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Author Topic: Calling all busnut patent attorneys  (Read 2943 times)
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« Reply #15 on: November 08, 2011, 09:49:07 PM »

  Ferrari has gone crazy suing people over what they percieve as copyright infringement. Their logo, their name, even body shapes are copyrighted. A couple years ago a shop in France was raided, they had completed chassis and body work of replica vintage cars, using correct Ferrari engine, running gear, exact replica cars...all cars, tooling, everything was siezed and destroyed. About two years ago a guy was stopped in Italy driving a Ferrari replica built on a Pontiac Fiero. The car was siezed, and the owner was charged with counterfiting. I never heard the outcome but he likely got prison time. They have sued cases worldwide and won every case, so this is something that bears watching. Other companies have seen the results and are following suit. 

  I highly doubt GM would do anything, but they could, and they would win. If you get a letter telling you to stop, I would do so immediately. Actually, I would make and sell them, just dont tell the whole world. I think your somewhat safe here.
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MEverard
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« Reply #16 on: November 09, 2011, 05:39:04 AM »

Don't sell them to us. I don't think there is a problem with producing them. Give them to us free and we in turn will loan a friend money which we don't ever expect back.

Good Luck,

Mike
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Mike Everard
1960 GMC PD4104-4520
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« Reply #17 on: November 09, 2011, 05:59:18 AM »

 artvonne
 the guy in france was buying wrecked ferraris and using the engines ect to build ferrari 250 gtos they where exact copies
so good that ferrari had to list the serial #s as theres he built about 10-12 before getting in trouble and he never said they where
copys he just sold them as ferrari 250 gtos thats where he got in trouble but as i said his copy are now real ferrari as the factory could
not tell them from the real one and thay had a loss of imfo on serial # back then so told everyone that owned one to regerster it
with ferrari.  ps i love ferrari thats why i known about them about that time i built a all steal body of a gto myself
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john
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Jeremy
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« Reply #18 on: November 09, 2011, 06:31:56 AM »

The exotic car market is stuffed full of vehicles which don't have the provenance they claim - it's not just write-offs which are rebuilt in imaginative ways - it's quite common for perfectly sound 'lesser' Ferraris (330 GTs?) to be cut up and turned into 250 GTOs, and the same thing happens with lightweight E-Types, Cobras and all sorts of other things. Even muscle cars.

It is also true that some car makers have sued or otherwise prevented kit car builders from using their names and badges on replica vehicles, but that is a trademark thing and really a different issue. Ferrari are certainly known in the kit car world for taking a hard line against small manufacturers, but they aren't the only one. For instance I read a piece a year or two ago about the Chinese company that bought Rover, and thus MG brand. There's quite a few companies building MG replicas of various sorts, and apparently they were all shocked to suddenly receive cease and desist orders not long after the Chinese takeover went through. The story goes that the legal paperwork was hand delivered by messenger to each company at 4pm on Christmas Eve, with a response demanded by midday on 1st January.

Jeremy
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« Reply #19 on: November 09, 2011, 07:21:41 AM »

Like others have said, I doubt that you would be contacted by GM on a product that old and not manufactured for many years.  That said, they COULD come down on you if they wanted to.

All this discussion brought back memories.  I was doing some field testing with a customer who was a Honda Motorcycle dealer.  He attended a Honda Motorcycle convention in Las Vegas.  They shut off the lights and fired up a motorcycle and all the dealers began asking why they had brought a Harley to the convention.  When they turned on the lights, it was a new Honda model that they proudly announced that the engineers had duplicated the Harley sound.

You can guess the rest.  Harley came down on them!  The story was that Harley owned a patent on the sound and were going to sue.  I just did some searching and found this site that tells the story:

http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/2352/did-harley-davidson-patent-the-sound-of-its-motorcycles

As the article notes, Harley had a Trademark on the sound.  Not sure how you do that unless you file a sound frequency profile with the Trademark office.

I am not an expert, but I looked into Trademarks a while ago.  As I understand it, there are two levels of trademark.  One is where you simply claim the trademark for your item and always add the trademark insignia when you publicly use that name in a document/website/etc.  I did that for a long time on some names on my products but no longer make the effort except with formal documents (manuals, brochures, etc).

The second level is a registered TM.  That requires filing documents with the authorities and receive a TM that is registered.  Most large companies protect there names (and I guess sounds) with the registered version.

Sorry about my typical rambling Wink

Jim
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Jim Shepherd
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« Reply #20 on: November 09, 2011, 07:24:43 AM »

Yeah, I'll bet they don't even know they ever made coaches or who holds the copyright or if it's valid.

Is the medallion that you made for sale? Are you producing copies for sale?

