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Old 17-01-2011, 11:32   #1
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Legal Status of CM93 Charts ?

I am looking for definitive rulings on the legal status of the CM93 chart sets that are being used by a number of low cost or free PC charting programs. Please only independent legal or gov't, internet references as apposed to personal or vendor opinions!
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Old 17-01-2011, 12:09   #2
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Originally Posted by saildestiny
I am looking for definitive rulings on the legal status of the CM93 chart sets that are being used by a number of low cost or free PC charting programs. Please only independent legal or gov't, internet references as apposed to personal or vendor opinions!
My understanding is that these are " cracked" copies. Hence technically they break copyright

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Old 17-01-2011, 14:37   #3
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The most popular site for downloading CM93s just shut down a few days ago. They also had many other types of charts on their site. Someone in this forum posted what they said was a response from the owner. They said they closed it down because of pressure from the copyright holders. Which ones were not mentioned.

I think you'd find very few people that really believe downloading the CM93s is legal.

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Old 17-01-2011, 17:13   #4
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I always thought they were stolen property. Were they not?

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Old 23-01-2011, 13:19   #5
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The most popular site for downloading CM93s just shut down a few days ago. They also had many other types of charts on their site. Someone in this forum posted what they said was a response from the owner. They said they closed it down because of pressure from the copyright holders. Which ones were not mentioned.

I think you'd find very few people that really believe downloading the CM93s is legal.

-dan
Dan, the site is alive and kicking, although with another provider. Just google a few minutes.
I think we had 2 years ago also a discussion on the legality. As the maps are not maintained by cmap for the last 7 years but are in fact quite recent, how can cmap claim ownership but for the name?

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Old 23-01-2011, 17:25   #6
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Dan, the site is alive and kicking, although with another provider. Just google a few minutes.
I think we had 2 years ago also a discussion on the legality. As the maps are not maintained by cmap for the last 7 years but are in fact quite recent, how can cmap claim ownership but for the name?

Klaas
Thanks, for the post. I Googled. I found.

However, there is a common misconception that patents are good for 7 years.

Actually, in general a patent is good for 20 years. It can vary depending on the type of patent. But companies use various tricks. One is to file several patents on an item, but hold a few back. Then, before the original ones expire, file the remaining ones as new patents.

A copyright, in general, for work done for hire, lasts 120 years from creation date or 95 years from first publish date, whichever come first. (A copyright for an individual work lasts for the lifetime of the original author + 70 years.)

U.S. Copyright Office - How Long Does Copyright Protection Last? (FAQ)

CM93's are both patented and copyrighted. They have patents on the design and format. The actual charts are copyrighted.

My guess is that CM93's are still very much protected under multiple patents and copyrights.

-dan
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Old 26-01-2011, 11:45   #7
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Dan, I didn't say patents etc. run out after 7 years but that cmap has not maintained cm93 (the version 2) for the last 7 years. They also stopped selling v2 around 2004, because they switched to the more advanced and differently encoded v3.
Now, the whole idea behind patent and copy right protection is to ensure that the creator of the protected product gets income from his work. When cmap stopped selling and supporting the v2, they could not possibly get additional income from v2.
It seems a perversion of the law if abandoned products are still protected by patents and copyrights.
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Old 26-01-2011, 13:29   #8
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Dan, I didn't say patents etc. run out after 7 years but that cmap has not maintained cm93 (the version 2) for the last 7 years. They also stopped selling v2 around 2004, because they switched to the more advanced and differently encoded v3.
Now, the whole idea behind patent and copy right protection is to ensure that the creator of the protected product gets income from his work. When cmap stopped selling and supporting the v2, they could not possibly get additional income from v2.
It seems a perversion of the law if abandoned products are still protected by patents and copyrights.
Klaas
Sorry, so many people think a patent is good for seven years that I thought that's what you meant. My mistake.

A patent insures that an inventor is protected for the life of the patent to try and make money off of it. They may never make a dime off it. They may, finally, at the last year, find a way. They may make money the first year, and then not again until the last. Regardless, they are protected for the life of the patent no matter what their success or failure.

