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PlaneEater
07-11-2005, 03:43 PM
I sent them an email a few days ago about the problems we ran into with Pacific Fighters, and filled them in on what I could as part of the art team that worked on the game (and specifically, a Northrop aircraft that got cut because of it). Got a phonecall yesterday at about 7pm... From Australia.

THEY have been contacted by Northrop Grumman, about a year ago--and HAVEN'T had to pay licensing fees.

NG said 'hey, pay us money'. They responded 'Well, how much are you asking for?'

AND--here's the kicker...

'...and on what legal grounds, since you don't actually own these things, which are really taxpayer property?'

Northrop Grumman backed off and hasn't bugged them since.

They've consulted legal advice and are going ahead with the inclusion of Grumman, Northrop, and other 'copyrighted' aircraft and surface ships, as well as a little note at the bottom of the box & screen that gives the whole 'other names and trademarks are property of their respective owners (etc etc)'.

He also mentioned that they were aquiring insurance to cover possible damages sought by Northrop Grumman, and would be willing to either fight them legally or counter-sue for their loss of business and damages.

Folks, that is our victory flare and green light.

new-fherathras
07-11-2005, 04:05 PM
aha... http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif



well, Oleg. the word is yours

VW-IceFire
07-11-2005, 04:09 PM
Fascinating!

Thanks for tracking these things down. Time for an update.

Fliegeroffizier
07-11-2005, 04:20 PM
Please don't ban me...but I have to say that it appears that the French had surrendered without a fight this past winter, not totally unexpected!

UBI, according to the drift of the discussions on this subject 3-4 months ago, apparently rolled over and immediately surrendered and paid Northrop/Grumman, et al,(with Oleg's money/profits)as soon as Northrop fired its first 'bluffing' cannonball across UBI's bow. They simply didn't have the guts for a fight. IMHO.

Tooz_69GIAP
07-11-2005, 04:39 PM
very very interesting!!!

Frequent_Flyer
07-11-2005, 06:45 PM
PlaneEater,I think something may have been lost in translation. Grumman/Northrop are publicly traded corporations whose customer(s) is/are the United States government. The research and development costs for the aircraft/ships in question may or may not have been paid for with taxes.If these costs were not bore by tax payers than they have every right to expect a 'users fee', from someone or organization that profits from using a likeness of THEIR prodcut.In other countries where the government pays all of or subsidizes the cost of a product ,'ownership 'of that product would be a difficult sell.

MS_Siwarrior
07-11-2005, 06:47 PM
That changes everything,
Maybe Oleg has something we dont know about http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_eek.gif

9th_Spitin
07-11-2005, 07:05 PM
Maybe 1C just did not try too hard like Fliegeroffizer mentioned.

Firebird350HO
07-11-2005, 07:13 PM
I think that is exactly what has happened. The modern aircraft manufacturers that "inherited" the names of old planes manufactured by companies that no longer exist have no more right to charge royalties than when General Motors built cars like the Skyhawk, Starfire and Wildcat. Douglas, Lockheed and Grumman couldn't sue then and they sure couldn't sue now. Does Northrop-Grumman have their lawyers knocking on the door of every American high school that uses the name Wildcats for their football team, threatening with a cease and desist order? Nope. They can't.

PlaneEater
07-11-2005, 07:20 PM
Originally posted by Frequent_Flyer:
PlaneEater,I think something may have been lost in translation. Grumman/Northrop are publicly traded corporations whose customer(s) is/are the United States government. The research and development costs for the aircraft/ships in question may or may not have been paid for with taxes. If these costs were not bore by tax payers than they have every right to expect a 'users fee', from someone or organization that profits from using a likeness of THEIR prodcut.In other countries where the government pays all of or subsidizes the cost of a product ,'ownership 'of that product would be a difficult sell.

Not quite.

--The aircraft (and ships) were commisioned to US miltary specifications by the military with taxpayer money, were built with taxpayer money, operated with taxpayer money by the military, and named via military naming schemes and conventions.

--The vehicles (planes and ships) played a pivotal part in world history, a history that belongs freely to every person, much the same way the Apollo capsules (built by North American), the Lunar landers (built by Northrop Grumman), and the Saturn IV rockets (built by North American, Boeing, Douglas, and IBM) did in putting humans on the moon.

--We are not making or selling CAD blueprints, diagrams, or actual components of the vehicles. What game developers sell in a game or sim cannot be used to build or reverse-engineer an actual aircraft or ship. A 3D model for a game is essentially an interactive piece of representative art and thus protected under the First Amendment of the US Constitution's Bill of Rights.

--Northrop Grumman and other similar corporations have approached manufacturers and distributors within the hobby industry, pressuring them to sign licensing agreements and pay fees for the use of military designations and likenesses, both of which are in actuality taxpayer property.

--In previous agreements, contractors have sought 2-8% of the costs of each unit from manufacturers. On a typical $50 game, this amounts to about 4 dollars, which when multiplied over an example of 500,000 units equals $2 million. This increased cost, which is necessarily passed on to the consumer, is negligible to these multi-billion dollar corporations, but it is enough to drive down demand and put small developers and publishers out of business, especially as the developers only receive a very small part of the profit for each unit sold, and publishers will commony hold the developers responsible for licensing costs.

--Even in instances where the contractor is dealing solely with an overseas manufacturer, the ultimate effect of the licensing fees is still felt by US distributors, merchants, and consumers. A game developed overseas is published by a US distributor, who in turn sells it to a retail chain or store, who then sells to the consumer‚‚ā¨"Ěthe increased cost of licensing fees is passed all the way through this chain, and ultimately will result in decreased demand, which will have a direct and severe impact on the US businesses that compose the industry.

--These vehicles are not currently in production, and have not been for 60 or more years. They very likely never will be again. Northrop Grumman is not losing revenue on any sale of the actual vehicles due to easily mistakable copies or imitations created by game or sim developers (as our models of the vehicles are artistic digital depictions and not real vehicles). We are not damaging Northrop Grumman's public image or reputation in our depiction of these vehicles.

--Given that these defense vehicles were created at taxpayer expense, US businesses and proprietors (who are also US taxpayers) should not be required to pay for them again via these licensing fees.

