Re: Union Pacific gets tough over logo

"Trouble for Model Trains"
San Francisco Chronicle
Sunday, December 7, 2003
formatting link

Reply to
Mark Mathu
Loading thread data ...
If only it would be UP's Pearl Harbor Day.
Reply to
Steve Caple
On 12/17/03 1:34 PM, in article snipped-for-privacy@netnews.comcast.net, "Steve Caple" wrote:
You DO remember what became of the nation attacked on 12/7/41. I don't think you want UP to attain that kind of power.
Reply to
Brian Paul Ehni
The borg just lost its hearings on copyrights for all the old logos they eliminated after mergers.
formatting link
Reply to
MrRathburne
I sure hope Santa has paid his three percent.
Reply to
Mark Mathu
"Steve Caple" wrote
I'm not so sure about that. I seem to recall that the country that suffered the attack at Pearl Harbor came back to totally annihilate the attacker.
Do we want that to happen? I would prefer to think of it as UP's Hiroshima. ........F>
Reply to
Froggy
UP Logo issue...
I hear UP wants X dollars for each new UP model RR item built...
I also hear that UP wants Y dollars for all past UP Model RR items built... That's a deal breaker for sure for any RR model builder.... and in the past UP has helped Model RR builders build UP items... That's the contradiction of contradictions.. You be the Judge??????

