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I started writing an application for Windows Phone marketplace, at the time only making sure that the name I gave it wasn't being used by any other app on the marketplace.

I just found out that the same name is being used by a, seemingly popular, SourceForge project. Is this a problem?

I haven't released my app yet so I could rename it, but I really like the name and would prefer not to unless it is an issue.

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migrated from stackoverflow.com Jan 3 '11 at 6:56

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2 Answers

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I think that you'd probably be safest finding a new name, though if your app and the sourceforge one are sufficiently different that no connection is implied, then I think it'd be alright. Unless the Sourceforge app is trademarked or something like that. In that case you'd definitely want to rename your app.

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They both do exactly the same thing :-), the Sourceforge app targets the desktop while mine targets the phone. You made me consider a very important factor though, it is almost guaranteed that if my app is successful I will create a desktop version also. So I better rename it, time to dig out the old thesaurus! –  Praetorian Jan 3 '11 at 15:38
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I'd find a new name just out of respect for the other developers. Otherwise you're robbing yourself and them of the individuality and unique identity a name is supposed to provide. I wouldn't want to be on the receiving end of an apparent name theft and I wouldn't want to cheapen the identity of my product by committing such an act.

Talking to the other developers about it is always an option though. Be open and honest with them about your intention. See what will work for them: they may be willing to change, or they may not be. They may even be planning to change. You may be able to help them work out a new name which works better for them. Make sure they understand and accept that you intend to use the replaced name for your own product, in the spirit of honesty, or they may feel conned when you swoop in and take their old name.

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