--There are numerous examples of Northrop Grumman and other similar contractors not defending their trademarks and / or requiring licensing on these vehicles and aircraft in previous video games, and as thus, they have no grounds for suddenly starting to do so now. A short list of games that have included various Northrop Grumman aircraft or ships (vintage and modern) without license: 1942: Pacific Air War, Aces of the Pacific, Airwarrior, Airwarrior II, Airwarrior III, Battlehawks 1942, Chuck Yeager's Advanced Flight Trainer 2.0, Chuck Yeager's Air Combat, Corncob 3D, Dive Bomber, Fighter Duel, Hellcat Ace, Out of the Sun, Pacific Strike, Stunt Island, Task Force 1942, and Warbirds I / II / III. Obviously, that is not a complete or even extensive list. In addition, many numerous books, films, and scale model kits have focused on or included these aircraft and ships, and have not been required to pay licensing.


What it amounts to is this: Northrop-Grumman and other corporations tried to force smaller companies like software studios and plastic model companies to pay licensing fees for Department of Defense designations--designations that NORTHROP-GRUMMAN DOES NOT OWN. Aside from being unethical, that could very well be illegal.

WB_Outlaw
07-11-2005, 07:36 PM
This is a trademark issue and they own the trademarks - end of story. You can whine endlessly but in the end, they were still awarded the trademark. It might be possible to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars fighting it in court and win due to the fact that the trademark has not been defended vigorously, but you have still lost the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The fact that other developers are acquiring insurance to cover problems with trademark violation shows that they EXPECT to end up in court. It's way too early for a victory cry on this issue.

-Outlaw.

PlaneEater
07-11-2005, 08:20 PM
Outlaw: They own the trademark on the name 'Northrop-Grumman', 'Northrop', and 'Grumman'.

They own copyrights on the blueprints and designs of the actual physical aircraft.

It would be a violation of copyright for us to set up a production line of actual F6Fs and call them 'Grumman' F6Fs.

However, the Navy--a taxpayer-owned entity--named them 'F6F' and 'Hellcat'. The Navy created the design specs, commisioned them, and payed for them with taxpayer money.

We are creating interactive artistic depictions, as protected legally under fair-use and free speech.

Northrop-Grumman is trying to bully people into paying license fees for American taxpayer property.

They're overstepping their legal grounds.

Frequent_Flyer
07-11-2005, 08:28 PM
PlaneEater,The U.S. armed forces puts out to bid, to its specs. a weapon/ weapon sytem. Competing co.s reasearch and develope a product to those specs. at their own expense. If say Grumman is awarded the contract the product it devoloped and patent is THEIR's. The Governmet/taxpayers in turn purchase this weapon not the copyright nor the patents.

PlaneEater
07-11-2005, 08:50 PM
Let me repeat this part:

The Navy--a taxpayer-owned entity--named them 'F6F' and 'Hellcat'. The Navy created the design specs, commisioned them, and payed for them with taxpayer money.


We are creating interactive artistic depictions, as protected legally under fair-use and free speech.


If we wanted to publish actual blueprints of components, or produce kits to build the planes or the planes in whole, we would need to aquire a license.

If we wanted to call refer to them as Grumman F6F Hellcats, we would need to mention in a legal disclaimer that 'Grumman' is a NG trademark and is their property, and we're not trying to claim ownership of it. This is common practice when one company mentions another company's trademark by name and perfectly legal. It's what IR Gurus (who are doing Blazing Angels) are doing.

Between the fair use and free speech protections, and Northrop Grumman trying to charge licensing for 'F6F Hellcat', which is a Dept. of Navy designation and thus taxpayer property, they have no legal grounds to charge licensing for what we are doing.

That is the conclusion of EVERY lawyer who is familiar with the details of the situation.

PlaneEater
07-12-2005, 03:25 AM
I honestly can't believe more people haven't chimed in on this.

This is a huge step towards victory for us, guys! Someone finally called Northrop-Grumman's bluff, and they backed off!

In a court of law, that's victory right there. If they thought they had any chance of winning a legal case over this, they would have pressed lawsuits and injunctions like crazy. The fact that they went slinking away is as good as a public statement from them that they were wrong and have no grounds to demand licensing.

Furthermore, if they DO try to fight someone else over it, as soon as someone points out that they very consciously did not follow through with enforcing their claim previously, the case is done. Right there are grounds for dismissal of a lawsuit.

Personally, I'm gonna throw a party. Anybody around Seattle, WA, email me (hwhnn@hotmail.com) and once I get a headcount, I'll see about getting something set up. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif Bring a computer, your HOTAS, and network cable, and we can make it a lan party.

csThor
07-12-2005, 04:24 AM
A lot of people haven't chimed in as they seem to be able to correctly rate this "incident". It's not that MG is suddenly able to model the missing US aircraft - or did anyone donate a large sum to them all of a sudden?

What WB_Outlaw said still remains as a fact - real legal certainty could only be achieved in court, but who would spend a lot of money for such a "non-issue" ??? I'll tell you - nobody!

Flakenstien
07-12-2005, 05:58 AM
Im American and a tax payer so I own part of the whole thing!!
So that means that we are due a American only release!! lol

raisen
07-12-2005, 06:03 AM
You may well find that the Oleg is not legally allowed to comment following previous encounters with NG etc. Just a thought....

actionhank1786
07-12-2005, 06:07 AM
...i still want that Russian Add On

Tooz_69GIAP
07-12-2005, 06:18 AM
as far as I know, the main problem with 1C and NG is that Ubi stuck on the box the manufacturer's names when mentioning the aircraft. Like Grumman F4F and Grumman F6F and so on, instead of just the navy designations. And they did so without any disclaimer (I'm looking at the box now, no disclaimer in view). That was a really stupid thing to do.

But anyway, even if 1C were allowed to model US aircraft, pray tell, where are they going to find the time, money and resources to research em, build em, and then insert em into the game, and then get them distributed??

I'll tell you, they wont. There's no money (thanks to Ubi, and software pirates), no time, and I'm pretty sure Oleg has no inclination to do so with all this nonsense that surrounds this issue.

So, if it's a victory, it's a pretty hollow one. All it means is we may have less problems with future releases after BoB.

Chuck_Older
07-12-2005, 06:56 AM
Originally posted by PlaneEater:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Frequent_Flyer:
PlaneEater,I think something may have been lost in translation. Grumman/Northrop are publicly traded corporations whose customer(s) is/are the United States government. The research and development costs for the aircraft/ships in question may or may not have been paid for with taxes. If these costs were not bore by tax payers than they have every right to expect a 'users fee', from someone or organization that profits from using a likeness of THEIR prodcut.In other countries where the government pays all of or subsidizes the cost of a product ,'ownership 'of that product would be a difficult sell.

Not quite.