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Old 26-01-2011, 16:25   #9
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It seems a perversion of the law if abandoned products are still protected by patents and copyrights.
Klaas
That's one of the main problems with patent law. Patents are a government issued limited time monopoly to use an invention or design. In return the inventor has to share the best implementation of the invention via the patent application. The original purpose was to share scientific knowledge to advance general knowledge. I think patents are long past their effectiveness as a benefit to society and should be phased out.

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Old 26-01-2011, 17:01   #10
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That's one of the main problems with patent law. Patents are a government issued limited time monopoly to use an invention or design. In return the inventor has to share the best implementation of the invention via the patent application. The original purpose was to share scientific knowledge to advance general knowledge. I think patents are long past their effectiveness as a benefit to society and should be phased out.

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But, without the patent, what incentive do I have to invent anything if, the moment I come out with it, someone with better resources can simply take it and keep all the profit? Basically, large companies would then be the only people profiting by inventions. It'd just make it even harder for the little guy to rise up in the world. It's hard enough as it is.

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Old 26-01-2011, 17:59   #11
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But, without the patent, what incentive do I have to invent anything if, the moment I come out with it, someone with better resources can simply take it and keep all the profit? Basically, large companies would then be the only people profiting by inventions. It'd just make it even harder for the little guy to rise up in the world. It's hard enough as it is.

-dan
Dan,
That's the standard line on patents. In practice, it doesn't work that way. Patents stifle innovation, not encourage it. The vast majority of technology is protected as a trade-secret. This works fine for much of it. Patents are then taken to sabotage any competition and to make trades with when being sued for patent infringement. Government issued monopolies (patents) may be helping big corps, but in general they are hurting innovation and small companies. As a small technology company, it is almost impossible to know what large corp will have a patent that will either keep you out of competition or cost so much to defend that you couldn't afford to try.

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Old 26-01-2011, 18:33   #12
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Dan,
That's the standard line on patents. In practice, it doesn't work that way. Patents stifle innovation, not encourage it. The vast majority of technology is protected as a trade-secret. This works fine for much of it. Patents are then taken to sabotage any competition and to make trades with when being sued for patent infringement. Government issued monopolies (patents) may be helping big corps, but in general they are hurting innovation and small companies. As a small technology company, it is almost impossible to know what large corp will have a patent that will either keep you out of competition or cost so much to defend that you couldn't afford to try.

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I can see a small business that is hampered by other people's patents seeing it that way.

But, knowing individuals who have gotten patents, they definitely see it the other way around.

I absolutely agree that big business sometimes abuses the power and uses it to stifle.

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Old 26-01-2011, 18:53   #13
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I can see a small business that is hampered by other people's patents seeing it that way.

But, knowing individuals who have gotten patents, they definitely see it the other way around.

I absolutely agree that big business sometimes abuses the power and uses it to stifle.

-dan
Dan,
It is surely in the eye of the beholder. Since it is the government who is giving these rights, it should be done for the advantage of the people -- not the advantage of big biz. I've received patents while running a small biz and certainly used them to my advantage. That doesn't make them good for the country

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Old 28-01-2011, 07:32   #14
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I have found PaulL's and dacust and the other comments interesting. I suspect that the real answer is that until the nomnial owner of the Patent or Copyright (who I assume is C-Map, who I believe was bought by Nobletec / Boeing) sues for protection It is an open question. The other question attached to this is the public funding = public domain argument. In having worked for companies that had US Federal research grants I know that "if the Govt paid for it then they own it" and in the US that means it's in the public domain. Clearly most of the chart updates and any new soundings have been done by NOAA / USGG or the US Military. This adds that question to the discussion. I don't know whether that issue has ever been litigated in the UK as it relates to Admility charts?
Anyway, my guess is that low volume distribution of CM93 charts would probably not draw a challange from the organization that claims to own the patent or copyright but that a major commerical venture would. And at that point the courts would sort it out.
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Old 28-01-2011, 08:13   #15
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SD,
You are definitely right that it isn't settled till it is litigated. One thing about the govern'd owned stuff, if you republish it you can still copyright your work. Copyright covers the expression (or fixation) of the work, not the content. So a government chart printed with a box around it and fitted to a certain dimension is copyrightable.

This is not true where patents are concerned. They cover a non-obvious invention and gives exclusive right to use it for a period of time.

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