What's Your Opinion?

Believe it or not, the Office of the UK Secretary of State for Defense has objected to The Flying Cloud. What a very strange thing for them to do! Read the latest news and updates, offer support and suggestions, and post your comments here. But remember to be civil, because we're all gentlemen here.

Does this picture infringe on the RAF's intellectual property rights?

Yes, of course it does! The RAF is famous for flying airships with penciled-in blue and grey roundels!
No, the Office of the UK Secretary of State for Defense is indulging in a bit of casual bullying here.
Total votes : 15

What's Your Opinion?

Postby PaulGazis » Fri Mar 30, 2012 10:37 am

Episode001.jpg (20.68 KiB) Viewed 3561 times

The Office of the UK Secretary of State for Defense has alleged that this image infringes on their
intellectual property. At least I believe this was the image in question. I don't want to claim absolute
certainty lest I inadvertently libel a large government organization armed with lawyers and nuclear
weapons -- always a bad combination. Since we're all gentlemen here, I will do my best to refrain
from sarcasm, but it's difficult to see how this bold allegation can possibly be defended.

- Was it the airship? Do they claim it's a representation of one of their current aircraft? Does the RAF
have secret plans to bring back dirigibles? That would be way cool!

- Was it the 'R-number'? Even the most casual search of the Web will show that these were applied to
several civilian vessels, beginning with the R-36. Are they still feeling badly about the R-101?

- Was it the background image of the sky? Do they feel that John Gillespie Magee's immortal poem
High Flight gives them claim to any and all pictures that portray the 'tumbling mirth of sun-split
, the 'footless halls of air', and/or the 'high untrespassed sanctity of space'?

- Was it that grey and blue roundel? Are the forces of the Crown planning to change their colors in the
near future? Or do they wish to lay claim to all round insignia with three concentric circles, and plan to
challenge the Belgian, French, Peruvian, Greek, Egyptian, Bolivian, Brazilian, Burundian, Chadian, Congo,
Cote d'Ivore, Bahaman, El Salvadorian, Argentinan, Indian, Iranian, Paraguayan, Sierra Leonian, Spanish,
Romanian, Turkish, Yemeni
, and Inutoland Air Forces (as well as Target Merchandise), for infringing on
the RAF's justly famous red, white, and blue roundel? Wait... I guess they did go after Argentina :)

Vote in the poll, make you opinions known, and if have any idea what they could possibly have been
thinking, please feel free to post your theories here! The wilder the better... provided they're polite.
We do wish to maintain a level of civilize discourse.
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Location: California

Re: What's Your Opinion?

Postby Mutabilis » Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:25 pm

You got some good arguments here. Come to think of it, that puts the declaration of war in 1939 into a whole new perspective. Why you ask? Just look at this picture:

http://www.raeer.com/images/full/32135i ... n-Heer.gif
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Re: What's Your Opinion?

Postby harrier » Sun Apr 01, 2012 7:26 pm

Would the person who voted "Yes" explain their thinking, please? I'm really baffled as to how a pencil sketch "without any red colouration" can be considered to infringe any (putative) intangible property (1) in any RAF inignia.

(1) "Intellectual property" is a term that makes no sense whatsoever (and I argued so in my IP law exams). "Intangible property" makes a little more sense, and helps to focus the arguments for/against the existence of such concepts.
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Re: What's Your Opinion?

Postby PaulGazis » Mon Apr 02, 2012 4:08 am

harrier wrote:Would the person who voted "Yes" explain their thinking, please?...

I suspect someone was being sarcastic there. I was tempted to cast a similar vote myself to get things
started :)

Oddly enough, I posted a query on one of the webcomics forums and someone came right back and said,
in effect, "Of course penciled-in grey roundels are IP of the RAF!" I suppose this is possible. Perhaps
they ran out of paint while they were trying to stave off the Hindenberg Offensive...

I like your suggestion regarding terminology. 'Intangible property' seems like a significantly more coherent
concept than 'intellectual property', whatever that is. Living in Silicon Valley, we encounter these things on
a daily basis. I suspect I've run into these things as often as the boffins at the Office of the UK Secretary
of State for Defense, and this experience has led to a certain amount of cynicism. All to often, judgments
seem to follow the venerable legal principle "Opulentia facit recta" ("Might makes right") with victory going
to the side with the most financial staying power.

With this in mind, as I noted elsewhere, I've started going through all the graphics one-by-one to change
any questionable ones before I begin... tah dah!... the Long Awaited Ebook Project. In the process,
I'll almost certainly make some changes to the heraldry of the Royal Naval Airship Service. Or I could just
use the Union Jack -- I don't believe they're allowed to complain about that :)
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Location: California

Re: What's Your Opinion?

Postby Thalass » Sun May 27, 2012 3:14 pm

This is crazy. If you were building aircraft and splashing the RAF colours on them, then sure that would be bad. But this? Really.

Definitely a case of bored bureaucrat, i think.
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