They do now!!!  Now some smart, hungry legal beagle will find the discussion on Google and alert GM as to how they can make lots of money suing you.   Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy

Never should have asked.  Easier to beg forgiveness.  It's like buying a new tool; do you just buy it or ask Lois first?  I'm with the group that says no one knows about copyright and no one cares.
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Tom
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« Reply #21 on: November 09, 2011, 07:28:21 AM »

Good grief guys he falls under replacement parts and my daughter which is a attorney says go for it sale it as a replacement not a thing they can do

good luck
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Life is short drink the good wine first
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« Reply #22 on: November 09, 2011, 11:22:33 AM »

   

  I highly doubt GM will care, but if they did they could stop it.

  I dont know how Harley could claim any kind sound. Indian, Douglas, Vincent, Brough, and many, many others dating back over 100 years built V twin engines whose cylinders connecting rods shared a common throw, and all have the familiar skip beat any Harley has. It would be tantamount to GE trying to patent the sound of a fan.

  What Harely could go after, is if Honda made the claim their bike sounded "like" a Harley. Now they just crossed the line.

  I never understood why anyone would want to buy a copy of anything. If I wanted a bike that looked and sounded like a Harley, I'd buy one. If I wanted a car that looked and drove like a Mercedes, id own a Mercedes. Every time I see a fake Japanese Harely I just laugh. They did everything they could to destroy every motorcycle maker in the world by being technologically innovative, and in the end they end up copying the very things they set out to surpass. I suppose next we'll see a Japanese copy of a 4104. Lol.
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« Reply #23 on: November 09, 2011, 11:44:21 AM »

But the point is that Japanese copy of a 4104 would be a really good bus - it'd have much of the character and classic appeal of the original but with all the advantages of modern technology. I expect the same arguements can be made for Goldwings and the like (actually, I've always liked Goldwings - those Honda flat sixes are a work of art).

But it's an entirely personal thing; I would never have (for instance) imitation wood or fake marble in my house, because to me that stuff is bought by people who are cheap or who don't know any better. But I would certainly have a fake Lamborghini in my garage, even if I could afford a real one. Because I like the idea of owning a car with Lamborghini looks which I could actually use - rather than a real one which would be hopelessly unreliable, impractical, blisteringly expensive to run and generally hell to live with.

Jeremy
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« Reply #24 on: November 09, 2011, 12:14:25 PM »

So if GM insists that you not make the emblem then have it altered slightly so it does not inf infringe on them...

Make it with a big CM instead of GM
and spell GENERAL with a C so it would be CENERAL MOTORS

From a distance the C will look like a G

Anyone that buys one could modify the C to look like a G, but that would be after you sold it so you could not be responsible.



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« Reply #25 on: November 09, 2011, 01:09:57 PM »

Ha! I love that idea of altering it slightly though I guess you could still be sued with the idea of just keeping you tied up with expensive legal woes until you gave up. Coke has done that hundreds of times on their patented bottle shape and logo including the color scheme.  It's sort of like some cheap H.F house branded Central Pneumatic tools used to have a similar logo as the better brand Chicago Pneumatic. Hmm, I wonder why they changed?


Bottom line is that none of us would bear the cost of a suit or the hassle regardless of the many ideas to get around it or just risking it so the decision is up to the individual. Personally I would ask for permission first to sell and I'd bet I'd probably get it whereas just doing it might incur wrath. If it were only for my use I wouldn't bother and I'm sure nobody would care. I guess I had the idea that it was for personal use though that wasn't specified was it?
 
Today I asked an I.P attorney which by the way is the only type to ask since that's their specialty and the answer I got is pretty much the same as most have said, could be pretty risky and is very likely an infringement to use for commercial use.  The only question is, as paraphrased by Clint, "Do you feel lucky, punk?"  Grin

   

 
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« Reply #26 on: November 09, 2011, 01:42:26 PM »



John  Why worry. They will have to go out of the country to find any one that know es any thing about these.

You are a innocent bystander.

uncle Ned
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« Reply #27 on: November 09, 2011, 02:50:40 PM »

That was not a patent it was a copyright I doubt if anybody owns it now since the GM bankruptcy do some checking

All of the old GM's trademarks were sold to the current GM company as part of the whole bankruptcy process.  I highly doubt GM is going to be concerned about this use of the GM name.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #28 on: November 09, 2011, 03:08:20 PM »

Thanks guys, for all you response'.  I asked this kinda toungue-in-cheek, I don't know where she comes up with this stuff. 

I have gotten a real chuckle out of all the responses. Grin Grin

The medallion is still for sale and they will be available at the Arcadia Rally too.

I'm gonna wait for the letter from GM, and maybe I'm not selling them you're just loaning me money permanently. Roll Eyes

I like the idea of a copy of a 4104!! Next project?
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John Vickrey   -   Dearing, GA
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« Reply #29 on: November 09, 2011, 03:31:29 PM »

You would think that GM would be happy to have the free advertising that the emblems give. Grin
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