It was modified in committee to in fact REQUIRE defense contractors to get
licensing fees and split them with the Gov't. It also created a $10,000
fine for anyone OWNING an unlicensed kit, PER KIT!!!!
In the bill as sent to the Senate:
SEC. 820. PROHIBITION ON DEFENSE CONTRACTORS REQUIRING LICENSES OR
FEES FOR USE OF MILITARY LIKENESSES AND DESIGNATIONS.
(a) In General- The Secretary of Defense shall require that any
contract entered into by the Department of Defense include a provision
prohibiting the contractor from requiring toy and hobby manufacturers,
distributors, or merchants to obtain licenses from or pay fees to the
contractor for the use of military likenesses or designations on items
provided under the contract.
(b) Limitation to United States Companies- Subsection (a)
applies only with respect to toy and hobby manufacturers,
distributors, or merchants incorporated in or organized under the laws
of the United States.
or http://tinyurl.com/bukwk .
Al Superczynski, MFE, IPMS/USA #3795, continuous since 1968
My "From" address is munged - use 'modeleral (at) swbell (dot) net' to respond
...which is presumably why the new F/A-18F kit from Hasagawa has an
"Officially licensed Boeing" label on the box, and the Revell E kit does
I could see this getting fought in the world courts (personally, I think
it's bad law), but on the up-side, maybe it will enourage hobby and toy
manufacturers to move to the USA.
Yes - and in my opinion, this becomes a trade issue...in that what it
essentially does is to unilaterally levy a tariff on non-US toy and
hobby manufacturers for making replicas of any item produced using US
public funds. And I could see this being applied in the case of more
than just models..."any replica", as I've stated.
It could be argued that that is an unfair trade practice, or foreign
producers could simply retaliate in kind - raising the price of items
which are replicas of like kind and produced for export. Or just
raising product prices across the board.
Like I said - I think it's bad law, bad trade policy, and bad foreign
policy. They should have just exempted licensing for everyone...not
just domestic producers. We're all just going to get higher kit prices
out of this, IMO.
This licensing thing has had me upset for a long time.
I wonder if this could even be extended to photographs. You might, in
the future have to get a license if you wanted to photograph a full-size
airplane or car. After all, a photo is a 2-D replica, right?
I am not a lawyer. But I get the general impression that you own the
copyright to pictures you take in public. You also own the copyright to
pictures taken in private if you have implicit or explicit permission
to take them.
While I don't remember the exact details, I do remember an artist who
sued (I think) the author and publishers of a book of distinguishing
NYC landmarks. His argument was that the one of the pictures in the
book was of a building that had a prominent piece of his artwork outside.
He claimed including the picture of his artwork violated his copyright
as he had not licensed the author/publishers to print pictures of
If I remember correctly, the judge threw the suit out saying the artwork
was on public display and therefore the artist could not assert copyright/
intellectual property rights.
I remember another lawsuit by Matel against someone who was publishing
images of Ken and Barbie in, ehm, unusual poses. Matel claimed their
trademark was harmed by these pictures (amongst other things). IIRC, they
ulitimately lost as the judge sided with the publisher who claimed parody.
Again, I am not a lawyer. And I have bad memory.
All foods should be removed to reply
Even so, the gist of your recallections is an example of such that could
bring about the "chilling effect" that the news media is always
wrangling over concerning free speech arguments - only in this case, the
issue might be considered as "free exchange"...in the light of a trade
The issue of 3-D computer models really has me wondering now - exaclty
what can a 3-D model be considered to be - an image, a replica, a
collection of data, intellectual property, artwork..? And what if you
sell them - are you the same as a model "manufacturer? Or are you still
I'm no lawyer either, but I certainly know better than to trust any of 'em.
But what I meant was that an extension of the copyright idea could be
construed to mean you could not take a photograph of a copyrighted
design (since copyright is automatic, that means ANY designed object)
without violating copyright. I didn't mean anything about the copyright
of the photographer.
Actually, I know if a case where this applies. Photographing places of
business may violate the business' copyright. My middle-school
daughter went to a birthday party held in the food court of a local
mega-mall. The mother-in-charge thought it would be really cool to
have a Scavenger Hunt by giving the girls a list of things to find and
having them fan out into the mall to take photos of the target items
with a digital camera. At virtually every business, the girls were
told they could not take photographs inside the store of any
merchandise or even the exterior of the store. I later asked my
attorney brother-in-law what the deal was and he answered "intellectual
property rights". The businesses has exclusive rights to their logos,
product images, etc. and therefore have a certain amount of contorl
over how images of those items are presented, used, etc.
BTW: The Scavenger Hunt was a bust ;^)
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