open Source was just that: Open SOURCE, not open brand, not open business, not open ar*es.
In any case, it seems the situation is as usual more noise than anything and this too shall pass with a greater understanding of the issues at hand.