Brian Paul Ehni wrote:
Reply to
Dennis Mayer
No... The fee is based on the price of the products produced; it is not a flat fee on each product.
The UP's licensing structure is based on a 3% of the wholesale price of Union Pacific (or constituent railroads) models produced, or 0.5% of the gross sales of all products.
Reply to
Mark Mathu
"Mark Mathu" referred us to the "Trouble for Model Trains" article in the 12/7/03 San Francisco Chronicle:
formatting link
Including the comment that "Union Pacific said in an October letter to model-train manufacturers that it wants a fee paid for use of any historic logos of railways gobbled up in the past by the company, including the Southern Pacific, the Western Pacific, the Chicago & North Western and the Denver & Rio Grande."
Fortunately for everyone outside of UP headquarters, the US Patent and Trademark Office has denied the UP's application to trademark the names and logos for Southern Pacific and Rio Grande.
UP's pending applications for other fallen-flag trademarks (including WP and C&NW) are still awaiting decision.
JR Hill
Reply to
Jim Hill
They can't stop a hobbyist from making (printing) his own logo decals.
Reply to
D&Hfan
if this gets further along and out of hand i will see the question of determining what is considered the logo? i remember (i was a volkswagen factory rep. for over 8 years) it was determined that anyone could use the word 'volkswagen' but the vw circle logo could be protected, also the same for mercedes benz. if it gets to court i'm guessing that will also come out the same way. therefore, you can have cars, engines,etc. with 'union pacific' but not with any specific logo. karl of karls kabuse
Reply to
KYager1126
"Trouble for Model Trains"
I agree.
I do support their right to pursue this revenue [licensing protection], yet I also agree that it will be costly for the end user [the model railroad enthusiast]. If Geddes' $5 per $100 ratio is reasonably accurate as stated in the article, that's a fairly steep increase when you consider a 5% price increase on the upper end items.
It'll be interesting to see the outcome in court concerning their ability to charge a licensing fee on 'Fallen Flags'. I am confident that the fee will certainly pass for the UP logo [as it should]. I am not sure about the fallen flag fee.
Has the Union Pacific made an effort [over the years] to advertise and promote their history of fallen flag acquisitions? If yes, they have a good chance of assuming those fees as well.
I sure hope my backordered, UP, caboose arrives soon ;-)
Reply to
Matt & Kathleen Brennan
Even their defense of the UP logo may be suspect. If this winds up in litigation, I'm sure the MR manufacturers will fight all of them: costs about the same; maybe they will settle for UP payments only. But if it actually goes to trial, the argument will be that UP hasn't properly defended even the UP logo. Have the MR manufacturers (and others) asked and received permission from UP for use of the logo, or have they just been using them for years. If the latter, sure sounds like they have passed into the public domain to me.
The lawyers will figure it out.
It is good to see this whole issue in the press. It is negative publicity for UP, positive for the model railroad hobby (I've seen several other articles recently in the San Jose Mercury News about MR 'ing). If UP is doing this to shore up its brand recognition, etc., this part is failing. Maybe another bunch of letters to Mr. Davidson citing the negative publicity is in order...
Ed.
in article 3fe1ca08 snipped-for-privacy@newspeer2.tds.net, Matt & Kathleen Brennan at mc snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote on 12/18/03 7:45 AM:
Reply to
Edward A. Oates
=> =>> UP Logo issue... =>> I hear UP wants X dollars for each new UP model RR item built... =>> I also hear that UP wants Y dollars for all past UP Model RR items =>> built... => =>No... The fee is based on the price of the products produced; it is not a =>flat fee on each product. => =>The UP's licensing structure is based on a 3% of the wholesale price of Union =>Pacific (or constituent railroads) models produced, or 0.5% of the gross =>sales of all products.
I think model manufacturers should say to UP: "You want us to do models of your trains? OK, that'll cost you..." Models are free publicity for the RR after all.
I see _no_ reason to pay UP for the "privilege" of making models of their rolling stock. Sure, I like the Challenger and the Big Boy, and they have and had some nice looking paint schemes on the boxcars and stuff. But pay extra for modelling UP? When UP and orther RR's major problem is that the public hates being held up at a crossing, or being woken up at night by the noise of passing trains? When they need all the friends they can get?
UP is nuts!
Wolf Kirchmeir ................................. If you didn't want to go to Chicago, why did you get on this train? (Garrison Keillor)
Reply to
Wolf Kirchmeir
I consider IP the attacker. Folks in Omaha better practice their duck and cover.
Reply to
Steve Caple
Technically if they own the trademark for the fallen flags they can charge for the use.
Now I wonder if this is why the local Sams Club is selling the UP Bachmann Overland (4-8-4) trainsets for $49 CDN! Maybe Bachmann is trying to dump UP logo-ed stock. They also do not have french writing on the box, big no-no up here in the GWN.
Reply to
Jason
No, if anything they have done their best to bury any and all references to their acquired roads. Of course SP turned out to be a bit too big to swallow all at once (grin).
Regards,
DAve
Reply to
DaveW
There are a number of potential legal problems for UP in trying to shake-down the hobby industry. Copyright infringement suits generally must prove a "financial loss" has occurred. UP is not in the hobby business and never has been, so a model of an UP item has not caused UP any financial loss. An HO freight car is not taking transportation revenue away from UP. In fact, the models might be considered free advertising and actually produce a financial gain for UP.
There are also exceptions in the copyright law for satire, parody and artistic expression. A model is not the same as the original and could assuredly qualify under one or more of these exceptions. Imagine for example if every movie producer of every movie ever created had to pay the manufacturers of every item depicted on screen for copyright. Cars, furniture, clothing, beverages . . . it would kill the movie industry to no purpose and the UP position is no different in regartds to the model industry.
The real question however is if the model industry will pay the legal fees to fight UP in court if UP is foolish enough to pursue the matter. The CEO of UP is probably hoping that the hobby industry will cave rather than spend huge sums on lawyers.
The CEO of UP is making a very bad strateghic decision to squander the free positive publicity and goodwill created by model railroaders. The small sums of money that fees for models would generate are insignificant by UP standards. One national TV ad campaign to build corporate "image" for UP would probably cost many times more than the potential fee revenue on evey UP model train item ever sold!
Paul McGraw
Mark Mathu wrote:
"Trouble for Model Trains"
I agree.
I do support their right to pursue this revenue [licensing protection], yet I also agree that it will be costly for the end user [the model railroad enthusiast]. If Geddes' $5 per $100 ratio is reasonably accurate as stated in the article, that's a fairly steep increase when you consider a 5% price increase on the upper end items.
It'll be interesting to see the outcome in court concerning their ability to charge a licensing fee on 'Fallen Flags'. I am confident that the fee will certainly pass for the UP logo [as it should]. I am not sure about the fallen flag fee.
Has the Union Pacific made an effort [over the years] to advertise and promote their history of fallen flag acquisitions? If yes, they have a good chance of assuming those fees as well.
I sure hope my backordered, UP, caboose arrives soon ;-)
Reply to
Paul McGraw
(text bobbited)
There are also exceptions in the copyright law for satire, parody and artistic expression. A model is not the same as the original and could assuredly qualify under one or more of these exceptions. Imagine for example if every movie producer of every movie ever created had to pay the manufacturers of every item depicted on screen for copyright. Cars, furniture, clothing, beverages . . . it would kill the movie industry to no purpose and the UP position is no different in regartds to the model industry.
Actually manufacturers PAY "Big Bucks" to have their products placed in Films.
Back in the early 1950's, the Santa Fe actually PAID Lionel the cost of the tooling to produce the F-3. The NYC also kicked in a lesser amount (that's why there's more AT&SF units out there than NYC ones).
Don
-- snipped-for-privacy@prodigy.net
formatting link
snipped-for-privacy@yahoogroups.com moderator: snipped-for-privacy@yahoogroups.com co-moderator: snipped-for-privacy@Yahoogroups.com
formatting link

Reply to
Trainman
On 12/19/03 6:32 AM, in article zdCEb.37798$% snipped-for-privacy@newssvr32.news.prodigy.com, "Tra>
Remember the old TV series like "FBI" with Ephrim Zimbalist, Jr.? Ford provided all vehicles, and this was noted prominently in the credits.
Remember "Independence Day" and "Mission Impossible"? Apple paid big bucks for "product placement". (And did you notice all the bad guys in MI used PCs?)
Reply to
Brian Paul Ehni

PolyTech Forum website is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.