--The aircraft (and ships) were commisioned to US miltary specifications by the military with taxpayer money, were built with taxpayer money, operated with taxpayer money by the military, and named via military naming schemes and conventions.. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Different light on this subject-

If you were to find a US Navy aircraft from WWII in one of the US Great Lakes, and you raised it, the Navy would demand that it be returned to it, pronto

Despite the fact that it's been stricken from the roll, that taxpayers paid for it and it's been paid for for 60 years, the Navy will fight you tooth and nail for ownership, and you will legally be in the wrong if you try and keep it- because it is "theirs"

EKat58
07-12-2005, 09:34 AM
In general, I agree with PlaneEater, NG's postion would never hold up in court as it would set a precedent for paying royalties for any realistically depicted object (building, car, plane, whatever) in a computer simulation. It's an absurd argument as it could call a halt to depicting reality.

However, don't forget, in the US the deep pocketed corporations only need to threaten a Patent lawsuit to make a smaller pocketed company see that it's just not worth the fight. Too bad, as I think a lot of small inventors and innovators are thwarted by this tactic. But, $$ make right in the US these days.

Ekat

Hendley
07-12-2005, 10:50 AM
Chuck-- but they lost/gave up on that case pretty quickly.

Obviously, PlaneEater knows whereof he speaks, and I'm 99% sure that the problem with Pacific Fighters was the fact that they wrote GRUMMAN on the box without a disclaimer, not the ingame depiction.

The fact is though, that some manufacurers have, for some years now, been succesful in extorting money from the plastic model industry for "licences" of "their" products. Pocket change to the military industry guys, but business-breaking sums for the model industry.

darkhorizon11
07-12-2005, 12:14 PM
Originally posted by Chuck_Older:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by PlaneEater:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Frequent_Flyer:
PlaneEater,I think something may have been lost in translation. Grumman/Northrop are publicly traded corporations whose customer(s) is/are the United States government. The research and development costs for the aircraft/ships in question may or may not have been paid for with taxes. If these costs were not bore by tax payers than they have every right to expect a 'users fee', from someone or organization that profits from using a likeness of THEIR prodcut.In other countries where the government pays all of or subsidizes the cost of a product ,'ownership 'of that product would be a difficult sell.

Not quite.

--The aircraft (and ships) were commisioned to US miltary specifications by the military with taxpayer money, were built with taxpayer money, operated with taxpayer money by the military, and named via military naming schemes and conventions.. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Different light on this subject-

If you were to find a US Navy aircraft from WWII in one of the US Great Lakes, and you raised it, the Navy would demand that it be returned to it, pronto

Despite the fact that it's been stricken from the roll, that taxpayers paid for it and it's been paid for for 60 years, the Navy will fight you tooth and nail for ownership, and you will legally be in the wrong if you try and keep it- because it is "theirs" </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Sort of. Your treading on legal grey area. Now your getting into salvage titles and stuff like that. In American, cars and trucks are one thing but when an airplane crashes the NTSB can actually step in and claim complete ownership to conduct a thorough investigation as they see fit. Now obviously the NTSB would have little to no interest in a warbird in the bottom of a lake that crashed there before they existed.
Just a little FYI there.

What it really comes down to is this: If the Navy searched in vain for their aircraft and pilot, never found it, and was forced to abandon the search for said aircraft. One day your out fishing you get a strong one, swim down to see what it is, low and behold a Grumman F6F...

In this scenario the Navy might still have rights to the wreck if they wanted it. There may be regulations stating that they forfeit ownership however after nothing finding it for a certain amount of time.

Scenario 2. The F6F crashes into a lake, the pilot bails out and survives. The Navy is well aware that the aircraft is sitting at the bottom of the lake but decides that recovering it isn't worth the money, especially if the cause of the crash was pilot error and there was no real need for investigation. In this case the Navy forfeits their ownership of the aircraft by failing make any viable attempts to recover. Now its definitely fair game.

The reason why this is so: a Navy ship sinks in the Caribbean full of gold. The Navy annouces what happened and makes no effort to recover it. Every treasure hunter around goes out looking for it, and a week later the lucky winner comes up with gold bars. If there was no protection, the Navy could turn around claim ownership of the gold hereby screwing the diver out his findings and get their treasure recovered free of charge.


But back on topic. It looks like were finally making headway. I knew as soon as someone stood up to these companies they would be forced to back down. Also if anyone noticed 1c added the Mustang Mk.III to the new patch, yet another American aircraft...

AerialTarget
07-12-2005, 01:18 PM
Originally posted by Chuck_Older:
If you were to find a US Navy aircraft from WWII in one of the US Great Lakes, and you raised it, the Navy would demand that it be returned to it, pronto

Despite the fact that it's been stricken from the roll, that taxpayers paid for it and it's been paid for for 60 years, the Navy will fight you tooth and nail for ownership, and you will legally be in the wrong if you try and keep it- because it is "theirs"

Ah! But if you raised an F-6F Hellcat from the drink and Grumman tried to claim it, there would be much Grumman blood spilled.

Firebird350HO
07-12-2005, 01:30 PM
Did Lockheed try to make a claim for The Lost Squadron and specifically the P-38F now known as Glacier Girl? I don't think so, because they have no legal rights to it.

I think Hendley is on the right track here. The only problem UBI has is using a trademarked corporate name without the legal mumbo-jumbo fine print. Using the military designation and non-trademarked nickname cause no worries.

Tooz_69GIAP
07-12-2005, 02:33 PM
Originally posted by darkhorizon11:
But back on topic. It looks like were finally making headway. I knew as soon as someone stood up to these companies they would be forced to back down. Also if anyone noticed 1c added the Mustang Mk.III to the new patch, yet another American aircraft...

The Mustang is a North American Company aircraft not affiliated, as far as I am aware, with NG, so is able to be used. Same goes for the CW-21, which should be released around September. It's a Curtis Wright aircraft, again not involved with this nonsense, so no problem putting it in the sim, far as I know.

Tex-Hill-AVG
07-12-2005, 02:43 PM
Originally posted by darkhorizon11:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Chuck_Older:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by PlaneEater:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Frequent_Flyer:
PlaneEater,I think something may have been lost in translation. Grumman/Northrop are publicly traded corporations whose customer(s) is/are the United States government. The research and development costs for the aircraft/ships in question may or may not have been paid for with taxes. If these costs were not bore by tax payers than they have every right to expect a 'users fee', from someone or organization that profits from using a likeness of THEIR prodcut.In other countries where the government pays all of or subsidizes the cost of a product ,'ownership 'of that product would be a difficult sell.

