The Apache OpenOffice project says it is now tentatively targeting a first-quarter 2012 time frame for the next release of the software, which will be version 3.4.
In the meantime, the Apache Software Foundation emphasized that participants in the project must abide by its policies for using its trademarks so that they are not used "in confusing ways."
Presumably in response to Team OpenOffice.org's funding plea from October, the group also wrote that "we wish to make it clear that no third party has been given approval to solicit donations of any kind on behalf of the Apache Software Foundation or any of its projects, including OpenOffice.org."
'White Label Office 3.3.1'
Making all this even more interesting--and, it must be said, confusing--is that Germany-based Team OpenOffice.org on Wednesday published a release candidate based on OpenOffice.org 3.3.0 that it has called "White Label Office 3.3.1."
Why the mysterious name? "Because the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) holds the trademark rights of the brand 'OpenOffice.org'," the German developers explained. "Team OpenOffice.org and the ASF could not reach an agreement for a shared usage. By publishing White Label Office 3.3.1, Team OpenOffice.org is taking the first step towards a maintenance release for OpenOffice.org 3.3.0."
Is that the smell of yet another fork in the works? Time will tell. In the meantime, I'm sticking with LibreOffice.