When did the EAA become money grubbing bullies?

Discussion in 'Hangar Flying' started by radfordc, Nov 30, 2019.

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  1. Dec 3, 2019 #61

    Aviacs

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    I tend to look more to AOPA for that and find them more personable.
    Having 2 strong organizations, with one focusing on private rights to build airplanes is good, though. We also may tend to forget how much practical information on building airplanes is available from the organization and museum, and how accessible it is to members. Still valuable even in the internet age.

    Well put, and some parallels: For years, the not-for-profit, and the Poberezny family owned for-profit elements of "EAA" were intermingled.
    It may all be NFP now, my interest in searching has declined. Maybe someone else paid better attention over the decades.

    smt
     
  2. Dec 3, 2019 #62

    Kyle Boatright

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    I should be so lucky as to be waterboarded by an attractive 22 year old woman with a beer bong.
     
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  3. Dec 3, 2019 #63

    mcrae0104

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    I say, I say, that band's name is copyright infringement, son! Brand die-lution, I say.
     
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  4. Dec 3, 2019 #64

    Victor Bravo

    Victor Bravo

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    I was referring to Foghat... not Foghorn :)

    (that's a joke, son)
     
  5. Dec 3, 2019 #65

    Wanttaja

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    I'll admit I'm weak, as far as copyright v. patent v. trademark.

    Though I would think the ability to confuse the public would be a primary factor. I just don't see people having trouble telling "Beerventure" from "Airventure."

    When did EAA file the trademark paperwork? I did a search of Sport Aviation magazine archives, and the first mention of "Airventure" in regards to the EAA was in 1998. There's a group of summer camps in Texas called "Kidventure," yet according to the SOS lawsuit, EAA claims that as a trademark as well. The Texas Kidventure operation claims to have been operating since 1994...several years before EAA's public use of the term.

    When I did a search for "Airventure" in the archives of EAA Sport Aviation magazine, I found the first mention in May 1993.

    In an article written by a representative of the Evergreen AirVenture Museum, in McMinnville, Oregon.

    According to Wikipedia, Evergreen changed its name in 1997. Wonder if they sold "Airventure" to EAA?

    Ron Wanttaja
     
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  6. Dec 3, 2019 #66

    12notes

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    First things first, trademarks are NOT like copyrights. You retain copyright if you filled and do nothing about it for decades. You lose a trademark if you don't vigorously defend it after it's filled.

    EAA trademarked Airventure in 1997. Since the museum mentioned changed their name that same year, I would imagine some sort of arrangement was made between the two, but not necessarily.

    Much like the EAA fly-in now known as Airventure had been going on for 50 plus years, the Texas operation now known as Kidventure may have changed their name in the last 22 years, even if they have held it since 1994. I don't know this operation, I have no idea their history. But I'm not sure why Kidventure as aviation related activities would have made sense as a name before the Airventure name was well known as the EAA fly-in.

    Having a beer event just outside of a trademarked event called Airventure, calling the event Beerventure, changing your logo to a similar trademarked logo of that same event owner, then selling merchandise with the name and logo, and continuing to do all this after a cease and exist letter is sent warning of the infringement is about the stupidest thing you could do as a business owner who didn't want a trademark lawsuit. This may stand a chance of becoming a literal textbook example in the future.

    I understand they may have wanted stick it to the EAA, but they've done this in about the stupidest way possible to cause minimal, if any, damage to the EAA while opening themselves up to significant loss.

    I understand some of you may like the Beerventure event, but the people who run it have made some of the worst possible decisions here and have brought this on themselves. They pushed the infringement to the point that forced the EAA to defend their trademark (rememberr it's defend it or lose it with trademarks), then ignored warnings to stop. They don't have a "first use in commerce" defense, as that only applies to a company that actually used the trademarked term first, "first use" copyright defense isn't applicable to trademarks.
     
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  7. Dec 4, 2019 #67

    pictsidhe

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    Minimal damage to the EAA?
    Google the story, read the comments on some random hits.
    Does that really look like minimal damage? This is a PR disaster for EAA. Yes, there are some on the EAA side, but it's definitely a minority.

    They aren't copying the trademark and running a rival event, they are parodying it. They are selling beer, not an airshow. This puts the case into a grey area. Personally, I suspect the law will side with SOS, but I could be wrong. If it doesn't, they will overwhelmingly win the public opinion debate...
     
  8. Dec 4, 2019 #68

    Dana

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    SOS couldn't have paid for such great advertising. Think of all the people who never heard of them who are now saying, "I gotta check them out next year!"
     
