General Question

CakeBaker's avatar

Copyright on models?

Asked by CakeBaker (4points) September 3rd, 2008

Does anyone know if you can make models of existing cars, boats or planes without requesting permission from the original manufacturer or can you just go ahead and do it?

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4 Answers

eambos's avatar

Are you selling the models for profit? If not, I do not see why you shouldn’t be able to.

marinelife's avatar

To sell commercially? You cannot.

Lovelocke's avatar

Coleco had an “expansion device” for their Colecovision that allowed it to play Atari 2600 games. That would be like making an expansion on the PS3 that played Nintendo Wii games, basically. Atari took Coleco to court, but because Coleco built their “Atari Expansion” using 100% “Over the Counter” components, courts ruled in favor of Coleco because no “patents” were violated.

That said, as far as “models” go, as in, hobby models, you would have to keep it to yourself as a hobbyist’s project. If you intended on selling the miniature model, then you would have to be generic in the branding of it. (Instead of calling it a Honda Fit, you’d have to call it the Japanese Go-Wagon” or similar).

dabbler's avatar

Interesting case @Lovelocke, I wonder if today Coleco would have run afoul of the DMCA for reverse-engineering the Atari…

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