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Tux Cake

While waiting to be served at a newsagents today I noticed The Australian Women's Weekly Party Animals: Birthday Cakes for Kids sitting there on the counter. Just about every child growing up in Australia in the last 40 years has had at least 1 cake from one of the many editions of the original The Australian Women's Weekly Kid's Birthday Cakes (formerly Children's Birthday Cakes?).

Enough reminiscing, the reason why Party Animals caught my attention was the front cover.

Australian Women's Weekly Party Animals: Birthday Cakes for Kids Cookbook front page featuring Tux (the Linux mascot

Source: ACP
That penguin looks very familiar to me.

For those of you unfamiliar with Tux - the Linux mascot, here s/he is Tux - the Linux mascot, Created by Larry Ewing using The GIMP

This is not the first time the Linux mascot has been ripped off by a company in Australia looking for a quick buck. Last year the NSW Lotteries used Tux in their Pengwins instant lottery tickets which they later licensed to the SA Lotteries.

ACP should respect the license of the Tux image and acknowledge Larry and the Gimp, and even consider publishing the recipe under a Creative Commons License. ACP's parent company PBL Media is the other half of Microsoft's Australian online joint venture - ninemsn. I am sure MS wouldn't be too happy if someone created a clippy toilet brush without licensing their design.

I quite like the idea of a Tux cake. I can think of several occasions where it would be appropriate to prepare such a creation. As Ia am not that gifted in the kitchen any instructions on how to do so would be a great help to me (and I am sure others). After thinking about it for a minute or so I decided to I pony up the cash (12.95AUD) to buy a copy of the cookbook.

There were enough other recipes which looked like suitable for my son in the coming years to make it a worthwhile purchase. Avoid the other penguin recipe on page 86 is pretty lame.

The cookbook is available from amazon.co.uk (yes that is a referral code in the link) or if you are in Australia direct from ACP (the publisher).

I will be emailing ACP and Larry links to this post and will post any replies I get from them.

While doing some googling to see if any one else has blogged on this topic, I found a post from Bruce Everett about the book.

Update I have received something back from ACP.


cw wrote:

Bruce somehow doesn't point out, but does quote, that the license Larry gives says "if someone asks". I'm sure if you called the mag and asked, they'd tell you, and if they didn't, then that would be a blatant license violation. Bruce also says that ACP is listing copyright on this cake? I wonder if it's the design or just the recipe, they certainly hold copyright to the recipe, the shape the cake ends up is not relevant.

Added Thu, 2007-08-02 02:00


lucychili wrote:

its fantastic timing. people can celebrate software freedom day with penguin cake! yay to WW for including a tux. bring out your penguin waffle makers and fish shaped jellies!

Added Thu, 2007-08-02 02:10

If someone asks

Dave wrote:
I reread Larry's page and as cw pointed out it does state, "if someone asks". I emailed ACP (the publisher) late last night, about it and I am awaiting a response. As for the copyright notice in the book, it simply states:
This publication is copyright. No part of it may be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written permission of the publishers.
Reads to me like they are claiming it all for themselves. I would still like the recipe released under a CC license.
Added Thu, 2007-08-02 08:39

Comment from the publisher

Dave wrote:
Earlier today I received the following in an email from the publisher. Christine Whiston from ACP said:
Thankyou for your email. As far as we can tell, ACP’s Penguin Prince cake was designed in 2000 or 2001 by one of our home economists. However, we have not been able to identify exactly who this was as all of the possible designers left ACP some time ago. That being the case, we don’t know much more about how the design came about. Nevertheless, we are more than happy to acknowledge that Larry Ewing (using “The GIMP” software) was the designer of the original and much admired Linux penguin, Tux, which the cake resembles. We hope you and the Linux community enjoy the recipe!
Sounds fair enough to me, although I would still like to see the recipe released under a CC license.
Added Tue, 2007-08-07 14:22

warning: black ice(ing)

dxm wrote:

Actually I've sampled one of these before - let me tell you that black icing is NOT very appealing.

Added Sun, 2007-08-12 20:04

black icing and Tux copyright

Anonymous wrote:

The icing is blue, not black.

A penguin is a penguin, get over it. How much different do you want it to look? Sounds like you're just trying to get credit where it is not due.

Added Wed, 2008-01-09 13:40

Tux image licencing

Lana wrote:

Hi Dave,

I came across your blog while researching for my own post about the Tux image used by the Australian Women's Weekly. I made this cake myself from the "Kids' Birthday Cakes" book (where Tux is also renamed "The Penguin Prince") and, Anonymous 2006-01-09 I can assure you - it is black icing in my recipe ;)

You can see my post on the topic here: http://lanabrindley.blogspot.com/2008/03/my-definition-of-word-soon.html

Cheers, Lana

Added Thu, 2008-03-27 21:12

Tux Cake

Hells wrote:

Hi Dave,

I made this cake for my son for his 5th birthday in May. I used chocolate icing instead of black and it went down a treat. My son chose this cake because he plays a computer game called 'Super Tux'(a take on Super Mario). I purchased it through 'think all publishing' and nowhere on the packaging does it mention Linux, it does however state 'All rights reserved'. It looks like it is an American company and the website is www.thinkall.com/freeCD.html. Best of luck

Added Tue, 2008-10-28 15:07

Re: Tux Cake

Dave wrote:

Super Tux looks great.

It is free software and can be downloaded from the Super Tux download area. btw thinkall is now just a parked domain.

I will also keep the chocolate icing in mind.

Added Wed, 2008-10-29 20:18

My wife is making this cake

Birthday Boy wrote:

My wife is making this cake for me as I type this.

Added Sat, 2010-03-13 06:50

I just ate this cake! :-P

Feenicks wrote:

My wife made this cake this past weekend for my 2 years olds birthday. http://twitpic.com/205ihu

I half suspect my son picked it cos when my wife pulled the cake books out, I reacted to the penguin gibbering about linux. (cos needless to say i instantly recognized it as such) So he started running around with the book pointing at the "Ping": http://twitpic.com/1zr4ne

The cake was insanely yummy BTW :-)

Added Mon, 2010-06-28 13:52