  9. Dec 4, 2019 #69

    Toobuilder

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    Yep. There are some long time EAA members ready to drop their memberships and send the dues to SOS for their legal defence. EAA probably has to fight this thing, but it is going to cost them a LOT of goodwill.
     
  10. Dec 4, 2019 #70

    BJC

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    You may be correct, Too, but I would bet that the vast majority of EAA members will, without independent thought or any awareness of the history, default to supporting EAA’s position.


    BJC
     
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  11. Dec 4, 2019 #71

    cluttonfred

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    They didn’t need to fight it, I have been to Oshkosh and never even heard of it. And who is responsible for the bad blood going back to the land grab? If an association tried to buy my land, I turned them down, and then they got it via eminent domain....
     
  12. Dec 4, 2019 #72

    pwood66889

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    Like I said - I'll be interested in how it all comes out.
     
  13. Dec 4, 2019 #73

    dragon2knight

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    I went to Osh for the first time this year and met a friend there at SOS....can't say it's my kinda place, but it did seem to attract a crap ton of people, more than any other place I noticed outside of the main grounds. I know nothing about this story but I do have a business with trademarked items and understand EAA's side here on that alone. This seems like a no win situation for them either way and SOS just got a ton of free (not counting what they're paying for their defense of course...) publicity. I too am interested in how this turns out.
     
  14. Dec 4, 2019 #74

    bmcj

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    That’s a typical internet assumption, but it could very well be that the malcontents are in the minority, but are the most vocal, at least in the highly visible forum environments.

    (By the way, my choice of the word ‘malcontent’ is not intended to carry a negative or derogatory connotation... it was just to mean ‘dissatisfied’.)
     
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  15. Dec 4, 2019 #75

    12notes

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    Yes, I meant minimal damage. EAA membership will be up and more people will attend Airventure next year, barring an economic downturn. This is minor internet outrage, which will be pretty much forgotten by next July. There's probably a 100:1 ratio for people ranting about cancelling membership over internet outrage issues to those who will actually follow through. As for not attending over this, the ratio is much higher.

    The parody defense doesn"t even come close to applying here. This is textbook dilution.


     
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  16. Dec 4, 2019 #76

    TFF

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    Environment wise, something like SOS , as a business, at the time of Oshkosh is almost a given. Oshkosh city closes at 9:30. The only thing open, I have found, is the a Perkins and it’s required to be open 24 hours. You have a hundred thousand people descend on a city from all over the world for a week, and it all closes at 9:30. It’s just a small college town otherwise.
     
  17. Dec 4, 2019 #77

    billyvray

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    Yep. Next time I go I'll be sure to seek out SOS now...
     
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  18. Dec 7, 2019 #78

    Ricknsharon

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    First off, I'm very disappointed reading the newspaper article about EAA using eminent domain to grab land from from SOS. That should not be used for these types of situations, even if done under the guise of "they needed it for security purposes". Secondly, EAA suing SOS regarding shirt logos, etc. is total BS. I don't see enough correlation between the two to make a case. It's very weak at best. Maybe they should try living up to Dick Knapinski's last words of the newspaper article "We all want to be good neighbors," instead of being a money hungry giant that thinks it now can control it's neighbors.

    Since 1974 I've been attending Oshkosh (as I still call it). I've brought my two boys and daughter to it every year, always enjoyed the family camping time while there. Kids need to see all aspects of life, they will see it anyway so why not let them see it and talk to them about it when they're young? All three turned out great and we still enjoy getting together and always make a stop at SOS for some food and a beer. I've even encouraged them to try the beer bong (no marijuana involved Victor Bravo, haha) just so they can see how fast $15 goes down the funnel. It's 99.99% good clean fun, and as someone already said there's more skin shown on the airshow grounds. Seldom do I see anyone have too many beers, not any more than I see in the EAA Campground. I've made many friends while there from around the world, thanked many military pilots who needed some R&R and even met a few celebrities incognito.

    I just found out about this tonight and plan to write a letter to EAA regarding it and suggest for their own good to back off. They can't afford to lose memberships, the numbers are down from what it was years ago and they have some mighty huge budgets that need to be filled every year just top stay afloat. The focus of the "members convention" has changed so much over the decades and they have lost the reason it was first started. Homebuilt aircraft hardly get any recognition anymore during the show. It's all about the big corporate sponsors and "VIP" tents and seating. Personally I wish they had never grown to what it is now, I liked it better 35 years ago, but I guess that's progress for you.
     
  19. Dec 7, 2019 #79

    BJC

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    +1


    BJC
     
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  20. Dec 7, 2019 #80

    BBerson

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    In his column in 1983, President Paul said they could have stayed with homebuilts only and have just 5000 members, and that was unacceptable to him.
     

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