Not quite.

--The aircraft (and ships) were commisioned to US miltary specifications by the military with taxpayer money, were built with taxpayer money, operated with taxpayer money by the military, and named via military naming schemes and conventions.. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Different light on this subject-

If you were to find a US Navy aircraft from WWII in one of the US Great Lakes, and you raised it, the Navy would demand that it be returned to it, pronto

Despite the fact that it's been stricken from the roll, that taxpayers paid for it and it's been paid for for 60 years, the Navy will fight you tooth and nail for ownership, and you will legally be in the wrong if you try and keep it- because it is "theirs" </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Sort of. Your treading on legal grey area. Now your getting into salvage titles and stuff like that. In American, cars and trucks are one thing but when an airplane crashes the NTSB can actually step in and claim complete ownership to conduct a thorough investigation as they see fit. Now obviously the NTSB would have little to no interest in a warbird in the bottom of a lake that crashed there before they existed.
Just a little FYI there.

What it really comes down to is this: If the Navy searched in vain for their aircraft and pilot, never found it, and was forced to abandon the search for said aircraft. One day your out fishing you get a strong one, swim down to see what it is, low and behold a Grumman F6F...

In this scenario the Navy might still have rights to the wreck if they wanted it. There may be regulations stating that they forfeit ownership however after nothing finding it for a certain amount of time.

Scenario 2. The F6F crashes into a lake, the pilot bails out and survives. The Navy is well aware that the aircraft is sitting at the bottom of the lake but decides that recovering it isn't worth the money, especially if the cause of the crash was pilot error and there was no real need for investigation. In this case the Navy forfeits their ownership of the aircraft by failing make any viable attempts to recover. Now its definitely fair game.

The reason why this is so: a Navy ship sinks in the Caribbean full of gold. The Navy annouces what happened and makes no effort to recover it. Every treasure hunter around goes out looking for it, and a week later the lucky winner comes up with gold bars. If there was no protection, the Navy could turn around claim ownership of the gold hereby screwing the diver out his findings and get their treasure recovered free of charge.


But back on topic. It looks like were finally making headway. I knew as soon as someone stood up to these companies they would be forced to back down. Also if anyone noticed 1c added the Mustang Mk.III to the new patch, yet another American aircraft... </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

U.S. Law states that the U.S. Navy retains ownership of all its wrecks, no matter what type,(i.e., naval vessal, aircraft). This has come up on several occassions. Robert Ballard, (who found the Titanic & Bismark), had to get permission from the Navy before he could look for the Yorktown which was sunk at Midway.

Another gentleman located an Avenger in the Atlantic, off the coast of Florida. He salvaged the aircraft without the Navy's permission and they filed charges against him and took possession of the plane. 60 minutes did a story on this case, & the Navy was even trying to have the guy thrown in jail. I don't know if they were successful.

Tex-Hill-AVG
07-12-2005, 02:48 PM
Originally posted by Tooz_69GIAP:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by darkhorizon11:
But back on topic. It looks like were finally making headway. I knew as soon as someone stood up to these companies they would be forced to back down. Also if anyone noticed 1c added the Mustang Mk.III to the new patch, yet another American aircraft...

The Mustang is a North American Company aircraft not affiliated, as far as I am aware, with NG, so is able to be used. Same goes for the CW-21, which should be released around September. It's a Curtis Wright aircraft, again not involved with this nonsense, so no problem putting it in the sim, far as I know. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

North American merged with Rocwell in 1960. North American Rockwell Corp. was in turn bought by Boeing in 1996.

PlaneEater
07-12-2005, 02:55 PM
...and believe it or not, Piper Aircraft Corp. owns the rights to the P-51 now (physical production line and blueprint rights).

They did some reworking of the Mustang in the 70's-80's by sticking a turboprop and tip tanks on the thing and trying to market it as a cheap light attack / drug interdiction aircraft to smaller / poorer nations. Ugliest Mustang I've ever seen.

Chuck_Older
07-12-2005, 04:05 PM
Thanks Tex http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

Chuck_Older
07-12-2005, 04:10 PM
Originally posted by AerialTarget:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Chuck_Older:
If you were to find a US Navy aircraft from WWII in one of the US Great Lakes, and you raised it, the Navy would demand that it be returned to it, pronto

Despite the fact that it's been stricken from the roll, that taxpayers paid for it and it's been paid for for 60 years, the Navy will fight you tooth and nail for ownership, and you will legally be in the wrong if you try and keep it- because it is "theirs"

Ah! But if you raised an F-6F Hellcat from the drink and Grumman tried to claim it, there would be much Grumman blood spilled. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Well my example is only showing a different light on what people commonly think, that could be completetly wrong but still seem right. For instance, the Navy retaining ownership of all wrecks seems completely fantasy-land...but it's true

Now, if am F6F that was never sold to the Navy was recovered...that's different, but you'd have to prove it never had a BuNo. fron the USN

I'm not saying that any of this makes a copyright issue better, it's just an example of weird laws that folks aren't even aware of

Waldo.Pepper
07-12-2005, 04:43 PM
OK so then when are you going to finish my beloved? http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Chuck_Older
07-12-2005, 04:59 PM
Did I promise you something? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif If I did I don't recall, you'll have to refresh my memory http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_confused.gif

WB_Outlaw
07-12-2005, 05:53 PM
Y'all should try 5 minutes of Googling. In addition to others, the following are trademarked by Grumman...

F4F WILDCAT
F6F HELLCAT
F7F TIGERCAT
F4U CORSAIR
JRF (G-21) GOOSE

I know that some companies have also trademarked the SHAPE of their aircraft.

It doesn't matter who paid for what or when production stopped or how anyone THINKS or WHISHES the world worked, THEY OWN THE TRADEMARK - end of story.

The fact that Grumman hasn't said anything in a year means nothing. What do you expect them to do, drive over and beat someone up? They made their demands for license fees and they were ignored. That only gives them MORE AMMO for a court battle when the time comes.

I'll bet anyone all of PlaneEater's possessions that they will NEVER find anyone to insure them against damages/losses due to a trademark violation that they were notified of at least a year prior to the product release date.

Additionally, what makes anyone think that the taxpayers OWN anything their money purchased? If that's the case, I want my freakin' M1A1 and I want it now. Also, my wife will take a Bradley b/c she's a little intimidated by the M1A1 (parking you know). I will be moving into the White House next week and I'll be needing the Senate Chamber around the middle of August for the making of a porno film.

