New Heritage unit addition

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Re: New Heritage unit addition

Postby DutchRailnut » Thu Nov 30, 2017 6:27 pm

ConnDOT bought the rights of Premier underwriters years ago , I don't think the NHRHTA has enough cash to have made that purchase.
If Conductors are in charge, why are they promoted to be Engineer???

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Re: New Heritage unit addition

Postby Tadman » Fri Dec 01, 2017 3:21 am

I don't know who has those rights, but it's not necessarily sold for a big amount of cash. Could be $10. A written contract requires consideration, and $10 is considered by courts to be valid consideration in exchange for property.
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Re: New Heritage unit addition

Postby Ridgefielder » Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:18 pm

Tadman wrote:I don't know who has those rights, but it's not necessarily sold for a big amount of cash. Could be $10. A written contract requires consideration, and $10 is considered by courts to be valid consideration in exchange for property.

Exactly.

Take a step away from us railfans and think what, exactly, the brand image of the NYNH&H was worth in, say, 1975. A company that had spent ~15 of the past 40 years in bankruptcy, only to be folded into a company which in turn went bust in the largest corporate bankruptcy in American history. The trains were dirty, the former CEO was in prison for embezzlement, and it seemed like the whole industry might be nationalized. Probably not a heck of a lot of what finance-types term "Goodwill" associated with the brand. :-D
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Re: New Heritage unit addition

Postby BandA » Fri Dec 01, 2017 11:53 pm

I don't think you can copyright the train colors & logo, only trademark them. If you don't maintain your trademark it could be challenged/expire. Hence why railroads maintain a few cars with old liveries. Unless it is considered art, then I guess you could copyright. Does the STB preempt the USPTO, lol?
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Re: New Heritage unit addition

Postby Greg Moore » Sat Dec 02, 2017 3:16 pm

Technically you can do both.
A copyright is when you've fixed an expressed idea into a fixed medium.

So the words you typed here for example, are automatically protected by copyright.

So I can 't collect the "best of Railroad.Net" and publish a book on my own.

So, a paint scheme, much like a building is protected by copyright.
HOWEVER, as you note, copyrights expire, trademarks don't.

Trademarks protect an expression in a particular field. The classic (though complicated) is Apple Records had a copyright on Apple when it came to music, and Apple Computers when it came to computers. But I could still have created "Apple Pie Company" that used an Apple as a logo.

So in the case of a paint scheme, I'm not sure the relevant case law.

My best guess is, if it's protected by copyright, you couldn't say, paint your car in a McGinnis paint scheme because you'd violate their copyright AND trademark.

Once it's out of copyright protection then they MIGHT be able to get you on trademark infringement, but among other things, they have to prove that a reasonable person might be confused into thinking you had their endorsement or something. Which, they'd probably win.

Briefly looking, my guess is the McGinnis paint scheme was probably protected under the 1908 Copyright act, which basically gave 56 years from the time it was filed. So you can use that.
For trademark I'd have to look, but my guess is it's still protected. So anyone, especially a RAILROAD trying to use it, had better make sure they have a legal right to do so.

And given that I've seen Metro-North locos (E7s I believe) painted in it recently, I'm guessing MNRR somehow owns or has obtained the rights.
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Re: New Heritage unit addition

Postby Tadman » Tue Dec 05, 2017 7:54 pm

Ridgefielder wrote:
Tadman wrote:I don't know who has those rights, but it's not necessarily sold for a big amount of cash. Could be $10. A written contract requires consideration, and $10 is considered by courts to be valid consideration in exchange for property.

Exactly.

Take a step away from us railfans and think what, exactly, the brand image of the NYNH&H was worth in, say, 1975. A company that had spent ~15 of the past 40 years in bankruptcy, only to be folded into a company which in turn went bust in the largest corporate bankruptcy in American history. The trains were dirty, the former CEO was in prison for embezzlement, and it seemed like the whole industry might be nationalized. Probably not a heck of a lot of what finance-types term "Goodwill" associated with the brand. :-D


Agreed. This is why my parents, especially father, never take the train. They grew up at points between Detroit and Chicago in the 50's, 60's, and early 70's. To them, passenger trains were broke-ass Penn Central runs or the South Shore, which is commonly known to be completely neglected from the Chessie buyout in '67 until NICTD took over. There is no goodwill in any of those brands. Those brands stood for absolutely awful service, completely busted trains, and crumbling stations. That brand equity is equal to that of the Romanian Communist Party or British Leyland. No thanks.
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