Re: Food for Thought

Date:         18 Jun 97 02:36:57 
From:         swestin@ford.com (Stephen Westin )
Organization: Ford Motor Company
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In article <airliners.1997.1249@ohare.Chicago.COM> Gary Welch <garywelch@flex.net> writes:

> Boeing claimed a trademark (not a patent) on the profile.

No, I think they have a patent on the design. This is routine, say, in
the car business.

> I don't think
> any other planes have the distinctive hump.  I suspect the goal isn't to
> keep competitors from using the idea but to keep movie makers from using
> the profile in crash movies and to give Boeing approval rights for any
> other commercial usage.

I don't think the patent would cover such usage. I think it's done in
the car industry to block clones of a popular model. There may be some
effort to block third-party replacement body parts through design
patents, but I don't know. I suspect Boeing is guarding against the
possibility of cut-rate Chinese (or Indian, or Taiwanese...) 747
knockoffs; though folks might not respect the intellectual property
rights involved, building a long-range airliner that couldn't enter
the U.S. wouldn't be a practical commercial proposition.

--
-Stephen H. Westin
swestin@ford.com (spammers to abuse@cyberpromo.com)
The information and opinions in this message are mine, not Ford's.