Give it up folks.


-Outlaw.

shinden1974
07-12-2005, 06:24 PM
I agree with Tooz_69GIAP here...Ubi probably messed up. I don't think Oleg is going to slam his distributor in public nor should he.

Even though these things are taxpayer paid for, public items...there's a lot of legal issues surrounding their use and you basically need to a good lawyer to navigate the landmines.

I think most sim-builders have always known this stuff and most of this angst about copyrights is 'community' hysteria. It sucks and it hurts, but we're not getting american planes because of a legal error on ubi's part, not a conspiracy of fascist companies, or 1C wanting to stick it to the US. Ubi screwed up, the legal sharks at NG saw an opening and bit. You can't expect a shark to be anything but a shark.

Sharkey888
07-12-2005, 06:46 PM
Originally posted by shinden1974:
Ubi screwed up, the legal sharks at NG saw an opening and bit.

You are correct. You just can't use company names on your merchandise without cost or permission.

In the end this was an easy and convienent out for UBI(and 1C) for not including many half done planes and ships!

PlaneEater
07-12-2005, 07:12 PM
In addition to others, the following are trademarked by Grumman...

F4F WILDCAT
F6F HELLCAT
F7F TIGERCAT
F4U CORSAIR
JRF (G-21) GOOSE

I know that some companies have also trademarked the SHAPE of their aircraft.

It doesn't matter who paid for what or when production stopped or how anyone THINKS or WHISHES the world worked, THEY OWN THE TRADEMARK - end of story.

See, that's where you're mistaken.
Stating that they own those things is inaccurate--they claim copyright / trademark of them. Claiming something is very different from actually having proof of owning it or having a legal ruling that declares you as the owner (neither of which they have). What they DO have is lots of money to pay lots of lawyers to intimidate and wear people down into either believing them or not fighting them.

Saying "it doesn't matter what you think, THEY OWN IT BECAUSE THEY SAY THEY DO" is exactly what they want you to (inaccurately) beleive. That's not just me thinking so--that's the conclusion of every IP and copyright lawyer (actually, every lawyer, period) who is familiar with the situation.

WHAT THEY DO OWN:
-----------------
Grumman owns the trademark "Grumman", "Northrop", "Northrop-Grumman", and other manufacturer names (I believe they also own "Vought" and a couple others such as that). They own rights to the construction, blueprints and production of the actual physical aircraft and their components. They have the right to demand licensing costs for the use of their trademarked names, and to charge licenses if somebody else wants to use the aircraft's physical design, its blueprints etc, or start an assembly line.


WHAT THEY DO NOT OWN:
---------------------
"F4F" and "Wildcat" (et al), however, are designations created and thus controlled / owned by the United States Department of Defense, and therefore the taxpaying public, the same way a private entity cannot copyright or trademark things such as "Supreme Court", "White House", "Smithsonian", "NASA", the shape of the Statue of Liberty, or the apperance of the Lincoln Memorial.

Those names and designations therefore cannot be copyrighted or owned in copyright by a private corporation, no matter how much that company might want to, claim to, or want you to believe they do.

Furthermore, while there are some statutes regarding what is known as trade-dress infringement, it doesn't really apply here, and creating a game model of an aircraft would not violate it anyway for a couple of reasons:
1) The model is protected as art (in this case, an interactive artistic depiction) under the First Amendment.
2) Even if Grumman did have a copyright of the physical shape of the aircraft, depicting it artistically would be protected as in 1) and by statutes governing the artistic aspect of Fair Use provisions.



They made their demands for license fees and they were ignored.

Nope. They demanded license fees, and when the other party asked for details and to see justification for those fees (perfectly acceptable), Northrop Grumman ignored them and walked away!

shinden1974
07-12-2005, 07:12 PM
You are correct. You just can't use company names on your merchandise without cost or permission.

In the end this was an easy and convienent out for UBI(and 1C) for not including many half done planes and ships!

Well, I don't think 1C and UBI were into the easy and convenient route, I'm sure they wanted a good product for good reason...it'll sell better. Just from following all the discussion during the development of PF in the archives, the half-done planes and ships had everything to do with HOW PF was developed. PF was mostly a coalition of 3rd party developers, most of whom did great work.

Unfortunately this type of development is a grab-bag, and it's impossible to guarentee that everyone involved would put out their best work, or meet the deadlines. There's an advantage to in-house rat-race for the paycheck type work...it meets deadlines and puts everyone under pressure to finish on time with acceptable results. For what it is PF ended up pretty good, probably thanks to the intervention of Oleg.

I know this, if PF was more in-house we may still be waiting for it, or it would have been a much smaller scale product, though maybe in the end a better one.

At this point we are getting add-ons to everything including PF for free, to which we all should be grateful for this departure from the norm.

Firebird350HO
07-12-2005, 07:12 PM
Originally posted by WB_Outlaw:
Y'all should try 5 minutes of Googling. In addition to others, the following are trademarked by Grumman...

F4F WILDCAT
F6F HELLCAT
F7F TIGERCAT
F4U CORSAIR
JRF (G-21) GOOSE


Could you provide the URL's that definitively show Grumman has these trademarked? My own search of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's website showed that Northrop Grumman owns the trademark for "F6F-5 Hellcat" in one specific instance, for a scale model aircraft. Interestingly, if I'm reading things correctly, Northrop Grumman allowed this same trademarked phrase "F6F-5 Hellcat" to expire in some other fashion and it was subsequently obtained by a toy glider company.

I could find no Northrop Grumman trademarks under the following searches: F4F, F4F Wildcat, F4U, F4U Corsair, F7F or F7F Tigercat.

Waldo.Pepper
07-12-2005, 07:57 PM
Originally posted by Chuck_Older:
Did I promise you something? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif If I did I don't recall, you'll have to refresh my memory http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_confused.gif

I was directing that comment to Planeeater, so you can relax. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

shinden1974
07-12-2005, 08:06 PM
Planeeater is right I think. Grumman owns Grumman and that's about it. the US government owns F4F, etc. Car companies can get you for a camaro or mustang...military equipment isn't in the same category.

