10th apr, 2008

Trademark bomber

Now this is interesting. 


Via Boing Boing i caught wind of a developing dispute about aircraft names. A guy called John McNiell has done some very nice 3-D models of WW2 bombers, eg. The B-24. These 3-D models were posted on the Turbosquid website but later removed when Lockheed-Martin used DMCA to get the models removed. Lockheed-martin has registered B-24 as a trademark which enables them to remove McNiells models. As EFF´s Corynne McSherry notesis perplexing that this mark was granted in the first place, given that the term “B-24” is nothing more than a U.S. military model number used to describe the plane itself (descriptiveness is a traditional basis for rejection; that’s why you can’t register a trademark on the use of the term “cyberlaw” in connection with the practice of technology law.” 


So the question is: is the takedown legal or not? Lockheed-Martin does not sell the bomberplane product anymore or spare parts(?) so why do they want to control the use of the name… ah i see the merchandizing rights. Furthermore the pictures do not infringe the trademark as Lockheed claim which is a word mark as far as I see it. Interesting part is that the trademark was applied for in 2001…not in 1944 where the bomber was in service.


A very interesting case….all you trademark lawyers out there please enlighten me!

Leave a response

Your response: