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RE: (erielack) Rights to EL name

Hank Sundermeyer asks:

> If I buy a EL logo boxcar or locomotive and 5% of the 
> purchase price goes 
> into the pockets of CSX as unearned profit, what other 
> purpose does it 
> serve?  Do they put some of this money back into public service by 
> supporting organizations like ELHTS or the ELHS or the ARHS 
> or any other 
> organizations that promote public awareness of railroads and 
> their history? 
> Why not?  The predecessor names would seem to be useless for 
> anything else.
> How have we let companies like CSX and other railroads who have done 
> everything they could to destroy the identities of their 
> predecessor roads 
> get away with turning around and gouging the public for using 
> these names?

[putting on my corporate hat]

The money going back IS earned profit off a trademark that they own. For example, Athearn has to cough up $$$ to Coke to make Coca-Cola delivery trucks. Nowadays, companies are VERY controlling of their image and the fact that they can license it as an additional revenue stream. So technically, it *IS* "earned profit."

[corporate hat off]

In the good old days, companies weren't as savvy (or money-hungry, I suppose) and let the logos be used without license fees. Though this does puzzle me - many of these logos (notably UP's) have been used on models for DECADES without a licensing charge - doesn't that set a precedent in the eyes of the courts? How can they start charging now for something that they've let be used for free since the 1930s?

	- Paul

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