Earlier someone said something about developing planes at "their own expense"...I don't think anything like this has happened with any of the companies mentioned here especially military aircraft since WWII. There maybe exceptions, but development of new aircraft and equipment is usually itself a contract by the US government and gets government subsidies. The sheer cost is just too staggering for even these monsters to handle. Also, very little of the money these companies make is privately handed over, these guys are government contractors, almost all their money is taxpayer money, even 'their own expense' is a huge chunk of taxpayer money. I guess following this logic you could get your own M1A1 tank...if you can get the rest of the 200+ million people who paid for it to agree to it and demand so from their representatives, good luck and have fun.

and one more thing...money talks, which another mentioned here...but not these days, try 'always' and 'everywhere' including tribes in SE asia and nomads in the middle east...since bonk gave thunk a wheel for a stick on fire. I think the concept that greed began yesterday comes from nostalgia over the only time in anyones life money didn't mean anything: childhood.

AerialTarget
07-12-2005, 09:35 PM
Originally posted by shinden1974:
money talks, [...] always and everywhere [...], since Bonk gave Thunk a wheel for a stick on fire.

If I didn't already have a terrific signature, I'd be asking to borrow this capital line.

RAF92_Moser
07-12-2005, 09:36 PM
If I painted a fantastic picture of the New York or Chicago skyline, will I have to pay all the owners of all the buildings a licensing fee for colors on a canvas.

Does IC seriously have to pay a licensing fee for colors on a screen?

Does something seem wrong here?

actionhank1786
07-12-2005, 10:12 PM
Originally posted by RAF92_Moser:
If I painted a fantastic picture of the New York or Chicago skyline, will I have to pay all the owners of all the buildings a licensing fee for colors on a canvas.

Does IC seriously have to pay a licensing fee for colors on a screen?

Does something seem wrong here?

I think your interpritation of the scene is wrong.
If the same artist painted a picture, involving a certain companies billboard, with another companies plane flying about, the artist would most likely have to get the rights to the company name and likenesses and all that good stuff, before he could publicly sell the painting

AerialTarget
07-12-2005, 10:19 PM
That's not really correct either, since Oleg's not advertising for another aircraft manufacturer, for one thing.

Nimits
07-12-2005, 10:32 PM
So what I am seeing here, 1C should at least be able to stick a cockpit on the TBF. And I don't really see how Northrop-Grumman could enforce a trademark issue on the an aircraft carrier (the names Yorktown, Enterprise, and Hornet are certainly not owned by Grumman). Plus, if the Curtiss-Wright CW-21 is in, we should be able to include a Curitss SB2C Helldiver without any problems. And if we can have NA/Boeing/Douglass aircraft, why not a Douglass (property of Boeing) TBD Devestator? Quite frankly, I don't see any good reason why these planes and ship, especially those that were already near completion, could not be included . . . unless UBI was stupid and already signed some sort of agreement with Grumman promising not to develop those models . . .

Of course, this still doesn't really explain what happened to the IJN ships and torpedo bombers . . .

PlantEater, can you hint as to what Northrop aircraft was cut?

AFJ_Locust
07-12-2005, 11:23 PM
Face it

Oleg is never going to give you what you want...

IMO the whole thing was a bunch of bs too begin with

Tooz_69GIAP
07-13-2005, 03:49 AM
I suspect the reason why many US ships were cancelled was because NG bought Newport News, the major shipyard that built pretty much every US capital ship during the war, and so they claim ownership of the license over depiction of those ships.

This means no US ships for PF.

PlaneEater
07-13-2005, 04:17 AM
Tooz: exact same thing with the ships--possibly even more so, considering how possesive the Navy is about its equipment.

Northrop Grumman probably owns the production rights and production materials (plans and blueprints) to the physical ships, but does not own the class or vessel names, as those designations were created and assigned by the Navy and thus are taxpayer property. I would also not be surprised if the designs and the production rights were ALSO signed over to the Navy, as it has a history of not liking other people posessing 'their' (the Navy's) equipment.

Furthermore, in the same way as the aircraft, an artistic depiction of the ships is protected by both the First Amendment protection of free speech, and by fair-use provisions of United States Copyright and Trademark statutes and case law.

As before, any mention of the Northrop Grumman trademarked names such as Northrop, Grumman, or Nothrop Grumman would require the inclusion of an ownership acknowledgement and disclaimer, but they do not have any claim over the Department of Navy designations or names and cannot therefore demand licensing fees for them or likenesses.


Sheesh. I gotta quit being so involved with this stuff--I'm starting to feel like a lawyer when I write.

Chuck_Older
07-13-2005, 07:07 AM
Originally posted by AFJ_Locust:
Face it

Oleg is never going to give you what you want...

IMO the whole thing was a bunch of bs too begin with

See, this is exactly what we don't need.

"Oleg" isn't his company's lawyer, he doesn't run UbiSoft, and probably never even spoke with anyone from NGC

face it: none of us here knows exactly what the problem really was, but many folks tell each other they DO know exactly what went wrong and where, and how it could have been fixed

This is the same discussion we've had as a group about a dozen times, over several months

Instead of becoming more informed about the situation, we seem to beleive in the old rumor mill even more strongly

I work in Aerospace, and my old company got screwed out of copyrights by a very large, well known US Aircraft manufacturer about 6 years ago

We were in the 'right' but they have more money and time, and better lawyers than a small start up contractor, so the whole thing ended up getting resolved by them getting us to relax some exclusivity agreements: also known as "blackmail". And the kicker: they STILL legally have the rights to the stuff they in effect stole!

Bottom line: there's much more to any issue like this than armchair CEOs like the people on this forum know or dream about

You're a good virtual pilot. Great news, I hope you like the sim, but savvy in these legal issues you ain't http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-indifferent.gif

SaQSoN
07-13-2005, 07:41 AM
Please don't ban me...but I have to say that it appears that the French had surrendered without a fight this past winter, not totally unexpected!

I affraid, you are absolutely right on that. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_frown.gif But now, the move is done and can not be undone. My guess, they signed something, which now prevent them from adding more NG things in that particular game without recieving a permission from the NG.
This situation certainly can be resolved in a court, but, I affraid, Ubi hardly interested in this at all by now... http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

Paying NG and signing anything with them was a stupid move (though, probably, dictated by a certain circumstances), but there is too late to talk about this in regard to FB/PF.

Peachy9
07-13-2005, 08:17 AM
Out of interest does this mean permission is required from European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company for use of Messerschmitt and Heinkel models and from Alvis Vickers for Hurricane and Spitfire?

Why arent we seeing similar issues in Europe and for that matter from Russian aircraft manufacturers. Is it just a matter if time or is it a question of different legal backgrounds as so many of these firms became state owned at some time?

csThor
07-13-2005, 09:23 AM
Because there some common sense might still be found among the higher-ups? http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

Basically at some point in the future all these "copyright" and "intellectual property" cowboys are going to fall down a deep, deep cliff - once their "hot air castles" crumble because nobody's going to pay for their stuff anymore.

