Question on kit copyright dates

As we all know, "new" kits are not necessarily new. Manufacturers reissue kits, sometimes a number of years after the original hit the primary market and
kit molding can change hands faster than stock on Wall Street. One year a kit is being made by one firm and the next year the same kit is being produced by another. Unless you're a model kit historian or have built almost everything there is, it can be tough knowing whether a model is a reissue or a genuine new kit. It seems to me that the copyright date should be of some value or clue in solving the mystery. So here are my questions:
1. When a manufacturer reissues one of their own kits, does the copyright date have to be the original issue date or can it be the date of the reissue?
2. When a manufacturer issues a kit that was originally produced by another firm, does the copyright date have to reflect the issue date by the original company or can the date reflect the new company's reissue?
Any insight and information would be greatly appreciated. As always, thanks in advance.
Mike
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date
In Tamiya's case, the only time the (c) date on the box changes is if modifications are made to the kit.Otherwise if the kit is still the same as the 1978 edition, the reissue with have (c) 1978.
In addition I like the fact that Tamiya keeps the same box art. Unlike Revellogram which seems to change their boxes every few years which no doubt fools the uninformed that is a 'new' kit.
Ken
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In the US, Copyright dates on the box may refer to either the kit itself, or the boxart/text.
Copyright dates molded on the kit usually only represent the original release date or when significant modifications are made.
However, if you look at some really old kits, like the current Testors Spirit of St. Louis kit, the copyright molded on the kit still says Hawk and the date (1961? frankly I don't remember for sure).
Nat
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On 04 Nov 2003 19:26:04 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com (MGlantzMN) wrote:

A "reissue from the same molds is not new expreession therefore it dates back to the original copyright. They would have to create new expression to get a new copyright

Original, this is a licensing situation
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Licensing? Not really. When a model kit originally tooled by "Company A" is released by "Company B", it can be under a number of circumstances. For starters, Company A may well have been bought out or merged with Company B (Monogram Models bought Revell, Ertl bought AMT, and later MPC--also Ertl purchased some MPC tooling 13 years before buying the MPC brand), in which case the "new" firm resulting from the merger or the company completing the "buyout" owns the rights to tooling, kit designs of the former companies, so no "licensing" of the affected tooling would be in order.
Often, we see model kits that were tooled and released by one company, being sold in the packaging of another. This isn't at all new: AMT Corporation helped introduce Hasegawa kits in the US starting about 1966, and Heller model car kits in 1968-69, simply by buying the kits, molded and polybagged by their original producer, shipped to AMT's facility (then located in Troy, Michigan) to be packaged. The packaging was co-branded as AMT/Hasegawa or AMT/Heller respectively. MPC did a very similar thing by about 1965, in fact I suspect they were the first American model company to co-brand with an offshore company, Airfix. MPC imported bagged shots of Airfix kits, then eventually borrowed/leased Airfix tooling for production in their own facility (remember those great Airfix kits with chromed "customizing parts"? In return, Airfix offered some MPC kits in their own packaging (the James Bond Aston Martin, MPC's "Gangbuster Series" Classic Car kits are good examples.
In more recent times, Revell-Monogram entered into a similar arrangement with Hasegawa, the most visible kit having been the VW Microbus/Samba kit, first offered by Hasegawa, and then in exactly the same form in a Revell box. I believe also that some Revell-Monogram kits were offered in Hasegawa packaging in Japan.
Other kits (and I'm speaking of cars here) were "farmed out" by their originating companies to competing companies. A great case in point here was the now very rare AMT 1965 Dodge Coronet hardtop, and it's mate, the convertible. This tooling was never run in original form by MPC, whose tooling it was, but was molded and packaged by AMT in 1965. Apparently this was done simply because AMT was the "King Kong" of model car kits at that time, MPC being still a startup (MPC was formed in 1963, first kits introduced in early 1964). MPC then took the tooling back inhouse, but modified it for other types of model car subjects.
JoHan, a company as old as AMT also entered into "co-marketing" arrangements with AMT in the later 1960's, with several JoHan kits (notably a couple of Olds Toronado's and at least one year of Olds Cutlass 442 kits). Whether these were molded at AMT (some believe they were) or by JoHan, then shipped across Detroit and suburbs to AMT for packaging and distribution isn't all that clear, but it happened.
Going back even further, Revell, after having introduced a nice line of 1:32 scale "new cars" in 1955, teamed with AMT Corporation for their 1956 lineup of this kind of kit, simply to get parts like grilles, bumpers and hubcaps vacuum-plated, AMT being one of the few model or toy companies with a large, in-house vac-plating facility (AMT had just started vac-plating trim parts for their vast line of automotive promotional model cars in 1955).
In almost all of these cases, no changes in "copyright" notices on the tooling occurred, to my knowledge. In fact, some companies never seem to have bothered with it.
Licensing, on the other hand, occurs primarily due to the model company (also in the toy industry) when the model kit or toy represents a miniature of a "real world" object or product, or makes use of some other company's intellectual property. For years, automakers have licensed their designs (trade dress) and trademarks (their corporate and product names) to model and toy companies. This is now beginning in the area of aircraft, even ships, and in some cases military vehicles. Boeing (for Boeing, McDonnell-Douglas, and a number of other makes of aircraft for which they own the rights, or have contracted to become the licensing agent), and Northrop-Grumman both have created licensing departments within the past couple of years.
Art Anderson
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