Zyzbot
07-13-2005, 09:42 AM
Originally posted by Peachy9:


Why arent we seeing similar issues in Europe and for that matter from Russian aircraft manufacturers. Is it just a matter if time or is it a question of different legal backgrounds as so many of these firms became state owned at some time?

You do see the same idea in Europe...only it is the government and it is with respect to markings, not aircraft and such:


"Intellectual Property Rights Copyright, Patents and Trade Marks

Trademarks, Crests and Logos Trade Mark law protects the identity of goods and services, allowing distinctions to be made between different undertakings. Trade marks do not necessarily need to be registered with the Patent Office in order to be protected, although many MoD trade marks are. In the context of the MoD, "trade marks" include all badges, crests, heraldry, logos and other insignia used by the Armed Services and other MoD sections, together with their names, mottoes and the names of any services they provide.
These signs embody the reputation of the units they represent, and as such their use is very tightly controlled under trade mark law. Unauthorised reproduction is treated as a serious matter, as it can amount to the appropriation of an organisation's reputation.If you wish to reproduce insignia purely for as an illustration for reference purposes, please contact the Directorate directly, at the address below.Frequently, firms wish to produce merchandise bearing MoD insignia. This business is generally welcomed, provided that the goods and services are of acceptable quality and fulfils the role of promoting or reinforcing the Armed Service's profile. Charges for reproduction usually take the form of a royalty payment. Initial authority relating to the use of Service names and crests for merchandising purposes rests with the following contacts:All Royal Navy insignia including ships' badgeshttp://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gifirectorate of Corporate Communications (RN) Ministry of Defence, Room 1/77, Metropole Building, Northumberland Avenue, London WC2N 5BPAll Army insignia including regimental cap badges:Marketing Branch, IDT(A)/MC, Trenchard Lines, Upavon, Pewsey, Wiltshire, SN9 6BE.All RAF insignia including the "RAF Roundel" and squadron badgeshttp://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gifirectorate of Corporate Communications (RAF) Ministry of Defence, Room 1/51, Metropole Building, Northumberland Avenue, London WC2N 5BPFor other trade marks and insignia, please contact the Directorate. Once authorisation to reproduce the name or crest has been agreed-in-principle by the above section, please contact the Directorate, who are responsible for issuing formal licences setting out the terms and condition of use. Directorate of Intellectual Property Rights, MOD Abbey Wood #2218, Bristol BS34 8JH Tel: 0117 9132862. Fax: 0117 9132929. E-mail ipr-cu@dpa.mod.uk



BBC
MoD defeated in fashion dispute
Tuesday, 13 January, 2004

The roundel cannot be registered as a trademark on clothing
The Ministry of Defence has failed in its battle to stop clothing retailers using the red, white and blue target symbol.
Arcadia Group, owners of Topshop, Dorothy Perkins and Burton, went to war with the MoD after it tried to register the roundel as a trademark for RAF-related clothing.

The high street fashion group argued the roundel was brought into the public domain by the Mod movement of the 1960s.

On Tuesday, the Patent Office told BBC News Online it had rejected the MoD's application.

However, the MoD has been given the sole rights to use the roundel, which appears on all RAF aircraft, on items other than clothing such as military hardware.
Mod fashions

A spokeswoman for the MoD said they were now considering whether to appeal against the decision.


The target appears on all RAF aircraft
"We are naturally disappointed with the decision in respect of the suitability of the roundel as a trademark for RAF-related clothing," she said.

"However we are happy that the roundel has been protected as a trademark in respect of other goods and services."

Arcadia Group had enlisted the help of other clothing manufacturers, including The Lambretta Clothing Company, who have also used the motif on their products.

Making his decision John Macgillivray, for the Registrar the Comptroller-General, said the roundel "has been used since the 1960s to a significant degree as a decorative motif or emblem on articles of clothing and prior to the relevant date has been used by a number of different traders.

"It has, in particular, been associated with a group of persons known as Mods and while its popularity has ebbed and flowed with fashion, clothing bearing the 'roundel' or 'target device' has remained available to the public."

He ordered the MoD to pay the Arcadia Group ‚£1,900 costs.


And check out the PDF file for the RAAF image guide:

http://www.defence.gov.au/raaf/organisation/info_on/units/brand/

Peachy9
07-13-2005, 02:53 PM
Interesting Zyzbot, I must have missed that one. So I guess permission must be sought to use the roundel and Squadron crests.

I can see why the MOD lost this one as the roundel that Lambretta and other designers use is effectively a competition target from Archery and as such they can easily argue that they are using a target motif and not an RAF roundel. If they put a yellow band around the outside of the motif then top shop may have been in more trouble!

I am surprised that they have not tried to protect actual aircraft in the same way - the MOD are always looking for ways to generate cash!

gombal40
07-13-2005, 04:53 PM
They will wait untill more cash is sunk into the program and on the point of no return they will be back.
They have given fair warning.

Tooz_69GIAP
07-13-2005, 06:36 PM
didn't Oleg say that to get at the aircraft at RAF Hendon for photos and to get all the blueprints, etc, to model the aircraft for BoB, they had to fork out ‚£30,000 per aircraft to the MoD?

RAF92_Moser
07-13-2005, 08:18 PM
Originally posted by actionhank1786:

I think your interpritation of the scene is wrong.
If the same artist painted a picture, involving a certain companies billboard, with another companies plane flying about, the artist would most likely have to get the rights to the company name and likenesses and all that good stuff, before he could publicly sell the painting

Ahh, I see. I hate "all that good stuff".

Though, I've always wondered that we got our torpedo bombers that are not flyable, why can't we give them cockpits? I mean wouldn't Maddox have already violated their copyrights and trademarks blah-blah when he put the AI models in the game. Why haven't they sued IC? Why hasn't Maddox gone through with implicating cockpits.

Anybody got an explanation? I am really confused and missing something.

B0lter
07-13-2005, 08:38 PM
I'm not sure about aircraft in particular, but I work for the 3rd largest defense contractor on the US. We basicaly build just about every missile, radar and remote sensor the US Department of Defense commisions. They are paid for by DoD contracts with taxpayer money. However, the patents are on our corporation's name, not the DoDs or any of its branches.

We are bound by very strict regulations about foreign exports of products and any part of their technology. In that sense, the DoD has a lot of control over our products in the sense that we can't just sell them to anyone, hold them over the barrel for more money or threaten to stop deliveries. The patents belong to our corporation, though, not the taxpayers or the US government. I thought I'd share that with the boards.

On the other hand, though, to my knowledge we have never sought or gotten any royalties for the myriad digital entertainment's depictions of our products. In today's videogames you can't hardly see a missile being fired, a targeting radar's return or an infrared image whos patent my company doesn't own. Yet, we're not getting any money from EA (Battlefield/Jane's) or Eagle Dynamics (LOMAC) for those of our products likenes they model in their games.

Do you think Colt and HK get royalties for all of their weapons depicted on videogames? If they did, you wouldn't see M16s and MP5s in shooter games. You'd see generic rifles and SMGs instead. Think about it.

On the subject of publishing and it's dog-eat-dog aspects I keep hearing about: publish online directly.

Eagle Dynamics (LOMAC) had a very succesfull direct release of their flaming cliffs expansion. It would have been far more so if they hadn't gone with paypal, and had simply set a secure Ecommerce server that took creditcards. However, I got it no problem, and I can tell you that Ubi saw not a dime out of that deal. Box games are doomed, Half Life 2 and Steam proved the concept. Now all developers need to do is smell the coffee and get with the program.

PlaneEater
07-13-2005, 11:46 PM
If the same artist painted a picture, involving a certain companies billboard, with another companies plane flying about, the artist would most likely have to get the rights to the company name and likenesses and all that good stuff, before he could publicly sell the painting.


Nope. Not in the U.S. Artistic works such as paintings, drawings, photographs, movies, etc, are protected by the First Amendment.

PlaneEater
07-14-2005, 12:01 AM
B0lter, the patents are in your name, but a patent isn't a copyright or a trademark. Patents deal with protection of an invention (like a better mousetrap) from somebody stealing your idea. It's a different department of property protection from what we're dealing with here.

I think you'll find that if you do some research, you guys don't hold the copyright or trademarks to 'AIM-120 AMRAAM' or 'AIM-9 Sidewinder', for example, as those are designations created and assigned by the DoD.

Also, your company has my thanks for not pulling a Northrop Grumman on digital works, since they really have essentially nothing to gain by doing so.

Northrop Grumman, like you guys, already deals with several billion dollars in revenue, but nobody understands why they believe it necessary to ruin a few dozen people's jobs and hundreds of thousands of people's enjoyment for a few grand from a game developer.

Nimits
07-14-2005, 01:28 AM
The F-, P-, B-, etc. designations, aircraft nicknames, and ship cannot (legally) be copyrighted or trademarked by any private company. Letter/number designations are created and assigned by the service departments or the DOD, and are not chosen or owned by the manufacturer. Only the designations given the aircraft by the manufacturer could possible be considered their property. For example, calling the P-38 the Lockheed Model 22 or the F-16 the General Dynamics Model 401 could be stepping on the company's rights, but the P-38 or F-16 designations themselves were assigned without any company input. Similarly, aircraft nicknames were chosen by the branch of service (or in the case of many WWII planes, the RAF), not the manufacturer. Ships are generally named after famous battles, persons, or past ships. The Enterprise (CV-5), Wasp (CV-7), and Hornet (CV-8) were not the first or last ships to hold those names.

Aaron_GT
07-14-2005, 05:34 AM
PlaneEaster wrote:

--The aircraft (and ships) were commisioned to US miltary specifications by the military with taxpayer money, were built with taxpayer money, operated with taxpayer money by the military, and named via military naming schemes and conventions.

Whilst the specifications were issued by the US Government, and the contract for development was often (but not always) issued by the US Government, the companies very often retained rights to the design, for example selling export versions of them. The contractual arrangements, unless the explicitly indicated that the US Government had exclusive rights to the design did not convey such a right to the government, as any rights not explicitly conveyed to the government would be held by the companies involved.

An analogy might be if the US Government asked Microsoft to create a super secure version of Windows. This would not mean that the US Government, nor the public, would have rights to read the code.


--The vehicles (planes and ships) played a pivotal part in world history, a history that belongs freely to every person, much the same way the Apollo capsules (built by North American), the Lunar landers (built by Northrop Grumman), and the Saturn IV rockets (built by North American, Boeing, Douglas, and IBM) did in putting humans on the moon.

Now you are getting into fair use, which is not an explicity constitutional right, as it requires that it you demonstrate to a court that you have a right to the use of intellectual property over and above the right of the holder of copyright, trademark, etc. to restrict the right. In the case of using images of a particular plane in the illustration of a historical event precedent would indicate that you would almost certainly win a fair use case. The grey area is where the depiction is not for the primary use of illustrating history. The argument could be that IL2 is a simulation of history, and the depiction of the aircraft is secondary to this purpose (which would allow fair use). The other argument is that the depiction of a particular aircraft would be one of the prime reasons for being in an entertainment product, in which case fair use would not apply.

Aaron_GT
07-14-2005, 05:36 AM
Nope. Not in the U.S. Artistic works such as paintings, drawings, photographs, movies, etc, are protected by the First Amendment.

Not in the way you seem to understand it. You are allowed to use copyrighted images where fair use is demonstrable, but you have to demonstrate the fair use - the right it not automatic. Fair use cases have set precedents, so where an trademark is depicted incidentally to some other event, everything is fine. Often parody is protected.

Aaron_GT
07-14-2005, 05:41 AM
Planeeater is right I think. Grumman owns Grumman and that's about it. the US government owns F4F, etc.

Grumman is, I assume, trying to assert the rights over the visual representation of its aircraft, not over the designation (which is owned by the US Government). Whilst the aircraft may have been designed to a US Govt specification the argument would be that the expression of that specification is either copyright or trademarked.

Now I don't think that they could really assert trademark rights as the F4F isn't sufficiently distinct to really fall into being trademarkable, plus if you don't assert trademar k rights you eventually lose them. So maybe it is just the use of the the name (which is a trademark) that is the problem?

Aaron_GT
07-14-2005, 05:43 AM
Yet, we're not getting any money from EA (Battlefield/Jane's) or Eagle Dynamics (LOMAC) for those of our products likenes they model in their games.

A depiction of a patented product doesn't use the patented technology, so nothing would be payable.

gombal40
07-14-2005, 07:03 AM
Again they will wait till the point of no return than hit.

That's why 1C caved in. They could not afford all the expences not making money.

This kind of games is like milk. Only good for 2 weeks.
Sales i'm talking about
So it's 1c to look over the yearbooks.
Get 1 share from 1c (about the cost of a beer)

In that case you have rights.